Sanyo VPC-HD2 Review

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Basic Specifications
Full model name: Sanyo Xacti VPC-HD2
Resolution: 7.10 Megapixels
Sensor size: 1/2.5 inch
(5.8mm x 4.3mm)
Lens: 10.00x zoom
(38-380mm eq.)
Viewfinder: LCD
Extended ISO: 50 - 1600
Shutter: 1/2000 - 4 sec
Max Aperture: 3.5
Dimensions: 3.1 x 4.7 x 1.4 in.
(79 x 119 x 36 mm)
Weight: 8.3 oz (235 g)
includes batteries
MSRP: $700
Availability: 03/2007
Manufacturer: Sanyo
Full specs: Sanyo VPC-HD2 specifications

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10.00x zoom 1/2.5 inch
size sensor
image of Sanyo Xacti VPC-HD2
Front side of Sanyo VPC-HD2 digital camera        

Japanese consumer electronics company Sanyo Electric Co. Ltd. has unveiled a new digital camera that updates its existing Xacti HD1a model with some new features. The original Xacti HD1 was launched at the Consumer Electronics Show a year ago, followed mid-year by the HD1a (which dropped the original model's OLED display in favor of a more standard LCD display, added a couple of new still and video resolutions, and made it possible to edit videos in-camera). One year later, and the Sanyo Xacti VPC-HD2 follows at the exact same $699.99 price as the HD1a, but with two more megapixels of resolution. The Sanyo HD2 couples its seven megapixel imager with the exact same body and lens as the previous models. The only other change of note that we came across in our perusal of the specifications is that Sanyo has dropped the HD1 and HD1a's unusual 60 frames-per-second video mode - perhaps because the data can't be clocked off the higher resolution sensor fast enough to make the mode possible.

The Sanyo Xacti HD2 is marketed as a hybrid device with an emphasis on its better than average (by still camera standards, anyway) video capabilities, and features an unusual vertical "pistol grip" design reminiscent of a camcorder, with no optical viewfinder in favour of a large tilt/swivel LCD display. The Xacti HD2 features an f/3.5 10x optical zoom lens (the lens design originally coming from Konica Minolta), plus an MPEG4 movie mode with resolutions up to 1280 x 720 pixels, and frame-rates up to 30fps in all resolutions. Images are stored on Secure Digital cards, and thankfully (given the camera's ability to fill a 2GB card with video in around 30 minutes) the VPC-HD2 is now compatible with the newer SDHC (Secure Digital High Capacity) cards. SD cards max out at just 2GB, whereas SDHC cards may be shipping in capacities up to 16GB by the end of the year (should Panasonic fulfil a promise made at CES).

MSRP pricing for the Sanyo Xacti VPC-HD2 is set at US$699.99, and the camera ships this March.


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