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Thread: Canon 650D or Canon XM2 or Go Hero 2

  1. #1

    Default Canon 650D or Canon XM2 or Go Hero 2


    I've been shooting a few bits with a Canon XM2 and external microphone but the camera was on loan. The time has come to give it back and now I need to buy soemthing to replace it. Given that a lot of what I'm shooting is talking head/voxpop I thought a DSLR with external mic jack might be the way to go. I have a Canon 450D which I could trade in against a 650D and probably get kitted out for less than 400. I have a good quality external mic and a handful of decent Canon lenses including a 50mm 1.8F prime which is nice and quick.

    However, for the same sort of money I could get a Canon XM2 which I know to be a good workhouse, albeit bulkier than the 650D.

    Then at the other end of the spectrum, there's the Go Hero2 with external mic jack which offers a lot of options for shooting on the move and stuff. Plus, that kit would run to less than 300.

    I'm a bit stuck. Any advice would be great. Here are some things I have shot with the XM2 - I did get paid for some of these but the results aren't what I'd hoped for and with a bit more practice I think I could do much better.

    Thanks in advance


  2. #2


    It's a difficult choice to make, I would tend to go for the 650D as that will give you a better quality image but there is a learning curve going from a video camera to using stills camera for video. The Go-Pro is really for specialised shots which will only give a wide angle view. If you ever need to frame a shot you would have to get the LCD screen OR the WiFi attachment and an iphone with the Go-Pro App.

    The XM2 was a good camera in it's day and will have some advantages in that it's easier to use out of the box but it might be time to put it to bed. Only you know what would suet you and your circumstances so my ramblings aren't going to help much. I'm just throwing out some considerations you may not have thought of.

  3. #3


    Seeing your footage, I'd say stick with a camera over a DSLR, you seem to do a lot of very "informational" videos, definitely of the type you can see on the news. So I take it you want something that can be quickly set up in order to catch the moments. A DSLR will give you more of a "film look" but with lots of prior preparation before you actually start filming. From the videos you posted, I know I couldn't do that with a DSLR, there seems to be a fair share of hand held footage with moving subjects, you want autofocus for that (it seems to me that the 650D autofocus is more of a sales gimmick, now I did not verify it myself, I went for the 600D over the 650D for that digital zoom that gives me at least one viable composition alternative for each of my lenses (the 3x digital zoom gives great results), and the 650D does not have that feature)

    As for the gopro, I also happen to have one, it is not a viable main camera, maybe the upcoming hero3 that may or may not have more manual features, but still, I wouldn't use it as my main cam and very few people do it, unless they have a very good reason to do so.

    To me, your footage really is the home turf of the camcorder and I would have no idea where to begin shooting some of your shots with a DSLR.

  4. #4


    Ok so assuming the answer is "none of those" which camera might be a good choice. Would need the external mic port obviously and I'd be spending about 500-600. I'll buy second hand if need be.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Blog Entries


    Out of those three, the 650d wins by a fair margin, particularly as you seem to have a few nice lenses. Pair it with the new 40mm pancake lens, and personally I thin you've found a good solution.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    London, England


    That borrowed XM2 is a capable piece of kit - - are you sure you are getting the best out of it, and that's why you are considering going for something else?

    You will need a powerful PC for that HD stuff as well as fancy software . . . can't you Borrow it for a bit longer?

    How do your vids compare with yr friends? That might tell you about the capabilities of the XM2 - and dare I say......maybe you've not exploited them all?

    Jumping for new tech is fine if you can afford it . . . . let's see how those alternatives stack up . . .

    + I liked the vids.

  7. #7


    Unfortunately I can't borrow it anymore. Otherwise I'd just keep using it.

    I don't know what a comparable HD camcorder would be to the XM2. Any ideas?

  8. #8


    I have the gopro hd hero 2 and i like it very much! But i've just bought the 600d..gopro is a great camrea for action (because of the size) but the image quality cannot be compared with the 600d..And last gopro can be mounted EVERYWHERE!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Surrey, UK
    Blog Entries


    Quote Originally Posted by Team_Lumpy View Post
    I don't know what a comparable HD camcorder would be to the XM2. Any ideas?
    If you like Canon then the XF100 would be a good fit. But we're talking prices in the region of a new XM2, not the 500-600 you're looking to spend.

    Manufacturers don't seem to think there's a market for consumer cameras with physical buttons, dials and rings. Lots of camcorders have manual facilities, but theyr'e all tucked away in menus (which sometimes require you to put your sticky paws all over the touch sensitive screen. That makes sense, doesn't it!

    I've probably missed something, but I've not sen a camcorder with anything like the x20 optical zoom the XM2 has (though this may notbe an issue for you)

    Just above your price range, the Panasonic X900 might work for you. Much is still ticked away in menus, nut at least it has an assignable ring.
    The Panasonic AG-AC90 seems to be the same camera in a more "pro" body (three rings, more buttons, XLRs) at around 1,400.

    But, as has been said earlier, the XM2 is very capable and we mustn't for get that "only" HD is still DVD quality. I would think you can get a bit more out of it that your videos suggest (Megan) seems much better than the others, so I'm guessing you're improving. Spending your money on a second hand one might not be a bad idea until you have the funds for an XF100 or similar.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Hazel Park, Michigan, United States


    My girlfriend and I just bought a couple 650D's, and we are completely new to DSLR's. We use them along with a couple of other different cameras (Nikon AW100 & Zoom Q3HD) to film live performances for local bands. The video auto focus (which was a bigger selling point for my gf) is really no good for our chosen field of filming, instead we opt for manual focusing & controls. Overall I am pretty happy with the 650D, which I'm sure will grow with my learning of how to use the camera to it best capabilities.

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