Beginner Videographer…Need a camera…Dont have much money, any suggestions?

Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews Forums Cameras and Camcorders Consumer Camcorders Beginner Videographer…Need a camera…Dont have much money, any suggestions?

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    • #45342

      I am starting to get into video production and have been using a Canon GL2 from school. I need to get my own and want something high quality. Something in the 400 dollar range. Any suggestions?

    • #188477

      Well a GL2 is actually a decent camera. If you think it’s not, then don’t expect to get anything better in the $400 range. You might even have a hard time finding a used GL2 for that price.

    • #188478

      GL2s still retail for around $1,700 or more, unless you get lucky and find someone trying to off-load one. I’ve actually seen them priced in their original $2,700 zone even though that would NOT be a reasonable price to pay for one, considering the selections “out there.”

      You will not find a camera in the $400 range that comes close to comparison to what a GL2 offers.

      IMHO, the best alternative, and one that gets you into HD production as well, would be Canon ‘s HV30, but somewhere in the $800 range, so double your desired range but easily 6x the camera of anything you’ll find with your present budget.

      Yeah, there are some cameras out there for $400, but they will likely fall short in the lens, focus, format, resolution, stability, audio categories – especially if you compare them to your experience with the GL2.

    • #188479

      i personaly suggest the panasonic SDR-s10 its little its heavy duty it come with its own editing sytem and also i am a student who loves film producion too so if we could swap tips that be great email me any time at

    • #188480

      This is the best price I’ve seen on Canon HG10, it may be what you need to get into video Click Here

    • #188481

      I agree with Earl..

      The way to go is a Canon HV20/30

      I use a Canon HR10, but that is in the 1999 dollars range..

    • #188482

      $400 save you money. the cheapest I would go to break into the professional field is a Sony HDR-SR11. and even with that the work you will get will be limited. You will find yourself having to prove to your customers that it’s about you and not the camera. If you buy this cam then spend a lot of time getting to know it. practice with different lighting and buy some warm cards. to make money with a consumer camera you have to be able to make it look much better then anyone else.

      But this cam alone will not be enough, you will also need lighting, a “good” tripod, warm cards, a “good” external mic, and a few filters. to make money you have to either impress your customer with a $7000 pro camera with all the trimmings, or sell yourself as a professional talent.

      I’m doing ok with a JVC HD-7, however I wish I would have bought the Sony HDR-SR11. The HD7 does not have a Mic input nor a headphone output, 2 very important features for a pro. I made a reel where I showed the difference between some body off the street making a shot using the cameras full auto feature and next to it the same shot with me using the camera in full manual mode. Night and day difference, you either sell the camera or yourself, but it can be done.

    • #188483

      Work on your skills, develop a marketing plan, try renting for the first few jobs, then buy.

      Here’s a sample… Done with a Sony sr12, rode mic and cheap halogen lighting. (I throw in 15-30 second video cards for corporate photo clients).

    • #188484

      Whoo boy! I remember those days… hated ’em!

      Hoss, you are not going to find a usable rig for $400 bucks. You’re going to need $800 to $1200 to get something you can get usable footage with. Warm Cards are a good idea, but you’ll need to practice with them and learn the camera’sidiosyncracies to make make them useful with a consumer grade camera. Be careful about renting. You’ll need a credit card with enough to cover the rental and any potential damage to the gear. Some rental houses still require you to establish a credit line with them. Be advised; be prepared to cough up the majority of what you plan to make on the gig for rental fees! While your still in school, you should be figuring out what kind of video work you want to do, who your potential clients will be, how you are going to attract business and where are you going to work from? Most likely, you’re going to have to get a gig completely unrelated to what you are studying to pay the bills. If that’s the case or if you get a gig in the industry, save your money, build your skills/reel and put together your gear list as you go. It will take time so try not to get discouraged. If you are serious about the work and love what you do, camera gear will come.

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