Shoot and Shares for Mom

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Today’s moms are beyond cool. They rock DSLRs, iPads, and are fast becoming the largest growth segment in social networking. It’s not just kids listening to mom -- hundreds (and in some cases, thousands) of folks follow her tweets, Facebook updates, and blog entries. She’s got her own point of view backed up with boatloads of digital photos -- Isn’t it time she started posting video?

Modern digital video camcorders are small enough to fit in a purse or pocket and make it easier than ever to share clips over the internet. Many of these cameras are light enough to carry daily. If your mom doesn’t have her own shoot and share camera, maybe it’s time to do a little Mother’s Day gifting.

Uploading to YouTube only takes one button with the Samsung HMX-U10. Full 1920 x 1080 HD footage is captured to readily available SD/SDHC memory cards. Plug in to your PC over USB and start sharing clips online. What makes this ‘the one’ for mom? The ergonomic 7 degree curve. Slightly tapered to fit the hand, this is the most comfortable shoot and share available. A built-in 10 megapixel camera and an animated menu system round out the feature set. Color choices? Black or purple for under $100. Red for a few bucks more.

For moms that divide time between ski slopes and the beach, the Kodak Zx1 is the perfect travel companion. The unique, rubberized casing is resistant to snow, sand, and everything in between. High def 720p footage recorded at 60 frames per second makes action shots ultra crisp and silky smooth. Available in red for about $80, the Zx1 is a darn good deal. Considering the unit ships with a free HDMI cable, rechargeable batteries + charger, and a camera pouch, we’re upgrading this to STEAL status.

The majority of shoot and share camcorders employ fixed focal length lenses. This can leave a true wide angle perspective to be desired -- but not with the Sony MHS-PM5 bloggie Camera kit. Available in blue, pink, violet, and white, these kits include a slick 360° lens accessory for capturing brilliant panoramic video and 5 megapixel stills. SteadyShot Image Stabilization and advanced Face Detection technologies are carried over from Sony’s Cyber-shot cameras for an exceptional shooting experience.

Good video requires equally good audio. Geeky moms (and their geeky children) know that quality sound requires an external mic. Creative Labs Vado HD is one of the few shoot and shares on the market with an audio input. Mom can plug in a stereo mic for interviews, news gathering, or collecting better sound at live shows. She can even privately review video and sound recordings with the integrated headphone jack. And it comes with manual exposure adjustments, 4GB of internal memory, built in USB arm, and a free HDMI cable. This little guy offers the control of a high-end camcorder with shoot and share convenience. Mac and PC ready, the 3rd generation Vado is available in black, cyan, purple, red, and white.

No-nonsense mom? Try a no-nonsense camera. Flip Video ignited the pocket video revolution with the original Flip. The Flip Video Ultra builds upon that success with the same set of simple recording tools and enough internal memory for up to 120 minutes of standard definition recording. The Flip Ultra is powered by 2 AA-size batteries. Whether she’s stateside or abroad, your mom will never be without power. Best of all, the included software is loaded on the camera --  Mom can connect the built-in USB arm for easy uploads, and she can edit and share video  on a Mac or PC. The Flip Ultra is available in pink, yellow, black, and white.