HELP Purchasing a Camcorder to use with Articulate!

Anonymous (not verified)

Hi All,

I am looking to purchase a camcorder for use with the Articulate E-Learning Software. I will need the camcorder to be able to:

- Shoot training vignettes (for example, a discussion between a professional and a client)

- Have good audio capabilities (we have a Snowball mic, so being compatible with this would be awesome!)

- Compatible with PCs (and have some video editing software if possible)

- Is easy to use (I am by no means an expert)

We would like to keep the cost relatively low (around $500) tops but cannot seem to find anything beyond a pocket cam (which I have been advised may not be the best bet for my needs).

Any help or advice that could be provided would be greatly appreciated!


Ed Rogers's picture
Last seen: 6 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 02/02/2008 - 2:35am
Plus Member

 Make certain your software will allow for audio and video.  I use Multimedia Fusion, it's a bit fussy but very versatile.

You have a pretty tall order for what you want to do.  I recommend looking at used, standard-definition camcorders. 

SInce you're on a budget, I also recommend choosing a location with great acoustic properties.  This way the microphone won't be as important. 

As for software, I can vouch for Adobe Premiere 6.5 and up.  You can get free trial software from


I used to create aircraft maintenance CBTs, so I've had some experience.  Good luck!


hmueller's picture
Last seen: 3 years 4 months ago
Joined: 07/03/2009 - 6:12pm

Hi Maribeth

With your budget, I would recommend a CanonZR960. This camcorder does allow the use of an external microphone and has a remotecontrol, features useful for makingtraining videos.It sellsfor about $230. As far as software goes, I would recommend the Adobe Premiere and Photoshop Elements combo which would allow you to do amazing things for your videos and thereis excellent online training for both on


Moab Man's picture
Last seen: 5 years 4 months ago
Joined: 11/02/2010 - 3:35am

Working within your $500 budget...

It sounds like this project is simple in scope with no great frills.

$300 for a Canon standard definition camera. Specifically Canon because at this dollar level they are the only ones I found with an external microphone jack.

$27 x 2 for lapel microphones from Radio Shack. They are inexpensive and work really well.

$7 for a Y-cord or splitter (Radio Shack) for the two microphone cables to plug into.

$7 for a cable extension from the Y-cord to the microphone jack on the camera.

$10 for a mono to stereo adapter (cable extension will plug into this adapter and the adapter into the camera)

Lastly, Windows Movie Maker to edit. It is a simple program to learn. Can create simple title, captions, audio adjustments, music track overlay, and transitions to fade in and out.

This leaves you with $122. (not counting tax yet to be deducted)

Windows Movie Maker is a great program to cut your teeth on. As much as people will poo-poo it, for simple projects with a small learning curve it's a great program.

Now... if you want to do a little morepizzazz you can take your remaining ~$100 and purchase Pinnacle 15. Make sure your computer is ABOVE the specs needed. Just meeting the specs will be troublesome. Having cut your teeth on Windows Movie Maker the leap to Pinnalce 15 would be really simple.

There are all kinds of spectacular editing programs, hardware, and bells and whistles out there, but a keen eye can use a simple tool and do wonderful things.