"Not bad, for a junior with camcorder"3.5 starson by cdebel2005
Pros: price, video quality with proper light, cmos
Cons: Software doesn't even playback videos properly, bad exposure when set to auto, bad autofocus, some little distorsion when image stabilization is activated, optical zoom only 10x
Summary: (Note: I'm not a PRO, and it's my first camcorder so i couldn't compare to other models really long enough to notice all the differences)
There's many things to say about this cam. First, Samsung haven't done its job properly about the software. I understand that they didn't made it themselves, but they should still have provided the proper software to be able to view their videos! CYBERLINK DVD IS NOT WORKING PROPERLY. It skip many frames, it play video 20X slower than realtime! *** IT IS UNACCEPTABLE ***
This beeing said, i've been to find FREE alternative to play my videos on the net. (take a look at COLE2K Codec Advanced 7.1 on WWW DOT DOWNLOAD DOT COM web site. Download and install it, and you will be able to play your videos in Windows Media Player without any lag, and any frame skipped!).
About the bad exposure, i agree with CNET. I've got better result by setting the Exposure manually. In automatic, sometime my picture appear too dark.
About the auto focus, again i agree with CNET. When it's set to AUTO, the camcorder will change the focus one way and notice that it's getting blurred, than go back in the other way until it get blurred too, then finally come at the right position. So AutoFocus could be faster. There's no latch to adjust the focus manually, and you have to go thru LCD menus options to find the FOCUS, and adjust it manually... it take time. So i prefer let it stay at AUTO.
But when you get really close to the subject (or zoom a lot), you may have some difficulties with AUTO focus... so it's up to you.
I'm not familiar with camcorder again, but i've noticed a little problem with videos when the camcorder DIS (Digital Image Stabilizer) is enabled. I see some distortion at the top of my videos when the DIS is enabled and i shake a little bit. I can't say if Mecanical image stabilizer do a better job... probably?
I thought i would dislike the touch screen, but actually it's not so bad. Oh and the LCD is 230K! That's twice the quality of other camcorder i've seen with the same price.
Digital Zoom can't be used when DIS is enabled. Honnestly, i don't care. I don't use the Digital Zoom because your video quality get so bad when you use this kind of feature.
Optical Zoom only 10x.
I've bought this cam at 400$CAN. I've seen the SONY DVD710 model, JVC Everio and Canon FS100. So far, the HMX10A gave me the best result. If i had to choose another cam about the same price, i would have choosen the FS100 but keep in mind that you have to pay for SDHC because no memory included. The HMX10A come with 4GB built-in.
Bottom line... if you want to get a picture of 1280x720 / 60 frames per seconds, you have to buy this model otherwise you need to pay 1000$CAN (I've checked every models... believe me, often after 480p, you get to 1080i or p, and it's more than 1000$CAN) (at this price, you get 10X only too!)
HMX10A is way better than all SD (740x480 approx) camcorder i've seen.Updated
I consider that technical support is very important when you buy something. I never had to talk to Samsung until now, and just got their answer: "Wipe out your whole PC and then Cyberlink and tell us if it work"... Damn! What kind of technical support is that?
Plus, they don't even keep a tracking of your cases! Each time you have to reply, you just get another person, and they never give you a case number or anything like that.
I gave them a 7/10... and i lower that to 5/10.