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114 of 114 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good quality and features for the price
Although I have a few cameras, this is the first camcorder I have bought. So I did quite a bit of research before buying, and I have not been disappointed.

This is a very reasonable camcorder for the price. Being a novice camcorder user, I love the Intelligent Auto setting which automatically switches between the different shooting modes to make sure you...
Published on 23 Aug. 2010 by Mrs. A. Day

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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Panasonic SDR S50
This camcorder looks great and is very easy to use. BUT the video quality is poor. Worse than my previous Panasonic DV camcorder. I had a chat with someone at a Panasonic shop who said that the picture will look worse if you are viewing it on an HD TV. Mine is, so I've no way of checking, but it seems to make sense given the increased pixels on an HD TV.

It's...
Published on 14 Oct. 2010 by simon


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114 of 114 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good quality and features for the price, 23 Aug. 2010
By 
Mrs. A. Day (Hinckley, England) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Panasonic Sdr-s50 Camcordersd Card, X78 Enhanced Optical Zoom, Wide Angle Lens, Ia + Af Tracking And Optical Image Stabilisation - Red (Electronics)
Although I have a few cameras, this is the first camcorder I have bought. So I did quite a bit of research before buying, and I have not been disappointed.

This is a very reasonable camcorder for the price. Being a novice camcorder user, I love the Intelligent Auto setting which automatically switches between the different shooting modes to make sure you capture the best image possible i.e. switching to portrait mode when it senses faces, or scenery mode when it detects large open or sunny spaces. It means you can just turn on the camcorder and start shooting automatically without thinking and still get good results.

But it does also have reasonable manual abilities. I don't use them that much as the automatic setting is good enough for me, but I do particularly like the Intelligent Contrast system which makes sure that reasonable detail is maintained when shooting with darker or lighter areas in shot so the main image is not overexposed.

I wasn't sure how good the image quality would be for a non HD camcorder but I found it to be quite adequate for my needs. The images are reasonably sharp and clear, and colour quality is also good. Image stabilisation is good anyway, but the camera also comes with Active Mode which adds extra stabilisation for filming when you are walking etc. To be honest, I have it in this mode almost permanently as it doesn't affect the image quality so there is no reason not to. I also loved the idea of the 78x optical zoom but was worried it might lose image quality being that zoomed in, but there was no loss of quality that I could notice; very good for anyone doing a spot of animal or bird spotting.

Having said all that, it does have one drawback. The camcorder does have a low light shooting mode but it does still struggle in low light conditions. The colours do not appear as sharp and the image can become quite fuzzy. I haven't found a way to compensate for this unfortunately. Also, most of the buttons are positioned reasonably though I often find myself hunting for the zoom control as it is closer to the viewfinder than I would expect.

One of the main bonuses for me though is the AF/AE mode which I have not seen on other cameras in this price band. Basically, it enables you to choose an object for your shot which is then used as the reference for focus and exposure. This means that the area you have chosen will always be clearly in focus even when moving, as long as you can keep up with it - particularly useful for filming a fast moving child! It is quite simple to use as well as there is a useful little AF/AE button on the side of the camcorder that you press to set this.

The camcorder is fairly robust and also pretty tiny which is a massive plus for me. It fits really snugly into my hand, but also fits into coat pockets or jean pockets at a squeeze. This does mean it might not be quite as user friendly for those with slightly larger hands though. In terms of how much you can record, I can normally fit about 2 hours worth of high quality filming onto a 8GB SDHC.

Overall, depending on what you are after, this is a great camcorder for the money. It is not a HD camcorder so don't expect super high quality images. Personally, I just wanted a camcorder that I could pick up quickly, point and shoot and get good results, plus fit snugly into my bag without any effort. This camcorder fits the bill completely.
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56 of 56 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Good, just one problem., 27 Jun. 2010
This review is from: Panasonic Sdr-s50 Camcordersd Card, X78 Enhanced Optical Zoom, Wide Angle Lens, Ia + Af Tracking And Optical Image Stabilisation - Red (Electronics)
It's a brilliant camera, light, affordable, great battery life, 78x optical zoom!! it's just not HD!! I thought it was when I ordered it, but even though it's not, it's recording quality is very good. I like it very much, and think it's the perfect family camera.
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100 of 101 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great little camera for the price...!!!, 17 May 2010
By 
S. Blackwell (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Sorry, I disagree with the previous review...

The battery just clicks into place, it takes 30 seconds to setup and everything is fine...!

If you are on a budget and can't stretch to a High Def camera this is the one for you. You can get them for around £180 BUT you will need to buy your memory card seperately... don't forget. A Sandisk SDHC 8Gb/16Gb class 2 is all you need for standard definition and you can pick them up for £10/£20.

It has many good fuctions like the X78 Enhanced Optical Zoom, Wide Angle Lens (16:9), Face Tracking and Optical Image Stabilisation but with full zoom you will need a tripod in my opinion.

Still camera option is there to save carrying two gadgets around but will never replace a standard digital camera.

Best £180 Standard Def camera on the market...
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Panasonic SDR S50, 12 Jun. 2010
By 
Mr. Nicholas Wyer (Dorset, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I was very pleased with this cheap and simple model. Nothing fancy to it, but it does the job all I want it for is to record simple memories with the family, it's so easy to use my 8 year old uses it. Good value.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Easy to use, 9 July 2010
By 
D. Swann "swannie" (Kent UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is a very eady to use camcorder which with its small size/weight makes it ideal for taking asay on holiday. The results are of good quality. The lack of a ciewfinder is not really a problem as the screnn is clear in all but te brightest light.

There is only one small niggle the supplies software will not work with Windows 7 64bit and as yet there is no "fix" on the website so its back to basics using a video editing program etc.
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44 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exactly what u want., 21 Jun. 2010
This is the basic model the S50, the others are T50/T55/H85, but with Panasonic less is usually more, a lot more!
the other models differ in one major aspect and that is they all have hard drives, u may think that a hard drive is better but it is definitely not! and the reason is simple, they have memory that can record for many more hours of filming that u will never need, yes the hard drive is more memory but the cheap 16Gb SD card can record up to 15 hours continues filming which makes the hard drive completely redundant, other very good reasons to get the S50 are: with no hard drive its much lighter on your hand, the battery will last significantly longer, there are no moving parts to break and fail, the hard drive makes a low humming sound that is audible in quiet environments which the SD card does not, the grip is much easier without the drive .....etc etc.
That covers the comparisons with other models with hard drives, as for comparisons with other makers, i can only say that this product is everything u could want in a camcorder! i couldn't think of anything else i could ask from it, if anything it shines with its incredible zoom (X78) thats way too much but great fun, so unless your Michael Mann remaking the master piece 'Heat' then this camcorder will be exactly what u want, i will now wait for Panasonic to send me a check for this review, i wonder if i will have to wait long?
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars great zoom, 30 Oct. 2010
This review is from: Panasonic Sdr-s50 Camcordersd Card, X78 Enhanced Optical Zoom, Wide Angle Lens, Ia + Af Tracking And Optical Image Stabilisation - Red (Electronics)
Very impressed by the stunning zoom capability of the lens, especially in such a small and lightweight piece of kit. On the sea-shore, could zoom in to a boat out at sea you could not even see when at wide angle view !
Of course, picture quality is not the best, and it is a shame the input to the computer is not of a better quality. Looking at the recordings directly to the TV the images are clear and sharp. Put them on the computer and view them and they are awful.
I am told I need a fire wire connection to get better quality.
But I am impressed by the still picture ability, even frames taken from a movie sequence, copy and print out at reasonable quality.
Lots of choices on the on screen menu are far from intuitive to a non-gadget oldie like me....almost need the somewhat un-clear instruction manual with me to know how to replay or whatever.....
Good value for money, very light to carry in your pocket, and with a higher capacity extra battery ( the one supplied runs out pretty quickly) I would gladly recommend it.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Panasonic web cam, 15 July 2010
Lovely little camera, very light and easy to carry around, great picture quality too! I'm no expert but if you need a vid cam to capture holidays and special occasions I don't think you could go wrong with this one.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great camcorder, 12 Nov. 2010
I love this camcorder. It's small and very lightweight so it doesn't make your arms ache when holding it for a long period of time. The videos are really clear. A good quality affordable camera.

Not very good for taking pictures at night time though but of course you're buying it more for the video quality and the zoom is excellent too.
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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bargain, 1 Jun. 2010
By 
Great little camcorder. Wide angle lens a bonus and the 78x optical zoom lens is as good as anybodies, with of course the usual comment about a tripod needed for more than about 20x zoom. It was easy to set up with a comprehensive printed instruction book.

Menu access with 2 buttons and screen lists is easy although it would be handy if the wind noise canceller was activated by a button rather than buried away in the menus.

Editing on the S50 model is limited to deletion of scenes; the T50 and T55 models allow the division of a scene with partial deletion. Recording in standard mode gives acceptable quality when played back on a 32inch television.
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