Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews › Forums › Cameras and Camcorders › Other Camcorders › 20 year old looking to buy first HD pro cam, Sony/Panasonic › Hi and welcome to the foru
Hi and welcome to the forums!
I would suggest you look into getting some accessories also.
Depending on what you are filming, you may want to get an external mic. Also, where you are filming (indoor, outdoor, far from your subject) will determine what kind of mic to get (shotgun vs. condenser vs. lav vs. etc). Along side this you’ll want to pick up mic cables, a shockmount, possibly an XLR adapter if your camera doesn’t have XLR inputs, and a pair of monitoring headphones.
I personally feel a tripod is a must for any one with a camcorder. Look on websites like B&H to find a good one with fluid heads.
Extra batteries are often essential. Consider buying at least one of the extended batteries (I know Sony made a 9 hour battery for my VX2000, so they might have a similar capacity battery for the HD cameras). If you will be more than a day in between charging, consider getting two of these, or several more smaller batteries.
A good case. You’ll want to transport your camera, so a good case will keep it protected. A soft case protects against accidental droping and day-to-day banging around as you carry it, etc. A good hard case will also protect from moisture and keep it air tight.
If your going to be making short films and such, consider lights as well. You could go with a pro 3-point lighting kit, or you could get hallogen work lights (though keep in mind these generally aren’t the best lights for film, but they are hundreds of dollars cheaper). If your doing mostly outdoor work in the daylight, you can probably skip this for now.
Those are some accessories that you might want to look into. Of course, you don’t have to get those. For a while I filmed with just a tripod and my camera (VX2000). I can’t say the footage is all that good, but at least it gave me some practice until I could afford some more gear.