I just wanted a decent camcorder to take out to australia to visit family, especially our first grand-child. I tend to look at panasonic av kit above other brands and this seems to offer really good features at a very decent price. No complaints so fat at all.
After finding out my 5d mkii can not auto focus for video shooting, we bought this as a handy camcorder for our new born. It got everything you would need.
I own an older sd60 which is basically identical to the new sd80. When i bought my sd60 last year i knew it did not have a viewfinder, which to me was not a problem. Adding a viewfinder to a camcorder would add bulk, weight and cost to a new product. In the days of film movie cameras, having just a viewfinder limited a shot and was not an option. With the introduction of digital technology and then the flip out/rotating screen, opened up in more freedom to the type of shot one could make. High and low shots are a doddle with a flip/swivel screen. By the way, a viewfinder that does not flip up through 45-90 degrees would not be much use unless one’s imagination was lacking. For really high shots i can mount my camcorder on a monopod, pointing the screen down. Before you say you could not see what you are shooting the idea of a viewfinder or screen is to just frame a shot not watch the action.
This camcorder is brilliant used to film a wedding, bought an extra bigger battery and bigger sd card and i filmed about 3 to 4 hours and both batteries lasted this length of time without being charged. Picture quality is good and it is even good when the light is poor. I replaced a sony handycam with this camcorder and this is far superior it focuses a lot quicker. The sound is good but really if you want excellent sound you need to get a camcorder with external mic jack.
After having a look online at countlees different models of hd camcorders, i settled for the panasonic sd80. It seemed to have everything i needed from a hd camcorder without being too exspensive and without too many gadgets or gimmicks that i would never use or even understand. The quality is amazing, its touch screen is responsive and easy enough to use with the on screen menu options, its quite light, battery is ok, interface with other devices is straight forward enough and its quick power on/off feature is great for catching spur of the moment videos. Great product, would recommend.
Panasonic SD80 Full HD Camcorder – Black (SD Card Recording, x42 Intelligent Zoom, x37 Optical Zoom, Wide Angle Lens & iA + Face Recognition & New Hybrid OIS) : This video camera is awesome, i couldn’t believe how small it was too. I am a guy and thought i might struggle with the controls because it is so small, but the side strap keeps it in place nicely. This video camera has a lovely touch screen for the options/settings, very easy to setup reading the manual. It has everything you need so as not to miss those memorable moments, it will also tell you when you are paning round to fast. This is a very nice bit of kit, you have to get the sd card seperately, but you can get a pretty good 16gb one for £15, so it’s not to bad. I managed to get this lovely camera for £209, which is a fantastic price.