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Flip Mino 8GB 

I have owned a Flip since the very first model, to me anyway, it is the best pocket camcorder, the latest software release has improved the compression algorithm when sending items to other people, making it even better.

click image to enlarge

Recently my own first generation Mino developed a fault, I was lucky the first time, a night to let the battery go flat and it recovered, then a few weeks later it did it again this time there was no recovery so this came along just at the right time.

The new Flip Mino 8GB measures 10x5x1.5cm and weights 100grams. It looks very swish to me; mine was black with all but the back a lovely matt black that does show any finger marks. Sadly the back is a shiny black but finger marks rub off it okay.

The right side has the on/off switch and wrist strap anchor point. The base has mini HDMI socket and tripod anchor point. The left side a slider that releases the Flip connector a chrome 2.5cm long USB connector that ‘flips’ up from the top to allow file transfers to the PC. The face has the lens and microphone mounted 1cm from the top.

This leaves the back at the top is the 4x3cm TFT, below this a slightly indented button on the left and right side, between these the rest of controls arranged in the ubiquitous five position joystick arrangement with the record button in the centre in red with a chrome surround.

All the Flips I have used have taken excellent images the early offerings in 640x480 and all the more recent one HD. There are two styles the slightly thicker Ultra and my favourite the Mino that uses solid a battery both have internal memory.

On first switch on you are asked to hold the red button to setup your device. First option set language, second set date, third set time, forth set tones on/off, fifth set recording light on/off and then finally save the settings, next time you can ignore the message and just point and press the red button once the screen have turned on to start recording.

The unit can capture up to two hours of HD video before you need to transfer files to a PC, however you can do the transfer as often as you like. The first time you connect to a PC the unit transfers the Flip software and thereafter everytime you plug in your Flip the software opens and shows you the files currently stored on your Flip.


click image to enlarge

The interface has not changed but now you get more options, for me anyway the most important is the ability for it to transfer a compressed file (approximately 1/7 of the original size to a server and then a link is sent to whoever you wish who can download or play the file, quality is excellent as the audio since the latest software upgrade in November.

As regular readers will know I tend to take clips at various jazz gigs (with permission) and the people who receive them all enjoy them and without any prompting from me remark on quality of those taken in daylight and poor (normal room lighting) at night. The zoom is of course still digital but this has become a lot smoother with later versions.

The internal memory used to support one hour of capture now they can support two hours with the version I was sent. The email option has now even better compression an 844MB 7minute file compresses to 57.5MB and that I make two fifteenths of the original size this is stored for you in the cloud for one month. You just send a link to the file and it can be downloaded at a time suitable to the recipient and not public like You Tube.  

Using the mini HDMI socket on the base you can play the clips directly on any TV that has a standard HDMI socket. Perhaps one of the most telling comments I have had was someone who said which channel is that and remarked on the clarity of both sound and video quality. I then showed him the Flip connected to the HDMI port he was speechless.

Doing my Internet searches found the Flip Mino 8GB (3rd Gen) at best price of £153.59 from the link below.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B004323H92?ie=UTF8&tag=gadge0a-21&linkCode=as2&camp=1634

http://www.theflip.com/en-gb/Products/mino.aspx

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Features2
Performance2
Value2
Ease of use2
Design2
OverallFlip Mino 8GB rated 84 out of 100

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