Review: Flip Ultra Video Camera
So, what is the first thing you do when you get a dead simple video camera? You take a video of your recent dental implant to send to your cousins in the UK! Imagine how happy my Doctor cousin was upon receiving such a wonderful surprise in their email.
What device am I talking about? The Flip Ultra video camera.
The camera, which is small enough to fit in a shirt pocket, weighs in at 5.2 oz. Very easy to carry with you to capture those precious moments.
I purchased my Flip from Amazon which at the time of writing was $117 US.
The recording time is 60 minutes on the Ultra at 640 x 480 resolution. The videos are saved in MPEG-4 AVI format. Did I say it was simple to use? Just point and shoot. The back of the camera has a 1.5" TFT LCD screen to see what you are recording. You start recording by hitting a red button in back of the unit. You can zoom in and out using buttons in back of the unit. Hit it again to stop recording.
Two AA batteries power the unit, which proves more than enough power for 2 hours of recording. You can opt for lithium batteries for a 5 hours recording time, if you so desire.
Transferring the videos to your computer is super easy as well. There is a USB port that swings out from the camera by sliding a switch. Plug it into your PC or Mac and the camera automatically loads the video into the Flip software on your computer.
Just browse to the device in Explorer or Finder and there are your videos. They also include an NTSC cable to hook the Flip to your TV for playback.
Overall I would say the Flip takes great videos for what it is. The Flip will not replace your family video camera. What the Flip does is give you the ability to take video where you normally wouldn't be able to.
Nick Blackman is a computer geek turned Mac Nut. He never meet a gadget he didn't want! :-)
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Reader Comments To Date: 16
You are enthusiastic about the Flip Ultra and so was I when I ordered the new Ultra HD. I even went $70 for an HDMI connector (the type recommended in the sparce Flip literature) to watch video of my newly born grandaughter on our plasma. Problem is my camcorder will not power on when connected. I sent a request to Flip customer support and got a reply on how to connect three connector (red, blue, yellow) cables! Clearly, no human being read my request. Do you have any knowledge of this issue with HDMI on the Ultra HD?
Bill, I don't have the HDMI version but I believe that the HDMI connection is only meant for direct playback on HD-capable video devices, and that you'll still need to use the regular USB connection to actually download the videos. Nonetheless, you're right, it SHOULD let you view the videos directly off the Flip so I'm not exactly sure what to say. Try hooking it up to a different TV and see if it works?
So, these little flips are not going to show good quality on larger tv's correct? I purchased the Ultra HD - do they play ONLY on HD tv's? Also, what type of disk do I need to record on?
Such basic questions I feel like an idoit for asking! haha
Totally legit questions, Tif! The HD in "Ultra HD" refers to the amount of video information it stores when it's recording. If you hook it up via HDMI and play it on an HD-capable TV, yes, you'll get a nice high-def image. If you hook it up to a regular TV or watch it on your computer screen, you'll get a regular video image. No worries.
In terms of storage medium, the device has its own built-in memory to save what you're recording. Each time you want to empty it so you can record more, you'll need to copy the data onto your computer, at which point you can burn it to DVD, email it to your Mom, whatever you want.
I recently purchased a 2nd generation of flip ultra hd, it worked fine when I first tried it, about 2 weeks ago. Then I havent touched it since. I used it today, took some footage, plugged it to my computer, and nothing! Computer doesn't detect the camera... which is weird because it did when I first tried it. Can you help? thanks
What happens if you insert the FLipHD into your lap-top and Flipshare Setup says "Please wait" but never seems to materialize
as that blue wave that usually shows activity, with installers?
I probably shouild have set it up when I first got the FlipHD,
but was in rush to download to lap-top at the time. Thank you!
Dave, I fixed it myself but thanks for being there! All Best, C.
There are no videos stored on my Flip and it's supposed to store 2 hours of footage. However, whenevr I turn it on, it says there's only 29 min 30 sec of record time left. Can you help me please?
Dave - tried to run my Ultra through our Vizio LCD flat screen and all I could get was a sort of loud buzzy "ghosty" picture, like it was close but not close enough. Used the provided Flip cabling and went into the AV inputs, then selected the appropriate AV channel, first 1 and then 2. Any ideas?
Patrick, have you tried hooking up your Ultra to a different device? That'd be a great test...
I just bought a Flip HD Ultra, can I play it on a TV with out HD. I don't have HD
The Flip should be here by Friday. Thank you for being there for people like me. An old Grandma that loves gadgets.
I have a flip ultra HD video Cam. My issues is my memory is full and when i try to delete footage it tells me there isnt anything to delete. And when i try to record it says no memory.
Can anyone tell me why the colors in my videos look fine when I play them back on my Flip Ultra HD, but once I transfer them to my computer they're all blue, especially skin tones? Everyone looks like Barney. I can't find anyone else who's having this problem.
I keep trying to E-mail my photos but they send back that it is to big to send. Is there a way to send this. Walt. Thanks for any help.
I had never heard of this camera until I got one for Christmas yesterday. Problem being, when I plug it into my USB, my computer does not recognize it. I've tried all three USB ports and it isn't the ports because they easily recognize my external HD. Do you know how I can fix this?
I do have a lot to say, and questions of my own for that matter, but first I'd like to say thank you, Dave, for all your helpful information by
buying you a cup of coffee!||
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