Published on May 21st,2009 at 12:32 PM
By >Daimaou - G.G-B

Sanyo Xacti Dual Camera FH11, a Good Product for the Casual User: The Review

In March we tested the Sanyo’s latest HD dual camera, the Xacti HD2000, here for more info: Sanyo Xacti HD2000, An Evolution Rather Than a Revolution, and today wereview its “brother” the Xacti Dual Camera FH11, that beside its shape offers almost the same specifications and features found on theHD2000, but in a stunningly lighter and smaller package with 8GB of internal memory.

I said “almost,” since there are some tiny differences in the choice of image size and format when shooting photos (ISO ranges on the other hand is the same), but when it comes to video, both offer the same nice looking 1920 x 1080 at 60fps with a 24Mbps BR.

This is a first for Sanyo, and believe it or not but this change in design was “strongly” requested many professionals in the USA… If I personally prefer the “gun” type position for the camera, providing a better grip and a more stable position to shoot video, the “gun” design of the Xacti have concerned many in the USA that the camera could be mistaken for a real gun… I never really thought about it, but I can understand why.

The FH11, uses a more “consensual” design for a camcorder, but in an insanely small package. Don’t get me wrong, I in NO way am criticizing the size, I rather like this freaking small camera… Just think about it for a second, having a Full HD dapable video camera offering 60p speed with correct photo capability with 8GB of internal memory in JUST 90×54.5×112.6mm and with a weight of only 268g… Yep, this bad boy can and WILL fit most of your pockets.

If I personally like the compact size and light weight, it sometimes is a problem if you record for a long periods of time… After all this is human, but after 5 or 10 minutes of continuous recording your arm will start to shake and this camera, due to its light weight, will be more sensitive to shakes and this even with the Image stabilizer on.

Not much to say more than was said about the HD2000. Videos are nice, but here also the HF11 needs some improvement with both AF and Image Stabilizer. We were surprised that on a tripod the camera with IS was a bit lost and trying to stabilize the video when it wasn’t needed (check the sample video below).

A tiny difference regarding the video and where the HD2000 performed better, below you can see a 100% crop image of a video that we recorded, and some “ghost/blur” effects on the white borders, annoying in the long run… My opinion is the bigger lens size of the HD2000 compared to the HF11, gave better results in low light.

Let’s talk about low light here as well… The HF11 does not make any miracles, but hey, which camera that small can give your flawless video in low light?

All new Xacti are called dual cameras for a reasons, both are quite capable of shooting either video or photos… Photos aren’t that amazing, I mean for someone who uses a DSRL and a point and shoot, I am not very impressed. But for everyday use, quality will be average to good.

We shot several vdeos for you in different conditions, each time we choose the Full HD 60p mode with the highest video quality possible. Unfortunately the weather during our test was far from perfect, which is for you a good point since you can see how the camera reacts in bad conditions…

357MB worth of untouch MP4 videos coming straight from the Xacti FH11

If you aren’t crazy about the design of the HD2000, the HF11 is the perfect camera for you, with decent quality videos and photo. For the average user, the HF11 is a great camera to carry around and shoot the best, or worst moments of your life (worst could be your kids using irremovable ink pen on your brand new sofa)… Now if you’re interested in editing video with a nice NLE (Vegas, Edius, Premiere…) and want the best images possible the FH11 like the HD2000 may be a little too underpowered for you… But once again it’s the perfect toy or gift for a casual HD video maniac!

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  • tenshi

    Nice review, haven’t seen another one detailing the FH1 as most people focus on the HD2000.

    I ‘d prefer the HD2000 too but the connectivity options without the need for a dock are rather nice. On the minus side, chromatic aberration indeed looks nasty on that crop. Is HD2000’s lens much better in such extreme conditions?

  • andersemanuel

    would be nice if you had some photos of it in a man or womans hand, so I could see it’s size.
    keep writing for the fans



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