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With the demise of Cisco's Flip, the market for pocket-sized camcorders lost its champion. There's plenty of choice still available though, from Sony's Bloggie range to offerings from Samsung and Panasonic as well as Kodak with its PlaySport Zx5.
Design and features
With its cutesy curves and soft-touch plastic exterior, the Zx5 looks the part of a pocket camcorder that can withstand a little bit of punishment from water and shocks. It's waterproof to 3m, dustproof and shockproof from a drop of 1.5m. There's full HD recording at 1080p and a 5-megapixel still camera. Those looking for the flexibility of a Flip or Bloggie-style built-in USB connector will be disappointed with the Zx5 as there's no pop-out plug.
On the side there are covered mini USB and HDMI ports, as well as a slot for SDHC cards. The Zx5 has a limited internal memory of 128MB. Lens specifications are pretty basic, as would be expected on a camcorder like this, with a fixed focal length and aperture of f/2.8. The lens is stabilised digitally.
Turn the camera around to reveal the 2-inch LCD screen as well as a range of buttons within easy reach to switch between video/still recording, playback, settings, delete, a four-way control pad with shutter button embedded and finally, a share button.
Kodak is really pushing the Zx5's sharing capabilities, with a bunch of social-networking icons pasted onto the back of the unit. The included software, preloaded onto the device, will be installed when you first connect the Zx5 to a computer. The sharing process is straightforward once the software has been installed: simply press the share button when reviewing your photos on the Zx5's screen and they will automatically be uploaded to your social media site of choice once you're plugged in again.
This is what the sharing interface from the enclosed Zx5 software looks like. (Screenshot by CBSi)