Chris Drage gets his podgy fingers on the Veho Kuzo pocket camcorder
The old adage that says you only get what you pay for applies firmly to digital, optical technologies and the Veho Kuzo Pocket HD Camcorder (advertised as “the slimmest HD camcorder on the market and is even an MP3 player”), certainly proves the point.
Measuring just 100mm x 57mm x 17.9mm, it is diminutive. Many of the buttons are multi-functional and very close together – which immediately poses problems for anyone with remotely podgy fingers, like me. A child however, wouldn’t be too bothered.
Open the 2.5-inch flip LCD screen and the camcorder turns on. The sequence of button pushes is a bit confusing at first but once the logic is sorted out you can immediately start shooting stills or video. It comes with 38Mb of usable storage, enough for a few seconds of video at high definition. To get any reasonable footage you need to buy a high-density SD card.
There is no optical zoom, only an 8x digital zoom. However, there is a macro mode button (range of 20cms) that permits zooming in to small objects, and a small LED light for lighting. Other features include effects like Normal, B/W, Classic (sepia) and Negative and a Night Mode to enhance image quality while capturing movies or stills in darker environments.
All of the effects and settings, such as white balance (auto, daylight, fluorescent and tungsten) are applied through a menu system which in itself is not easy to immediately get to grips with. Once the video is shot it can be downloaded to a PC or output via the HDMI cable directly to an HD-ready TV for appraisal.
Personally, I found it tricky to hold the device still, compose my shots and press the shutter release and the first group of stills downloaded to the computer were all blurred and out of focus. Thinking that I must have had the macro mode on for distance shots and vice versa, I took another 15, inside and outside, with and without the macro setting and with the LED light on and off.
Of these only two were crisp and sharp, which makes me think that the lens is letting the camcorder down very badly and emphasises the point that it doesn’t matter how many megapixels an optical device purports to have, if the lens is poor you’ll never get crisp shots. Worst of all though, when I looked in detail at the stills in Photoshop I discovered a huge number of 'artefacts' (digital specks) in each image. The best shots were those taken at wide angle in bright light.
The video was little better. Jerky when panning, poor depth of field and an auto white balance that was too slow to react to changing conditions; all resulted in disappointing video. Surprisingly, the captured sound quality wasn’t bad at all for such a small device.
According to the advertising hype Veho are “redefining the world of video capture with its range of HD camcorders.” If this model is anything to go by, I don’t think so. Better to spend a bit more of that hard earned budget and go for a camcorder that delivers good images.
Ratings (out of 5)
Fitness for purpose 2
Ease of use 3
Value for money 2
Veho Kuzo HD Camcorder VCC-001HD
Digital camcordwe (takes 11 megapixel stills) with built-in MP3 player and earphones, internal rechargeable li-ion battery
Capable of capturing video or images, and also works as a webcam. Features high-definition recording with direct connection to HD TV using HDMI connector. Price: £99.99