My version of that tired old “What camcorder is best for me?” post

Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews Forums Cameras and Camcorders Other Camcorders My version of that tired old “What camcorder is best for me?” post

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    • #43211

      Good day. I am VERY new to this forum and gatherin as much intel as possible on camcorders, editing software, etc. to ensure I make educated, smart decisions on a future purchase.

      I am challenged at work to create a proposal for a new camcorder to create in-house videos for our organization (we are in the meat processing industry).

      Videos will range from production floor training videos, State of the Business/Executive Addresses, recorded interviews, shots of our processing environment for recruiting/job fairs, creating fun internal videos of associate life/culture, creating short educational YouTube videos for our customers/consumers, etc. So we have multiple applications that we would like to look semi-professional, but at the same time, we do not need something that is too professional in nature.

      We currently have a camcorder (sorry it is not in my posession so I cannot give specifics) that shoots miniDV that is a large shoulder mount, but it is almost overkill for our current needs and skill-set.

      What we KNOW we want is as follows:

      Something that records in digital media (at our current level, we do not understand the value of tapes over digital and with no clear reason for one over the other, we would like digital for ease of use).

      Something that shoots in low-ish light (while our associates do not work in low-light environments, footage we have captured with the old camera had a tendency of giving us dark video… could have been user error on the camera side).

      Something that can operate in a cold environment (production floor temps average freezing… while we have not had issues with our camcorder in the past, we have had issues with shutter speed on cameras, so I thought this was worth noting).

      Something that is small to medium sized (the large, shoulder mount camera was a bit too obtrusive and frankly intimedated associates from using it simply based on size).

      External microphone jacks is a plus

      LED viewing screen is a plus

      HD would be optimal, but SD may be okay for what we are doing

      So, this purchase is kind of a phase 1 as we move into the media relm (technology is slowly adopted in our industry). We want to increase our skills with this camcorder before moving on to bigger and better.

      ALSO, we currently have Adobe Premier Pro 1.5. Is this a good program for begginer/intermediate editing or should be consider exploring some more options there too?

      Thank you VERY much and if I missed anything, let me know and I will answer those inquiries.

    • #181062


      Whooboy! That’s a ‘Ghetto’ setup if I ever heard of one! Premeire Pro 1.5? And your Co’ wants you to shoot training films and all with little or no experience/training? I suppose they aren’t willing to pony up some cash to send at least one of you off to a training seminar to learn how to do this? Oh brother! This is typical of the ‘well all you need is a camera’ mindset.

      Well at least you’re putting in the time to do proper research. Okay, be advised; other posters are going to give you models of cameras you can use for your projects. That’s fine, but the info will probably give you a headache. Truthfully, I say stick with the camera you already have as long as it is functional and get some training DVD’s about basic video production, camera work, writing for video and editing. Watch them, do the tutorials and go from there. You can spend a ton of money on gear, but if you don’t know what to do with it you’ll still be at square one. VM has a lot of really good training materials, but first start digging through their short online training videos to get yourself pointed in the right direction.

    • #181063

      Will do, thanks for the response.

      To add more info to my situation… The training videos are more on how to do certain job tasks/functions on a processing floor… not leadership/conceptual training that would benefit more from expertise post-production.

      Also, I wouldn’t say they are throwing me into the fire here. I know my abilities to pick up new programs and self teach myself (to a degree) and then seek additional help (like external training as mentioned), so for basic videos, I feel confident that I am the right person for the job.

      Finally, I do understand, and will prepare for the learning curve that is video making, so I do want to start slow (and inexpensive) and progress as my skill level does.

      I can’t help to go back to your comment on Premier Pro 1.5… do you recommend another avenue?

      All things considered, I will create proposals for all things I deem necessary to accomplish these goals without taking the “throw money at it” approach.

      Thanks for the feedback and keep it coming.

      I’ll take a look at the resources available here and elswhere.

    • #181064

      “I can’t help to go back to your comment on Premier Pro 1.5… do you
      recommend another avenue?”


      It’s not so much as whether PP 1.5 is bad or good, just old. Now that said, I’ve got a copy of Premiere 5.5 on a shelf somewhere and it’s really old. However, I know how to use it. I just don’t because I currently use CS3 (soon CS5) because the new program can do the things I need it to now. Back when I was doing SD DV work only, I used it for super quick turn around projects (primarily I used Avid.) If I was training someone from absolute scratch, yeah I may drag it back out and put it on one of the old NLE’s still on active duty. Once I could see they had the basics down, then I’d bring them up to what I am currently using as that will cut down on their learning curve.

      So long as you currently have a machine capable of running it, PP 1.5 would be serviceable to learn on. You will want to move up to CS4 – 5 shortly after your initial training because quite a bit has changed since the CS line has started. Right now though, you need to learn basic shooting and editing and not detracting from your ‘innate abilities’, learning how to do that on your own is a lot harder than it looks. Not to mention the added pressure of your company no doubt having a timeline in which they want you to get started.

      PM me with more details on your setup and I’ll have a better idea of what you’re up against and how I or others may be able to assist you. In the meantime, don’t forget to look at the VM free tutorials.

    • #181065

      CANON FS200 AND AN AUDIO TECHNICA 3.5mm Wireless LAV mic.

      For about $420

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