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Thread: Advice on a new camera in the sub 400 range

  1. #1

    Default Advice on a new camera in the sub 400 range

    Hi everyone,

    First post here! I'm looking for a budget video camera that will be mainly used to film music performances indoors. I'm a freelance audio engineer and plan to start filming some of the performances that I record. Plus, I'd also like to be able to use it for family holidays ect.

    I've had a look at quite a few reviews but dont really feel any wiser!

    I'm looking at avoiding HD for the moment and would rather get a standard def cam with better features/lens than spend the extra on HD. I'm not too bothered about the format but it would be good to have some manual controls (I'm a very keen Photographer) and fairly decent low light performance. A lot of the videos will end up on Vimeo or Youtube.

    So far I've got my eye on the following:

    Panasonic SDR H80 and SDR S26
    Sony SR57 and SX30
    Canon FS200

    I'd love to hear some opinions on those and any others that people might suggest. I'll most likely be editing in imovie so it would be good to avoid a camera that records into any format that will need conversion prior to imovie editing!

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Western Europe


    Manual controls below 400, your out of luck. At a guess I would say all of those camcorders you listed are not too good in terms of picture quality especially in low light. If you want the best picture quality go for a mini dv tape based camcorder with a mic socket, such as a Canon MD205 or Canon MD216, if you can still get one or the other.

  3. #3



    I actually ended up getting a JVC HD30 as it seemed great value for money. I got one new for 350 and as it seemed to get fairly good reviews I thought I'd go for it. Good results so far!

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