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Mr. Rm Clarke (Spalding,, Lincs. United Kingdom)
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Sanyo Xacti HD2 High Definition Digital Movie Camera
Sanyo Xacti HD2 High Definition Digital Movie Camera

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not a bad little camera but its hardly HD, 9 Feb. 2008
I really wanted to love this camera and read a lot of reviews about it prior to purchasing it. I like what Sanyo are trying to do with the Xacti range of hybrid cameras but unfortunately they just don't manage it. This camera has a lot of cool features and its size is a real benefit, it is nice and light so you can easily carry it in your pocket. The photo quality is pretty decent however I am comparing it to my old 2Mp Sony cybershot.

At the time I purchased this camera there were three main contenders at the low end of the HD market. These were the HD2, Aiptek's GO-HD and Canon PowerShot TX1. This camera trumps the other two outright but then they are pretty poor cameras to begin with. A lot of fuss was made about Aiptek's GO-HD since it was the first sub-500 pound camera to make use of the H.264 encoding architecture. However, if you search the internet you will soon discover that the GO-HD is barely a working product. It has an appalling bit rate, the sound is at times virtually none existent and I won't even mention the optics. The 720p feature on the TX1 is more for novelty value than anything else since it uses JPEG motion for its encoding.

The HD2 encodes its videos in the basic MPEG4 AVC codec (not H.264) and the resulting videos are no better than a standard DV camcorder running at 16:9 (and in some cases worse). As with a lot of these cameras at the moment the HD2 struggles in low light situations. There are plenty of ISO options, but the truth is your not going to want to use them since the higher the ISO the more noise you introduce into your video. There are also arguments about whether these cameras are filming in 720p at all, or merely up scaling internally.

With all that being said I still gave the camera three stars, however this was mainly for its form factor and ease of use. If you seriously want a HD camcorder then go and look at a decent HDV model, because at present they are still offering the best solution (even over the much touted AVCHD based cameras). If you are still considering this camera then I would recommend the HD700 which Sanyo quietly released at the end of 2007.

It shocks me that as of writing the HD2 is actually listed on Amazon as £40 more expensive than the HD700. The HD700 is basically a smaller version of the same camera and guess what... it uses H.264 encoding so the image quality is much better. The HD1000 is also definitely worth a look but if you can afford that then you may as well spend a bit extra and get a HDV or HDR camcorder.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 6, 2008 8:24 PM BST


Serenity [DVD] [2005]
Serenity [DVD] [2005]
Dvd ~ Nathan Fillion
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: £2.69

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome!!!, 28 Feb. 2006
This review is from: Serenity [DVD] [2005] (DVD)
This film does justice to the series and is enjoyable even for those who have never seen FireFly. This film I think more than anything else Joss has done shows his talents as a writer. I say that because as a series converted to the big screen this so very easily could have gone wrong. The characters are interesting, the action is where it should be and the humour never feels played out. I only hope this film does well enough in the long run to warrant the sequels it deserves.


Rainbow Six 3: Black Arrow (Xbox)
Rainbow Six 3: Black Arrow (Xbox)

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good bang for ya buck... or pound if you like., 12 Sept. 2004
This game embodies everything that a tactical shooter should. Rainbow Six 3 Black Arrow has very tight play mechanics that provide for a more anaesthetically pleasing experience than other squad based shooters on the Xbox. For example when your team is pinned down in a room the ensuring fire fight feels like a challenge and not as if your enemies are mere cardboard cut-outs to be knocked down at your leisure. The AI in these kinds of shooters normally isn't up to the task but Black Arrow's, while not being perfect, gets the job done quite well. I never brought the original Rainbow on the Xbox because I don't want to play online on a console. Happily two player split screen is supported in Black Arrow for all its missions however this comes at a price. The first is that the lovely detailed weapons are replaced by the reticule used in the earlier games in the series. And secondly, that neither player has a team at there disposal, which really detracts from the point of the game a little because who ever heard of a two man swat team. If it were not for the price tag my grievances about the two player mode would have forced me to give it a three, but seriously at the end of the day you're only paying 20 quid and it's still better than the competition.


Live
Live
Offered by CAC Media UK
Price: £12.96

5.0 out of 5 stars Wicked!!!, 15 Nov. 2003
This review is from: Live (Audio CD)
I was a little worrried about how this album might turn out it sounded kinda bootleggish and I wasn't that impressed with there last outing (Gravity 2002). The Album blends there early works with some of there newer tracks the whole album is very atmospheric with long whining guitar feedback and intros that go on forever (they always play a long Naveed intro live). This album is a complete package its solid well edited and if your an olp fan don't be put off and think this is merely a cheap release until there next big album. This LIVE album truely catches OLPs live sound as I heard them. is awesome buy now.


Enter the Matrix (Xbox)
Enter the Matrix (Xbox)

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very enjoyable, 15 Nov. 2003
Look lets not get bogged down in the specifics of which version is better on which console or whether you even like the matrix at all because you fancy yourself a wannbie film student with too much time for thought on your hands. This game is by far one of the best uses of a film leicence ever. It ties in with the plot of the second film and shows us footage not in the films. It is easily as enjoyable as say splinter cell, in fact its better. The fighting engine makes for some great close combat fighting in slow motion and this being the most motion captured game ever it feels awesome. In this game characters don't simply put there arms up to block they will actually avoid the move true movie kung fu style, if you go to sweap the leg they'll quickly move there leg out of the way. Games like Dead or Alive and Tekken have alot to learn from this fighting engine. Okay that said its not perfect and was rushed out for the second film some of the level design is a bit bland and with the release of the third film (yes it was a let down) it may have lost some of its appeal but personally its a gaming gem. I live in a student house and we all got well into it spent those evenings in after the pub just passing the controller watching each person trying to do cooler looking combo's than the other. Great game on xbox and on any other console I would imagine If your thinking about buying it then its simple... do!


Spiritual Machines
Spiritual Machines
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £9.89

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Set apart from everything else..., 26 Sept. 2003
This review is from: Spiritual Machines (Audio CD)
Clumsy was one of the first few real CD's I ever owned and remember at the time thinking to myself "wow this is a bit lame". Being one of the few CD's I owned however it received weeks of play through lack of choice and at the time I was listening to very standard and less mature punk (sorry off spring). As time went buy I became completely obsessed, I mean big time buy there use of funny tunings, Raines voice and there odic lyrics which took me away from my own life and my own issues. Happiness was just as much as a triumph as Clumsy however Spiritual machines is by far the best album I have ever owned. OLP's fourth outing was by far there finest hour the album is based on the works of futurologist Ray Kurzweil who supplies trinkets of insight from his book Age of Spiritual Machines. There unique style of rock comes to its climax in this album which carries such amazing tracks as "Life" a deep rock anthem, "Are You Sad?" a ambient and moving track for times of quiet reflection and "Made to heal" a melodic and uplifting song. This album is a whole entity dealing with the spiritual and the metaphysical complete and solid from start to finish. It's a fantastic album dealing with issues ahead of its time and it's sad to see that OLP has gone the way they have with Gravity.


Yamada DVD 5520 Multi-region DVD Player
Yamada DVD 5520 Multi-region DVD Player

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's does what it says., 30 Aug. 2003
Okay my first impressions were that this Yamada (not Yamaha) DVD player was broken. When you first take it out of the box you'll notice it has slim written all over the packaging and yes its very slim the only problem is that while being very slim it still has a huge amount of depth I struggled to fit it on my shelf. Once I had it on my self and all wired up to my T.v. I struggled to understand why there was so much yellow in the image. Out of the box this DVD player (for some reason) is not set to give a good picture by default and does require a fair amount of fiddling with before the image is watchable. Also alot of the menu's referred to in its simple manual are not accessable so you may have to be patient. I have other means of playing DVD's and only really wanted this for its multi region function which is does. The image quality is the worst I've seen the colours are not bold and the egdes of the image don't look very crisp. Having said all that it is obviously only a low low end model what did you want for that price. It does do what it says and if your on a budget and really want a player then sure its fine I brought this for the same price as a DVD boxset. It has various connection methods the image is comfortibly watchable after some adjustment. Glad I brought it.


The Official Blender 2.0 Guide (Miscellaneous)
The Official Blender 2.0 Guide (Miscellaneous)
by Ton Roosendaal
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A required purchase for the beginner..., 20 Jun. 2001
3D artwork is a creative way to use your imagenation and really bring something to life. This book and BLENDER are a really great starting block for those who wish to animate, create games or work with 3D art. So far I've created some super little animations and I'm considering work on a whole CGI film all from my tesktop (which will take forever). This book leads to greater things and without it you will just not understand blender and soon get bored and delete it.


Happiness Is Not a Fish That You Can Catch
Happiness Is Not a Fish That You Can Catch
Offered by westworld-
Price: £7.55

5.0 out of 5 stars OLP doing what they do best...., 13 Jan. 2001
No ones heard of them over here (I've never meet another English OLP fan)...if you pick up an alternative music magazine you'll be hard pushed to find any mention of them. They are simply breath taking, from start to finish there music captures you and will have you humming along for weeks. There interesting mixture of grunge (that's not spelt right) rock is brillant. It proves to be never two mellow and yet always powerful. I own all four (4th album Spiritual Machines only out in Canada at the second) of there albums and have been a fan since I heard there cover of Tommorow never knows (Craft soundtrack). There music has scope and this album delivers BUY IT NOW!!!!


Shenmue (Dreamcast)
Shenmue (Dreamcast)

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Heaven or Hell, 23 Dec. 2000
This review is from: Shenmue (Dreamcast) (Video Game)
Okay I know what your thinking right...Some people think its the greatest game ever others hate it to death which one are you going to be. Firstly YES it does look like a work of art however this does not ensure a great game. There is a fair amount of freedom yet its still an adventure game non of this FREE stuff. The plot is pretty linear and it all ends a bit quick I guess. However having said that its a great game and I'll willing to bet you've paided 30 pound for worse games. Plus if your a big RPG fan then its deffinately for you, just don't expect FF7 because it isn't (anyway the story in that game made it what it was the rest in the series was poor).


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