The Good: It works, It comes with all of the cords and initial batteries.
The Bad: Terrible video quality, Audio is better than the video, No picture card, Battery hog
The Basics: The Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder might be a decent digital camcorder to use to get the basics of shooting, but it provides nowhere near the quality serious filmmakers need.
I feel legitimately sorry for my mother-in-law. My mother-in-law and I see one another an average of once a year and it is often accompanied by drama between my wife and her, so we’ve never really gotten to know one another. Even so, my mother-in-law seems very friendly and she tries to find me something for any gift-exchanging holidays we share. I feel sorry for her because I can recognize that I am a hard person to shop for, if you don’t know me or know what I already have. My mother-in-law’s attempt this year was with the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder. The irony here is that my wife, who is a photographer, asked me for a pretty sophisticated high-definition digital camcorder for our anniversary (and I got it for her). So, I’ve now had some experience with both a high-quality and a low-quality digital camcorder.
The Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder is the latter of the two.
The Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder is an inexpensive digital camcorder that is ideal for complete novices who are just learning how to use a digital camcorder. I, therefore, am actually the target demographic for this little electronic device. Very light and surprisingly unbreakable for an electronic device with a solid plastic casing, the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder is just under 4” from lens to back, 2 1/4" tall and 1 1/2" wide (closed, not counting the nylon and vinyl hand strap – open and with the hand strap, the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder is 4 1/2” wide). The Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder my mother-in-law gave me is a metallic red, with silver and gray accents (very stylish).
The Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder utilizes 3 AAA batteries, which are included. Also included is the camcorder’s mini-USB to USB cord that allows you to connect the device to a computer. What is not included, annoyingly enough, is a video card. Without some form of video storage card (standard 16 pin), the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder will not record anything.
After the batteries and video card are installed, the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder is very easy to use. It is so easy to use, in fact, that it does not even come with a lens cover. While the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder does come with a little velvet bag, it is still very vulnerable to getting scratched. The Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder features a flip out screen and a microphone on the right side, next to the hand strap. Folding the screen away from the body of the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder provides the user with access to the controls.
The is very easy to use. There is a bright silver button for power and when the unit is active, there is an LED next to it that lights up. On the top of the digital camcorder, near the back, is the “record” button. Pressing it starts the recording, pressing it again pauses it. While the image is being shot, it appears on the screen on the left side of the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder. Below the power button on the left side of the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder is a four-key pad that allows the user to easily navigate the command menus on the viewscreen. Most every command it input by hitting the “OK” or “Menu” buttons.
With the 256 MB video card that I was using in the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder, the digital camcorder can make a single 15 minute video or several smaller videos that add up to fifteen full minutes. The resulting video is 2592 x 1944 (5 Megapixel) resolution. The Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder is a no-frills digital video camera, but it does work. Moreover, it is exceptionally easy to use. The controls on the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder are mostly intuitive; I was able to delete and watch movies I shot without reading the manual on the digital camcorder itself.
Uploading the movies from the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder is equally easy. Simply plug the min-USB end of the cord that comes with the camcorder into the port in the back and plug the other end into a USB port on a PC or other USB-driven device. The Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder is plug-and-play, at least on Windows XP or better systems.
The resulting movies from the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder, however, are generally poor. Ironically, the sound quality is far better than the video quality. The lighting sensor for the Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder must be manually adjusted and for novices, that can be problematic. Virtually all of the movies I made for my wife were both grainy and choppy. When the videos of Myah, our Siberian Husky, were made “full screen” on my computer, they were so grainy as to be almost unrecognizable.
The Cobra Digital DVC910 Digital Camcorder is not bad, but it is not at all for professionals and is barely enough to get a novice started, even if it is a sweet gift!
For other camera device reviews, be sure to visit my reviews of:
Sakar Digital Cam 91372
Nikon Coolpix S60 Digital Camera
Fuji FinePix A200 digital camera
For other electronics reviews, be sure to visit my Electronics Review Index Page for an organized listing!
© 2012 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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