Helpful hints on Sanyo VPC Cg20
(Dr. Dave — 07/22/2010)
I have been reading everyone's comments. Here are a few thoughts. First, the camera is the best buy for the money and size for sure. I also have a Flip MinoHD and the Sanyo is far superior. The Flip gives you no options at all and no still photos. I bought and returned two Samsung HMX U20 camcorders and took them both back. They were terrible, sound didn't work right, video herky jerky. I thought it was just a lemon but the second one was the same. The Sanyo takes superior video all the way up to 1080p and excellent 10 megapixel stills with built in flash. As others have suggested, don't buy a cheap SD card, spring for a somewhat more expensive Class 6 SDHC card, an 8 gigabyte one should sell for about $18 - $20. That will get you a couple of hours of video. Playback of video shot with the Sanyo will depend on your computer and what software you use. An older computer will not play these high definition videos well no matter what. But even a brand new one may seem off. For example, when I take 1080p video and play it with Quicktime on my brand new 21 inch iMac, the video is not right, it's a bit herky-jerky, although the same clip shot in 720p seems to play fine. But the same 1080p video played using VLC player is perfect (VLC is a free video player). The Quicktime codecs seem off to me. Meanwhile I have found that I can't see any difference between video shot at 720p versus 1080p so I am shooting all my video in 720 at the moment. If this is true you could buy the Sanyo VPC CG10 for $123 and save some money as well, since it shoots in 720p. I also find that by resizing video for email using the free software MPEG Streamclip, I could take a 30 megabyte 20 second clip and resize it to about 2-3 megabytes with very little loss of clarity, and those resized videos will play well on just about any player. Try playing around with settings on the Sanyo. I find better results with noise reduction turned off. I set the focus on spot rather than auto. Also, buy yourself an extra battery on ebay for about $5-$7, so you won't run out of juice. For the money this Sanyo is just the best, providing everything you need in a compact very affordable camera.