I previously used a standard definition Flip Mino for about a year and I was entirely happy with it given that I wanted to use it for a specific purpose. Having just purchased an HD MIno I can say that I am once again extremely happy with my purchase.
Having a clear idea in mind about the potential uses to be made of the Mino is key to the process of review and to user satisfaction. There is no point in buying a Mino (HD or SD) if you want to own a camera which will provide best video or audio quality for all purposes. Clearly there are much better video cameras for most video recording situations. The Mino does, however, have a few key features which make it best of breed for certain purposes.
I use the Mino to record the exercise I take outside. When I jog I take the Mino. When I walk I take the Mino. It is small and easy to use and so switching on and off, and starting and stopping recording, is simple, even when running. Also it is very light, small and thin. I don't look at the viewfinder, I just point in the general direction and record what I want. More importantly, however, the audio recording facility under normal and exercise conditions is absolutely excellent when the required audio is a user narrative of the video being captured. The position of the microphone seems to be optimised for that type of situation. Wind noise doesn't ever seem to be a problem. It will also pick up bird noises very clearly. As a video camera companion for the jogger blogger it appears to be the best that is available at the moment and I have tried quite a few which cost quite a bit more than the Mino. I should say that I don't find the zoom of any use to me given the purpose and use to which I put the camera. I also don't use the built in software much. I simply import it into iMovie on my Mac and with minimum editing it is ready for use. The on-board USB connector is a bonus but I wouldn't mind if it didn't have that.
As a slip in the pocket camera where the ultimate in picture quality is not important, the Mino is excellent. As a means of creating perfectly usable ad hoc videos to upload to YouTube, it is excellent. As a means of producing a family video which will capture every detail look elsewhere and take advantage of the added facilities of more expensive cameras and careful zooming and careful microphone placement.
If you have a clear vision of the purpose or use to which you want to make of the video camera then the Mino could be just right for you. For certain situations I can recommend it unreservedly. Don't, however, expect it to do the same job as a much more expensive multi function video camera - that is being unreasonable.
Update - four months on. Observation of video quality obtained makes me feel that under low light conditions the SD Mino copes better. I also previously used an SD Mino and so I have experience of both. Under high contrast situations outside the SD Mino may also cope better. I am still however delighted with my HD Mino.
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