It’s sun, camera, and action for the holiday

This model has storage for six hours of 1,080p video on its 64GB flash memory (plus room for three hours more in its memory slot) and is a winner in this year’s Press Association awards. Optical image stabilisation enables smooth use of the 20x zoom with additional advanced stabilisation for panning. A 10.6mp CMOS sensor gives great low light sensitivity.

Samsung HMX H205
Another winner in the 2010 Press Association technical awards, this “beginner camcorder” shoots in full HD (1,080i) and has good low light sensitivity for its class. With a 32GB solid state drive, it has the greatest storage capacity of Samsung’s recently released full HD series and features a 20x zoom and 4.7 megapixel stills.

Sanyo Xacti SH1
This brand new release from Sanyo features an impressive advanced zoom of up to 30x without image deterioration and a wide-angle lens equivalent to using a 35mm film camera. Unlike most other camcorders at its price level, it shoots in full HD resolution (1,080i). The only downside is its lack of optical image stabilisation to go with the zoom.

GoPro HD Hero Helmet Cam
GoPro specialise in sports cameras and their recently released helmet camera delivers full-colour, smooth-motion video, whether mounted on a surf or a snowboard. Tough on impact and waterproof, it features quality settings from WVGA to 1,080p and comes with a variety of mounts for differently shaped surfaces. Unfortunately, it lacks an LCD?or viewfinder.

Kodak Zi8
At a size of 11.4cm by 6.2cm and weighing just 110 grammes without batteries, the Zi8 is one of the most portable cameras around. Even so, it manages to squeeze in a microphone jack, a 4x zoom with image stabilisation, 128MB storage (with a SD/SDHC slot for more) and four quality settings ranging from WVGA to 1080p.