Canon HDV HV20 Replacement

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    • #86427


      I have moved through several camcorders during the years from several brands, and my current HDV-tape-based HV20 has served me well. It’s 1080i resolution (regardless of how it gets there technically) has served me well for my casual video needs. I shoot mostly trips which might be landscapes, local culture, events, etc. And lately, local concerts, so loud music, dimly lit clubs. Anything else I feel like. Amazingly, although I tried the canon external mike, for basic stereo “house” sound, the in-camera HV20 microphone with the level adjusted manually has done well. But I am ready to move on from tape and up to 1080P at least.

      As a side note, I am also an avid photographer for many years. I currently shoot a Nikon D7100 used 99% for still-image work, but have also done some limited video work on this. However, there are times when I am shooting video on a tripod and still-image at the same time (say a concert) so can’t use the D7100 for video for events when I want to shoot still.

      Anyway, my requirements are 1080P for sure and 4K only if within my $1K price range(although I use Premiere Pro for editing which handles it, I don’t see shooting 4K right now, but of course that is coming).
      Although I mess with every single camera setting for still photos, for video I just need it to work. I’ll want the manual control on the camera, and for example I require it for audio levels, but I don’t adjust the picture settings much for video.

      Like other posts here I read, I am considering a camcorder, DSLR, or MILC.

      So….I want to look at camcorders that fit the bill but I am totally out of the loop as to what is out there right now. I typically like high quality/high value price points. My research shows the Canon HF G30 or G20 might be a “successor” to my model? I would not mind external “on-camera” microphone mounting capability to get better audio. I am open to any brand.

      However, since I am very familiar with DSLR’s, I would also consider a DSLR in that price range (although since I already have DSLR I am happy with for my photo work, it would have to be geared more towards video). Maybe a Sony with it’s translucent mirror? Although in that case I lose the ability to use my Nikon lenses with it. I have found my DSLR focusing to be lacking a bit for video as most do when comparing a standard mirror DSLR to a camcorder or translucent or MILC. So I am open to looking at these. However the “20 minute limit” thing can be an issue. Not that I can’t hit stop and then restart the video. But if I am shooting stills while the video is on a tripod, I have to always be aware of that limit and where I am at to run back and re-start it…

      The MILC space might be interesting if I can get a camera weighted toward video capabilities. I guess with an MILC I would get a smaller photo camera which I might actually use in that manner also. So that is interesting. Not familiar at all with what might work with these cameras for my needs. Sometimes it seems like video is an add-on in this space.

      So besides looking for advice on models, I am struggling with the format….and right now probably leaning towards a camcorder or a MILC. Buying another DSLR for video and lugging two full-size DSLR’s around just doesn’t sound appealing.

      Thanks for any advice you can give!


    • #212853

      Hi BJBBJB – with a $1000 budget, you might want to consider a $681.19 4K Panasonic G7 from Amazon Warehouse Deals:

      Add a $315.15 Metabones Nikon G to micro 4/3 Speed Booster:

      ..and you’ll be able to record in either 4K or 1080p resolution using your existing Nikon lenses.

      This camera has a 3.5mm external mic jack, on-screen audio meters, manual audio gain control, manual exposure settings, 1080/60p for smooth slow motion and a built-in intervalometer for timelapses.

      Unlike DSLRs, Panasonic DSLMs (Panasonic’s name for their MILCs) can record for hours continuously. They are also compatible with inexpensive, camcorder-like power zoom lenses such as this $185 14-42 3x power zoom:

      Here are some examples from Vimeo showing what this camera can do:

      Indianapolis 500 in 4K:



      Pine Ave:

      Away From The City ~ Panasonic G7 [4K] 42.5mm F1.7:

      Panasonic Lumix G7 / G70 Launch – 4K – 4KPhoto Modes:

      Here is an example from YouTube (please watch at 2160p and your monitor’s highest resolution):

      LUMIX DMC-G7 Sample Video in 4K by Colin Witherill:

      It’s a pretty good still camera too:

      To be fair, your D7100 is probably a better still camera, but the G7 is a much better all-around choice for both video and stills.

      Hope this is helpful and good luck with whatever camera you decide to buy!

      Hybrid Camera Revolution

    • #212860

      Thanks for the thoughts! Will check all of that out and will probably compare that body to the traditional Canon Vixia’s I mentioned.


    • #212968

      I was looking at the G7 specifications and it does look like there are recording limits, although for most formats fairly long. Looks like 50 minutes for 4K and then there are various times quoted for HD 60i, but don’t see them for HD 60P. I would be recording at 1080P/60 at least for a while so curious what those limits are.
      The 4K options appear to be 50 minutes as I said?
      Is this correct?

      In reading some other things it might be that it does not stop recording but just creates a file break? Would like to confirm what it does.

      I keep some footage unedited and others edit in Premiere Pro so not sure if I’ll shoot AVCHD or MP4. I always want my archive footage to be of highest quality.

      I also haven’t researched if there are even any in-house streamers that will handle 4K. I know my current WDTV Live cannot.


    • #213053

      According to the Panasonic site the “Actual Recording Time” for 4K/30p is 50 minutes though the “Continuous recordable time” varies. I have a Canon HF G20 and have been pleased with the performance. Granted it won’t record 4K but for HD video it works nicely. There are some differences between the G20 and the G30 such as the focal length, 35mm Equivalent Focal Length, and Optical Zoom. The G20 does have internal memory whereas the G30 does not. However the G30 does have built-in WiFi whereas the G20 does not.

    • #213056


      Thanks for the input! I continue to be frozen by inaction….I am probably going to wait until January and see if Canon comes out with a “G” version that includes 4K. I keep my good equipment for a long time….so it just seems to make sense to get 4k capability even if I do not use it for a bit. Of course if they continue to not update that line, not sure what I will do.
      I guess then I will be back looking at mirrorless possibilities.
      Thanks again,


    • #213058

      Have you looked at the Sony FDR-AX100 4K Ultra HD Camcorder ($1,700)? If you are looking for a camcorder then it might be one to consider. Canon does have the XC10 4K professional camcorder but it sells for around $2,500.

    • #213137

      Thanks again for all the thoughts. My view of the GH4 vs. G7 videomaker video comparison sparked me to re-look at this. In the review they stated that the G7 cuts off recording at 29 minutes. Is this correct? Based on the above I thought it did not.


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