Customer Reviews: JVC GZEX515BUSM 2.5 Megapixel 1080p HD AVCHD Progressive Everio(R) GZEX515BUS Digital Video Camera
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on May 18, 2013
I had reviewed the features on several models and settled on this one because of the low-light performance, external microphone plug, audio monitor plug, the ability to grab a still photo while recording video, and long, stabilized, zoom range. I was vaguely aware that it had a wi-fi card built in, but had not thought about how that might be useful. In the box, with the Owner's Manual was a new instruction sheet, explaining the process for downloading a cellphone app to remotely control the camera through its wi-fi connection, while seeing its display on the cellphone screen. I have rigged a tripod head on a long pole to get videos and stills from an overhead vantage point.
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on July 10, 2013
It's a decent camcorder for the money. Like that I can access it via Wifi and using my smart phone, but the "Live Streaming" over Ustream requires a computer. Not what I was hoping for. I really hoped this would stream through the Wifi directly to Ustream so I could bypass a computer. I'd not be unhappy if it worked through my iPhone or Samsung Galaxy S4, but that's not supported.

Besides that it does a decent job of recording video. The software that comes with it is HORRIBLE!! Just get something else. I use a Mac so fortunately I have iMovie, but Windows users will want to get something like Premiere Express or something else.
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on July 22, 2013
Use this camera for recording home interviews and other research topics. Several features are essential for our purpose, and the EX515 has them all...

+Mic Input
+Audio Monitor
+Adjustable Mic Level
+Record on AC power
+SD recording quality
+Good low-light capability


This is, of course, a very good quality HD video camera for everyday use. Video quality in low indoor lighting is excellent, and you have some high bit rate HD resolutions on tap as well. However, for recording research in home settings, it is the audio is actually more important than the video. This is where external mic input is essential.

External Mic: We use the Sony Bluetooth mics for native language only interviews Sony ECM-AW3 Wireless Microphone - Silver, they work EXTREMELY well both when clipped to subject's clothing, and when used on a table to pick up a small group.

Mic Level: We set the Mic Level to +2 (max) on the Mic Level Setting screen in the EX515's menu. Note that you have to use a Mono (male) to Stereo (female) adapter on the Mic receiver output to convert the mono of the Sony mic to stereo (actually dual mono) going into the Everio or you'll have a very noisy recording due to one channel of the input having no load.

Video Resolution: We record in the camera's lowest video resolution, labeled "SEW" on the camera's Video Quality menu page, so that we can get the maximum number of interviews on our SD cards, and to make it easier to edit and share the video after the fact due to smaller file sizes. The SEW level is 720x480 30 fps at about 2.7 Mbps for the video and 256 kbps for the audio, or about 1.2-1.3 GB per hour. This still looks and sounds great and provides plenty of quality for our purposes.

Remote Video: Just not very useful in our scenario, but it does work, tried it to both laptop and Android phone.

Video Format: AVCHD (MTS files) or iFrame (MOV files). We use MTS, much broader support in the industry. While you can now edit MTS files with many products, we generally use Sony Vegas, it takes in just about any format and is a very robust editor as well.

Net, a great everyday video camera AND a very useful research tool. Recommended.
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on June 2, 2013
I bought this particular brand because of the great reviews. I settled on the JVC GZ-EX515 model, honestly, because I could get it through Costco and take it back if it did not work out. I have had it for the weekend. I will say it did a great job recording our daughter's recital in an indoor, flourescent setting. It took me a bit to figure out the included editing software, but was able to splice our daughter's separate pieces together to email to the grandparents who could not attend.
However, for outdoor recording, I could not see a thing of what I was recording on the LCD screen, so it needs to be returend. I am hoping JVC has a model with good ol' fashioned viewfinder.
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on June 24, 2014
It has everything I wanted and a plus! It works perfectly. I was very impressed with the small size of the device and the shoe mount + mic input and headphones plug were a must for me. The fact that it has audio bars while recording is a nice touch. The feature that was not on my buying list but definitely became one of my favorites is the time lapse along with super slow motion. It is a great camera and would buy it again anytime!
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on October 10, 2013
I use it for video blog. The mic plug-in is very useful, great video quality, wifi control through ipad is perfect, manual white balance is possible (with a white sheet of paper).
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on March 10, 2014
Love this camera...the size is perfect to fit in a fanny pack. My only complaint is not being able to see the screen very well in sunlight.
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on January 29, 2014
Easy to handle. Compact and easy to carry. Excellent video and nice pics. Like the 65x zoom feature outdoors especially the ocean view.
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on April 22, 2014
Takes great videos, It is a great inexpensive little camera. I use it for recording job sites for cost estimates.
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on October 12, 2014
This is a high quality, low-cost camera. Get a bigger battery and memory chip and you're in business.
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