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June 25, 2009 at 9:15 AM #44034
Hello, I would like to buy myself a high definition video camera in the
near future and have been looking at a few of the cheaper (costing less
than $800) ones around the web.
The main reason I want to get myself one is to shoot wildlife videos
and of all this beautiful scenery around here along the coast of
Georgia. Most of the cameras I’ve been looking at have very weak
optical zooms of 10X – 12X. I certainly want/need a much bigger zoom to
be able to zoom in close to the wildlife without spooking them.
Of course, I certainly want a video camera that takes great video, but
here are my most important feature needs:
Great low-light recording
true widescreen recording ability
long optical zoom of at least 20X power (unless I can get a quality add-on lens to extend a lower optical zoom).
I’m a “BIG DUMMY” when it comes to video cameras and have a few
questions for anyone who don’t mind answering them. Any help or camera
recommendations will be greatly appreciated. Remember, my budget will
be no more than $800 dollars!
Thank you very much and I really do appreciate your time.
1. First of all, which High Definition format would you recommend and why?
2. When recording in 24p or 30p is sound captured along with the video? If so, is the sound in sync with it?
3. Is the camera loud when recording in the 24p or 30p modes?
4. Can high definition video be shot on regular MiniDV tapes or must I use an HDV tape? Does it really matter?
5. How will adding a lens (wide angle or telephoto) affect recording in high definition?
6. Can I still record in widescreen mode if I use an add-on lens attached to my video camera?
7. Will 24p or 30p work at the longest telephoto end of the lens?
8. Will 24p or 30p work with a wide angle or telephoto add-on lens?
9. Will 24p or 30p work well in low-light situations?
10. Can I burn my hi-def video to regular DVD’s? If so will the
video still be hi-def or will it be down converted to standard
11. Any camcorder suggestions?
June 25, 2009 at 12:57 PM #184573AnonymousInactive
June 25, 2009 at 1:18 PM #184574RobParticipant
1. AVC-Intra because it’s comparable to HDCam but records at a much lower data rate.
2. Yes. If you record sound with the on camera mic or connect a mic to the camera, your sound will be in sync no matter what the framerate is.
3. No. video cameras aren’t loud.
4. I could be wrong because I don’t use crappy HDV, but at this point, video is all 0s and 1s, and HDV is compressed to fit on a miniDV sized tape. I doubt there is anything “HD” about the HD MiniDV tapes. So you probably could just use a DV tape. I could be wrong though.
5. huh? affect it how? your video will still be high def
9. Depends on the camera. Frame rate has nothing to do with that
10. I’ve heard that you can burn HD to SD DVDs, but you can’t burn a long video. SD DVDs are only 4.5 GB and BluRay is 25GB.
11. Panasonic HPX3000…but that’s not $800.
June 25, 2009 at 2:55 PM #184575NeilRussellParticipant
I bought a Panasonic HDC-SD100 from B&H (bhphotovideo.com) for $540. It originally retailed for around $1100 but has been overshadowed by some new Panny models. It’s got 3 cmos chips and can shoot in native 24p. I’ve used it for exactly the same purpose you describe; scenery shooting here in beautiful Southeast Georgia (I’m in Statesboro).
There’s a review of the SD-100 at camcorderinfo.com, just put “hdc-sd100” in the search box and select the “review of hdc-sd100” when the choices come up.
For a consumer camcorder, it’s got a lot of features plus it shoots straight to SD cards. Depending on your editing software (I’m using Magix 14+) you should be able to work the footage with no problems at all.
June 25, 2009 at 3:26 PM #184576AnonymousInactive
HV30 is kinda cool for that
June 25, 2009 at 3:45 PM #184577XTR-91Participant
I would go with a reasonably cheap HDV orHD hardrivemodel (that’s all you’ll get under $800). Most reasonable camcorders which I know of that are over $300 have a good optical zoom capability – 20x or over… so that’s probably something you won’t need to worry about.
“recording in 24p or 30p”… “24p or 30p”
I do not see any need to record in 24p. If the classic “film” look is necessary, then I would record with the standard frame rate of 30 and convert it to 24p during the editing process before the production is rendered.
About your question of looking for a camcorder, check out some of JVC’s High-Def hard disk models, but realize however that they record in AVC-HD – so make sure you have editing software or a video converter that supports it.
June 25, 2009 at 3:57 PM #184578
Yeah, the computer upgrade is what will be next. Seems many people have a heck of a time with the AVCHD format and/or any HD editing. Also, I’m kinda nervous about recording to a hard drive. I’ll be outdoors around some thick vegetation and fear I’d bump the cam and erase everything recorded to it. That would suck BIG time!
Anyway, I’m still researching and don’t know what I’m going to decide on.
I appreciate everyones input and hope to see more. By the way, I’m in Brunswick, Georgia, Neil. You are not too far from me. GO DAWGS and Eagles!
Thanks to all!
June 25, 2009 at 4:02 PM #184579AnonymousInactive
Final cut express supports AVC-HD. Go cowboys!
June 25, 2009 at 4:17 PM #184580
I’m a Windows user. Cowboys? OK State boys? If so, they’re going all right! GOING DOWN! LOL
I think you guys really have a good team and may be a team to keep an eye on this year! That running back y’all have is fast as a Jet! But, some big boys are coming up that way in September and maybe we won’t mash him too bad!
Anyway, sorry to get sidetracked, but I sure love college football and can’t wait for it to get here! GO DAWGS!
June 25, 2009 at 4:32 PM #184581AnonymousInactive
I would like to hijack for three second to commend Gman on being the first person in a long time to approach the “what camera should I get” thread the proper way, with specific questions and info about exactly what he will be using it for. Can we sticky this for others to model after? HA ha
Gman, One thing I would like to add, is think about weight and size. if you are lugging your equipment into the woods, the lighter and less accessories you can take, the easier your life will be. Unfortunately the two cams that come to mind are way outside that $800 range.
August 26, 2009 at 1:26 AM #184582butter1093Participant
Now the camera is still reducing prices, and HD devices is so popular used. If you want to convert HD to SD DVD, the converter software is a necessary thing. For the iDVD etc is still not professional at burning HD DVD directly,and also your computer should be enough powerful to deal with HD video shoot by your camera.
August 28, 2009 at 7:37 AM #184583AnonymousInactive
If you’re shooting wildlife, you’ll need interchangable lenses
if you’re a big dummy, I’d definitely suggest buying used
you should be able to find something good on craig’s list or somesuch
what wildlife cam reviews did you find at camcorderinfo?
November 6, 2009 at 2:45 PM #184584cata12Participant
I recommend you Canon VixiaHF10. This is what I currently use to stream my online shows on tikilive.com. Professional look and functions, HD compliant, around $500.
Here is a presentation:http://reviews.cnet.com/digital-camcorders/canon-vixia-hf10/4505-6500_7-32786396.htmlHave a look and hope you ll have some answers.
November 6, 2009 at 3:54 PM #184585XTR-91Participant
The Canon Vixia HF S10 also shoots a whopping 900 lines of resolution. Sounds simple for some people if you’re recording Full HD (1920×1080). The average amount of horizontal lines for a consumer Full HD camcorders is around 675. It’s probably the HD camcorder I’ll upgrade to in years to come when I upgrade to HD, if no other prosumer HD camera shoots such fine detail. Right now, I’m staying with my JVC standard definition GZ-MG505.
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