Olympus LS-20M HD review

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The Olympus LS-20M HD records in Pro-Quality Audio and HD 1080p Video

When Cisco got rid of their Flip camcorder, you know the one the revolutionized the camcorder industry, other companies stepped up to offer new camcorder options, mainly smart phone manufacturers and traditional digital camera manufacturers.

Besides Toshiba and Samsung, Olympus is offering a very unique video product, their new LS-20M handheld HD video and linear PCM recorder. It sports a 2″ LCD display for previewing your videos and a smaller 1.46″ LCD data screen for showing the time, audio levels and battery life. The camera also packs and auto focus lens and 4x digital zoom to make sure you catch everything you want to catch on screen. It records videos in 1080p and even works in low light settings.

Star Rating: 
Cost: [amazon_link id=”B004ZKIZWQ” target=”_blank” ]$299[/amazon_link]
Where to buy: [amazon_link id=”B004ZKIZWQ” target=”_blank” ]Amazon[/amazon_link]

If basic video recording functionality isn’t enough, Olympus also offers a number of Magic Movie settings to spice up your movies. The LS-20M comes with settings such as ‘Rock Magic Movie’, which recreates classic rock music videos; ‘Sketch’, for those artsy pencil drawing videos; ‘Pinhole’, which darkens outside edges to enhance the focus in the center of the video; and ‘Pop’, for bright, fun, pop videos. It even features an auto voice-activation feature that automatically starts recording when a certain level of sound is reached.

The Olympus LS-20M incorporates technologies much like those that debuted in recent Olympus digital imaging products. The new LS-20M is the first Olympus recorder that captures and edits 1080p HD video while recording 24 bit/96 hHz Linear PCM stereo sound.

“The potential number of uses for the Olympus LS-20M Linear PCM recorder are limitless,” said Amy Leslie, product manager, Olympus Imaging America Inc. “Anyone looking to capture and upload music performances, sporting events, weddings, meetings or just create their own fun videos, can use the LS-20M for their personal and professional audio and video needs.”

Lights, Camera, Action
The new Olympus LS-20M takes handheld recording to a new dimension with HD video. By combining Olympus’ superior audio capabilities, cutting-edge design and the outstanding optical performance expected from Olympus, this all-in-one handheld offers the versatility and practicality you need.

You can capture full HD movies utilizing one of three video format settings up to 1080p for stunning HD video clarity. The camera lens and microphones are located on top of the unit.  This allows for better angle on the subject.  You simply  point the device in the direction of the intended object and hit record. A crisp, 2.0-inch color LCD on the front of the device clearly displays the video as its being shot. Below the video LCD is a 1.46-inch LCD data screen that displays time, audio levels and battery life.

The HD video compression format makes it easy to upload videos to Facebook, YouTube, iTunes, Vimeo and other web-based content sharing sites, and the resolution offers remarkable detail on modern home theatre systems.

The camera features a 4.1mm (16:9 at 49mm, 4:3 at 59mm) autofocus lens and 4x digital zoom. The Olympus LS-20M allows you to record in low light for more dramatic footage and also offers close-up video shooting. Record a close-up of of something in HD video and set it to your own sound track of better-than-CD quality audio.

[amazon_link id=”B004ZKIZWQ” target=”_blank” ]The Olympus LS-20M HD[/amazon_link] records in Linear PCM (WAV files) and MP3 formats.  It uses internal or external microphones to record better-than-CD quality audio for movies that sound like they were made in a production studio.

The [amazon_link id=”B004ZKIZWQ” target=”_blank” ]Olympus LS-20M[/amazon_link] offers manual or auto-level recording. The “auto” level is nice if you are recording from the crowd. Thanks to the manual level, musicians can capture optimal sound checks and live performances.

Certain settings, like crowded press conferences or a live show at a packed club can provide unwanted background noise that can later be incredibly frustrating. Thankfully, the Olympus LS-20M features a switchable low-cut filter that enables users to eliminate low-frequency sounds and unwanted background noises, like coughing. Collaborating musicians who want to monitor the recording progress on the fly can do so with the built-in speaker.

The Olympus LS-20M voice-activation feature automatically starts a recording when a certain level of sound is reached. The self-timer feature starts the recording process after a predetermined amount of time; both are ideal for recording a performance or video without having to operate the recorder.

The [amazon_link id=”B004ZKIZWQ” target=”_blank” ]Olympus LS-20M[/amazon_link] features a lightweight, durable, black body with silver function buttons in a slim, pocket-size device that fits in your palm. At just 5.3 inches long and 5.4 ounces, the LS-20M provides remarkable power in a tiny size.

 

Accessories
The Olympus LS-20M is packaged with everything needed to make HD movies straight out of the box. It’s equipped with a 2GB SD card, one rechargeable Lithium ion battery, and a USB cable. The battery is easily charged by plugging in the LS-20M to a computer. For added memory, the LS-20M can handle SDHC cards up to 32GB for long hours of movie making.

An optional RS-30W Wireless Remote empowers users to start and stop the recording of the Olympus LS-20M without touching the unit. This is ideal for live performances, as the device can be placed in an optimal recording position and activated at a distance.

Pricing and Availability
The Olympus LS-20M runs around $299.99 (U.S.) and is available at Amazon [amazon_link id=”B004ZKIZWQ” target=”_blank” ]HERE[/amazon_link].

 

Check out the demo video….

 

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For the last 20 years, David Novak has appeared in newspapers, magazines, radio, and TV around the world, reviewing the latest in consumer technology.His byline has appeared in Popular Science, PC Magazine, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, Electronic House Magazine, GQ, Men’s Journal, National Geographic, Newsweek, Popular Mechanics, Forbes Technology, Readers Digest, Cosmopolitan Magazine, Glamour Magazine, T3 Technology Magazine, Stuff Magazine, Maxim Magazine, Wired Magazine, Laptop Magazine, Indianapolis Monthly, Indiana Business Journal, Better Homes and Garden, CNET, Engadget, InfoWorld, Information Week, Yahoo Technology and Mobile Magazine. He has also made radio appearances on the The Mark Levin Radio Show, The Laura Ingraham Talk Show, Bob & Tom Show, and the Paul Harvey RadioShow. He’s also made TV appearances on The Today Show and The CBS Morning Show.His nationally syndicated newspaper column called the GadgetGUY, appears in over 100 newspapers around the world each week, where Novak enjoys over 3 million in readership. David is also a contributing writer fro Men’s Journal, GQ, Popular Mechanics, T3 Magazine and Electronic House here in the U.S.