The Tech-pert: Kodak Playsport Review
As a general rule, electronics and mud don't mix. So it was with great trepidation that I dragged a Kodak
Playsport pocket camcorder through an actual mud pit during a race called the Warrior Dash
Mind you, I don't mean the camera got splashed with a little dirt. I mean it got submerged in muck while I crawled on my hands and knees through about 30 feet of it.
I'm happy to report I survived the race--and so did the Playsport.
Unlike pocket camcorders from the likes of Creative
and Flip Video
, Kodak's latest model is waterproof. It can handle underwater shooting at depths up to 10 feet, meaning it's sealed up tight enough to keep out not only water, but also sand and, yes, mud.
Thus, you can take it to the beach, the swimming pool, an insane 3-mile obstacle course, or wherever, and not worry about your delicate camera getting ruined. After the Warrior Dash, I rinsed it under the sink and it was (nearly
) good as new.
The Playsport is also noteworthy for capturing 1080p video, where many competing models top out at 720p. It can snap 5-megapixel still photos, and it offers image stabilization, anti-glare filters (to help out when shooting in bright sun
), and the ever-popular face-tracking technology.
I found the overall video quality to be very solid, especially when shooting outdoors, but I'm disappointed that Kodak couldn't squeeze in a built-in USB cable like on other models. To connect it to your PC for editing, YouTube uploads, etc., you'll have to remember to bring along the cable. At least Kodak also provides an HDMI cable for making a direct connection to your HDTV.
As a bona fide warrior, I can attest that it's a great go-anywhere camcorder for families and active videographers. It normally sells for $149.95, but you can get the Kodak PlaySport
camcorder from Walmart
Self-proclaimed cheapskate Rick Broida has been a technology writer for
over 20 years. He has authored over a dozen books, including, most recently,
"How to Do Everything: Palm Pre." Currently he writes the Cheapskate blog.