Sometimes I like to inform those around me how to save a buck or too. OK, I am known for being downright cheap. So, you can imagine I am pretty upset when I sink $250 on a pair of products that should play together but end up ignoring one another completely.
First we have the Flip Mino. Now you might remember that Oprah listed this little device as one of her favorite things for 2007. Well, back in June Flip came out with an updated version that is a smaller and more elegant design. The Flip Mino is practically idiot proof in that it has only two true button, one for power and another for recording. There are some secondary controls for zooming, viewing and deleting clips but these are surface touch controls and not buttons. In order to upload your captured video to your PC, all you do is ‘flip’ out the USB connector, slide it into your USB port on your PC and the Flip does the rest for you.
Second we have Adobe Premiere Elements. The Flip Mino comes with some bundled in software, but the second you want to do anything even a little bit fancy you realize how limiting the bundled software really is. Adobe Premiere is widely considered to be one of the best video editing programs available for the PC and plays nicely with almost any video format. I says almost because as you may have guessed by now Premiere and the Flip don’t recognize one another.
The problem boils down to the video format that the Flip Mino uses to store an hour worth of video footage, MPEG-4. Because this is a compressed video format it doesn’t take to kindly to being edited. Sure it will play in Quicktime or your Microsoft Media Player, but actually trying to edit your video inside Adobe Premiere is one long dead end.
Now, I took it upon myself to write both Adobe and Pure Digital Technologies (the makers of the Flip), but after an initial response saying they were looking into the issue no future contact has been made. So, my recommendation is save yourself the $150 for the Flip Mino and $100 for the Adobe Premiere and instead put that money towards a Sanyo Xacti HD700.
The Sanyo Xacti HD700 cost about $150 dollars more, but comes with the Adobe Premiere software. Additionally it can not only record video, but also be used to take still digital photos. It has a viewing screen that can rotate 180 degrees in order to take self portrait, uses standard SD cards for memory and best of all no compatibility problems with your editing software.
We all have heard the old phrase you get what you pay for, well in this instance it couldn’t be more true. Just say no to the Flip and yes to the Sany Xacti HD700.