REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

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KodakZi8 Pocket Video Camera (Raspberry)
 
4.4

(based on 224 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (117)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (92)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (10)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (2)

98%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to use (180)
  • Great picture quality (142)
  • Large clear LCD (115)
  • Image stabilization (82)
  • Great sound (70)

Cons

  • Poor in low light (55)
  • Limited zoom (44)
  • Poor sound (11)
  • Poor still image (11)
  • Short battery life (5)

Best Uses

  • Home movies (128)
  • Travel (115)
  • HD shooting (78)
  • Weddings (61)
  • Movies/short films (52)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (128), Yes (40)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Casual user (104), Enthusiast (42), Semi-pro (18), Pro videographer (15)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Zi8 Fun Tool Some Minor Limitations...

I use the Zi8 in several ways. It is occasionally mounted to a tripod in my car and it is also used in dark music venues to record bands. I have also used it...Read complete review

I use the Zi8 in several ways. It is occasionally mounted to a tripod in my car and it is also used in dark music venues to record bands. I have also used it to record sports action as well. Future uses since this is new in my inventory will include recording travel adventures and as a full time "just in case" camera.

So far this has been an excellent little high definition recorder in the first two weeks. I would suggest that the "high definition" is primarily aimed at larger computer screens and Internet delivered HD content. In every lighting scenario I have used this camera it has created above average results. In a club lit by stage floods the camera and video have been better than my very competent and pricey ultra compact camera which the Kodak Zi8 will replace.

Indoors unlike some professional reviewers seem to suggest, it has done well in challenging lighting conditions. In particular, in situations where the stage was heavy on red and yellow lights my other cameras capture a strong reddish-orange tone in picture and video. The Kodak Zi8 has recorded the same environment with a clearer, more realistic color.

Sports @ 720/60FPS
This is a great mode! Although you need to still pan smartly, when you can't pan or want clearer back ground, the 60 frames per seconds really cleans up "judder" in the image. I took a shot of some roller derby at the 2011 St. Louis Auto Show that is posted online of the flat track roller derby demo and you can see that at 30 frames per second, the judder is pronounced even when panning. In 6o frames per second, the video is much easier to watch. This was also noticed in m first "test drive" with the camera mounted on the dash of my car as I took it for a spin on a few nice interstate off ramps. Again video posted. Using 60 FPS versu 30 FPS made no appreciable difference in storage consumption.

Ease of Use
This is incredibly easy to use. I would call my technical skill "Expert" but I can see how anyone with two thumbs can make this work. The interface is easy and I purposely took it for my initial test drives without reading any of the instructions in the quick start guide.

Minor Limitation
The only issue I have with this which isn't a big deal in most of the ways I use this is the wide angle. I would have given it SIX out of FIVE if it had a better wide angle. At the St. Louis Car Show I did have to step back some distance to get a car in full frame. Again, a minor limitation to be able to shoot HD video whenever because your video camera fits in your shirt pocket and was very affordable. It does take a bit to get the zoom smooth, but that is even more minor than the wide angle.

Conclusion
Five out of Five and I am pretty stingy. My background is 30 years in CE retail including audio, video and computers. I am using the Transcend 8 GB SDHC (Class 10) which is probably overkill for HD recording.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Very convenient but zoom is mediocre

I've had it for a few weeks now but so far everything works great. It's easy to operate, charge battery, and transfer files to the computer. It's easy to take still photos and...Read complete review

I've had it for a few weeks now but so far everything works great. It's easy to operate, charge battery, and transfer files to the computer. It's easy to take still photos and to charge the card that holds the media. The picture quality is surprisingly good. The audio is also pretty good. The only thing that I'm disappointed in is the zoom. Not only does it not have a great range but it's not easy to zoom and makes the zoom jerky. There's no such thing as a slow smooth zoom on this camera. I don't know if that's true of all of these tiny cameras as I've only had larger semi-professional miniDV cameras. It's also not so great in low light. This is my first foray into this venue so I'm not exactly sure if this is typical for this kind of camera. I will say it's so small that I can take it anywhere. It fits in the same belt holder as my ipod Touch so it's very convenient. If you want something to take everywhere with you and get those moments with the kids, then this type of camera is the one. I would recommend checking all of the similar models in other brands to see which zoom is best.

Reviewed by 224 customers

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4.0

Overall Very Pleased!

By Mom to 5

from Birmingham, Alabama

About Me Casual User

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy to Use
  • Large Clear LCD

Cons

  • Poor Sound

Best Uses

    Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

    I love the convenience this camera offers, it's so easy to stick in my pocket or purse, and doesn't weigh me down.

    The only thing that seems to be a downside is the sound quality. When I make a recording, I HAVE to plug in a microphone and carry it around (which makes a terrible noise), but it's the only way you can hear everything well.

    This matters more so to me because I love to catch the cute little things my children say. I also use this to upload business videos for a website, and the sound is very important for that.

    I've noticed that at times it won't focus well, but I'm not much of an instruction reader. :P Once I discovered the switch at the top, that problem was solved.

    All in all, it IS the best camera we've bought thus far - as far as being able to load videos online.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • Yes

    Share this review

     
    5.0

    Great for mac owners

    By Sara video enthusiast

    from UK

    About Me Casual User

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Easy to Use
    • Good Image Stabilization
    • Great for mac owners
    • Great Picture Quality

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Business trailers promo
      • HD Shooting
      • Home Movies
      • Travel
      • Weddings/Events

      Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Raspberry):

      This was exactly what I was looking for. I went to B&H with a different camera in mind, but the sales rep gave me a list of pros & cons comparing the one I had in mind with this one, pointing out that my description of what I wanted suited this better. He was right. It's easy to use, the video & stills quality is great for the price, and loading/editing on the mac is automatic & needs no further software or conversions. Highly recommended for mac users.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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      4.0

      Great Compact Video Camera

      By LoneWolfUSMC

      from Evansville, IN

      About Me Semi-pro Videographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Audio Input
      • Easy to Use
      • Good picture quality

      Cons

      • Limited Zoom
      • Mediocre Onboard Mic
      • Poor In Low Light

      Best Uses

      • Home Movies
      • YouTube

      Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

      This is not a professional camera.

      Now since we got that out of the way, we can talk about what the camera IS. It's cheap, light, compact and does a reasonable job of HD video. In fact I thought it was excellent until I saw what I could do with a Canon EOS.

      The picture quality is great when put on a tripod. Handheld leaves much to be desired. I keep the "IS" turned off because turning it on will often give you the "jello" look. A compact "table top" tripod will enhance your videos incredibly.

      This is one of the few cameras in this class that has an audio input. One of the biggest things that makes me cringe on YouTube is poor audio. The on-board mic is acceptable when compared to other on-board mics. However in the wind it's not that great and as usual it's a bit "tinny". I have not plugged a Lav mic into the input yet because I prefer to just run an external digital recorder (Zoom H1).

      It will do 1080p at 30fps and 720p at 30 or 60fps. No option for 1080 at 24fps is a bit irritating when attempting to mix the footage with other higher quality cameras.

      I borrowed a Zi8 from a friend before I had a video enabled Canon EOS. I was impressed enough to buy my own. Now that I have an EOS (which of course is MUCH more expensive) I have relegated this to a "B" Camera that I can place downrage where it may get damaged.

      If you are just looking for something for family videos and YouTube this is a great option.

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      5.0

      Awesome, Awesome , Awesome :)

      By Tan Tan

      from FL

      About Me Casual User

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy to Use
      • Good Image Stabilization
      • Good in Low Light
      • Great Picture Quality
      • Great Sound
      • Great Zoom
      • It is easy to use
      • Large Clear LCD
      • Zoom range/performance

      Cons

      • Poor Still Image

      Best Uses

      • Home Movies
      • Movies/Short Films
      • Travel

      Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Raspberry):

      The ZI8 is user friendly and easy to use. The instructions are simple to follow. It has a built in microphone which enables you to interview people. There is also a camera where you can take photos. I give the ZI8 two thumbs up. [...]

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Share this review

       
      4.0

      Great Product!

      By Mike in Troutdale

      from Troutdale, Oregon

      About Me Video Enthusiast

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy to Use
      • Good Image Stabilization
      • Great Picture Quality
      • Great Sound
      • Large Clear LCD
      • Zoom range/performance

      Cons

      • Software

      Best Uses

      • HD Shooting
      • Home Movies
      • Interviews

      Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Raspberry):

      I use it to record on-site interviews. I bought it because of good reviews, and because it accepts an external microphone. It is easy to operate and hold. The external Audio Technica lapel mic (also from B&H) does an excellent job.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Share this review

       
      4.0

      Easy use, great picture, short bat. life

      By Silverbird 88

      from Boston, MA

      About Me Casual User

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy to Use
      • Great Picture Quality
      • Large Clear LCD

      Cons

      • Short battery life

      Best Uses

      • Documentaries
      • HD Shooting
      • Home Movies
      • Movies/Short Films
      • Travel

      Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

      I used this to record 2+ hour installation procedures I was writing about. (Also puppies around the house, etc.) Chose this one because of the good reviews on [...] etc.OK for short personal stuff, but battery life was a pain when doing a long recording. Nice, economical camera, though. It's so compact, has built-in USB connector, and is easy to figure out and use right out of the box. I read that the image stabilization ate up battery, so mostly I shoot using a tripod. With 16 SDHC card, several hours of recording, depending on quality I selected. About the battery: After I got this camera, I read that the Kodak battery is good for about 1 1/2 hours of basic (non-stabilization) recording. I got a $40 replacement battery (not from BH- I needed it that day) that turned out to have 3/4 the capacity of the original battery. It's a nuisance to guess when battery will quit and replace it.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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      5.0

      Awesome

      By Drew

      from Columbus, Oh

      About Me Casual User

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy to Use
      • Great Picture Quality

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Home Movies
        • Movies/Short Films
        • Travel

        Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

        This camera is great I needed something just to take high quality video for class and youtube videos and it does just that. Great product would definitely recommend this camera.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

         
        5.0

        Simple and Effective

        By Jake

        from Peoria, IL

        About Me Casual User

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy to Use
        • Good picture quality
        • Great Sound
        • Large Clear LCD

        Cons

        • Limited battery life

        Best Uses

        • HD Shooting
        • Home Movies
        • Movies/Short Films
        • Travel
        • Vlogging
        • Weddings/Events

        Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

        I bought this camera to record home videos, sporting events, and for filming car reviews. First of all, the ease of use is unparalleled. Switching between menu's could not be simpler. The quality of the video is good. The resolution, while not as good as a $1000 camera, is great for such a small device. I have already uploaded some videos to YouTube, and they look great. I have used a Flip HD camera before, and I think the video quality of the Zi8 is superior to the Flip. The EIS (Electronic Image Stablization) is a nice feature, but it definitely helps to have a steady hand or tripod. With the aid of a tripod, the film becomes much clearer. The 5 megapixel camera is handy and is able to take rapid pictures with ease. For the picture camera, a steady hand is needed, or else the pictures look a bit fuzzy/blurry. Overall, the picture feature is nice to have and does take decent shots. The built-in microphone is another great part of the Zi8. I have had nothing but clear and crisp audio in my videos. The zoom feature works for both the video and picture cameras, but as with most digital cameras, the image becomes somewhat grainy while zoomed in all the way. I have not shot very much in low light, but so far the Zi8 has handled changing light well. The battery is one area where this Kodak could improve. While shooting in 1080p, I ran out of battery in just about 30 minutes. If you are going to shoot for extended periods of time, keep a battery (or two) in mind.

        If what your looking for is an affordable, easy to use camera that shoots great HD video and the occasional picture, there is no better choice than the Kodak Zi8.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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        4.0

        Great camera and value

        By me

        from nj

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy to Use
        • Good Image Stabilization

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

            very clear picture
            don't forget to buy an sd card too.

            Share this review

             
            5.0

            Great Camera Great DealC

            By Pico20

            from Welland, Canada

            About Me Casual User

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Easy to Use
            • Good Image Stabilization
            • Good in Low Light
            • Great Picture Quality
            • Great Sound
            • Large Clear LCD

            Cons

              Best Uses

                Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

                I love this camera, small but great video. It is easy to carry on vacation with all my other gear. [...] it was a great price. It comes with a movie making program which installs on your computer with 1st use.

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

                Share this review

                 
                4.0

                reall nice camera

                By johni

                from n.y

                About Me Semi-pro Videographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Easy to Use
                • Good Image Stabilization
                • Large Clear LCD

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Home Movies
                  • Outdoor events games
                  • Travel

                  Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

                  good qulity , easy to use coming with good softwares including. there is a problem in editing not supported on primire (*.mov) exept this very nice camera.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

                  Share this review

                  (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Zi8 Pocket Video Camera

                  By Dan

                  from Ann Arbor, MI

                  About Me Casual User

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Easy to Use
                  • Good Image Stabilization
                  • Great Picture Quality
                  • Great Sound

                  Cons

                  • Limited Zoom
                  • Poor In Low Light

                  Best Uses

                  • Home Movies
                  • Movies/Short Films
                  • Travel

                  Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Raspberry):

                  I did some searching for a small pocket video camera. A friend recommended the Kodak Zi8 and B & H for the purchase. Every part of the purchasing process was positive. [...]We are delighted with the purchase and would certainly use B & H again.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

                  Share this review

                   
                  5.0

                  Works great!

                  By UT Hunter

                  from Salt Lake City, UT

                  About Me Casual User

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Easy to Use
                  • Good Image Stabilization
                  • Great Picture Quality
                  • Great Sound
                  • Large Clear LCD

                  Cons

                  • Poor In Low Light

                  Best Uses

                  • HD Shooting
                  • Home Movies
                  • Travel

                  Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

                  Good little camera for the price. If you are looking for a compact camera with an external mic jack this is the one to get.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

                  Share this review

                   
                  4.0

                  Great little camcorder

                  By Pesi

                  from Vancouver, BC

                  About Me Pro Videographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Easy to Use
                  • Good Image Stabilization
                  • Great Picture Quality
                  • Large Clear LCD

                  Cons

                  • Limited Zoom
                  • Poor In Low Light

                  Best Uses

                  • Home Movies
                  • Travel

                  Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

                  Very handy little device and easy to carry around in your shirt pocket to shoot B-roll footage as and when the occasion arises. Good quality image in good lighting - not so great but acceptable in low-light situations considering the size and price. Very easy to use and transfer footage. The zoom is not very good either in range or in image clarity - again, price!!

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  4.0

                  Works good for consumers, not for pros

                  By Andreayaya

                  from Fredonia, NY

                  About Me Semi-pro Videographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Easy to Use
                  • Good Image Stabilization

                  Cons

                  • Limited Zoom
                  • Poor In Low Light

                  Best Uses

                  • Home Movies

                  Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

                  This product is very easy to use, with one click recording. The recording looks great in high light environments, however, when used in low light, the results aren't that great. The zoom quality just isn't there, the recording is very grainy. The external mic jack is great, and has helped us record much better quality audio.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  2.0

                  too simple

                  By howard

                  from brooklyn ny

                  About Me Casual User

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Easy to Use

                  Cons

                  • Limited Zoom

                  Best Uses

                    Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

                    not enough user freindly features...
                    the batery charger did not have the feature to charge a second battery independatly....

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

                    Share this review

                     
                    5.0

                    Good video in small package.

                    By VidDad

                    from Iowa

                    About Me Video Enthusiast

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Easy to Use
                    • Good Image Stabilization
                    • Great Picture Quality
                    • Large Clear LCD

                    Cons

                    • Limited Zoom

                    Best Uses

                    • Home Movies
                    • Travel
                    • Weddings/Events

                    Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

                    I use this as a "point and shoot" video cam. Carry in my pocket on vacation. Shot video on roller coaster holding cam in one hand and seat bar with the other. Picture quality is good. Only digital zoom, but good for the price. Others have no zoom. Image stabilization was good. SD card makes downloading video easy.

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

                    Share this review

                     
                    5.0

                    Easy to use

                    By Mark

                    from Indianapolis, IN

                    About Me Casual User

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Easy to Use
                    • Great Picture Quality
                    • Large Clear LCD

                    Cons

                    • Poor In Low Light

                    Best Uses

                    • Travel

                    Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

                    Had it for a month. Great so far. Feels like good quality. Easy to use. Don't need the manual. Recharges fast.

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

                    Share this review

                     
                    4.0

                    Great video camera for it's size

                    By eddie

                    from Maryville, Tennessee

                    About Me Casual User

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Easy to Use
                    • Great Picture Quality
                    • Great Sound
                    • Great Zoom
                    • Large Clear LCD

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Home Movies
                      • Travel
                      • Weddings/Events

                      Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

                      Used for video recording Preaching events and it has worked great.

                      Trouble down loading to facebook or youtube.

                      • Was this a gift?:
                      • Yes

                      Share this review

                       
                      3.0

                      Great picture quality/low battery life

                      By silverbird88

                      from Boston, Mass.

                      About Me Casual User

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Easy to Use
                      • Great Picture Quality
                      • Great Sound

                      Cons

                      • Battery Life

                      Best Uses

                      • Video note-taking

                      Comments about Zi8 Pocket Video Camera (Black):

                      I use this to document assembly/installation processes in my work as a technical writer. I got this camera because of its rating on CNET and the fact that it has image stabilization. The picture quality is very good, though now that I see how big the files are, I wish I had gotten a low-def camera. I've been using it on a tripod, so the stabilization is not a factor. I was happliy surprised at the sound quality! It was very easy to figure out. The user manual says it will pause if you press the record button briefly, but it always seems to stop and then start another file. Worst thing is the hi-def recording capacity is 2+ hours and a fully charged original equip. battery only lasts like 1 1/2 hours and is recharged in the camera. I got a spare and it's only 3/4 the capacity of the original equipment battery. argh.

                      • Was this a gift?:
                      • No

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