Kodak unveils 1080p, image-stabilized HD pocket camcorder

The Zi8 looks pretty slick, but we'll let you know what we think of its alleged image awesomeness when we get a test model in

Kodak has announced a new high-definition pocket video camera, the Zi8, which captures video in 1080p HD. The Zi8 is a step-up in video resolution over its predecessors, the Kodak Zi6 and the weather-resistant Zx1, which both maxed out at 720p. Along with the 1080p HD video, the Zi8 can capture stills of 5 megapixels with a 16:9 aspect ratio. At US$180, it's priced in the same range as earlier models.

The Zi8 has a swing-out USB arm (like the Pure Digital Flip Mino HD-a more expensive alternative), which enables the user to quickly upload files, as well as an HDMI-out port. The Zi8 only comes with 128MB of internal memory, so you'll have to use the expansion slot for an SD/SDHC card to store most of the video. It's also the first pocket camcorder that we've seen with built-in image stabilization, which will certainly come in handy for those recording during high-speed unicycle chases.

Also worthy of note is its external microphone jack-although the Zi6 captured great sound, we didn't love the audio quality on the Zx1, so the option of an external mic is a nice one. The Zi8 comes in a new color this time around, as well: tart-but-delicious raspberry (in addition to aqua and black).

The Zi8 looks pretty slick, but we'll let you know what we think of its alleged image awesomeness when we get a test model in. This newest addition to the Kodak camcorder family is to go on sale in September.

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Sarah Jacobsson

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