Flip Mino HD vs Kodak Zi6 vs Flip Ultra Video Cameras

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A few weeks ago, I reviewed the Kodak Zi6. It is HD supported, but it has good quality. I also did a review of the Flip Ultra awhile back. I just finally got my hands on the Flip Mino HD. Now, I get to make some serious comparisons. Since the new Mino is HD as well, I decided to do a little playing around with some recording on each device prior to making this video.

First off, the Flip Mino is definitely much smaller and lighter than the Kodak Zi6. If you look at the differences between the two videos, you can see that the contrast is much better from the Zi6 than what the Flip Mino is. I’m not sure if there was a problem with the lighting, but there’s a definite difference. However, with the Zi6, I look more “yellow”, whereas with the Flip Mino my skin looks its normal color.

Both of them have a fair amount of noise in them, yes. However, the Kodak video is just a bit sharper than the Flip camera. On the other hand again, the Kodak camera always tends to drop frames, to an annoying degree. That needs to be fixed in the firmware ASAP, seriously. It happens constantly, and is a really huge drawback.

The image overall is shaper when using the Zi6 and the blacks are richer, but it does drop frames often. That makes it impossible to recommend over the Flip Mino. The Flip doesn’t have removable storage, but it is 4GB. The Flip software has been seriously upgraded, and it’s excellent software.

Overall, if you’re in the market for a new compact camcorder, I’d have to recommed the Flip Mino HD at this point. Even though the quality of the Kodak is better, the frame dropping is just something that is hard to live with for many people. You need to weigh the pros and cons against each other, and choose what works best for you.

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15 thoughts on “Flip Mino HD vs Kodak Zi6 vs Flip Ultra Video Cameras”

  1. When I clicked on your MINO-HD link the review there mentioned nothing about HD quality; what a misleading name !?!

  2. I have a FLIP ULTA and though convenient, I often miss videos starting when I press the START button, which has been real frustrating (similar problem in stopping a video).
    BTW, same reaction from a friend of mine who also has the ULTRA.

  3. @dan I had a Flip Ultra and now have a Flip Mino HD. The issue that you had with the start/stop button was only with the Ultra. Neither the Mino and the Mino HD have this problem. The buttons on the Mino line are far easier to use, and very well thought out.

  4. Thanks, this review really helped me to decide on which camera to get. Also, the 3 comments helped. Anyway, I’m getting the Mino HD. Thanks!

  5. Chris,

    Do you remember exactly what kind of SD card you were using with the Kodak Zi6 when you saw the frame drops?

    I’ve seen reports that the frame dropping may not happen if you use an SDHC card rated as “class 6” (particularly if it also has a max speed rating of at least 20MB/s).

    The card I saw recommended by one person out there was a Lexar card that carried both those ratings. The guy claims to have gotten this information from “a Kodak representative at Best Buy”:

    Obviously, a premium SD card adds to the Zi6’s price pretty quickly, but it’s still less expensive than the Flip Mino HD.

  6. I picked up and started testing the Aiptek Action HD GVS. It features 5x optical zoom (4x digital), HD video at 30 and 60 FPS. Good quality so far but it requires a fast SD card and quite a bit of light for good results.

  7. Aiptek is considered a budget camera compared to other HD video cameras. The product I am testing is their latest and greatest HD model. One additional comment… the Aiptek camera feels somewhat cheap in quality so I am not sure how it will hold up with extended and extended usage. Would love to know if anyone else has tried this brand or model.

  8. I love the flip video but unfortunately the video doesn’t up load on my HP mini notebook but it does on my dell laptop. I need it upload on my mini notebook. Do you think I will run into the same problem if I purchase the Kodak Zi6?

  9. Gregory,

    Can you please post more intel on this camcorder asap.

    I’ll be going on a long trip soon and I have to decide between this or one of the pocket cams (Vado HD, Flip, Kodak)


  10. okay so i am CRAZY frustrated. I have the Zi6 and can only get under 2 minutes and the batteries die ALL the time. Noone else is talking about this. What am I doing wrong. HELP!

  11. The only reason why it drops frames is because you need a really fast sdhc card. It truly helped me and there is no more dropped frames

  12. Hi,
    I just bought the Flip Mino and I paid premium for it. It stopped working after I played a video on my TV. I contacted Customer Support and they told me to reset it. I reset it and it still didn’t work. I contacted Customer Support several times and eventually got an RMA number. I sent it to Flip to get fixed or whatever. Flip sent it back (COD!!!) and told me they couldn’t fix it. They didn’t even try. You guys are a piece of work. I will never buy a Flip product again and make sure everyone knows why. I have everything documented.
    Thanks for nothing.
    Disgruntled customer.

  13. thank you for helping devalue the Zi6. For guerilla filmmakers like myself the zi6 is now completely affordable, which I find vastly superior in image quality to the whole range of flip products. I get no “frame dropping” even with a class 4 card (that i got for $10 at office depot). I get slow-shutter smears in low level light, but that was expected. with a lens mod i performed with a $12 dollar peephole I now have a wider lens. Overall my rig has only cost me $150 total and my films look awesome. oh yeah, $13 steady cam rig. DIY guerilla filmmakers unite!

  14. My Mino lasted less than 1 year; I was pretty careful with it, but it became less & less reliable, and could not be rebooted, either by holding the pwr button, or using a paper clip to access the reset button. I’m really tired of spending good money for unreliable products. I would like to try a different device.

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