Sunday, August 16, 2009

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Review: RCA Small Wonder EZ209HD Camcorder

Since I have been increasingly including videos in my product reviews, it has become quite important to have a reliable portable camcorder. I was also having a problem with the record button sticking on my Flip Ultra, which caused me to constantly have extra footage to edit out, so I welcomed the chance to experience the RCA Small Wonder EZ209HD camcorder. I was extremely curious to try it since I had heard that RCA had made some improvements upon the previous model.



What I thought about the Small Wonder EZ209HD Camcorder:

1) When I first picked up this camcorder, I could not believe how lightweight and thin it was. It is easily half as thick as the Flip Ultra and significantly lighter. It is attractive, sleek, and compact enough to fit comfortably into your back pocket.

2) This camcorder is very user-friendly and you do not need to be tech-savvy to use it. Just press the red button to start recording and then again to stop.


3) I love that this camcorder is rechargeable so we can avoid the cost of constantly replacing batteries.

4) The Small Wonder has a high quality screen. I am very pleased with the resolution and brightness.

5) The microphone picks up and records sound nicely, even if the subject is several feet away.

6) With the Small Wonder you can still capture bright footage even under slightly low light conditions.

7) The ability to take still photos as well as video is a convenient feature, although I still like to have my SLR camera with me when I can.

8) I also like that I have 3 options for resolution settings. Since most of my videos are being viewed on the web, I don't need to use the HD setting sometimes, which in turn allows the camcorder's 256MB of memory to hold plenty of footage.

9) I am happy to report that I have not experienced any problems with the buttons sticking. I find the buttons are very accessible, but my husband who has much larger hands said that the bottom of the rim around the screen keeps him from pressing the "up" button with the pad of his thumb. Instead he has to use the very tip of his thumb.

10) The built-in software is organized into 3 sections . . . managing, editing, and uploading your videos. The management section is very user-friendly and the fact that you can upload your video directly to sites like YouTube without opening a new window is extremely efficient.

11) Because I had more than one video-editing software on my laptop, we used my husband's laptop to test out the software to avoid any potential conflict. Both my husband, who has not had much experience editing video, and I, who have used several different types of photo-editing software, did not care for the built-in Small Wonder editing software. It is very basic and not as user-friendly as it could be. Luckily, the software is not why a consumer would choose (or not choose) to purchase a particular camcorder.

Overall, I am extremely pleased with the RCA Small Wonder EZ209HD Camcorder. If on the next model, RCA can figure out how to accommodate larger hands and revamp the editing portion of the software, I think they will have a near-perfect product.

To read more about this camcorder's features and specifications, visit the RCA Audio/Video site.


Thank you to RCA for providing us with a review product free of charge.