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Thread: Professional Camcorder for First-Time

  1. #1

    Question Professional Camcorder for First-Time

    Hi, I'm new to the world of video, and I've been wanting to get a professional camcorder for quite along time. The problem is, I have quite a limited budget! I'm a keen photographer who has a Sony A100 and quite a few Minolta bodies and lenses, so I know vaguly what I'm doing - just I'm not up to date on the technology front. My current camcorder is, a pretty awful Sony which I got from Jessops a year ago for 200....not the best!

    I really do not mind going second-hand, buying one from ebay would be great. Is High Definition an important feature? Or is it worth sacrificing this for better features? Age of the camcorder is no issue. Important features include manual focus ability, good audio (preferably external mic connection), excelent picture quality and ability to get video on pc.

    Budget is around 600-ish.

    Many thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Western Europe


    As you want the ability to get video onto a pc I presume to do editing, then I would advise you to get a Mini DV camcorder. A budget of 600 won't buy you a 'professional' camcorder, by that I mean a 3CCD shoulder mounted one. Maybe after a lot of searching on ebay, you might find a hi def camcorder but I doubt it, they are outside your budget and the jury is still out on whether they actually give you better picture quality.

    A Mini DV with 3CCD's (Panasonics) will get you a lot of what you are looking for in terms of picture quality and manual controls, just check the small print for things like manual focus and an external mic socket. Also, they are very easy to connect up to a computer both IBM PC compatibles and MAC's using a Firewire connection and the picture and sound quality is great.

    Try not to spend all your budget just on the camcorder, keep some for a spare battery, a carrying bag and a tripod. Three accessories you will find VERY useful at some stage.

  3. #3


    Ok thanks alot! I can't get a Panasonic DVX100 for under 800, so 24p is out of the question...It looks like the Panasonic 3ccd non-hd mini-dv ones will be the best bet. I was quite dissapointed with my Sony that I bought, I believed it would be a big improvement over my HI-8 one I had before from around '99, but it really wasn't and I stuck to that.

    Okay, all the best!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Western Europe


    What was the Sony, was it a Mini DV camcorder, a Mini DVD or HDD?

  5. #5

    Default Reply

    Sorry for the late reply! It was a Sony Mini-DV camera model name HVC-24 or very similar model name thing. Thanks.

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