Flip Video SlideHD Review

The Flip Video SlideHD is a great little pocket camcorder.  It allows you to capture those otherwise missed moments in a snap.  The easy operation means anyone can use it and the preloaded FlipShare software is a breeze to use.

The video above was made out of a few short clips in the FlipShare software in just a few minutes and then uploaded to YouTube directly from the software.  There are other social sites that integrate as well.  Unfortunately, image stabilization is not included on the SlideHD as it is on the new Flip UltraHD, which should make for much more stable video.  Once the video clips are captured simply flip out the USB plug and insert it into a USB port on your computer and in a couple of clicks those clips are imported and with FlipShare they can easily be stitched together for a cool video.

Operating the Flip SlideHD is about as simple as they come. The big red button is for record start and stop and the 2x zoom function is controlled with the + and – buttons.  There is a playback and trash button as well as the left and right navigation buttons and that’s all.  The battery lasts about 2 hours and the SlideHD will store about 4 hour of video, which should be plenty for most casual users.  If you are looking for simple then I can recommend the Flip SlideHD.  There are drawbacks to the simplicity though.  Zooming is very limited.  There is only a 2x digital zoom, meaning when zoomed in video quality is being sacrificed and 2x is quite short.  There is no still capture button, however the FlipShare software will create a still image in a couple of quick steps and the image quality is decent.  For low light conditions carry along a light source, because the is no on board light.  What is great, though, is that you can pack this thing along with you almost anywhere and you won’t have to say “I wish I had a video camera”.  Just pull out the SlideHD and start filming.

Playback is just as easy as everything else is.  You can play back video on the record view screen or flip the screen open to view larger and horizontally on the  full screen.  Simply use a finger to scroll through videos on the touch sensitive slide bar and tap the scroll bar to play and stop the video or simply touch the screen on the video you want to watch and then touch it again to stop play.  There is a HDMI output port for playback on an HD TV but unfortunately the cable is not included, so that will be an extra expense, if you want it.

Specifications

Optics

  • Sensor: CMOS
  • Lens: Fixed Focus – f/2.4; Zoom – Digital 2x

Recording

  • Recording Media: Internal Flash Memory 16GB Video Only
  • Video Format: Standard Definition – MPEG AVC/H.264; 1280 x 720 (30 fps)

Display

  • Display Type: LCD
  • Screen Size: 3″
  • Touchscreen: No
  • Add-on Lens: No

Features

  • Built-in Mic: Yes
  • Built-in Speaker: Yes
  • Built-in Light/Flash: Light – No; Flash – No
  • Accessory Shoe: None
  • Tripod Mount: 1/4″

Input/Output Connectors

  • Inputs: None
  • Outputs: 1x HDMI; 1x USB 2.0; 1x Headphone Out
  • Microphone Input: No
  • Headphone Jack: Yes

General System Requirements

Windows

  • XP, Vista, 7
  • Pentium 4 1.66GHz Processor or greater
  • 512MB RAM
  • USB 2.0 Interface

Mac

  • OS X 10.5
  • Core 2 Duo 1.66GHz Processor or greater
  • 1GB RAM
  • USB 2.0 Interface
  • Dimensions (WxHxD) – 4.13 x 2.17 x 0.98″ / 104.90 x 55.12 x 24.89mm
  • Weight – Not Specified By Manufacturer

Accessories

HDMI Cable: I mentioned earlier that there is an HDMI output on the SlideHD, but a cable is not included.  The Pearstone Gold Series HDMI video cable is a good option for a price that is not totally outrageous.

Power Adapter: When you are away from a computer you still need a way to charge the SlideHD provide there is A/C power available and if that is the case the Flip Video power adapter is a good option.

Case: Although the SlideHD comes with a soft pouch an inexpensive case is extra protection from that occasional drop when not in use and is not given as much thought.

On-Camera Light: An on camera light is essential in low light conditions and a CameraBright LED light that screws into the tripod mount should serve well for the Flip SlideHD.

Final Thoughts

You may have gathered already that I like the Flip SlideHD for what it is and that’s totally true.  For carrying in a pocket or purse and catching those near missed moment the SlideHD is hard to beat.  There are other pocket camcorders out there and sure they work well too, but the flip is probably the simplest out there and the quality is among the highest.  On the downside there is no expandable memory, very limited zoom, no image stabilization, has no built-in light source, and is a bit pricey at $199.90 at the time of this writing. Flip Video is the original compact pocket camcorder and continue to stay on the cutting edge, so as the old saying goes, ‘you get what you pay for”.

Flip Video SlideHD at B&H Photo / Video – $199.90

Comments

  1. says

    Great point about image stabilization. If you’re looking for the perfect (and inexpensive) accessory to stabilize your Flip, check out the readysteady at readysteadyvideo.com. It fits in your pocket and takes the shakiness out of your shots!

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