If you're looking for a lightweight camcorder with all the basics and more, the JVC GR-AX841 is a good choice. It combines a wide selection of automatic and manual shooting options with the ease of the VHS-C format, giving home users a go-anywhere, shoot-anything video recorder.
The JVC GR-AX841's slim, flat form makes it easy to carry. It offers an adjustable color viewfinder and a built-in lens cover, which lessens the hassle of carrying around an extra accessory. The unique side-battery design keeps almost all the selection buttons handy at the back of the camcorder.
The JVC GR- AX841's pictures are bright and colorful, although its VHS-C format is by nature less sharp and clear than Hi8 or digital formats. VHS-C does have the huge advantage of universal playback--it uses normal VHS tape wound on a smaller cartridge, so you can play it in any VHS VCR (using the included VHS-tape-sized adapter). VHS- C tapes also tend to be less expensive than other non-VHS formats.
We liked the wide range of effects offered by the JVC GR-AX841--it has four different fade modes, plus seven exposure and effect settings, including the especially useful antiglare and twilight exposures. The JVC GR-AX841 also stands out because it lets you manually adjust exposure, focus, and white balance, making it more suitable for amateur video producers. Overall, we found it both easy to use at the beginner level and helpful in more advanced work.
- Manual exposure, focus, and white-balance adjustment
- Wide selection of auto-exposure and effect settings
- Easy access to buttons