The challenge that many manufacturers face is trying to fit in as many technologies and features as they can without compromising the interface and looks of the device. Digital camcorders are a great example for this since the higher-end models have all kinds of controls that need to be used a certain way to get the best recording each time. JVC tries to simplify the approach with the Everio HM series as they are smaller since flash memory is used as a primary storage. The JVC Everio GZ-HM400 represents itself as the highest-end camcorder that saves videos on flash memory.
Because of all the embedded features, the JVC Everio GZ-HM400 is a bit bigger than the other HM models, but still has the right ergonomic shaping to make it comfortable to use for advanced or basic shooting. All of the controls that are used for manual operation are within reach.
Although the GZ-HM400 comes only in black unlike the cheaper HM200 model which comes in three colors, the overall design is polished with a nice matte finish that keeps the entire device free from fingerprints. The lens gets protection too by triggering an automatic cover that activates when the camcorder is turned off. What makes this better is that the cover automatically closes when the LCD is closed and reopens and powers on again when the LCD is open again. A built-in flash complements the lens along with a “Set” button for the adjustment dial.
Like the other models in the series, the JVC Everio GZ-HM400 can record video in full HD AVCHD quality at 60 frames per second so the video outputs look wonderful on an HDTV. The optical zoom isn’t as powerful as the HM200 with a 10x optical zoom, but other enhancements to the Konica Minolta HD lens are made including the CMOS sensor totaling 10.3 megapixels making it reliable for still imagery without the interpolation thanks to the Bayer array. An optical image stabilizer is also included to remedy camera shake and provide zoom stabilization by using two active prisms.
The heart of the JVC Everio GZ-HM400 contains the HD Gigabrid Premium II Engine which processes the pixel data at high speeds to enable smooth high quality recording. The quality can even be raised higher when the UXP video recording mode is activated as it provides the highest bit rate at 24 Mbps for benefits like sharper images and reduced noise.
Audio quality is equally good by including the K2 technology which is a JVC exclusive technology that restores any sound details that were lost during compression to enable better audio playback bearing more similarities to the original.
Actual user review:
“Purchased this camcorder for $699 from Amazon just after Thanksgiving. As other reviews online have said there is some noise in the image in low lights levels. The manual controls can compensate some but this is the weak point of the camera. I will say it is still order of magnitude better than my old MiniDV camera. I recorded an event at my church with adequate indoor lighting and the image quality was great! The Optical Image Stabilization feature worked amazingly to take a lot of my hand shake out of the image even at a long zoom. Image quality is like nothing I have ever seen in a home camcorder outdoors. Really amazing HD quality video – in full light situations I don’t think you’ll find a better consumer camcorder. Was also pleased that this camera came with a 2hr. battery instead of the typical 1 hour found in most other brands and models. Overall very pleased with this camcorder.” – D.Duvall (MD,USA)
Below its amazing specifications come some nifty extras such as the high-speed recording mode which lets people record their own ultra-slow motion videos. Three speed modes are offered with frame rates of 120 fps, 300 fps, or 600 fps.
Still photography has its own speed modes as well called “Motor Drive Shooting“. This allows up to 6 continuous 9 megapixel photos to be taken at 15 frames per second. The lowest speed setting has no limit and shooting them in 5 megapixel mode allows 11 images to be taken continuously. Face detection technologies can be applied as well for group shots to look sharper on the areas that matter.
If the 32GB internal flash memory isn’t sufficient, an SD card can be used supporting up to 32 GB capacities totaling nearly 30 hours of full HD video if both memories are used. When connected via USB, the “Export” button can be used to transfer the videos to iTunes, an iPod, or an iPhone. If the “One Touch DVD Creation” is used instead, DVDs or Blu-ray discs can be created through a laptop or Share Station DVD burner. Files can also be transferred to the computer using the Everio MediaBrowser which offers easy playback and editing functions.
An HDMI cable isn’t included, but as an optional accessory, it can be used to plug into an HDTV or media player to enjoy the recordings on the big screen.
The JVC Everio GZ-HM400 is pricey at around $1,000 , but those looking for high quality and fun features will enjoy using this model.
Average User Rating:
- “Color accuracy and amazing sharpness make this an extarordinary camcorder – if the light is not too bad. In low light situations the perfermance is mediocre. Laser-operated menu-system is annoyingly umstable; otherwise handling is OK. Compared to Canon’s HFS10, I would prefer the JVC, although the Canon is a better low light performer. But if the light is reasonable, it seems to me that the picture quality of the JVC is noticably better.” – K.Johnsen (Norway)
- “If you buy this for outdoor shooting or very well lit indoor scenarios, you’ll be very happy. The image quality is superb is those conditions, but the medium and low light situations are handled very poorly. There is more noise with this camera in less than ideal conditions than with a cheap $200 non-HD camcorder I also own. It’s a tremendous value if you intend to use it in the right situations, otherwise there are better options.” – M.Welch (TX,USA)
Click Here for Latest Offer on JVC Everio GZ-HM400
Enjoy Free Shipping & Secure Shopping