New digicam and HD-camcorder review Pt. I

I go to a lot of rock shows, and what I like best about it is to take pictures and make some movies. Now my first (and only) digicam is a very old “Kodak Easyshare DX7630” which is about 7 years or so old. The quality of the pictures themselves are okay as it can do 6.1 Megapixel which is more than sufficient.
But of course in dark locations (which is usually the case with the bands I see) and not enough light sources a lot of pictures don’t work.
What’s even more annoying is the quality of the videos. Of course it’s only an extra, so you can’t expect much. But what you get is even less. Maybe something like 480 or so Pixels x whatever. Not even talking about the bad sound quality when it’s too loud (which it always is), it’s not the idea rock show cam, especially considering the lifetime of the recharge unit which gives up after one hour or so.

Now as I always wanted to do some movies of my own, I decided to get an HD-cam. Of course it shouldn’t be too expensive. Not expensive=bad quality? I thought so too, but I finally got the Rollei Movieline SD-50 camcorder (with SD/HCSC-card-system). I only got it a week or so ago so I haven’t had much experience with it yet. But I recorded some test videos and I’m going to compare the qualities between each resolution:
1. Full HD
2. HD
4. Web

I only managed to upload the test videos for the Full HD function as Youtube seems to have trouble with HD (haven’t tried the other ones yet as I only recorded them today and yesterday). So I’m going to find out how to convert and upload them for the next blog entry.

What can already be said about the HD-Cam is: In lightened environments, like during sunshine, the picture quality is pretty good, the sound is also okay (even though you’ll have the same problem with distortion in really loud environments). The zoom function is also decent, although I got the impression HD worked better than Full HD. The problem is that there’s a picture-stabilizer which works with any solution BUT Full HD. A strange decision of Rollei, but what do you expect for 130 Euros (including a small bag).

(copyright: Rollei)
The Rollei Movieline SD-50 in all its glory for a very good price

So here are the test videos in Full HD (different environments, standing still, moving, some monologue of myself, zooming function, etc.). The others will (hopefully) be ready soon.

The camcorder can also do some photos, but “can” doesn’t necessarily mean “can do well”. The quality (which is like 5 Megapixel) is even in good light conditions not that good at all. It’s all blurry and pixelated. So in order to give my old camera a goodbye kick (although I’m sure I’ll use it anyway for certain occasions), I bought myself another camera, the Fujifilm A220, for only 60 Euros.

(copyright: Fuji)
The Fujifilm A220 in its compact glory for a real bargain price as well

It can do up to 12 Megapixels (even though I don’t see any differences to 6, to be honest, only that the file size is way too big) and uses a 640×480 resolution for videos (so triple the quality I had with my old one). Another great thing is the size and weight (much smaller and lighter than my latest camera). Unfortunately this also means that the camera lens isn’t large either, actually smaller than my old one.

I took some pictures and made some videos and I’m going to upload them as well so that you get an impression about the quality. Of course it’s only a means to bridge the gap between the old cam (with better video quality) and a really good professional reflex camera. But due to money and time problems, that’s the best I could come up with.

So far I’m happy with my choices and we’ll see about the end results of video editing, comparing the different solutions in another blog entry (or more). Of course the biggest test will be when shooting and taking pictures at the Gamescom in Cologne, starting in four days.


About nufafitc

Being an avid gamer, cinemaniac, and bookworm in addition to other things the internet and new media present, I'm also very much into DIY music, rock and pop in particular. Writing short or longer pieces about anything that interests me has always made me happy. As both an editor for German website "Adventure-Treff" and UK website "Future Sack", I like to write reviews and news about recent developments in the movies, games and book industry.
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