I like to take videos, but either the quality is not good enough (when using my regular digital camera) or the camera is too big so that I don’t take it with me (my normal HD video camera). So today I bought a Flip Mino on taobao.com, a high quality video camera just a bit bigger than my business card. I first planned to buy one during my last trip to the US, but at BestBuy it was sold out and I could not find one shop in downtown San Francisco nor on SFO airport that sold it. They all told me to order it online!
The best thing about the Flip is not the design (I think they could use an Apple designer), but the usability. You click the on/off button and hit the record button to start recording. When you’re finished you click on the top part and a USB connector comes out. Plug it into your computer (both Mac and PC work fine) and you can watch the videos, edit them (software is loaded on the Flip) and immediately upload them to YouTube. Not Tudou, but if Flip should ever start selling this thing in China I think we should look at that.
It’s the simplicity that makes it brilliant to use. No need for cables, no need for additional software, just plug and play. Even my parents could probably use it :). And it’s small, so you just put it in your pocket. A simple but great gadget. There is also a Flip Mino HD version, but I decided to go for the standard one for now. The quality is excellent and the sound is amazing, especially if you compare it to the sound you get with a digital camera. I’ll put some videos on YouTube and Tudou over the next days, so you can see it for yourself.
Update: This is the first video I shot with the camera when I got home: http://www.tudou.com/programs/view/3ls9KprhAUs/
I’ve looked at this thing before and have never been convinced that it’s any better than using the video function on my camera.
Don’t video-sharing sites just compress the heck out of whatever you upload anyway?
Interested to see what you said about the audio being good quality though- as I think that’s somewhere that cameras definitely skimp.
BTW- I’ve found tudou to be pretty user-friendly, even for someone who doesn’t read much Chinese.
Here is my Tudou homepage.
Don’t know if I can comment little off-topic, but speaking of home-video websites, I can recommend Vimeo. Quality of an average – compressed – video there is better than at other sites, and they also support HD. The only snag is they use some technology that to this moment I was not able to find out how to store the videos on my PC. I do not mean stealing – just considering amount of data which need to be transferred for an HD transmission, it cannot be watched realtime even in Europe. China, even when using good proxy, is even much worse. But that is not a problem of vimeo.. 🙂