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Top Five Flash Memory Camcorders

Updated on August 19, 2009

Flash Memory for Video Cameras

Flash Memory Digital Camcorder

Camcorders with Flash Memory have been around a few years, but they're still one of the newest types of camcorder on scene. When we say camcorder with flash memory, we're talking about the type of memory card used to record the video, usually an SDHC card. This is not the same as the flash video format an Adobe Corporation file format used to store video clips. A digital video camcorder or dv camcorder needs to record it's video onto some type of media. The standard dv camcorder uses tape, typically miniture tape (mini DV camcorder) It looks like a little VHS tape and provides the highest quality video. There are other types of cameras that have built in hard drives for storing the recorded video, you don't need any tapes or cards. Still others use miniture DVD's to record their video, the movie is burned directly to a small DVD you can play in your player. Finally, the subject of this hub the Flash Memory Camcorder. Flash camcorders use a little memory card to record the video. Some have them built in, some have removable memory cards, some use both. You're probably wondering what the benefits are of each type of recording media, that could take a whole hub, but basically flash memory is rugged, and doesn't need the delicate mechanisms that DVD, Tape and hard drive camcorders need.. I based this on the top rated and top selling flash camcorders on Amazon there are more out there that didn't make the top five like the Panasonic flash memory digital camcorder, but are still good digital camcorders. If you're looking for camcorders under $200 there are a lot of bare bones ones in that category too.  These are basically point and shoot camcorders with built in memory.  You don't need to remove a card.  They have a flip out USB port that you plug directly into your computer.

Best Flash Memory HD Camcorder

Cannon Vixia HF200

One of the more expensive and best flash camcorders on the market the Cannon Vixia HF200 has a large feature set. At 13.9 ounces its relatively light for a camcorder of it's features. It records about 5 minutes of memory per gigabyte at the higher quality (24Mbps) and about 7 minutes of video at the lower video quality (17Mbps). Cannon recommends a class 4 or better video card.  It's a high definition camcorder, the video looks good, without a lot of overexposing of white or light colored areas. Sound is also good. The photo button and zoom control are located in a comfortable position, most of the video controls are on the LCD panel. It gets on of the best flash memory camcorder reviews and it's one of the top selling camcorders on Amazon

JVC Everio

JVC Everio GZ-MS120

This JVC flash memory digital camcorder the Everio is compact and easy to hold, it comes in three colors black blue and red. It is not a high definition video camera so you can get more video on the same sized card as a High Def model - about 14 minutes per gigabyte. Unlike some of the others it makes YouTube compatable video, with the included software you can upload your video directly to YouTube. The controls are touch screen. The outdoor video is of better quality than inside shots, but those are good too. Quality is good enough to view on a large TV, it just isn't High Definition.

Sony HDR-CX12 from Amazon

Sony Handycam HDR CX12

The Sony CX12 is one of the best of the flash memory camcorders in terms of video quality, it's also at the top in terms of price. In a flash memory vs hard drive camcorder battle it comes out about equal. It doesn't use SDHC cards but instead uses the Sony Memory Stick format, and comes with a 4 gig card in the box. It uses a 5 megapixel which gives excellent quality video in bright light and has a 12x zoom. There is some noise under low light conditions, but with a large loss of detail. It comes with a dock, which has a USB connector built in, not into the camera. You can also get a card reader for your computer and take the memory out and put it on your computer that way.

Vixia HFS10

Canon Vixia HF S10

Another Canon flash memory camcorder, the Vixia HF S10 is similar in features to the HF200 with a few exceptions. It's a little bit heavier (about 3 ounces) making it a little bit over a pound. The HF200 does not come with built in memory, the HF S10 does, so when you are looking at the price you won't have to figure in the cost of the memory. It doesn't have an eyepiece viewfinder that you can look through, some people don't like that anyway and never use it, they use the LCD screen instead. You should consider if that's a drawback for you. In place of the eyepiece is a control wheel, when you look at pictures of the camera it might appear to have the viewfinder but it doesn't.  It probably shares the title of best flash camcorder with the HFS and HF line of digital camcorders

Creative Vado HD

The Vado HD is the only camcorder under $200 on this list. As such it doesn't have a lot of the video quality and features that some of the more expensive flash camcorders have, but it might be the perfect fit for some people. It biggest feature is ease of use. It has a flip out USB connector so you can plug it right into your computer like it was a thumb drive. As a bonus it recharges while connected to your PC. The Windows software pops up and offers you the choice of automatically uploading to YouTube or Photobucket and the choice of uploading clips and editing them together. If you have a Macintosh computer you'll need to drag the files to your computer - it doesn't happen automatically.  It's a good choice for those that want to take some quick video for internet sharing.  The quality is good, but you don't have features like optical zoom with this camera.  It's made for ease of use.

Comments About Flash Memory Camcorders

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    • David Verde profile image

      David Verde 6 years ago

      @electronics, yeah I've got a Canon which I love. They seem almost too light if you're used to a tape model.

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      electronics 6 years ago

      I love the compact, portable size of these flash memory camcorders. Canon and Sony both have some great models.

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      Panasonic HDC-SDT750K 7 years ago

      This technology keeps getting smaller, better quality and lower price! I love it! Thanks for sharing.

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      Glen 7 years ago

      The sound quality is really bad so i have to use external mic.If you import the files using a Mac, you will have to render them threw iMovie than edit them on "After FX" or "Premier".

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      kims3003 7 years ago

      Great Hub with well researched information

    • David Verde profile image

      David Verde 8 years ago

      Looking at that camcorder, it seems that it doesn't have a flash on it, although it uses flash memory - the two things are completely unrelated, confusing, I know. Many camcorders can take still pictures but that's a secondary function, so many of them don't have a flash or an option for adding one. Looking at the specs of that camcorder I don't think you can add an external flash, since there's no way of triggering it.

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      Candace 8 years ago

      We got our daughter the Sharper Image Mini Camcorder. We just noticed there is no flash when she takes a pic at night or in poor lighting. Do we need a separate accesory?