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Thread: Looking for a camera..

  1. #1

    Default Looking for a camera..

    Hi there guys. Just joined and thought you guys could help me out.

    I am an aspiring film-maker and as my 21st birthday is coming up, I am thinking of asking for a whole load of money to put into a camera.

    I am not expecting alot. So I would say the limit would be $1000.

    I have heard good things about handycams such as Sonys HDR range.

    I realise that camcorders like these arnt desired for short filmmaking, but I was wondering if it is a good start off point.

    My main worry is mic input. As I know inbuilt mics really suck, and for short films with dialouge, a wireless mic system would be desired, would it not?

    Any help would be strongly appreciated.

    Thanks.

  2. #2

    Default

    Look, I know this is a newbie post, and its the same old shit, but any help would be grand, as there are
    some things I cant trust the internet or people in store for...

    Anyone? Don't just look at my post, help me here a little.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Whitecourt, Alberta Canada
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    Default

    Get a camcorder with a remote control. This is the most important feature on a camcorder. Eliminates the jigglies at the beginning and end of each video caused by hitting the on / off button. Mpeg format is what my player does best. No point in being the leading edge in any digital format. Just not worth it. Keep your videos short and no editing is required if you upload them to the net.
    Is it uncut nature video or a fabrication? To edit or not.

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Default

    Most important features for CamCorders (out of 100)

    50 points for a cheap $5 remote; this feature is way more important than all the rest of the features combined. Eliminate the jigglies at the beginning and end of each video caused by hitting the start/stop switch. $30 DVD players come with fully functional remotes. Wake up CC manufacturers...

    10 points for major Camcorder design changes, make it more like a flashlight. The hand strap is not a good way to shoot video.

    I would have never noticed the mouse if I was watching the tiny view screen. The flashlight shooting method makes it easy to catch the action. The hand strap is a loser a wrist strap would be more useful.

    10 points for files named YYYYMMDDHHMMSS.mpg AND not all in one huge file (the worlds best media players forte is mpg)

    10 points for standard AA rechargable batteries. What a waste of money the batteries and the chargers are. My first backup battery was a dud so I bought a 3rd and my battery charger broke and had to be replaced. Trying to locate these items was more wasted time.

    5 points for a wired remote so nothing needs to be pointed at the CC when turning it on and off. The Start/Stop recording button would no longer be needed if the CC has a Remote.

    2 points for the remote censor at the rear of the camcorder. That is where I use my remote 99.9% of the time.

    2 points for the mute option. Wind noise and yappy friends would be the main reason for this option. A Mini microphone cover would help as well.

    2 points for the ability to attach to a spotting scope to the FRONT of the CC (digiscoping). Everybody with a spotting scope would love this one. It wouldn't be expensive either.

    1 point for a detachable view screen (with 10" wire). This shouldn't be a big item cost wise.
    It would have been great for curling.. Being able to turn the CC without losing sight of the view screen.

    1 point for the GPS watermark option. It has it's own switch. I'd just make short-short videos or 1 pic for location then switch it off. I don't want to have to go digging for this info. Again this would be a minor software fix.

    1 point for the time showing on the screen. That should be an easy software option with no cost. There are a number of far more useless options in the menu.

    1 point for the ability to skip videoing at the beginning and end of each clip. A remote would make this a less needed item. If it's difficult to skip the end, then the eliminating the jigglies at the beginning is a good start. The ability to set the number of seconds to skip at the end of each video would be handy in XXX rated situations (wild wild parties etc). But not that big of a deal. Just delete those files completely.

    1 point for the sighting tube / flashlight mount on the top of the CC

    1 point for the zoom cover/lock. I have wrecked a dozen or more clips by inadvertently touching the zoom button. I guess I could use a small piece of electrical tape to solve the problem...

    2 point for the ability to auto upload to the NET. Handy when someone is breaking in or your are videoing police wrongdoing.

    1 point for a CC that can video with the view screen closed. My Hitachi can but my Sony needs this screen open. In cold weather I wrap my hands around the camcorder to keep it from freezing up in -20F temperatures.

    1 point for the most important menu items listed first: 1-off load video, 2-delete old video, 3-set date and time

    1 point for optical zoom of 10X or better. The best zoom is manual zoom. Get in close and circle the subject if you can

    -1 point for Digital Zoom

    -1 point for the ability to review videos on the tiny screen. I never watch or delete any video on the camcorder; this is another worthless option.

    The Camcorder should be CHEAP. Otherwise you won't take it with you and what good is it then. Most of recent great video has been shot on cell phones by amateurs not by self proclaimed pros. Egypt, tsunami, police brutality etc. It's not the equipment that makes these shots great. A pro would be busy checking the lighting etc and most likely miss the action.

    Recent video

    Bulls fighting (nobody gets hurt)
    Is it uncut nature video or a fabrication? To edit or not.

  5. #5

    Default

    Curiously the quality of the lens and the sensors, abilities to set aperture and shutter spped, functions to control exposure levels all appear to attract zero points. Are they really so unimportant?
    Perhaps you should clarify the meaning of "great", as in "Most of recent great video has been shot on cell phones by amateurs not by self proclaimed pros". I tent to find such videos suffer from poor, unstable images and dreadful sound. The clips you refer to occur because many people have cameras with their phones, and often cannot afford decent equipment.

  6. #6
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    Default Not all features are worth it

    Quote Originally Posted by TimAndrews View Post
    Curiously the quality of the lens and the sensors, abilities to set aperture and shutter spped, functions to control exposure levels all appear to attract zero points. Are they really so unimportant?
    Perhaps you should clarify the meaning of "great", as in "Most of recent great video has been shot on cell phones by amateurs not by self proclaimed pros". I tent to find such videos suffer from poor, unstable images and dreadful sound. The clips you refer to occur because many people have cameras with their phones, and often cannot afford decent equipment.
    Ok ok your ideas get 1/2 point each. As for affording descent equipment. Handheld camcorders that cost 4 or 5 times as much as a computer doesn't seem right somehow. "Prosumer" another stupid stupid word made up by the lord-it-over-yous
    Is it uncut nature video or a fabrication? To edit or not.

  7. #7
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    Save yourself the first 50 points by learning to edit and trim your shots. And the ability to review in camera (your -1 point) can help you reshoot there and then rather than discover when you've got home.
    Tim

  8. #8
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    Default Pro-Sumers called out

    Quote Originally Posted by TimStannard View Post
    Save yourself the first 50 points by learning to edit and trim your shots. And the ability to review in camera (your -1 point) can help you reshoot there and then rather than discover when you've got home.
    So everybody with a camcorder should learn how to edit. What a piece of crap. I don't edit anything. Resolution is lost with each edit.

    My only ruined shots have come from inadvertently hitting the zoom button. Tape will fix that. Making any decisions about video by looking at the tiny screen is pure stupid as well. Boo to the perfect perfects. Great video is shot not edited. Witness the Vancouver Riots and North Africa videos. I didn't notice any Pro-Sumer camcorders there. Too expensive to risk is my guess. Buy cheap, shoot lots and don't edit anything and you'll be way ahead of the game.

    I'm pretty sure nobody can touch me when it comes to shooting and replaying golf video. Real sure.
    Is it uncut nature video or a fabrication? To edit or not.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpectateSwamp View Post
    Making any decisions about video by looking at the tiny screen is pure stupid as well.
    As stupid as not realising you've not got the shot, while the opportunity to re-shoot still exists?
    Quote Originally Posted by SpectateSwamp View Post
    Boo to the perfect perfects. Great video is shot not edited. Witness the Vancouver Riots and North Africa videos. I didn't notice any Pro-Sumer camcorders there. Too expensive to risk is my guess. Buy cheap, shoot lots and don't edit anything and you'll be way ahead of the game.
    ...that's as maybe but the OP stated he wanted to shoot short films with dialogue. I'm guessing he's not after run & gun filmimg of civil unrest.

    Quote Originally Posted by SpectateSwamp View Post
    I'm pretty sure nobody can touch me when it comes to shooting and replaying golf video. Real sure.
    I congratulate you that you are that good at shooting only what you want to appear in the final film. However most of us do not have your finely tuned ability nor the time or budget to shoot a film in the sequence it will eventually be shown and therefore have to resort to editing. There's enough crap as it is on YouTube without you encouraging others, less gifted than yourself, not to edit.
    I can see how your approach can work for your golf swing shots: it produces a memento or even something to analyse. But it's not a watchable film.
    Tim

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