Today Santa Brought: NEW Flip Mino *HD*!!!

There’s a reason why I’ve held off on my big review of Kodak’s “lifestyle”-grade pocket HD camcorder…and my Cone of Press Secrecy lifted today.

Yes, Flip was working on a high-definition version of the Flip Mino. Mine arrived just about an hour ago; it’s charging up as I write this so obviously…no sample video yet. Plus, there’s the pesky problem of “this week’s column” to finish.

But to answer your firstest questions:

  • It records in 720p (1280×720 at 16:9 widescreen ratio).
  • It has 4 gigs of storage, which promises to hold an hour of HD video.
  • It looks identical to the old Mino…just marginally wider and thicker.
  • Like the old Mino, there’s no card slot and the battery is sealed in.
  • $229, or just $50 more than the standard-def Mino (which remains in the lineup).

Oh, and iMovie recognizes it immedately and imports HD content directly…when I plugged it in to charge, iMovie activated and showed me thumbnails of a few samples that were already on the device.

More comments, video, and of course a full review — comparing the Flip HD, Kodak Zi6, the Aiptek Action HD (aka “The Walmart Camera”) against my Panasonic HDC-SD1 (aka the “real” HD camcorder) will follow.

Until then…There Will Be Blood. Er…photos. The HD edition is on the right…to the left is the standard-rez Mino.

[Updated: Yes, the Flip HD is immediately recognized by iMovie. Yes, it presents you with an import panel of thumbnails. But! None of them can be imported. Instead, you need to use the desktop app to import videos from the Flip. Let’s hope that it works with Perian. Stay tuned.]

[And the HD model is exactly the same size as the original Mino. Sorry folks…blame the optical illusion of that light-colored band around the original model.]

28 thoughts on “Today Santa Brought: NEW Flip Mino *HD*!!!”

  1. Great price point for this bad boy, and as expected, a great form-factor. Can’t wait to see the samples you put up; I’m wondering what it’s like with high-movement or low lighting captures.

    I look forward to your follow-up post.

  2. Wow Andy! You must really have an “in” with Santa. I”ve been hoping that there’d be an HD Flip out before the end of the year. Now I can’t wait to read your review and compare it with the others in it’s categories and a “real” HD camcorder.

  3. After my experiences with the Flip, I will never again touch one of their poorly built products. I got a Flip for Christmas last year and used it about six times before it simply stopped working — right after the rather short warranty expired. A waste of money. I got a Flip for ’em.

  4. On Amazon, search for MinoHD (one word). You can also order a customized one from theflip.com. Remember Andy’s Martin Scorsese Mino? :-)

  5. It would be interesting to also compare it to the non-HD Mino, if there’s anything lost in the upgrade to HD (e.g. battery life). (This could end up being a single sentence in the eventual article.)

  6. Wow. This is almost what I was looking for. I’d been seriously looking at the Kodak Zi6, but I just liked the Mino’s elegance and size more. Adding HD functionality to the Flip line of cameras definitely helps, but no card slot on an HD device with only 4 GB internal storage might make this a deal-breaker. Looking forward to the full review.

  7. Dammit Andy, even though we just bought a Flip Mino in July, Leif is all excited about this one now. He says “I can take the other one dirt biking, and we can use the HD one for the baby and other stuff”. I at least convinced him to wait until we see your review, and I too am curious as to how it compares to the original. :)

  8. I’m just hoping that my wife doesn’t go into labor (she’s due next week) before you finish your review. That way I can weigh the pros and cons, put in my order for, and receive either the MinoHD or the Zi6, before the baby comes. Go, Andy, go! Push!

  9. Andy – are you saying that the video needs no special codec? That’s the one thing I absolutely hate about the current Mino I have, I have to deal with the video before I can send it around. This seems to not compress in a proprietary format, is that correct?

    (on the other hand, I may just get a D90 and be done with it, I just won’t pan much while filming.)

    tim

  10. I bought a Flip Mino on a whim before a trip to Disneyland at the end of August.

    It died about 2 days after the end of the 90 day warranty.

    I liked most things about my Mini, but you might want to consider some kind of extended warranty if you are going to buy a Flip product…

  11. I’m not sure that I’d buy a D90 just for that sort of use. I’ve already decided to pass on buying a D90; my D80 works great and I think the next step up will be a low-end pro camera instead of a high-end consumer camera. Much better to spend that cash on a “real” HD camcorder, all told.

    I’ll be taking the Mino HD for its first real test drive tomorrow and we’ll see how easy it is to import video into iMovie. I’ve already found that it’s not as simple as one-click import, which is what I get on my HDC-SD1. At worst, you have to run a special converter app (pre-loaded on the device’s flash storage). At best, there’ll be a codec install to add iMovie direct support.

    The cool stuff always arrives on a deadline day…this and the Panasonic LX-3. All I’ve really done so far is charge them!

  12. My finger was on Amazon’s ‘Buy’ button for the Zi6 today until I saw your tweet. Thanks for covering these particular products. There’s a free meal at O’Rourke’s for you the next time you’re in Middletown.

  13. Yeah, David, clearly you got a bad’n. I’ve had my Mino rattling around in pockets and bags for months and it’s never given me a lick of trouble.

  14. I too was hovering over the buy button on the zi6 until I saw this. Mine should arrive today, giving me a chance to test it extensively in an upcoming snowboarding trip next week.

  15. Hello Andy, I can’t wait for your review. Call me crazy but I have the 2 previous versions of the flip and have been very satisfied with them. I just about bought it from the flip website last night but I will wait for your review. Take care and thanks.

  16. re: the D90, the temptation for me is the all in one device. I don’t HAVE another pocket for the Flip, whereas I always carry my D200.

    Now I’m curious as to your opinion on why a D90 (prosumer) isn’t better than a D200 (pro-level)?

  17. @tim – It’s a philosophical thing. I’d have to really look at the specs to come up with a technical argument but I want my next SLR body to be one in which every decision was influenced by the idea that this is professional gear, to be marketed towards people with a different set of expectations.

    Which is not to say that I’m going to run out to buy a D300 “instead of” the D90. I’m pretty convinced that I’m not “there” yet. $1200 spent on a couple of new lenses would have a more positive influence on my photography than the latest $1200 body. Hell, this pocket Nikon CoolPix D6000 will probably do more for my photo skills than a D300, by virtue of the fact that it delivers so much power in a pocket form factor.

  18. Wow! You were right about the support. Flip is letting me RMA it and going to try to recover my video even though it’s a few days out of warranty.

  19. Did I read that correctly ?

    A 90 day warranty as standard in the USA ? In the UK you get a year.

    Buying a couple of the older style Ultras as xmas presents this year, might treat myself to the HD Mino when they arrive in the UK.

  20. Hi Andy. Congrats on your new purchase! When recording video with the Mino HD, does it still have that red light shining from the back of the camera? Is it exactly the same? I’m hoping for a bit duller. Enjoy it!!
    -Allen

  21. Hey I was seriously considering buying a Mino HD but then realised they weren’t available in the UK, does that mean that I need to get it shipped from the US or do I have to wait ? If so, any idea how long ?

  22. The major flaw with Flip products is that absurdly shortly warranty: add me to the list of people whose Mino died not long after the warranty period. The thing works well when it works but appears to be made very cheaply. I certainly won’t buy another electronics product with a warranty of less than a year.

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