Which direction?

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    • #49156

      Hey guys,

      I’m quite new to this entire video making scene considering my background is mainly in audio. Anyway, pretty soon I’ll have enough money to buy a camera and previously asked for what my best option should be. The budget is $3500.00 and after much thought, checking test footage, reading specs, and considering cameras like the XA10, the HDR-AX2000, and the Mark II, I’m so far set on getting the Canon XF100.

      I’ve also read (here actually) that for beginners, a DSLR is not the way to go. However here is my question. Since I still have a little more money left when I buy the camera, what would be the best option.

      1. To buy the XF100 + Accessories like a lens converter,maybe a shotgun mic, some lighting kit or on camera lighting, or other unknown to me adapters with the $500+ I still have left over.

      2. To buy the XF100 + a DSLR (like the T2i or Sony NEX5) as my secondary camera and NO secondary expansions like adapters, lighting, etc.?

      I have a laptop and an MBOX on hand if sound quality is the big loss in option number two, as well as other condenser mics I could use in the meen time until I get a shotgun mic. I just have to remember to que the sound before each take (“action snap anyone?”)

      As far as what I’d be using the camera(s) for, mainly for band show recordings, interviews, EPK’s, and general freelance.

      Thanks for your help in advance and as always, if you can recommend to me a better camera, then please let me know.

    • #201353

      At Media Fish Productions we use both the Canon XF100 and 7D…both have served very well with no complaints.

    • #201354
      Luis Maymi LopezLuis Maymi Lopez

      I would go with option 1 because you will need all the key accessories you can get (that your budget allows) to support your camcorder. Believe me, now that I have a prosumer camcorder (Sony AX2000) I understood how important are the support gear. For interviews you need a good set of at least three lights and a shotgun mic is a MUST have. Also the on camera light will be extremely useful in band show recordings and regarding adapters, buy them when you really need them because there is an adapter for everything.

      “I’ve also read (here actually) that for beginners, a DSLR is not the way to go.”

      I totally agree with that because as a beginner videographer you will be overwhelm with so many technical aspects. A DSLR camera requires a lot of supporting gear (which are expensive) to be able to use them right. Start with a video camera and later when you get your feet wet in this video world, then a DSLR will be more useful later on.

    • #201355

      I’ve heard about theadditionalequipment cost for getting DSLR rigs going (if I were going with options two, I was going to go with something like this instead of just the body: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/675618-REG/Canon_4462B003_EOS_Rebel_T2i_Digital.html), but how large is the learning curve in comparison to cameras like the XF or XA?

    • #201356

      I would normally recommend dslrs, but after hearing what sargehero had to say, i think it’s better ifyou stick with option one.

      But before all that, Can I askyou, what is the purpose ofyou getting a video camera? Shortfilms? Documentaries?Weddings?

      Essentially, sinceyou have zero supporting equipment foryour camera, I suggest,you buy a camera and build on it, instead of having two cameras and nothing left. I think video cameras are not any easier than dslrs though unlessyou’d want to use auto for everything.

      Hopefully,your answer to my question above will help us all in definingyour best camera choice.

    • #201357

      Sounds about right.

      Mainly I’m using the camera to record live shows, and electronic press kit interviews. If anything else, behind the scenes shots like backstage footage, and maybe even indie music videos.

      From the looks of it, one camera and video equipment is better than two cameras and no video equipment. I only considered option two because I’ve seen a lot of footage that I want with the DSLR in question by what would appear like a bunch of novices, but I have the theory that good technique, filters, etc. with that HD camera above could be just as good or better than that DSLR….then again, you dont use the same size hammer for every job. Eventually I’m pretty sure I’ll need one. The question was if when should be now.

      Here’s an example of the DSLR I was considering:

      and here’s the Pro Cam (though you can also consider the XA’s footage as this camera as well considering it’s basically the same sensor and camera, just with less features):

      So I guess I’ll be looking up what basic equipment to get. There’s a video I ran into about budget lighting, but I may just start off with the shotgun mic first. I think there’s a version called the 481 or 421…something that has been getting some good reviews as apreferredshotgun. If you know, please let me know.

    • #201358
      Luis Maymi LopezLuis Maymi Lopez

      @jamaal I strongly recommend you read a previous forum discussion “DSLR vs Prosumer Camcorders”. It will give you some direction to what to do.

    • #201359


      That’s where I got the info that starting DSLR for beginners wasn’t a good idea. Originally I was going to invest in a Canon 5D Mark II (or III whenever that comes out) but changed my mind.

      @Julie Babcock

      Will do. Looks like it’s mics first then πŸ™‚

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