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Thread: Another noob needs help on a camcorder

  1. #1

    Thumbs up Another noob needs help on a camcorder

    First Post yay.

    Ok so i'm going to dedicate more time in the "lab" as i call it this year because there are ZERO videographers where I live. And i'm heavily into the motorsports world here so i have planty of action to catch. I've actually just purchased a new Mac because trying to edit anything on my HP to0k way too long. So i am planning on taking this as serious as my finances can withstand.

    I was looking into a camera that records to its own hard drive, or to flash, but they all seem to lack performance. Plus after reading for just an hour, the video that comes out of them seem to be hard to edit. is this true? So maybe recording to DVD is an option, but i am trying to rid myself of having to buy disks or tapes for i am going to be recording lots and lots of footage.

    What I am looking for is a camera with great picture quality, easy to transfer to my mac, and maybe easy to acessorise. And of course, not that expensive. I know a lot of you are thinking to yourself "yeah you and the rest of the world 'only' want all that", but I am shopping blind. I am going to read as much as i can everyday to educate myself on the subject, but hopefully i can get turned into the right direction early when it comes to making my first purchase. My passion by far is editing the footage. I will post a sample when I am allowed to.

    Right now about $300-$600 is a desired price range. Please help!! Links are best for me. When i walk into stores, all I see are flashy stickers on lame cameras. Any help is greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
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    I would normaaly say tape every time but as it sounds like you want to record hours and hours without the hassle of small 1 hour tapes it seems sensible - just make sure your software can digest the video and that you have 4 cores in your pc - ir are very patient.

    I couldnt mention a specific model as I know very little not being a camera freak.

  3. #3

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    After doing more reading, it seems like going with a hard drive camera is just a pain in the ass and video quality and editing capabilities are compromised when uploaded to a computer. What i want is the highest quality and most "edit-able" footage. So i as very anit-tape, but now it seems to be the smarter choice.
    Mark, what about DVD? I'm assuming it would be about the same as hard drive (compressed video, bad for editing) but I am still unsure what is what. What about something like this:
    Sony - 2.3MP Handycam DVD Camcorder - Silver - DCR-DVD910
    Never mind, that camera doesn't offer much control if any. disregard this question.

    I'm going to run around to different stores checkin cameras out. I just hate that in-store info is so crappy. But any helpful on what to look for would be great. Like i know if i go tape, i have to have some kind of firewire capabilities.

    thanks for any help.


    Edit: For any recommendations, keep in mind I DO NOT care for size, ease of use, all the stuff the regular consumer would care about, ect ect. My main concern is quality!!
    Last edited by LocalStreetHero; 01-10-2009 at 01:27 AM. Reason: add info.

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    I wouldnt go dvd - more compressed than tape and the cameras are unreliable sometimes in my limited experience of the format. Only a boon if you want to shoot and watch in a dvd player.

    If you want the best quality considor second hand tape DV prosumer gear. Bargains are to be found as people rush into HDV.

    Sony pd150, 170, vx2000. Canon xl1/xl2 ( great lens ), XM1, XM2. All tape cameras.

    Good SD DV is better than cheap HDV.

    Those cameras are shooters cameras too. Easy to use mics and other accesories and a dream to shoot with compared to consumer stuff.

  5. #5

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    damn those are expensive lol. Well that just tells me i need to save a lot more money. Anything that comes to mind for about half the price of those? In the mean time, i guess i'm going to just save up for a better camcorder. Buddy of mine did not listen to me and went out and bought a Sony SR45 and i played with it and i definitly know i do not want anything like it.

    I think i am set on tape. I just feel weird since i had a mini DV camcorder when i was in 7th grade, and here i am at age 23 and i'm looking into getting another tape camera lol??? luckily technology has come a long ways since then.

    oh and Mark, thanks for all the help so far bro. This forum doesn't move much at all, thanks for taking the time out to help me out. cheers.

  6. #6

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    What do you think about a canon HV20? older model, but if i can get over the awkward handling that reviews say is so horrid, i think i could enjoy this camera.

    not sure, but are ALL tapes easy to work with once it comes to editing? the HV20 records in 1080 and just the thought gets me...excited.

    ok i spent to0 much time on here this weekend so far (up to 3AM last night). I'ma go enjoy the world for now. thanks again for any help.

  7. #7

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    Dammit I cant get off this effin forum now. Ok so i've been checkin reviews and i think i got my mind set on the HV20. The camera offers standerd and high def capabilities. When working with standard, does it require a beastly machine for editing like high def would? I wil be filming in well lit areas so using the camera at its full 24p will not be necessary. Lol i'm not even sure if i know what i'm talking about still hahaha.

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    The HV20 is liked by forum users.
    If you shoot in SD it will indeed be smoother to edit.

    Dont be swayed by 24p - it's a gimmick on cheap cameras and usually poorly implimented.

    For action stuff interlaced is likely to give the best results.

  9. #9

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    HV20 it is.
    Last question (for now) is I'm going to be shooting a lot of out door, fast movie cars near and far of many different colors, all mostly in the very bright sun. I know i want a bigger mic, shotgun style i believe its called, and a wide angle lens. Since i will be outdoors, would it be a good idea to get a UV Filter? Again I am still new to this so i'm not sure if one is necessary. Also would that help to get rid of glare from windshields and such?? Mark W. For President.

  10. #10
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    President - nah - Obama cool by me - but I do use a blackberry - but not cos he does - no honest !

    Filters - I know nothing - that is a bit of this filmmaking thing I am yet to get into.

    Photographic filter - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    We do have a few regualrs who know thier stuff - keep an eye or maybe best to start a new thread.

    Wide convertors - have owned a few for a few cameras. I suggest spend more and always try befor you buy or get sale or return. If you want skater style fisheye go for like 0.35 - still pretty dam wide but not in your face barreling go 0.5, wide with hardly any bendies 0.7.

    The wider the worse all distorions are.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barrel_distortion
    Last edited by Mark W; 01-12-2009 at 01:39 PM.

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