The $400 D-Snap SV-AV50 has a superslim design reminiscent of the SV-AS10
, but the section of the body that holds the lens and LCD swivels out so that the LCD faces you as a viewfinder and the lens is pointed at your subject. Pretty wild. The SV-AV50 even lets you capture TV shows for playback: put the device in its cradle, hook it up to your set, and record. With a 64MB SD card, you can capture an hour-long show. The cradle also charges the battery and lets you play your photos and video back on a TV.
The $300 D-Snap SV-AV25 is designed similarly to the SV-AV100, but it's even smaller--although it still manages to incorporate a 2-inch flip-out-and-swivel LCD. Both D-Snaps offer a 2.5X optical zoom and use SD cards to store the 2-megapixel photos, 30fps MPEG-4 video, and voice recordings you can capture with them, as well as MP3 and AAC audio files for playback. We're not expecting anything earth-shattering in terms of image quality from these little devices, but they're definitely hard to beat when it comes to versatility and all-around coolness. Hitachi's DVD shooters
Hitachi unveiled two new DVD camcorders. Like their predecessors, they record MPEG-2 video on 3-inch DVD-RAMs and DVD-Rs. The UltraVision Digital DZ-MV550A ($800) and DZ-MV580A ($900) cut down on the bulk and weight of last year's models and have a new Quick Mode function that activates a streamlined version of the menu system for more efficient navigation. The DZ-MV550A offers an 18X zoom lens, and both models include SD/MMC slots for photo capture. The DZ-MV580A also offers a 16x9 wide-screen mode, a megapixel CCD, and an accessory shoe, although its zoom range is shorter at 10X. Both models will be available in the spring.