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  • EEVblog #595 – World’s Shittiest Camcorder: Teardown

    Posted on March 26th, 2014 EEVblog 36 comments


    Teardown Tuesday
    What’s inside the world shittiest camcorder that costs a whopping $7.50 on Amazon?
    The Global New Beginnings DV-136ZB 1.5″ 3.1 MP Digital Video Camera
    Mailbag: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NYWGXLuyH4M
    Forum HERE

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    • edy

      You have to admit, Dave, that for $7.50 it starts to be worth the price… and makes a nice child’s toy. If anything you can strap it to a remote control car or plane, hack around with it… Although that is a complete garbage of a camera, at least it costs what it’s worth. It would be appalling if they charged any more for it, but that is very cheap!

      • edy

        I’m almost tempted to buy one for my kids… if they ever offer free shipping, like I get stuff off eBay for next to nothing direct from China with free shipping but it takes a month to arrive!

    • Chris

      Now I would never suggest this would be a good first camcorder for Sagan for fear of being banned for life, however for those who don’t have an extraordinary child, it seems decent. I would never buy a $100 camera for a little kid. If he drops this one in the toilet, mud, on the driveway and gets broken, no big loss. Also he’ll stop trying to play with my expensive toys :-)

    • http://www.aykira.com.au/ Keith

      My eldest was given one of these for his birthday by a relative… Now migrated onto a Canon via Dad a few years later.

    • http://www.youtube.com/user/101blog problemchild68

      Yes despite it causing the evident anger issues I think the poor camera was almost tolerable for the $7.50…plucky little soul.

      As said before I thinkit would be ok as a kids toy keep them off Daddies’ camera !!

    • http://www.youtube.com/user/101blog problemchild68

      “Goodbye” shitty little camera …You are in a better place now ….. :-P

    • RedneckEngineer

      Ok, I have to say something. Dave, I really am a fan of yours, but sometimes stuff like this drives me crazy. Why bash a product for not living up to something it was never intended to from the get-go? We’re engineers and ought to understand the notion of ‘good enough’. Apparently for quite a few people, this kind of cheap camera is good enough.

      You do the same thing with multimeters: “OMG, if it’s not a $100 meter it’s a piece of shit and you shouldn’t waste your time”. Yeah it’s not a Fluke, but I’m here to tell you that many a fine project has been turned out using a $10 meter and a radio shack woodburner. It just drives me nuts when people have the attitude that you can’t get things done without having top of the line tools. Fact is that’s just not true; it only has to be good enough, and these days the cheapie $10 chinese specials have gotten ‘good enough’ for the majority of projects you’ll encounter. I’ve met too many people (in electronics and other non-related fields) who wait around for the perfect tool and wind up never getting anything done.

      • MC

        Along with RedneckEngineer, I have to say – I couldn’t develop and sell this (nor would I want to for the piddly margin it would offer), but if I tried to put it together with the R&D costs and the most costly parts (case, right-angle connector, RAM, image processor and sensor… it would be pretty hard to cover the manufacturing and packaging costs at /any/ price.

        Ok, so our labor is paid more than $3/hour.

        Basically – congratulations for delivering what they intended to.

        Dave, I think you were a little harsh. Yes it is a POS, but it wasn’t designed to compete with anything other than the rubber dog poo in the $2 shop!

        If I could sell 250K units of anything I put together – I’d be happy!

        Cheers

        • huh

          I also didn’t like this video for the same reason.
          Also, there are a lot of people in the world who would love to get this piece of crap because they cannot afford anything better, not to talk about the poor experimenters in developing countries who could repurpose some of its parts.
          Continuous bashing and trashing it wasn’t exactly classic. Thumbs down.

      • Concerned Citizen

        I enjoyed the video greatly.

        Loosen up! It is about all you could expect if there are no first world companies involved to teach manufacturers in the third world about quality.

        Like a lot of Chinese rubbish, I noticed there is no evidence of mandatory compliance marks. If not, it is contraband in Australia. And if it is made with lead, it is contraband in the EU, although it does look like lead free solder.

      • http://www.eevblog.com EEVblog

        Many completely missed the point of this video, it was supposed to be humorous teardown.
        Most who complained completely ignored the fact that I actually praised the internals given the price, and just went into a fury over how I was too harsh on on the value for money and usability, when it is in matter of fact pretty darn crap. But this was NOT a review, it was a teardown, which is why I didn’t mention that some people may actually find it useful for the money etc. So I”m being attacked for something I didn’t say
        I’m not the one who has to settle down here, some people just need to lighten up a little bit. If you think it’s good value and has a use, fine go buy it. I called a piece of crap camera a piece of crap, nothing more.

        • BigAdam

          A much needed laugh!
          Great work Dave, and I certainly got the intention of the video.

          As for the steaming pile, it reminded me of the image quality of my first Sony 3Mp still camera back in 1999, when a 64Mb Memory Stick was $149!

          And with regards to the comments about the waste of resources and fuel these products consume, I have always regarded Reject Shop and $2 shops as “landfill shops”. Shipping containers full of imported crap, shipped over the oceans then delivered at breakneck speed by trucks to the shop. All so we get to add it to the hard rubbish pile not too far down the track. But there is always a market for “Steaming Piles”!

          Thanks for telling it like it is Dave!

    • DB

      Dave should have kept the most useful part of the device… the screws. Everyone worth his salt should have a screw collection.

      Hoo Flung Dung could not spell MAIN. He spelt it MIAN. But at least he had designators.

    • SilverSolder

      I enjoyed the thorough bashing of the crappy little $7 camera. But I also agree with the commenters that said it has its uses, even for adults!

      For example, you could tape it under your car and go for a drive to locate a knocking/loose part. It is also a great “hacker’s object” to use in other projects.

      At this price, it can almost be considered a “disposable video camera”!

      I guess this really shows the power of integrated circuits to lower prices of quite complex functionality…

    • Jim

      Heeelllooo! $7.50!!!!

      As a practical engineer you should be in awe that anyone in the world could possible sell something like this so cheaply. It is frightening.

      Incredible!

      And yes, great as a toy.

    • tchicago

      It is possible that $7.50 is an “at loss” price. The device could have been overproduced at some point, stock was not sold at original price and whoever is left holding the bag is selling off the unsold stock at whatever price they can get for it.

    • Worf

      I suppose as a throwaway camera it’s a good deal, but that’s about it. The video it produces is quite… bad. Kids may love it, but I think beyond that the image quality is too awful to use for any practical purpose.

      Of course, the big problem is how crappy it is and how much worse the Earth is having made it

    • http://www.gauda.net Manuel

      Hi Dave,

      funny review :-) I don’t understand these complains about your comments… It’s a shitty product and that’s it!
      Products like these are problematic in two ways:
      1) They are an environmental problem: the resources like power, water etc. could be used for much better things…
      2) Because of devices lie this one, people get use to bad image quality and take it for granted :-( I’m teaching photography and my eyes are alway bleeding when I see crappy stuff like this.

      Thumbs up for the review !!

    • Robert123897158

      As some other people have stated, I could totally see this as a cheap toy for kids to play with. I know when I was 10 years old if someone had given me a tiny camcorder of my own I would of have a ton of fun with it.

      Cell phones being common place even for kids, have kind of stolen the thunder of a cheap device like this.

      • Robert123897158

        Wanted to add I loved the teardown and saw the humor in it :)

        I don’t want to come off as one of the people complaining.

        I got to see a teardown of the world’s shitiest camcorder, I’m happy!

    • Kaiser Soze

      That is a cheap video camera. The “selling” price of $7.50 seems so low as to have no relationship to the true cost of manufacture.

      How much high sulfur coal was burned to make and ship this thing of such marginal utility?

      How much land fill space throughout the world will be used by the packaging and ultimately the device?

      Is there any real need for any such a low quality devices?

      Engineers that prostitute their talents to such products have wasted resources and robbed the world of the things of value and beauty they might have made but didn’t.

      • Le_Bassiste

        @kaiser soze:
        full ack.
        and that’s why dave’s teardown of that thingy is a fair review in its own right.
        to the hell with all that tamagocrappotronics, and to the ethics-classes with all those thoughtless crapmakers!

    • Sosh

      Does anyone know if this is available in Europe? For the price, this looks like a great hacker component, especially with the bulky case removed.

    • Agent24

      This episode should have been about shift registers! ;)

    • edy

      I would buy 10 of these cameras and hack the trigger to start all of them from a single switch. Mount them on your helmet in all directions and create a 3d all angle video like Google VR. Or point them all at an object inwards from different angles and use the cameras to do 3d scanning, or simply neat video/shooting effects. For that price, someone can find a clever application for combining an array of these cheap video data recorders and if their idea works in principle they can later move on up in quality!

    • mark

      hi, I am exercising my right to not watch every video. Love Dave’s Videos but I don’t watch them all though I would probably like this one.

      I think I would be with Dave on this one. (and with Kaiser Soze.

      It is not ‘great’ that this camera could be considered disposable. What I wish is that when materials are converted to products there would be some minimal level of quality expected. Otherwise it is just contributing to the waste problem.

      However, I don’t know where the mechanism would be to establish this minimum quality.

      Related- in the fitness industry there is a class of crap treadmills at the opening price point. someone I know thinks these are truly designed to make it from mid-winter to yard-sale season and no more. Fortunately, they are mostly steel (recyclable) and wood (renewable?)

    • derik

      I think the government and or a group of really smart people should tell engineers what to develop.

      • Kirill

        Believe it or not engineers themself are generally quite smart people. And there have never been too many qualified engineers around even in the USSR and being a developer provides a developer with almost unimited ways to control his/her project. That is why the level of possible regulation in this field is very limited.

        There are only 2 kinds of projects engineers actually develop:
        1) What they like to develop.
        2) What they are paid for.

        Of course good engineers always try to have both at the same time and not to participate in a really wierd-ass crazy stuff but theese are their personal choices and preferences.

        An other thing is that once the project is finished it is not for engineers to think of whether to sell the crap or not. If there is a significant demand for a product even the crappiest one there will always be engineers to design what is required and some ways to sell the stuff especially if someone can pay for the effort.

    • Crille

      Forum link does not work…

      • Ross

        Maybe the link only cost $7.50

    • Phil b.

      My first comment . . . just had to.
      I was amazed at Dave’s over-the-top treatment of this toy camcorder. I actually tuned out after the third? dogs turd comment. It cost Dave not a cent. Heck it cost nothing for the bloke who sent it in.
      The opening vid was okay; it worked; I’m far from an expert but saturation didn’t make me sick, colour was present; not bad for nothing. I like the vids but hey, settle down will ya?

    • Michael A.

      Hi Dave,

      Your link to the forum page is not working.

    • Greg

      The entire family listened to this one. Got a few good laughs. Always fun to watch the tear downs. Love repeating the new phrases I hear. Would love to tell the support people I have been dealing with that I did not give two dog turds why they can’t figure out the issue. lol

    • PK

      A byproduct of the modern times that we live in. Built in obsolescence that made electronics technicians a dying breed :-(

    • chippy

      MIAN Board ! It reads MIAN Board :D

    • Edy

      You could have kept this as an April fools teardown and praised it for how amazing it is. :-) Can’t wait for the next video… This video has been up so long, you even have EEVBlog members commenting on the Amazon reviews for this cam and linking back to this Site! Awesome!