Stimulus package bargain buys

We highlight the best gear to buy with Rudd’s cash-bonanza handout.

Best Camcorder: Sanyo Xacti HD1010 (RRP: $999)

The Sanyo Xacti HD1010 is one of the best sub-$1000 high-def camcorders we've ever tested. It combines comprehensive manual features with top-grade video quality and the convenience of removable flash memory recording. Sporting a plus-sized 1/2.5in CMOS sensor with a maximum resolution of 1920x1080p (i.e. Full HD), it is definitely worth the pennies.

The number of modes and features the Xacti HD1010 offers is astonishing for the asking price, including multiple focus options, adjustable aperture and shutter speeds, ISO sensitivity, noise/flicker reduction and an external microphone jack (to name but a few). This makes it a very good option for people who are serious about video. It also performs well in low lighting.

With an RRP of $999, the Sanyo Xacti HD1010 will cost an extra $99 on top of your tax bonus — but only because the Green Party sliced $100 off our cheques. (Stinkin’ hippies.)

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