Canon ZR950 1, Great video camera

This is a great little cameramy wife and i wanted to get something simple for the next few years-till we get a much more expensive hd camera. This little canon is exactly thatwe play hockey and it has no problem catching the moments: shooting, passing, and scoring- ha hathe zoom has a pretty nice stabilizer and the lcd screen (although fairly small) is wonderfully bright and suprisingly great quality. The microphone has a built-in filter (meant to kill unwanted backgroud noise/high freq bursts like wind. It’s ‘ok’ but not enough to kill some of the reverb of slappers in the rink- or a windy tennis game (which of course is understandable. )the interface on the lcd (such as changing manual features) is pretty user friendly and straight forward- however on the subject of manual settings such as night shooting, sports, or even shutter speeds. Can’t have your standards too high however for an in-expensive basic camera. Seems like it will be a pretty durable little camera and over-all very satisfiedlike i said, for a basic camera. It’s one of the best for your buck.If you want higher standards- just pay more and get a camera with more features.

Best zoom yet for view finder-handycam.

Pros: great video, great 48x advanced zoom, looks great, ease of use and vista ready. This is one of the best camera’s on the market currently in this price range. Great video resolution and the ability to take photo’s as well. The ability to zoom in on objects from far off and lots of extra’s that most camera’s do not offer. Good luck finding a better camera with all these features at a price slightly under $300.

Key specs for Canon ZR950 1.07MP MiniDV Camcorder with 37x Optical Zoom (Discontinued by Manufacturer):

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  • Capture video to MiniDV tapes
  • 48x Advanced Zoom; image stabilizer
  • 1-megapixel CCD sensor; widescreen HR recording
  • 2.7-inch widescreen LCD
  • SDHC card slot

Comments from buyers

“A No-Regrets Camera!!!!, Canon has awesome customer service, awesome camera for photos and video”

I purchased this camera as a gift for my husband. He has been very happy with it. He has used it on a tripod to film his railroad layout and got very good results. It is a good camera for a reasonable price.

This is a solid camera for a great price. Has options for sd cards for still photos. Native wide screen support and decent battery life. Still photos could be higher resolution, but this isn’t meant to be a digital camera replacement.

I bought this for recording family stuff. It records good with good sound. I am very unimpressed with the still pictures, especially in low light. It doesn’t come with any software for capturing or editing your videos. There is no firewire cable to transfer your video to your computer either. It doesn’t come with a sd card for still pictures. Overall i am happy with the camcorder, the zoom is great and the video is sharp. If you plan on taking a lot of still pictures you probably wont be happy. My phone takes better photos than this.

Speedy deliveryused it for 3 months and then noticed a pixel bun-in (one small dot was always red). Not a huge problem unless you watch recorded video on a big screen. The dot was the size of a pencil eraser. Canon paid for shipping both ways and repaired it perfectly. No questions asked (or money for that matter). And it was done within 10 daysby the way this camera takes great pictures on an sd card (uses usb to transfer). Takes grate video on a minidv tape (yes tape). The video is transferred via firewire. Canon is wonderful to work with.

La video cámara funciona muy bien. Es un buen producto , espero que me vaya mejor porque adquirí unz zr200 y me duró tan solo 1 año , a pesar de usarla poco.

Had this camera for vacations and for use of youtube videos. Love it, great zoom and awesome sound and picture quality, easy to use and great price.

Our family ordered the canon zr950 to record our son’s stock car races. This is a true test of a camera (and operator), as you are recording varying conditions and light levels. The canon is preforming beautifully. The images, whether bright sunlight or under the lights at night, are crisp and clear. The zoom is a breeze to use and the microphone captures all of the action we need to hear (and some we don’t) since we’ve only had the camera a few weeks we have not been able to delve into all of the options the camera has to offer, but so far we love it. We would definitely recommend that anyone looking for a low to mid-level priced camera give this one a try.

First off, two things you should be aware of before you buy this camera. One, if you don’t have a firewire port, or don’t intend on getting one for your computer (fireware cards aren’t difficult to install and are fairly cheap), do not buy this camera. Since most cameras record on harddrives nowadays anyways, this camera is definitely a little dated. However, if you have a firewire port this is a non issue since getting the video onto your computer is a painless process. Second, if sound is very important to you, do not buy this camera. Now i’m talking more production quality sound, not your average home video sound. The microphone on this camera is very poor and does a terrible job at isolating important noise from background noise. With that said, image quality with this camera is incredible considering its price. Also, you can’t beat the zoom on this camera.If you’re looking for a camera to make web videos with this is definitely a camera i would consider buying.

So easy to operate and such quality recordings. Very impressive, actually lives up to stated qualities.

Easy to download video to computer as long as computer has firewire connection. May have stabilization issues, but need to look further into the camcorder’s options.

The first guy who reviewed this camcorder is an idiot. Before you buy, i would encourage you to check out all the brands and compare the features. Much like cell phones everyone has something just a little different that might grab you. If your looking for special features. Test it out at the store and then buy it on amazon. The performance is as expected. Canon put out a quality 800 series last year (which was their mid-priced cameras) and now they have dropped their top-of-the-line series this year to concentrate on the more popular mid-priced camcorders. The 800 series from last year has been updated and tweaked to become the 900 series this year.

I ordered this camera, not expecting it to arrive early. It came two days early and is a great value for a beginners camera. It would be a great gift for a grad or father.

In the product description amazon. Com lists as a feature that the zr950 has a microphone input: ‘the microphone terminal on the zr950 makes it especially useful for educators and trainers to carefully capture the audio they need to make most effective use of the video they shoot. It’s also handy when you want to easily record a live narration for your footage. ‘however, having hands-on experience with this camera and from reading over the manual it does not have any audio-in jacks. This is a fine camcorder, but if you’re buying it to record lectures and want to record from a microphone source you’re buying the wrong tool. The canon zr930 and the zr900 both do state that they have microphone input on the canon website. Also, among the older models, the canon zr800 has audio-in as well, however the zr830 & zr850 do not. This is not made clear initially from canon’s website and required a good deal of research. I wish they listed that spec in their comparison page. At any rate, these are good cameras, at a good price.

For the money with all the options this camera has, ease of use, you can’t touch it.

This is the only camera i can find with firewire that works great with my software. This camera works well very happy with it.

Book of directions that comes with the camera/camcorder is fairly good and describe the options for focusing and aperature and other features. I learned to use the camera within a few days. The software for downloading images to the computer is self explanatory. Having that range for the zoom is wonderful. The resolution is not as high as a regular digital camera but the pictures are nice quality anyway.

Camcorder works ok, but the playback function doesn’t always operate properly. You can tell the camcorder was dropped. Probably isn’t worth half of what i paid for it.

I rated this one already, i remember, but they keep asking for it, so here goes again. The camcorder works perfectly. The price was extremely reasonable. I especially like the fact that the seller was willing to give a 30 day guarantee.

I purchased this a couple of weeks ago after reviewing just about every comment on the mini dv cameras. I picked mini dv because i expected a lot of learning and cost reduction to follow on the newer hard disk drives (and i didn’t want to spend $600). I used the camera on vacation (in oregon and indiana). Frankly, it was pleasantly easy to use, and very easy to integrate/transfer over to my imac (i selected this camera partly because it has a firewire). It’s sound is great, it’s zoom is amazing. I have no regrets over the purchase. I did need some help connecting it, and called their 800 number, and they were equally helpful (also a pleasant surprise). I realize the markets are constantly changing in terms of technology. But for this camera, it will last me for years (assuming it lasts for years). But it’s really nice, and i’ve already made several dvd’s with it.

Film making is not just a hobby of mine. I plan on doing it as a profession so i needed a good low budget camcorder. It has 1ccd and 1+megapixel. Also the camera has an amazing 48x advanced zoom that does not deteriate the quality at all. Another thing is that the camera is loaded with amazing effects, white balances, and features. Next it has a color view finder, and a nice big lcd screen. It is a very small camera and very light. It has a dv(firewire) output and usb output. Also the picture comes out great on tv, even on a 60 inch full hd tv.

Review Date
Reviewed Item
Canon ZR950 1.07MP MiniDV Camcorder with 37x Optical Zoom (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
3 of 5 stars, based on 37 reviews