There is a minijack available for hooking up to a TV to watch your footage – but no cable is supplied in the box. In reality, though, the Vado is very much focused on being used with a computer. With the USB 2.0 connection built in, neither pulling footage off and onto a PC nor recharging will leave you wishing you’d brought the right cables, as they’re on the Vado already. No software CD is supplied in the box, but there is a simple application stored on the device itself called Vado Central, which loads automatically when you plug the camcorder in via USB. No installation is required, so you could run this from anyone’s PC, or even an Internet café if running software from a USB device is allowed. The software is only compatible with Windows too.
Vado Central is fairly simplistic. It lets you watch stored clips straight off your Vado’s memory, copy them to memory and delete the ones you don’t want. It has no editing capabilities whatsoever, but online integration is particularly slick, with direct support for YouTube and Photobucket. Simply enter your username and password, then information about your video (in the case of YouTube), and upload straight from the Vado itself to the Web. We found this worked extremely well with either supported services. If you do want to edit footage, the XVID codec is stored on the device for installation on a PC, and we found that the Vado’s footage could be loaded on any editing app we tried, including Ulead VideoStudio, Pinnacle Studio, Adobe Premiere Pro and CyberLink PowerDirector.
The Vado is not really a device for anyone who wants to do more with their video than just upload it to YouTube. Its camcorder features are virtually non-existent, and decent lighting is required to obtain acceptable image quality. But it still manages to achieve its goal. The built-in USB 2.0 plug and integrated software mean you can shoot, and then use any Internet-connected Windows PC to upload to the Web literally minutes afterwards. So if that’s what you want to do with your video, the Vado’s £79 price tag seems rather good value.
Score in detail
Image Quality 4