JVC Everio GS-TD1 Review

We have to give JVC props for taking a huge step forward in home video, leaping from 2D to 3D with the GS-TD1.
We have to give JVC props for taking a huge step forward in home video, leaping from 2D to 3D with the GS-TD1.
We have to give JVC props for taking a huge step forward in home video, leaping from 2D to 3D with the GS-TD1.

Highs

  • Records high-quality Full HD 3D video (MP4 MVC)
  • 3.5-inch auto-stereoscopic touch panel LCD
  • Touch GUI works well
  • 64GB onboard flash memory, also accepts SDXC cards

Lows

  • Expensive
  • Poor still quality especially indoors
  • Definitely need a larger, spare battery

You’ve probably heard so much about 3D that you’re red-green-blue in the face, especially with the introduction of Nintendo’s 3DS and 3D HDTV bubbling along in the background. Getting lost in the hype is JVC’s first Full HD 3D camcorder that’s loaded with 64GB of flash memory and is light years ahead of low-cost 3D movie makers currently available (think Sony Bloggie 3D). Now let’s determine if the GS-TD1 is worth its hefty list price.

JVC Everio GS-TD1Features and Design

If you want to impress your friends with a gadget that looks like it beamed down from the “V” mothership with lovely Anna, the black-bodied, silver-accented Everio GS-TD1 is it. In order to accommodate two large lenses with enough separation to create 3D depth, the TD1 is much wider and unusual looking than any other camcorder on the market. When the $1,500 Sony HDR-TD10 arrives with its pair of large lenses in April, there will be company in this category but right now JVC stands alone. It measures 4.1 x 2.7 x 7.4 (WHD, in inches) and tips the scales at 1.4 pounds with the supplied battery. It’s big, heavy and wide; forget about simple one-handed shooting with this one.

Since it’s a 3D camcorder, the most obvious feature is the f/1.2 Twin HD GT lenses on the front which looks a little like Wall-E, the animated Pixar robot. When shooting 3D, it’s a 5x optical zoom but if you switch to 2D, it’s a more powerful 10x. To the left and right of the lenses are large mics. JVC incorporated Biphonic technology for 3D sound and we’ll let you know shortly if it delivered.

On the top is a cold accessory shoe, wide/tele toggle switch and a snapshot button for stills (yes, you can take 2.9-megapixel 3D and 2D photos). On the right is a comfortable Velcro strap, a switch for the manual lens cover, an input for optional mics and a door that covers the cavernous battery compartment. The supplied battery–which is rated around 1 hour for continuous 3D recording–gets lost in there and JVC offers an optional larger, longer-lasting battery.

JVC Everio GS-TD1One of the GS-TD1’s coolest features is the swing-out LCD on the left-hand side. Not only is it a 3.5-inch touchscreen rated 920K pixels but this auto-stereoscopic display lets you check out your 3D creations without glasses just like the FujiFilm W3. Cool. Another plus is the Auto Parallax adjustment. You just tap an icon on the top left and the camcorder does the work for you and it does a good job. Manual screen adjustment is also available if you’re not totally happy with the results. One squawk—the icon is a bit small and inscrutable so a quick peek at the Basic User Guide was required. As a matter of fact, some other icons were bit perplexing but we guess that’s what owner’s manuals are for. You’ll do almost all of your tweaks via the touchscreen so there are a minimal amount of buttons on the GS-TD1. Thankfully, the screen reacts quickly to fingernail taps and swipes. Opposite the LCD on the body are compartments for SDXC cards, another for USB and A/V outs, a speaker and on/off button.

On the back is a large silver button labeled 3D and it’s surrounded by five smaller ones: Adjustment, Info, User, Movie/Still and Manual/Auto. Adjustment takes you to the tweaks available in Manual mode (a scroll wheel at the bottom left makes the changes). Info shows the amount of recording time and battery life you have left while User activates your presets. Movie/Still lets you quickly jump between modes and Manual/Auto goes from point-and-record Intelligent Auto to Manual which has a wide range of options (focus, brightness, white balance and so on). The record button is on the far right and a headphone jack is above it. You’ll also find a compartment for mini HDMI out and DC-in for the AC adapter. The big 3D button with its blue backlighting naturally lets you switch between 3D and 2D recording. You’ll also find a tripod mount on bottom of the Made In Malaysia camcorder.

What’s In The Box

The camcorder, AC adapter, rechargeable battery, remote, USB and A/V cables as well as mini HDMI. You also get a fold-out Easy Start Guide, a 36-page Basic User Guide booklet in English. The supplied CD-ROM has Everio MediaBrowser 3D software and a link to download the full 146-page manual as a PDF.

Mobile

OnePlus 6T vs. Honor View 20: We compare the cameras in these ‘flagship killers’

For less than $600, you can buy either the OnePlus 6T or the Honor View 20, two extremely capable smartphones with plenty of exciting features. But which one has the best camera? We found out on a recent trip to France.
Deals

The best budget-friendly GoPro alternatives that won’t leave you broke

Cold weather is here, and a good action camera is the perfect way to record all your adventures. You don't need to shell out the big bucks for a GoPro: Check out these great GoPro alternatives, including some 4K cameras, that won’t leave…
Photography

When you're ready to shoot seriously, these are the best DSLRs you can buy

For many photographers the DSLR is the go-to camera. With large selection of lenses, great low-light performance, and battery endurance, these DSLRs deliver terrific image quality for stills and videos.
Emerging Tech

Wish you could fly? You totally can with these top-of-the-line drones

In just the past few years, drones have transformed from a geeky hobbyist affair to a full-on cultural phenomenon. Here's a no-nonsense rundown of the best drones you can buy right now, no matter what kind of flying you plan to do.
Wearables

Focals succeed where Google Glass fumbled (but do we really need smartglasses?)

It’s been seven years since Google took the wraps off Google Glass. Now, we’re finally getting a modern-day equivalent we want to wear. North’s Focals combine subtle style with an intuitive interface to craft smartglasses you’ll…
Photography

From DSLRs to mirrorless, these are the best cameras you can buy right now

From entry-level models to full-frame flagships, many cameras take great photos and video. The best digital cameras, however, push the industry forward with innovative sensors and improved usability, among other things. Here are our…
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Grow veggies indoors and shower more efficiently

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Photography

Photography news: Wacom’s slimmer pen, Leica’s cinema special edition

In this week's photography news, Wacom launches a new slimmer pen for pro users. Leica's upcoming M10-P is designed for cinema, inside and out, with built-in cinema modes in the updated software.
Mobile

Be careful who you bokeh, jokes Apple’s latest iPhone ad

With iPhone sales under pressure, you'd think there wouldn't be much to laugh about at Apple HQ. But the company has seen fit to inject some humor into its latest handset ad, which highlights the camera's Depth Control feature.
Photography

What’s the difference between Lightroom CC and Lightroom Classic?

Lightroom CC has evolved into a capable photo editor, but is it enough to supplant Lightroom Classic? We took each program for a test drive to compare the two versions and see which is faster, more powerful, and better organized.
Photography

Luminar’s libraries gain speed, drop need for you to manually import images

Luminar 3 just got a performance boost. Skylum Luminar 3.0.2 has improved speed over December's update, which added the long-promised libraries feature giving editors a Lightroom alternative.
Photography

Mirrorless cameras were built to be compact, so why have they gotten so heavy?

Mirrorless cameras launched as portable alternatives to bulky and complex DSLRs -- so why are they getting bigger and heavier? Cameras are trending towards heavier models, but that change comes with more advanced features.
Photography

The best place to print photos online in 2019

Have you been looking around for the best place to print out your favorite photos online or in store? Don't fret, we've pored through dozens of options and narrowed it down to the seven best.
Photography

The Panasonic FZ1000 gets a much-needed update alongside the smaller ZS80 zoom

Panasonic's 2014 superzoom camera with a larger sensor has finally seen an update. The new Panasonic FZ1000 II has a sensor that's better for low light, more physical controls, and new 4K Photo Mode features.