I’m sure some others will


I’m sure some others will disagree with me, but I suggest — since you’ve never shot a wedding — that you forget all about the cameras you reference and buy a used Sony PD170 from B&H. Use it to learn how to deal with the problems of wedding videography.

The camera is easy comparatively easy to use; all the manual controls you’ll need to shoot the wedding are readily available. Its low light capabilities are excellent; you’ll need this for shooting at the reception and it will probably come in handy during the ceremony as well.

You can use 83 minute tapes and not have to worry about tape changes or down-loading memory cards during the ceremony.

Sure it’s “old” technology, but it’s a solid choice for learning; that is, you don’t have to fight the technology while you’re on the job, and you’ll be able to edit in a format that doesn’t require intermediaries or a super-powerful computer. And since you’re almost certainly going to deliver your video on an SD DVD, a format the bride and groom will take for granted, HD can wait until you’ve mastered the basics.

You say “I have to buy a sh*t load of extraparaphernalia; lights, mic, stands, tracks, batteries, tapes, etc….,” all the more reason to begin with a tool that’s proven, reliable and reasonably quick to achieve competency with. You can always sell it back to B&H when you’re truly ready to move up.

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