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on October 25, 2011
Purchased the Vado HD 8GB Pocket Video Camcorder, 2nd Gen in October 2009. Vado wouldn't work upon receipt, easy return & replacement via Amazon. Happy with the replacement Vado, I ordered an additional new battery in December 2009 for a spare.

However, the original, new battery that came with Vado only worked for 3 months. Contacted Mfr Creative Labs who 1. told me to try to exchange it thru Amazon; 2. told me I'd need to return the entire Vado but eventually allowed just the defective battery to be returned after numerous emails from me; 3. approved return of defective battery under 1-yr limited warranty but then sent me a refurbished battery as a replacement. On VGA setting, the refurbished battery only held enough charge for about 1 hr, 45 minutes, then died. Needed to persist to replace defective original battery; didn't have time to pursue replacement of the defective replacement!

The Vado worked for about a year. After indicating that the battery was fully charged, upon immediate use, the battery indicator would sometimes drop 50% suddenly, then the Vado would shut off a few minutes later in the middle of taping. Quite unreliable & disappointing so we stopped using it. Tried to recharge batteries and use the Vado a few months ago. One battery couldn't be recharged. The other would only last about 5-10 minutes although it indicated it was fully charged. Of course, now past 1-yr warranty so no replacement.

I looked into purchasing new batteries so I could use the Vado again (optimistic). Creative Labs doesn't even sell the batteries on their website anymore. Found the Creative Labs battery available on Amazon thru a Seller Store, but Batteries are in the Non-returnable category so if you receive a battery that's dead-on-arrival, you're unlucky.

I noticed the mfr's website didn't list the Vado for sale any longer & sent them an email asking if the product line had been discontinued. They replied that they "currently don't have the further information on whether Vado series will be discontinued."

Bottom line: I really wanted the Vado to be great: it wasn't. The Vado and its necessary batteries have been horribly unreliable, and Creative Labs' Customer Service has been extremely poor. I doubt I will ever buy any Creative Labs products again.
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on November 23, 2011
This 2nd gen version was to replace my 1st gen Creative Vado 8GB HD, ordered from Amazon in May 2009 (for $180). I had gotten LOTS of use out of the 1st gen, and decided to get another as a backup, since the USB plug is starting to fray at the elbow. That's another issue; I can't believe the designer thought that was a good place and method for the USB plug! And it wasn't improved upon for the 2nd gen! Well, it's only a matter of time before it goes. Although the zoom is nothing to brag about (don't expect to zoom in on your favorite band from the cheap seats (scan YouTube for VADO videos)). I saw some complaints about sound on this 2nd generation version, but I had absolutely no sound problems on the 1st gen. I had recorded some concert footage, as did someone else at the same concert. Although he was a lot closer and his video substantially better, his sound was atrocious. I sent him my videos to dub my audio against his video. I also have the red Vado 4GB HD (Yugster, $38, 05/11), which I gave to my daughter, now 11, and has fun playing with her friends and shooting goofy videos.
Apologies for my babbling. As for THIS camera, 2nd gen ($50), I inserted the battery and promptly charged, for about 4 hours. I pushed the power button, and nothing happened, the camera would not turn on. I decided plug in and charge again for a few more hours. The screen did turn on, and "showed" me that it was indeed charging. I pushed the power button again, and nothing happened, the camera would again not turn on.

Promptly boxed back up and returned.

I had been very happy with my 1st Gen Vado despite the lackluster zoom, and it's a shame that so many have problems with the 2nd gen. The size was perfect, fit nicely in my Vivitar clamshell case, and is kept in my purse. I'll miss the 1st gen when it goes :(
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on January 2, 2010
I really like this mini hd camcorder and the 8gb is a steal at this price . First off NONE of these cameras in this class of camcorders have optical zooms/stabilization at this size or similar price points ($90 to $200+) , if your looking for a camera to shoot you back yard Oscar winning short picture please look elsewhere and dont not complain about the results vado hd or any similar flash camcorder puts out. LOL. The Vado HD excels at being a Light compact easy to use flash camcorder that produces very nice 720p hd video. The Vado hd video output (non zoomed, all digital zooms are KaKa) easy beats my old samsung mx 20 silly , yes the mx 20 audio is better (vado audio is good) but in terms of video quality the Vado hd wins. Easy of use the vado hd 2nd gen beats flip mino hd silly too. I bought and returned flip mino hd the touch "sensitive" keys drove me nutty varying needing a hammer smash to activate them, too accidental feather touch, causing popping up the garbage can in the middle of recording a video , I got big hands with big fingers and the Vado HD 2nd gen large tackle keys are a huge plus for me and is a major reason why I got the vado hd 2nd gen over the 3rd gen vado hd. The large 2" lcd on the back is also superior to Flip mino's hds and makes composimg your shots easier, nice for us eyeglass wearers. Now this might should strange be I like it over all size and light weight make it easy to hand hold fairly steady for decent periods of time and find it easier to hold steady over the Flip ultra HD which is bulker ,heavier and less pocketable than the vado hd, yes the Ultra hd can swap aa bateries (rechargeable, lithium, etc...), but if you need to you can get a second vado Hd battery for about 16.00 so if like recording for four hours in VGA mode you can (only god knows why and again you using the wrong camcorder). This camera is a nice design engineering compromise for what it is, that is a small compact high quality flash camcorder that can fit in almost any pocket or purse ,extremely easy to use , to take videos of drunken friends at partys, snow/skate boarding disasters, viedo reviews on you tube, or sweet and silly things that the new born baby, the family pet does or to document the damage to the cars in the traffic accident your were just in etc, etc..... . This is a great TAKE EVERYWHERE YOU GO camcorder that will produce two hours a good 720p hd video. If you understand the uses and limitations of the Vado Hd you be very happy with the camera especially the second gen HD 8gb at this insanely good price . Oh btw for windows users it took a 1 minute google search to find the codec to make all the vado hd videos play with Windows media player also vado hd videos the work with VLC media player if you having issues with the on board video program that comes with the vado, windows see's the vado hd as a mass storage device and you can explore it like any flash drive and cut/copy and paste as you like. Again I love the vado hd it a great take everywhere pocket camcorder.
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on January 25, 2010
As a professional videographer, I spend most of my day in a live truck. Having a new granddaughter that stays with us during the day, I wanted my wife to have an easy way to capture video of her quickly and easily when I'm not there. The Vado HD has made that process as simple as it gets. Turn it on, press one button, and you get a high definition clip that can be easily moved to your desktop or laptop. Most any decent editing software will handle these files and the quality is actually quite good at 720P. As with all video cameras, the more light you have on your subject, the better your video will look so I believe it serves no purpose to complain about "graininess" in really low light conditions. Move your subject closer to a stronger light source putting that source behind you and you will have a much better product. I like the wide angle lense as well as the HDMI cable that's included when other brands of pocket video cameras don't give you one. All in all, I think the Vada HD is a solid little camera and would recommend it to anyone who needs to shoot high quality home and travel videos on the fly.
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on November 21, 2009
I concur with many of the other reviews here. This little device takes beautiful, HD video and is smaller than our C@n0n SD600 still camera. Slightly larger than an iPh0ne 3G. A brief list of general pros and cons is provided - there are no specific speeds and feeds, since during my use of the device it's been pretty spot-on to what the manufacturer specs claim:

PROS

1 - Portable. I think that attempts to make devices like this any smaller would result in them being harder to use.
2 - Simple. This was the first device of its kind I've owned, and I haven't yet had to refer to the manual.
3 - Beautiful video. I only use the highest quality setting, so I can't rate the other settings. I am quite pleased with the video quality.
4 - Low light performance is excellent.
5 - Takes a lot of video before the battery requires a recharge or the storage needs to be freed up.
6 - LCD screen is bright and performs quite well in daylight conditions.
7 - The unit is ready to start recording IMMEDIATELY after powering on. This greatly improves your odds of capturing spontaneous events.
8 - Similar to 7 above, when you are done recording, there is only the slightest of delays while the memory is written before the unit is ready to power down and you can move on.

CONS

1 - No image stabilization. Like many other reviews here have stated, you need a very steady hand or tripod to avoid screen shakes.
2 - No stereo sound. Sounds minor, but I'd really like stereo audio.
3 - The included (latex?) cover makes it hard to discern where some controls are, like the power button and it doesn't protect the critical components exposed on the device (lens/screen).
4 - The lack of a lens cover makes me very nervous. The tendency is to stick this highly portable device in a pocket so that it's there when you want it. But pockets often also contain keys, coins, and lint, none of which I think are particularly good for a camera lens.
5 - Similar to above, there is no cover for the LCD screen either, and LCD screens are fragile.
6 - I'd have liked a larger LCD screen on this device.
7 - I'm not crazy about the flip-out USB connector. I think that in time this will be the piece that fails. Why not just use a standard mini USB type B socket like every other device of its kind?
8 - The zoom (digital) is pretty feeble.

The pros outweigh the cons though; I don't expect a full set of features on something this tiny. At the time of this review, I had bought this on sale for ~$120 US, which seems reasonable. It was certainly worth it to be able to get (HD) video of my family without all the drawbacks of getting our mini-DVD out and ready to use (a rather cumbersome procedure).
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon October 29, 2009
Having been a Flip Ultra user for over a year now, I was very excited to see what the Vado could do, especially at high definition quality. Other than the usual shortcomings from using a pocket video camera, I would have to say that Creative has a winner on it's hands.

PROS:
- Very small
- Good video quality
- Wide angle lens
- User-replaceable rechargeable battery
- Flexible USB connector
- Comes with HDMI cable

CONS:
- Poor low light performance
- Battery cover difficult to remove
- No Mac compatibility out of the box
- No RCA cable included for viewing on standard def TV's

SETUP & CHARGING
After removing the Vado 2nd Gen out of the box, I attempted to place the battery inside for charging. Unfortunately I struggled for a good 5 minutes for fear of breaking the cover. I finally figured out you need to sort of lift the end with the open battery tab to remove it but it was not an easy operation. Luckily, since it is rechargeable, I won't be performing that task very often. To my surprise, the battery came charged so I could start shooting videos of my kids right away. I was bummed that it did not come with the external battery charger however. If you happen to be traveling with your Vado and don't have access to a computer, you won't be able to charge it without the USB charger (or similar chargers), which you can pick up at Amazon.

VIDEO QUALITY
There are 3 different quality settings including VGA. I chose the highest quality setting to test, which the Vado can record for 2 hours. I found the quality to be excellent with good color and clarity. The wide angle lens is also very nice. But, like with most pocket camcorders, low light performance was less than stellar. From most reviews I have read, the Vado and Flip Mino HD are very close in video quality. The 2x digital zoom is nice to have, but not that great. The file size of the videos at HD+ (highest quality) are about 1MB per second of video. A 35 second clip I shot was almost 35MB.

EASE OF USE
Using the Vado is very simple. There are only a few buttons so it's easy to figure out even without reading the manual. When you want to transfer the movies to your computer, just pull the USB connector out and plug it in. I like the flexible USB connector because unlike the Flip Ultra, I don't feel like it's going to snap off when plugged in. Once you plug the Vado in, you can browse the Vado manually or with the included Vado software. The files are in AVI format so you can just copy and paste them to your computer. I like that the Vado software is entirely contained within the camera itself. The Flip installs software on your PC. The only thing the Vado installs on your computer is a video codec, which my computer didn't even need to view the AVI videos.

MISC
It's VERY nice that Creative included an HDMI cable so you can view your footage on your HDTV, but they left out the RCA cable so you cannot view them on your SDTV without buying the cable first. If you are a Mac user, you'll have to go to the Creative website and download the Vado software as it's not included right out of the box. The ugly silicon skin that comes with the Vado is nice to have but something other than the milky white color would've been much more attractive.

SUMMARY
I am not the least bit disappointed with the Vado, having come from the Flip Ultra. The video quality is SO much better that I wish I'd shot all our previous videos with the Vado HD. There is clearly a lot of competition in the pocket camcorder that Flip pioneered, but the Vado HD stands on top.
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on December 27, 2011
I would highly recommend this vado HD 8 GB pocket video camcorder to anyone who is uncertain about buying this product.

As I was looking for a camcorder to buy several months ago I was at a loss as to which one to buy.

There were so many to choose from and at this point I would like to extend my appreciation to the staff of Amazon who assisted me tremendously in the recommendations they have sent me.

Their recommendations is what led me to make an excellent choice in choosing the right product item suitable for my needs.

I was looking for a small pocket camcorder to record with.

This camera not only records in high definition with excellent clarity, it also allows you to take a picture of your choice within the recording portion.

If there is anything within the recorded portion that catches your eye and you would like a snap shot of it, all you have to do is click on snapshot and there it is.

The camcorder is very simple to use and when hooked up to the computer it is very easy and simple to playback the recordings.

I also purchased an extra battery to allow me more recording time and a battery charger to go along with it.

I don't care to wait several hours to recharge a battery so I'm glad I bought these additional items to go along with it.

I'm very happy with this item and I'm positive that you will be also when you choose to buy it.
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on January 10, 2011
Are you questioning whether to buy the Flip or the Vado? Choose Vado! After extensive research and side by side video comparisons, I bought the Vado for my boyfriend for Christmas and it is fantastic! We did some test video and I was soooo impressed by the quality of both picture and sound! It's super easy to use and weighs next to nothing! We got an extra battery and the ac charger. I highly recommend that as well so you have a full 4 hours of battery time!

I had used a friends Flip and though it was nice, I thought the display screen was very small and after using the Vado I think it's much nicer and significantly cheaper! You won't be disappointed! I did my research and the neither camcorder does well in super low light conditions so save your money and get the VADO! You will love it!
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on February 7, 2011
The Vado arrived very quickly. It is the easiest portable camcorder I've ever used. This is the 3rd one I've purchased. I have one that we used on our golf trip last year. It's easy to carry and have my husband take shots of me when I'm not hitting the ball well. My daughter was so impressed I bought her one for her birthday. Then when we took our trip to Texas this year I used mine during the Christmas holidays and my son loved how easy it was to just shoot then plug into the computer of tv and watch the recordings. It has it's own built in software so it's truly plug and play when you are downloading your recordings. It works equally as good with a Mac as with a PC. Has lots of internal memory...more than enough for a vacation trip or cruise. It takes great low light pictures and plays back in HD.
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on February 24, 2012
For some reason I didn't see any issues posted on here about powering on the Vado HD when I bought it. But I did have issues with it when it finally arrived. Once turned off it only seemed to turn on when I plugged the USB to my WIN laptop. I ended up finding several people mentioning this on the Creative Vado message boards though.
Being a system tester myself it seemed to me this pocket cam is about as basic as you can get; I got this sense from the folder appearing during start up. I figured the power on mechanism on this may work just like opening a folder on your computer (double click). So, I started using 2 quick clicks of the power button (like using a mouse) and it has powered every single time since. No lie.
Also, I don't have issues with low sound on playback like others have mentioned. May be a case by case basis.
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