Samsung has announced the latest in its TruDirect external DVD writer range, the SE-T084M. Featuring 8X DVD+R and DVD-R writing, 6X DVD+R and -R Dual Layer writing, and 5X DVD-RAM writing, the drive can be used without needing to store files temporarily on a computer's hard-drive.
With JVC rolling out a set of AVCHD-capable camcorders earlier this week, Sony have unveiled their own new HD HandyCam that can record 1080i 1,920 x 1,080 AVCHD video. The HDR-CX12 measures up at around the same size as a soda can and captures direct to Memory Stick PRO Duo cards (with 4GB included). It also has Sony's Smile Shutter and face-detection technology.
Victor JVC have announced [pdf link] two new HDD-based high-definition camcorders, both capable of capturing full 1920 x 1080 footage. The GZ-HD40 has a 120GB drive, while the GZ-HD30 has 80GB; each also features a MicroSDHC card slot. As of June 2008, the HD30 is the world’s smallest Full HD camcorder with a 1.8-inch HDD.
If Flip's latest $180 Mino camcorder is too rich for your blood (or just a little predictable) then RCA might have a few more options to tickle your fancy. The three new devices all use solid-state memory and adopt the upright, somewhat blocky design common in budget camcorders; entry level is the $89.99 MyLife EX200, mid-range is the Pocket EX205 at $99.99, while top-spec (relatively speaking) comes the Traveller EX210, at $149.99, which has a splashproof housing.
With Computex 2008 came more budget ultraportable news than many of us could stomach this week, as several manufacturers took the opportunity to confirm their machines (most of them previewed to death beforehand) and legions of others attempted to get their foot in the OEM door. ASUS finally took the wraps off the Eee PC 901, 1000 and 1000(H), while MSI's Wind was made official; Acer confirmed their Aspire One notebook, which was made special by virtue of the fact that we only found out it was coming last week. Meanwhile Dell held back on their Inspiron Mini, citing delays in tweaking the keyboard, and ASUS launched their low-cost offensive on the desktop with the Eee Box B202.
Sanyo have updated their popular Xacti camcorder, introducing new "Face Chaser" technology that can recognise and keep in focus up to twelve individual faces simultaneously. The HD1010 also has a 10x optical zoom, records video in 1080i high-definition, and can capture 4-megapixel stills. Both video and still image stabilization are present, as is a 2.7-inch fold-out LCD viewfinder, 40MB of internal memory (which you'll want to add to via the SDHC card slot, since an hour of 1080i footage gobbles up around 1GB) and all in the same, ergonomic shape that helped make the camcorder so popular.
As expected, Flip have announced their latest super-simple camcorder, the Mino. Slotting in at the top of the current Flip range, the Mino weighs just 3oz and can capture up to 60 minutes of VGA-resolution footage on its 2GB of fixed internal storage. A 1.5-inch LCD is used for framing and review, while the USB plug now pops out of the top for direct connection to PC or Mac. The Mino is being positioned as ideal for updating YouTube/MySpace/Facebook style media sharing and social-networking sites, and the onboard software has a new instant-upload feature as well as the existing editing app.
If Creative thought they could smack down budget camcorder rival Flip with their recent Vado and get away with it, it's time for a reality check. An eagle-eyed browser has spotted Flip's latest model, the Mino, in B&H's print catalog, and it's likely to be the company's retort to the Vado's "dramatically thinner and lighter" claim. So far, little is known about the camcorder, aside from its $179.99 price-tag, choice of white or black casing and June 4th release date.
Presumably it's a smaller, lighter version of the existing Flip Video. The pop-out USB port looks to have moved; it was previously on the side, and now, although it's hard to make out, it appears to have shifted to the top of the camcorder.
Hitachi have announced a new Blu-ray burner that can create discs directly from the latest camcorders sporting eSATA ports. Bypassing the need for a computer, the DZ-WR90 plugs straight into the camcorder - and presumably you'd be using one of Hitachi's hard-drive based high-definition models, to make the most of Blu-ray's capacity - and automatically creates discs from the footage you select. It even finalises the discs automatically, making it a complete one-stop solution for anyone wanting a straightforward way to share their video.
JVC have recognised the truth: nobody wants to film touching memories of their children in high-definition, to keep for all time, but instead short clips of their friends falling over and swilling beer from shoes and uploading them to YouTube. That's why their Everio S Series memory camcorder, the GZ-MS100, has a dedicated YouTube mode, which is intended to make uploading short clips to the internet straightforward. It records directly to a SD card, has a 2.7-inch LCD and 35x optical zoom.