Pros size, long batt life, joy stick, price, built in flash, remote controls (2 of them, one clip on, the other your basic remote)
Cons so much packed in, takes a while to learn it all, will record with lens shut
Summary my first digital camcorder, it is a good model: I bought the gs65, but then realised for $80 more, i could get the built in flash, and much more, i took it back before I opened it and bought the GS150. Things this camera has that I did not know until I started reading the manual:
1) two remotes, one works from about 15feet away, the second one is good for left handed people and if you are busy doing other things, this also has a mic in it
2) zoom mic
3) can take a pic while recording
4) Magic Pix Funciton - record dark places
5) fade in and out functions
6) wind noise reduction
7) rapid fire consecutive photoshot
and a host of other things. Like I said, this is a great buy for the regular home user, that is not going to film the next great outer space epic, but wants a good movie camera, and can mess around with it. Do a few other things that a less expensive camera will do. I have taken a few pictures and used photo shop to play with, they look very good. The movies I took were great. I would buy this one again in a heart beat. Good luck
Pros Greate picture quality and output sound, light weight, nicely fit in the palm.
Cons Lack of "ground shot" prevention, LCD cluster with info display
Summary I bought this cam for its Leica lens and 3CCDs and I have not been disappointed. Play back pictures are crisp and clear even with AV output. One needs to take some time going thru the manual to get the best out of this little cam.
Major miss on this cam is zero light shooting. It's a joke! useless. If you constantly need to shoot in the dark, use an infrared cam like Sony. I don't need this feature anyway. Still can believe Panasonic program management people would let this kind of bad feature into a product this good.
Another significant miss is, the cam will record regardless of the shutter door open or not. I did waist half of the tape by accidentally put the cam in the bag while turn the power button on.
I found it's best to tranfer the tape to a DVD recorder via DV port, forget about the OEM editing software come with the cam.
I don't care about the still picture anyway, I have great super fast Kodak Dx for the job.
Still don't know how much value added from "Quick start" feature, have not use it.
For what I was looking for in this cam, it meet my expectation. So other misses mentions are just annoyances to me.
Pros 3CCD Technology, Camera feature, Compact, Joystick
Cons Decent still image, digital but no optical stabilization
Summary I bought this camcorder to replace my outdated 8 year olds Hi-8 Sony. I have read several expert and consumer reviews from different websites. I finally selected this camcorder due to its low price offered only two weeks by Sixth Ave Eletronics 6ave.com. I could not find a better camcorder at $500.06 included shipping where most other stores sell it about $550 or more + shipping. Some online stores offer lower $500 then they ask you to buy their high priced accessories. Other brandname camcorders such as Sony, Canon, JVC with same features are normally higher price. $500.06 for a 3CCD featuring camcorder is a better choice.
These are the following camcorders I compared before buying this Panasonic GS150:
<b>Sony DCR-DVD403</b>: Better than GS150 on both video and still picture plus direct burn to miniDV disk. Best choice for whom does not need to do video editing. Expensive ($200 more). Remember that miniDV Disk cannot record as much as miniDV tape. If you are going to edit your recording anyway, so why direct DVD burn if you can save a couple hundred dollars.
<b>Sony DCR-HC42 </b>: good miniDVD camcorder but only 1.3 mega pixel for still picture while Panasonic GS150 has 2.3 pixel.
<b>Canon Optura 60 </b>: good miniDV camcorder with 2.0 mega pixel still picutre as same as the GS150 but the recharger battery is shorter life. Price is little higher. 1CCD. High quality still image reviewed by consumers.
GS150 is very compact using miniDV tape. Camcorder overall size is about 1/2 of my old Hi-8 Sony which using 8mm tape. Approximately 5"L x 3"H x 2.5"W.
- 3CCD technology provides clearer and more colorful video recording than the one using a single chip. GS150 has superior video quality for the out-door recording. In-door recording is fine but the video quality is degraded in low light. Low light is considered when only one or couple light bulbs in the room such as table lamp. I've found that none of consumer camcorders can give a best video if recording in-door at low light. Even my Hi-8 Sony with 0Lux which I could record in the darkness with no-light but very often or never I have used this feature. My 0-lux Hi-8 camcorder's video quality was also degraded in low light recording. So, don't expect you can find a consumer camcorder that gives you a best indoor shooting unless you turn on all or use more lights for the indoor recording.
- Option to record your video in 16:9 mode like a cinamax. User can have the GS150 default setting in Auto Mode which GS150 will adjust itself to provide you a great video. However, I like to use the Manual Mode where I can see more natural color output, especially for the indoor with low-light condition and when the outdoor is too much cloudy.
- GS150 Digital Stabilization prevents your video jumping up and down as your hand is moving. It does not have optical stabilization like its brother GS250, so user should be aware, especially when recording within the short range (less than 10x zoom). For first time users, try to keep your hand as stable as you can. Don't move your camcorder too quick, even most camcorders that have stabilization feature could not stand with it. Check dvspot.com to review about this feature in actual recording. After a few shooting, you will learn to prevent your video jumping up and down.
Still Picture Quality: How convenient it is that I don't have take both camcorder and camera with me since GS150 can do the job. User reviews were right about this. GS150 still picture quality cannot be compared to those dedicated digital cameras, but it isn't too bad. Although GS150 can take 2.3 mega pixel still image but the quality is lower than my old Kodak DC260 which takes only 1.5 mega pixels image. I have not seen the actual still picture from the Canon Optura 60. Many users have given good review for Canon Optura's still pictures.
<b>User experience</b>: GS150 is perfect to hold in the palm of my hand. Tape can be inserted on the top rather than from the bottom. That means, if you are recording with the tripod, you don't need to remove your tripod to change the tape. I spent a little time to read the menu since I just switched from a Sony user. I don't know how much easy to use the touch screen feature on the new Sony Camcorders. I really love and found it conveniently to use the GS150's joystick for navigating the menus. Another user experience one must not leave out is that you can shoot a picture while recording your video.
<b>Sound</b> : GS150 has built-in stereo microphone. This built-in condenser mic has good sound recording but little weak to pickup when the voice signal is low. However, GS150 package includes a remote microphone which can help you to get a better sound signal especially when recording in a conference or meeting room.
<b>Software</b>: GS150 package includes MotionDV Software. I have not gone much detail since I am pretty new. However, I already exported some of my test videos and still pictures from the GS150 to the PC via software. It is easy as a piece of cake. GS150 provides an USB cable for you to transfer both video and still image. Software editing is another story. If it is not useful, I can use Roxio to do the editing.
Conclusionally, technology keeps changing every day. 3CCD camcorders were once cost over $1000 and only found in professional product lines. Although, GS150 does not carry all features that a professional camcorder has, but it gives consumer a choice to record a great video. In addition, it is built in compact size, camera feature, affordable media DVCassette over DVDisk and HardDisk. I once paid my Hi-8 Sony Camcorder at $850. So, $500.06 for a miniDV 3CCD camcorder is really tempting and unbeatable. May be a few years later, I can get one of those HDD camcorders. These camcorder are pretty new in market, still pricey, and available only by JVC.
"GREAT CAMCORDER"on by JIM LONGO
Pros COMPACK SIZE-3CCD LCD-LEICA LENS
Cons NO SD CARD INCLUDED
Summary IF YOU ARE LOOKING FOR A COMPACK CAMCORDER THAT HAS GOOD PICTURE QTY-GOOD BATTERY LIFE-TAKES GOOD 4X6 STILLS AND COST UNDER $650 BUY THE PANASONIC PV-GS150-LOVE JOYSTICK CONTROL VERY USER FRIENDLY AND FEELS GREAT IN YOUR HAND PLUS HAS BUILD IN FLASH FOR STILL PICTURES
"More bang for buck"on by gemaz
Pros Does everything I want, the way I want it - easily
Cons none so far
Summary I thought I would need an extra light for taking indoor baby shots, but I haven't. This thing is so small and takes such great film, it is a joy to use and own. The auto features on this are fantastic, but I love having the option to take real control of the camcorder with the ton of manual features.