I know absolutely nothing about video and I don't have time to become an expert. However I need to video our forthcoming child to send regular videos on DVD to grandparents in another country and perhaps upload as YouTube HD depending on what kind of privacy they offer (I don't have a YT account yet).
Living on a small European island, my choice is MediaMarkt or small electronic shops that rip off tourists. Also these things are much more expensive here than in mainland Europe, UK or USA. So I bought the best video camera I could afford in MediaMarkt which was closest to our 300€ budget - a Canon Legria HF R106. They had an R16, but it was nearly 400€.
Several things are making me nervous about it though:
When filming outside in bright light it seems ok (yes, just ok... I'll talk about that quality in a minute). In the house, under what I would call 'normal lighting', the quality is absolutely terrible. It is so grainy, noisy, patchy and mis-coloured. Just awful. It's like looking at a 5€ webcam. Considering the point of this camera is for filming a baby mostly in soft indoor light, I'm wondering if this is due to the particular camera I've bought, or are they all terrible in low light at this price?
I'm filming in FXP mode at 1920x1080 resolution. Even with 'bright light' outdoor footage, when I put it onto our flatscreen TV (through the red/green/blue composite output) it doesn't look that great - kind of blurry and grainy. Is it supposed to look good on a TV? I don't understand why it doesn't look 'superb' or 'incredible', or any of the other adjectives used to describe the camera on the Amazon and Canon sites?
Given that the raw footage from the camera doesn't look that great to begin with, I'm very worried about the processing of it in something like Pinnacle.
Firstly, I've only got a cheap 2-year old laptop. It has 3Gb Ram, a T5750 2GHz Duo processor, and is running Win7. Will I be able to edit the FXP footage or is there too much data at that resolution?
Secondly, how much will the quality suffer by being processed in software? Will my parents be able to watch a fullscreen DVD on their flatscreen TV, or will they have to make do with playing a 400x300 file on their computer?
Thanks for any advice and/or reassurance.