CamCorder Advice

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    • #39772
      Avataroceanblue
      Participant

      I am new to the video world and have been renting equipment for the most part. Can anyone advise me on buying an entry level Camcorder that can handle an amatuer/professional assignment, but does not also come with a hefty price tag. Also I am wondering weather going into an HD unit is wise, is this the certain future of professional video work. Most of the work I plan to do is general parties, dance events, Band promos, maybe an occasional training video.

    • #171614
      AvatarBrian
      Participant

      Archiving important meetings and presentations and public events/trade shows are what the business Videographer does. Camcorders at this level typically cost between $1000 and $3000. The "Minimum Illumination" value is very important as well as business videographers may perform a lot of indoor shooting.

      Even though there are plenty of hard drive based camcorders offering SD and HD, entry level should start with MiniDV tape based for easy editing and distribution. Stay away from DVD camcorders for event/proo shooting!

      Here are some camcorders to look at in that price range:
      http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=Property&Subcategory=205&Description=&Type=&N=2070050205&srchInDesc=&MinPrice=&MaxPrice=&PropertyCodeValue=1800%3A12250&PropertyCodeValue=1800%3A21572&PropertyCodeValue=1800%3A17959&PropertyCodeValue=1800%3A17961&PropertyCodeValue=1800%3A12258&PropertyCodeValue=1800%3A15440&PropertyCodeValue=1800%3A17228&PropertyCodeValue=1800%3A15351&PropertyCodeValue=1800%3A12248&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A15276&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A28873&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A12292&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A18843&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A28393&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A12294&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A17414&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A12297&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A19986&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A12299&PropertyCodeValue=1802%3A21247&PropertyCodeValue=1808%3A18483&PropertyCodeValue=1808%3A15406&PropertyCodeValue=1808%3A12334

    • #171615
      Avataroceanblue
      Participant

      Thanks for the advice DV. Do you think the MINI DV format will soon be overrun by these newer hard drives and whatever else is new. I have read forum posts talking about the MINI DV tapes jamming and running out all over the inside of the camera, is this a big concern? also you mentioned easier editing with the Mini DV, are the other formats more complicated to work on? and finally do I need to spend $1000.00 dollars on an adobe editing system, or will one of these lower priced software products do a pretty good job?

    • #171616
      Avatarralck
      Participant

      I don’t know too much about tapes jamming and unravelling inside a camera as it hasn’t happened to me.
      I do know that if you use the same type of tape (brand and model of tape) all the time, this helps reduce and problems and helps to improve the life of your camcorder.

      And I would guess you might be able to do everything you want to do on AvidFree?

    • #171617
      AvatarBrian
      Participant

      oceanblue Wrote:

      Thanks for the advice DV. Do you think the MINI DV format will soon be overrun by these newer hard drives and whatever else is new. I have read forum posts talking about the MINI DV tapes jamming and running out all over the inside of the camera, is this a big concern? also you mentioned easier editing with the Mini DV, are the other formats more complicated to work on? and finally do I need to spend $1000.00 dollars on an adobe editing system, or will one of these lower priced software products do a pretty good job?

      Anything mechanical is prone to having a fit. An eaten tape with recoverable footage is better than no footage at all.

      In my experiences, hard drive based camcorders are not reliable for the professional world. I’ve been burned too times before giving up on it the third time. From that point I strictly use hard drive camcorder files (or the Firestore) for a backup of what is being shot on tape.

      As far as editing, hard drive camcorders already compress the footage. AVCHD was really hard to edit until NLE’s started supporting it.

      Doing a good job, in my opinion, depends on the editor not the software. You could have the least expensive editing software on the planet and still come out with a good production.

    • #171618
      Avatarvideonovice
      Participant

      This is the perfect leadin for my question. I am doing football games with a Sony VX2100 along with a friend who is using a TRV22. There is another person shooting the same game from the same vantage point using a HD Camera. We are all getting different views as in close up, zooms and etc. I am using a standalone DVD recorder to produce the DVDs at present. But later after the season ends, I would like to create a composite "good, bad and ugly" DVD of hightlights of the entire season.

      Now my question. Will there be any loss of quality if I feed the Hard Drive Camera into my VX2100 and transfer the desired scenes to digital footage on tape? This way, the footage should not be compressed. If it comes out the HD Camera good enough for a DVD or TV will it be good enough to transfer to DV tape?

      I also plan later to transfer some personal VHS, 8MM and VHC tapes to Mini DV tapes through the VX2100 the same way if this process gives good results. This way, when I am ready to edit, I can go into the computer via a firewire using my DCR-HC48.

      Plus, I will have the older tapes now in a digital format waiting on the next revolution in storage.

      Sorry if this is difficult to understand what I am saying, but I never ever did any videoing until Christmas of 2006 when I got the 2100. I am reading all forums on the web and my head is spinning. I am on a vertical learning curve and THIS forum has been a godsend for me.

      You guys are great.

    • #171619
      Avataroceanblue
      Participant

      So what I am hearing is that a Mini DV camcorder may still be the way to go! it seems it is also the format for easy editing, correct? I just assumed all this new hard drive camcorder technology, was to Video, ….what the CD was to video tape!

    • #171620
      AvatarJockey
      Participant

      video novice Wrote:

      Will there be any loss of quality if I feed the Hard Drive Camera into my VX2100 and transfer the desired scenes to digital footage on tape?

      Why would you feed video from HDD-based camera into your camera? Why would not you load these files into your NLE for editing? Or are you talking about printing back to tape for archival purposes?

      video novice Wrote:

      This way, the footage should not be compressed.

      It is already compressed.


      Michael, Canon Elura User Pages

    • #171621
      AvatarBrian
      Participant

      video novice Wrote:

      Now my question. Will there be any loss of quality if I feed the Hard Drive Camera into my VX2100 and transfer the desired scenes to digital footage on tape? This way, the footage should not be compressed. If it comes out the HD Camera good enough for a DVD or TV will it be good enough to transfer to DV tape?

      If you’re referring to the DV pass through method
      (http://www.thedvshow.com/faq-pro/index.php?action=article&cat_id=004&id=514) then no, there will be no loss in quality. The quality you shot in will be what is recorded to tape.

      You could also use the DV pass through method to capture the footage into your computer’s hard drive.

      video novice Wrote:

      I also plan later to transfer some personal VHS, 8MM and VHC tapes to Mini DV tapes through the VX2100 the same way if this process gives good results. This way, when I am ready to edit, I can go into the computer via a firewire using my DCR-HC48.

      Plus, I will have the older tapes now in a digital format waiting on the next revolution in storage.

      Good idea but keep in mind MiniDV tape is not an archival format.

      Sorry if this is difficult to understand what I am saying, but I never ever did any videoing until Christmas of 2006 when I got the 2100. I am reading all forums on the web and my head is spinning. I am on a vertical learning curve and THIS forum has been a godsend for me.

      You guys are great.[/quote]

    • #171622
      Avatarvideonovice
      Participant

      WARNING, I AM WINDY

      So I don’t do a complete HiJack on this thread, I have read the forums and all the info I could find since August a year ago. I took over three months gathering info before I purchased my camera. And it is strictly for personal usage. I did choose to go with tape and buy the Sony DCR-VX2100 from B&H and chose it for the low light capabilities. I have done quite a few basketball games in less than well lit gyms and they generally have been great. I also did a dance recital with a 5+ minute black light routine. I had no idea what I was doing and used all auto features (I can hear the groans) on the camera. It was unbelievably impressive and surprised everyone I have shown it to. The only setting I have changed so far, is the Day/Night filter and the camera tells me when to change that. Doing football games at the present time, they start in the bright sun and end under lights.

      So far, my orders from B&H have been close to 6K and all by reading recommenations mainly from this forum, and I don’t yet have a computer adequate for editing. I am purchasing equipment as I have the need and should be getting a computer within the next 2 to 3 months. I have been in computers (servicing large IBM and personal) since the late ”70s and hate to say, but I will probably go with a Mac. So there is another two months research, so I don’t over or under buy to do what I want to do. I won’t be doing weddings or anything like that. (I hope!)

      Now back to the scheduled hijack.

      Thanks to TheDVshow for the help. Glad you could understand what I was trying to say.

      Yes, I am talking about the pass through method of taking the HD camera through the 2100. If I take the HD Camera (or DVD camera or DVD) if the need arises) directly to the computer it is already compressed and less apt to get a good edit. (so I have read) So if I take it to the computer via the 2100, I should get a better quality of final result. If I get a "best of" DVD done, I will combine clips from three cameras this year. As I get better videoing skills, I will use only my own tapes. But at present, I still miss some of the action and make lots of goofs. Like anything else in life, the better the operator, the easier the task looks. And it ain’t easy for me.

      I read the referenced article on TheDVshow.com and it seems I don’t even need to transfer to tape, but just go through the camera to the computer. Neat. This should also save wear on the heads. Great site and sorry to say I have not been there before. But I will be visiting often from now on. Very informative site. It is now in my favorites.

      I realize that Mini DV is not the ideal archival media but over the years, if stored properly tape has had a decent life. And it will be more accessable than the 8 mm, VHS and VHS-C that has been passed to me for saving.

      And a final note on VideoMaker. I have not found the magazine to be very helpful to a newbie, and after calling AND e-mailing @videomaker.com">customerservice@videomaker.com I found the personel there equally less than helpful. The value is in this forum, not the mag.

      In my opinion, eventDV Mag seems to be better for us newbies.

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