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JVC GZ-MC500US ?

Papoloko's picture
Last seen: 9 years 3 months ago
Joined: 06/17/2005 - 11:50am
Hi everybody... I just joyned this great forum and here is my first newbie post.

After using a Sharp VL-WD255 for 4 years I'm now ready to buy a better rig. While checking the net for the Sony DCR-VX2100 I came across the new JVC GZ-MC500US. It really seems attractive to me but I can't find any full reviews on it. I did found a good post about the JVC Everio MC100... Cut & Paste from MiniME at camcordeinfo.com on Nov-16-2004.
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Quote:

First user experiences
Hi All,

I just bought the Everio MC100, and I must say.........I am impressed! For me, the buying of a camcorder was already a wish for a long time, but the main hurdle of existing cams was that, once recorded a lot of footage, it is a hassle to get all content/footage on your PC and then start editing. Of course this is the disadvantage of all lineair systems (like a tape).

So I was waiting for a non-linair, fully digital videocamera, with at least DVD quality, so footage can directly used for digital editing and producing DVDs.

After a lot of "toys" that could do the job, but only in webcam resolution and qualities, the first camera fitting this requirement (and that I almost bought) was the Panasonic SV-AV-100 (D-Snap). It has MPEG-2 quality, and uses an SD card to store the footage. Really small size, but............the main disadvantage is it can only store a max of 11 minutes in max (DVD) quality on the supplied 512 Mb card. Now, we are a year later and the only thing changed is that there are now 1Gb SD cards available, so that means 22 minutes of footage.

So when I saw JVC introduced the Everio, I was immediately attracted to it: 60 minutes of recording in DVD quality (at 8 mbps, 180 minutes at 2,5 mbps) on the supplied 4Gb microdrive. And it can hold both CF (I plus II) and SD cards. Also it can take 2 megapixel stills, what is acceptable for good 10x15 cm prints (the Panasonic 1,3 megapixel).

Now I have it for 2 weeks, here my experiences:
- the size is small, but a little bigger than the Panasonic
- the menu is very good and self-explaining, it even warns you when the lens cap is still on :-)
- the speed of interaction (ie pressing a button and the response on it) is good, and important to do some good filming
- it is great to have a thumbnail index of all your scenes your recorded at once (like on a digital photo camera)
- i find it difficult to hold the camera steady, especially with panning.......there is a digital image stabelizer included, but it seems not to help a lot (maybe I should learn how to hold it steady myself...??)
- image quality is great, especially with good light conditions it is indeed DVD quality, so crips and clear, no digital artefacts noticed up till now (a potential risk with low light scenes and with panning); with lower light conditions it is less impressive (but still no digital articfacts)
- photo quality is really equal to my 2 megapixel Digital Ixus, so that is for sale! :-) There are enough manual functions (like red-eye flash, fill in flash,EV values, ISO values, white balance, etc.) and...............10x analogue zoom! (a killer feature IMHO! there are not a lot of digital photo cameras with this feature, and certainly not at this size!)
- startup speed is a bit slow, so it takes a few seconds before you can start shooting.........so if you expect some action, put it on standby-mode
- the transfer of footage to your favorite editing tool (Cyberlink PowerProducer, PowerDirector, PowerDVD is included) is a peace of cake! either by USB, or, what I prefer, just put the CF drive in your PC and there is all the content ready for editing and creating a fancy DVD of your holiday! :-)
- displaying the content on a high-res DLP projector really gives you an idea of the quality: it is really DVD quality (or better: most DVDs are mastered with 4-9 Mbps, the Everio can use up to 8 mbps, all in the same PAL or NTSC resolution) and...........included is Dolby Digital sound (2.0, so a pity it is not 5.1, but with a fancy tool, like Nuendo, it is possible to remaster the audio to 5.1)
- the included digital audio recorder is a nice to have (but maybe I will use it when I attend another concert........the maximum quality is a 48khz/24bits stream of 1536 kbps!)
- one of the advantages is the size: I doubt about taking the MC 200, but that one is less easy to put in your pocket; the MC 100 easily fits there, so the consequence is, I take it almost to every (everio?) event
- the included software (cyberlink, see above) is great and more than enough to make semi-pro DVDs (including animated menu,s, etc)

Conclusion up to now: for me my first digicam, but certainly one I will use a lot. Quality of image and sound is great, interfacing (CF, SD and USB) is very flexible and size is convenient.

Future improvements: faster startup, optical image stabelizer, 0 lux function?, maybe even smaller form factor (like Panasonic SV-AV100)."
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Base on that post I went in search of the latest Everio and I like what I found on it. It's suppose to be the "World's Smallest 3CCD Camcorder". I will like to know other people opinions before dropping $1600. It look like they are back order at most stores. I'm new to this level of camcorders. Can somebody at this forum share their opinions with me?. Any leads about it will be highly appreciate.

Thanks.

compusolver's picture
Last seen: 9 years 9 months ago
Joined: 12/16/2004 - 8:16am
Sorry to take so long to respond, but it took that long to read your long post. ;)

Seriously, several factors prevent giving an adequate answer:
1. you're not comparing apples to apples
2. you don't give us a clue as to what kind of video your doing.

The Sony VX-2100 is basically an event coverage cam that excels in low light. If that's not what you need, then don't spend the $2400.

At one point or another, you've got to log your shots. Whether its done as part of a batch capture routine or after getting the video on your harddrive seems rather irrelevant to me, but all serious (pro or quasi-pro) people on this site use mini DV tape and download with firewire, then edit with an NLE like Vegas or Premiere Pro (although I'll grant that you can produce a decent video with the $99 NLE's).

I've yet to see a cam that uses a DVD, flash memory or harddrive that is a viable choice as a prosumer event camera. As far as that goes, I fail to see where either of those systems would really speed up the editing process.

compusolver's picture
Last seen: 9 years 9 months ago
Joined: 12/16/2004 - 8:16am
I forgot to mention, those cameras save in mpeg-2 format - which is compressed and therefore some quality already lost. Many NLE's don't support mpeg-2 for importing - another consideration.

And storing twenty hours of video in one file? Jeez, just TRY finding that one special shot somewhere in a 30 gig file!

Papoloko's picture
Last seen: 9 years 3 months ago
Joined: 06/17/2005 - 11:50am
Hi compusolver... Sorry for the long post. It's hard for me too since I have to use a reading glass myself.

Basically I just needed info from users on the JVC MC500. I found out a lot about it already and from what they're saying it's suppose to be a very high tech camera in a super small package. Last nite I downloaded a video clip, the "duck movie", taken outdoor with that camera and it look great.

On the other hand, I don't really need that much high tech or the tiny size. I make dvds for family and friends to save memories for the grandkids. It's a hobbie but my main problem for the past 4 years have been sticking to a cheap camcorder that have no video quality.
What I need is:
1) A camcorder that produce a very high quality video. I shoot mostly fast moving watercraft in the sunny Colorado River. A little bit of sunset and night take too.
2) Good auto funtion is important since I don't have any experience yet using the manual controls.
3) Steady zooming big pluss... My hands aren't steady anymore so I need help from a good camera and a tripod.

Transfering the videos to computer has always been easy for me via firewire, USB or the video capture card.
My editing and Dvds burning is done using Ulead VS8 without a problem.
Still funtion isn't importand if I get a really good video. It doesn't matter to me if the camcorder is an older model or not if I can save some money and still have the quality I want...
Could you or anybody at this forum help me on what will be a good camcorder for me?

Sorry it's a long post again. Thanks.