This is a public service announcement - brought to you, in part, by the folk from Samsung, Red and Dinosaurs Unleashed.
Last Saturday me and my brood were invited down to the O2 in London, aka the Millennium Dome, aka that initial waste of public money, aka wow what a great venue now, aka that place I saw Prince at an after-show party and didn’t get home until 5am. Samsung wanted us to try out their new ‘Full HD HMX-Q10 Camcorder’, and they had picked the Dinosaurs Unleashed exhibition for us to test it in.
I didn’t dare tell the kids about the trip until the morning of the said trip, a week of dino-begging would have been far too much to take. I truly think the ‘BC’ in 10000 BC stands for ‘badgering children’. Once told, the excitement levels rose to numbers not seen since the last Easter Egg hunt, but we managed to get them calmed and cleaned (no mean feat as it looked like they had been doing some excavation of their own) in time to jump on the tube to Greenwich.
When we got to the O2 all I could see was a sea of pink and there was a distinct smell of sweat and oestrogen in the air. Thousands of women had just finished their Run for Life and the only thing standing between them and their exit home was me and my lot. I grabbed the kids and we huddled behind a bin, nervously waiting for the stampede to pass. I tried to tell the kids that this wasn’t part of the dinosaur thing, but they didn’t look convinced.
We eventually made our way to the exhibition and met up with fellow bloggers Jen, Sally and Alex. As we waited for our hosts we all tried to keep our restless kids under control (unsuccessfully of my part) all whilst holding those nervous fixed grins that say ‘please tell me there is something wrong with your eyesight and you didn’t just see my kids go through that bin’.
The lovely ladies from Samsung and Red arrived (I’m sorry, I am really, really crap with names) and set about showing us how to work the new camcorder. I have to say I was impressed – small and lightweight, it even fitted in the front pocket of my jeans (although that did make it look like I was really ‘excited’ about the product). It was also very, very easy to use.
The whole tutorial took less than 10 minutes and only took that long because of kid interruptions. It had a touch screen for all the technical menu type stuff, but the basic use could be done using your thumb only, perfect. It also had something that Samsung call ‘Switch Grip’. This meant that if you are a south paw, you can flip the camcorder upside-down too and the screen would flip with it. Quite nice of them to think of all those strange left handed people, I have sinistrophobia so I wouldn’t have bothered personally.
We headed off for a quick lunch and a quick beer for fortification purposes, and then back to the exhibition. To be honest, I think it would be unfair for me to tell/show you too much about the dinosaurs, I don’t want to spoil it for anyone thinking of going. I will say the kids absolutely loved it, and even better, it quietened them down. A word of warning if you go on a hot day - make sure you take plenty of water, it can get really hot in there. It was quite dark in there and I was a bit worried about how much the camcorder would actually pick up, but it did really well and it also captured the sound really well.
Eventually we were all dino’d out, so we said our goodbyes and headed off home. Except we had to get the train home as the wife had mis-parked the car (only joking dear.)
All in all we had a great day and the Samsung Full HD HMX-Q10 Camcorder is a lovely bit of kit. I have attempted to make a quick vid to show you some of the functions (please don’t sue me Samsung for bad presentation),
but for the more technically minded, here are some of the specs:
Schneider-Kreuznach Varioplan-HD F1.8 10x optical zoom lens with OIS
2.75mm ~ 27.5mm focal length
43.7 x 53.3 x 119.4 mm
5MP BSI CMOS sensor
2.7” touch panel LCD
Flip Shooting (Switch Grip Control)
Switch/both Handed Grip
Smart Record Pause
Ultra Compact and Full HD Recording
Built-in USB/PC S/W
Face detect (up to 6 persons)
HD Time Lapse recording
2.7” touch LCD
2D S-motion Graphic User Interface
1920 x 1080 60i
1280 x720 60p
720 x 480 60i
Still capture resolution
I don’t know what the majority of that stuff means, but it all adds up to a nifty little camcorder that is easy to use and quick to turn on when your kids try to set up a dinosaur fight between their toy dinosaurs and our Dragon lizards.