Review – Flip UltraHD Camcorder

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I’m a blogger, and I have been a blogger for twelve years. My still photography has enhanced my website over the years, adding to the detail of the memories and the stories I tell. Every now and then, though, I get the desire to video blog, rather than type out my thoughts. With that goal and alternative format in mind, I started looking for a relatively inexpensive, easy to use, small and portable camcorder with which to record video entries.

My research lead me to the Flip UltraHD Camcorder. It came highly recommended to me by a couple of friends who have their own, and it’s been getting excellent ratings on the various technical and commercial websites.

While unboxing the video camera, it’s important to note that the rechargeable battery is packed in such a way as to be not entirely obvious – make sure you look for it under the molded cardboard packing material. What I like about the camera itself is, once the battery is in place, the entire product is very self-contained. The camera itself is charged, and the videos are downloaded to your computer, by the single USB plug arm that pops (or “flips”) out of the side of the camera. The necessary software is already loaded onto the camera, and loads onto your PC the first time you plug the camera into it. A wrist strap and cloth carrying case are also provided for the camera.

Using the camera is exceedingly simple. After pressing the power button located on the side of the camera, simply aim the camera toward what you want to record, and press the big red record button under the camera’s view screen. Zoom is accomplished with the plus and minus buttons, and fast forward and reverse with the right and left arrow buttons. A playback button and delete button round out the total controls on this very user friendly device. An HDMI port is also available, though the cable itself is sold separately.

I am quite pleased with the video and sound quality (though the one video I have at the moment is of my husband dancing to the Bee Gees, and he’d kill me if I posted it here as an example). I hope to record some photography-oriented tutorials in the near future, which will demonstrate the video quality. An Amazon customer recorded a video comparing the Flip Ultra to the Flip Mino, which you can view here. The particular model of the Flip UltraHD that I purchased has about 120 minutes of recording time on an 8 GB built-in memory card. The video output is 16:9 aspect ratio widescreen, HD 720p (1280 x 720) at 30 frames per second progressive scan, and records as MP4 files.

The quality of the camera itself is quite sturdy, and fits comfortably in my hand. Though light, the camera is not flimsy at all. It’s extremely portable and powers on in an instant, so you can be assured you will be in time to catch those irreplaceable candid moments. The provided software allows for basic editing capabilities (adding title and credit verbiage, cropping segments of the video, adding music). Uploading videos to YouTube, Flickr, or other video sharing sites is accommodated by the software as well.

I recommend the Flip UltraHD Camcorder for those folks who have basic video recording needs. It’s not fancy, but it does the job with decent quality for the price. My own simple video requirements will be provided for quite well with this particular camcorder.

Photo credits (all): Tiffany Joyce (who REALLY needs to get that light box set up for shots like these!)

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  • Kirsten A.

    Thanks so much for posting this great review. Our photography company is thinking of getting one to do some video blogging as well, and I think the Flip is a great concept. Glad to hear you like it.