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mc3: Buy It! It's Worth the $$$
on May 4, 2001
Kodak mc3: Versatile and Inexpensive Gadget
It's small, light, and rugged -- I take it everywhere -- school, the mall, vacation, hiking.
I've used it for: mp3s on a airplane, videos of fish while waist deep in the ocean, videos while sledding/snowboarding -- even duct taped it to a friends model airplane and flew it around -- (cool movie)!
Pictures: they look good if taken outdoors, or with some daylight -- (the lack of a flash is a clue to use mc3 mostly outdoors).
Video: it got two quality settings -- one is great if you've got a lot of motion and detail. The other is if you want small files (for email) or you want LONG (minutes) movies. The length of a movie clip is limited to the amount of free space on the card. Files are QuickTime -- but the software can change them to .avi. (HINT: buy the video cable -- and recorded your videos to VHS tape.)
mp3: has played 8 to 256 kbps mp3s; it has equalizer/repeat/shuffle; it displays title/artist/album info. Comes with a ripper and player software (RealJukebox for PCs; MusicMatch for Mac). Nice that it doesn't encrypt the mp3 file. (Comes w/ earbuds -- but I like the speaker. (Earbuds are nice for mp3s on the pc.))
Software: I've got both mac and pcs -- it was easy to install on both. Was able to get stuff on/off easy -- but I like the explorer window more than the mac. The picture and video editing programs are very cool! Go google search for "allan harris 1180 WHAM" for some videos a radio station has done using the mc3 product.
Three Comments: 1st -- you're going to use this A LOT -- go buy rechargeable batteries (two sets). (Although alkalines are handy when away from the charger.) 2nd -- Compact Flash Cards -- Big cards hold more, but cost more. What I do for a day is carry a 32MB card (w/ music) and three 8MB cards (for videos/pictures). Upload often. Or buy more cards. 3rd -- No light comes from the display, it is just a reflection. The display quality is like a good color display PDA. Pluses -- It's MUCH easier to see the display outdoors in direct sun light vs other camera displays -- and it's MUCH easier on the batteries. Minus -- It's harder to see it indoors -- but I think it is useable. (FYI: I've noticed that indoor pictures look better on the pc, than on the mc3 display.)
Summary: I love it! Simple controls -- my five year old uses it to take pictures and play music ("Sesame Street" on the airplane). I carry with me in a pack or by the wrist strap listening to mp3s all the time. When I want a picture or video, mc3 is there. Expensive cameras and video equipment are for special occasions -- the mc3 is for my every day stuff.
Punch Line: Simple, fun, easy, rugged, versatile, and inexpensive. Simple Elegance.