Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews › Forums › Cameras and Camcorders › Professional Camcorders › Looking for Older, Tried-and-Tested Pro HD Camcorders
April 27, 2013 at 9:34 PM #58200Trent S.Participant
I'm a recent graduate of Specs Howard School of Media Arts (2012), and I have been doing freelance videography since my attendance. I have generally shot events such as stage performances, live functions, and sports (albeit with my employers' equipment). Now that I have a year's worth of experience and have been able to save up, I'm looking to finally buy my own equipment.
I've done my research and have taken a look at a lot of the more modern camcorders. Now becase I won't have the highest of budgets (I'm hoping to have something in the $2000-$3000 range), I'm not necessarily looking for the biggest and baddest camera. Just something that works with my budget, but offers a lot of features. So far, the best match for those specifications has been the Canon XF100, with its compact design, various frame rates, XLR ports and audio controls, dual card slots, etc. A very nice plus for having this camera is its 4:2:2 50mbps capabilities. However, to be able to work with that, I'm going to need very fast and very expensive compact flash cards. Not only will this take up a big chunk of my budget, but it will leave me without raw footage in case I encounter computer issues. Which brings me to what I'm asking here.
Mini-DV-based cameras will give me that security with having solid raw footage. However, since digital media seems to have become the new norm, it will be more likely that a Mini-DV camera that will fit into my budget will be an older model. And since I have seen that they go for a fairly cheaper price if bought used, I'm not opposed to that option. However, the only two cameras that I know fit this description are the Canon XH-A1 (which I'm most familiar with) and the Sony HVR-Z5U (a bit of a stretch, but I absolutely love what features it offers). You all are welcome to make comparisons of these cameras that I've mentioned, but what I'm looking for are any other models like these that could work as a good starter camera. I'm open to any and all suggestions, but my necessary (preferred) preferences are these:
HD Capable (Full HD?)
60i, 30p, and 24p (720 and 1080?
Dual-XLR Ports and Audio Controls (Phantom Power?)
Manual Rings and Fair Auto Controls
Good Zoom (20x?)
3 1/3 Chips If Possible
I know this may sound like I have a very tall order, but keep in mind that I'm not at all opposed to buying used. Can't wait to hear any feedback I may get!
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