Toshiba Camileo X200 - Manual Controls, IQ and Verdict

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You can grab stills at up to 16Mpixels, too, which obviously entails a fair amount of interpolation, as it’s twice the sensor resolution. There’s a tiny 128MB of memory built in, so the SDXC card slot must be called upon for storage. With the top video data rate sitting at around 12Mbits/sec, you can store around 11 minutes of video per gigabyte.

The X200 has a modest LED video light built in, but it also offers something Toshiba calls digital light. This is actually a boost in video gain, rather than a real light. So it does improve image brightness, but at the expense of introducing more grain. The image stabilisation is digital, too. So it’s only moderately effective, particularly compared to the hybrid optical systems now available in premium models from the big names of the camcorder business.

The icon-driven main menu provides access to a host of features and settings, although not the manual controls a videomaking enthusiast would want. So there’s no manual focus, shutter or iris configuration. Even the scene modes are limited to soft skin and night mode, and although there are white balance presets for tungsten, neon and sunlight, there’s no manual option. But there is a macro mode, and you can switch to centre or spot exposure. All of these must be accessed via the touch-screen LCD, with just buttons for cycling through the light modes, and switching between recording and playback.

The X200 is better endowed for features that are aimed at fun rather than serious videomaking. There’s a motion detection option, which triggers recording when action is picked up in the frame. You can also record slow motion video and time-lapse frames at intervals of one, three or five seconds. You can enable face tracking and a pre-record function, which buffers footage so when you hit record this can be added onto the beginning of your clip, to prevent missing an important event.

Strangely, the X200 sports a minijack microphone input, so you could

hook up an external device, athough there is no accessory shoe for

mounting anything on the camcorder itself. The accessories in the box

are generous, too, considering the price. An infrared remote is

included, plus a material pouch to keep the camcorder dust free. Best of

all, Toshiba has thrown in a mini to regular HDMI cable, so you can

hook the X200 up to your HDTV and watch your footage in all its digital,

high definition glory.

Image quality in good lighting is decent

enough. Colour can be overly saturated, and where there is extreme

contrast in light, bright areas can be slightly blown out whilst shadows

lose detail. But overall the picture is very acceptable. Video

performance in low light isn’t terrible, either, but it is behind that

of the X400, showing the benefits of the latter’s back-side illuminated

CMOS. The X200’s footage does maintain some colour in poor illumination,

but it isn’t very bright, and there is noticeable grain, more than the

X400 shows. The white balance also gives light-coloured areas a

yellowish tinge.

Verdict

Toshiba’s Camileo X200

does give you a fair amount for your money, and it’s around £20 cheaper

than the company’s own X400. However, its image quality is also behind

the latter, particularly in low light. So whilst the X400 takes a decent

step up in quality over Toshiba’s previous models, the X200 is more

like a small shuffle forward. It’s good value, but isn’t quite in the

same league as its slightly more expensive brother.

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