Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: new camcorder models to look at??

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    7

    Default new camcorder models to look at??

    I am planning on purchasing a new camcorder since my sony hi 8 is hard to get batteries and film for and a lot larger than the newer models.
    I did my editing on a sony editor and transferred to vhs tape, mostly family videos while the children were growing up.

    Now the children can't afford a quality camcorder and so it again will be my hobby??? I guess to take the grandchildren etc.
    I have been into a few camera specialty stores and big box stores, googled reviews and don't see what was available when i bought my hi 8 in years gone by.

    No audio ear plug, external mic hot shoe, complaints about the size of lcd screens and tapping use on the Sony's e.g. zooming, color noise, the issue of dv tape or mini dvd for ease of use? lcd screen size, longevity of battery life with so many gadgets going while videoing, chip size complaints of I maybe mistaken 1/6?? thus problems, lux light problems, location of button problems, lens view finders being too deep set to add larger battery etc. Which leads me to looking at camcorders of $2,000 cdn dollar models.

    In days past, it was close to that which I paid for my sony hi 8; however it got used a lot and i could justify the cost and was not semi retired as i am now and of course a different budget life style.

    I have had several Sony's over my camcorder years and have been happiest with my infrared lens model as compared to when they changed to TTL focus.
    I know that Canon has a low light issue, Panasonic seems to be a corder in there for consideration; however I have read that some downsides are low light and graininess and then there is again Sony.

    I like to have the ear jack so I can hear what I am recording as I used a zoom mic before and preferred the quality. One store said I could get an attachment where the camera fits onto the tripod and attach an external mic there on some models; but again no ear jack.
    I did find one Sony, Hi end at $2000, a last years model, as this years is minus the ear jack. This one is like my older Sony hi 8 and will be discontinued this year and has everything I would like but the price is unjustifiable to have it sit on the shelf for occasional use.

    Then there is the dv mini or dvd? I was told if I buy the dvd model then of course it will be mpeg 2 and that if I want to edit there will be the compression issue and the software Wombles was suggested.

    My present hobby is creating dvd's from a vast vhs library of classics that I have via my BenQ I external burner and my Hauppauge win tv pvr usb 2 and I am quite satisfied with the quality of the dvd which I create with Ulead Movie Factory 4.
    I have been told not to look at the Mini Dvd and look to the tape camera, but which one?? And why?

    I was reading the post about the built in mic and wind noise and the member mentioned the use of a small sponge and an elastic band which made sense; however in the day of my hi 8 sony I did not have to do this with my external zoom mic and wondered how much sound would be lost having to do this.


    I liked the idea of a mini dvd of course for ease of use and a quick copy to my children as they obviously are not going to be buying a camcorder. What I was going to do was set aside a mini dvd for each of the grandchildren and as we take each one out use it til it was full and create a normal 4.75 dvd and give it to the parents. Then I read that the compression issue was a mega problem and the program Wombles was suggested for edits but they would be of poor quality and then comments arose about AVI v.s. mpeg 2 and then the sales rep said wait til something better comes out and simply buy a mini dv and use "Avid"??? So I would be back to editing as a hobby.
    I gather I need Wombles to capture my MPEG 2 to create a regular dvd???

    I am not really sure I want to get into editing again as I am busy with my Hauppauge transfers from vhs to dvd and likely won't have all that time and so am still toying with the idea of a mini dvd unit.

    Which brought me back to Sony, the 505 and then the price escalated as the store said I should buy the etended warranty b/c it is mini dvd, and the lcd screen needs yearly cleaning and again I was up to $1,500 and not using the camcorder as I did with my kids.
    The price of the camcorder would be the price of my notebook here that I use everyday and is easy to justify the expense.

    So I am looking for some reasonable suggestions regarding a model of a camera etc. that I can google reviews on or get members comments of their experiences.

    Looking for comments:

    1. use in low lux (not all of the time but on occasion)

    2. criticism of Sony 1/6 chip (maybe using wrong term) and Panasonic CCD
    and noise colour problem, sharpness comments??

    3. are all models able to attach eternal mic where the camera attaches to tripod via an adapter?

    4. Is mini dvd compression issue really bad? Wombles, what is it?

    5. Don't understand difference between AVI and MPEG2 and what I need to accompany these to create a regular DVD?

    6. The adverse comments re tapping on Sony lcd for Zooming and problem of picture instability as a result of tapping.

    7. Extended warranty b/c of LCD screen and Mini DVD requiring professional annual cleaning etc. is it really necessary b/c that comes at a price of $400 and of course replacement of camcorder if it has a problem and can't be fixed.

    I am totally confused by all of this, having had a Sony hi 8 and it feels like I was in the 19th century and am now trying to grow into the 21st with all of these new concepts and my old Sony hi 8.

    I really would appreciate comments as I have been reading so many reviews and am totally bewildered and there is nothing better than hands on advice. I do want to get a smaller camera and realize sacrifices have to be made, but what sacrifices are best?

    I hope members have time for me the upcoming buyer of a new age camcorder having owned and used many prior Sony's...this is me... and when I talk to camera store sales reps.

    Thankyou for your time, Cheers.
    Last edited by DVD; 06-29-2006 at 05:54 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Bristol uk
    Posts
    8,938
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    1. Dont worry, nearly all modern cameras will work fine in low light.
    2. Tiny differences only - whatever the detail of any modern camera will blow you away compared to hi8.
    3. Most cameras have a mic input.
    4. Not that bad, but it is also fussy to edit in many systems. DV is notceably better picture.
    5. See above.
    6. LCD button for zoom? Nasty, most should also have a proper zoom rocker, essential I say.
    7. Extended warranty is a rip off. This is where many outlets make their cash and sales people are tols to push it hard. Dont buy from anywhere where they push the extended warranty.

    Any modern camera around 1000 dollars should do you well.

    For the best quality go for a '3 chip' model, ask about the lens, ignore the doodads and 'features' the sales people go on about, you will never use them.

    One thing i would look for - check how wide the lens goes, have a play, does it go wide enough to get a decent amount of a room in? Ignore the zoom numbers, especially the digital bit, any zoom is almost totally impractical without a tripod or a wall.

    Even my oldest most crappy DV camera amazes me and would probably stuff your old hi 8....

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    7

    Default

    When the 3 chip model is mentioned is that specific to panasonic? or I am I getting something confused here? I have basically been looking at the mini dvd models.

    The Panasonic mini dvd model vdrd 250 has an ext mic in, no manual focus, optical stabilizer, night record (yes), remote, thumb joy stick, and comes with DVD Fun Studio and DVD Movie Album 2.0 (I don't know if these programs will be able to compile 3 quality 30 minute dvd's onto 1 regular 4.75 dvd which is what I want to do. Or will I need an editing program to do that?

    I have looked at the Panasonic mini dv PVGS 300 that has no inputs, manual focus, electronic stabilizer, no software, a zoom in mic, no remote, and it says Video Light indicated as " led " and there is No Software.

    Why do almost all of the reviews put Panasonic down for graininess, bad lux? Is it really poor to consider. i always was under the impression that Panasonic was a half decent camera. Even when I bought my Sony Hi 8.
    While now Sony is criticized for the button location and lack of joystick handling and the tapping lcd.

    If I choose to buy a mini dvd inspite of the mpeg 2 and the better quality of the mini dv. What software is required for mpeg 2 and mini dv ( as I have not ruled out purchase of the latter ...mini dv).
    If I buy the Panasonic mini dvd, I would assume that the software that comes with it would be sufficient to do the job that I want to start off with??

    I use Ulead movie factory 4 for my Hauppauge win tv pvr usb 2 to create a dvd from my mpeg 2 vhs tapes, would this program work for a mini dvd mpeg 2 creation of a regular dvd?

    I appreciate your comments as experience and reviews are 2 different things. I should say I get the extended warranty pushed at me everywhere b/c of the mini dvd concept and that lcd screen???

    Again I look forward to comments and with many thankyous!
    Last edited by DVD; 06-29-2006 at 09:47 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Bristol uk
    Posts
    8,938
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    I think you should go for a 3 chip panasonic DV camera. They are highly regarded by many on this site.

    Reading too many reviews and listening to all those salespeople can just cause confusion.

    All cameras in your price range are brilliant !

    Avoid dvd cameras. The picture is poorer like for like with dv.

    Whatever you buy get it on approval so you can change it if you change your mind.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    7

    Default

    My notebook only has usb 2.0 and so hook up the cam via this and burn to hard drive.

    I have not done this before, i have Nero, Ulead Movie Factory4 but I am not sure if this will work for this style of importing ???to the HD. I have always used the latter program to create a dvd from a vhs tape from my Hauppauge unit. This time there will be no Hauppauge hardware simply the camcorder and I get lost there.

    What I guess that I am saying is once the camcorder is connected to my usb 2, as my notebook has no firewire I am unclear as to what the steps are after that and what program is the one to use to transfer the tape onto the HD and then I presume my next step is to burn it to a dvd in my external burner? Again with what program. I never use Nero it just came with some package and sits on my notebook for data backups.

    A real novice here when it comes to tape dv mini.

    I keep googling and get more confused.
    Comments, thankyou

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    7

    Default

    I just returned from the camera shop and it appears that I don't have the choice of the mini dv as both of my notebooks are USB 2 and I need fire wire for video.

    The Panasonic dvd camcorder VDRD250 has usb 2.0, composite video, s-video while the Panasonic PVGS300 MiniDV camcorder requires fire wire for video.

    So it seems that the decision is made for me.

    Now as I said before, I still don't know what program I would use in my notebook to burn my 60 minute mini dvd to a regular 4.75 dvd although panasonic comes with Dvd Movie Album 2.0 which is supposed to do editing, how little it might be. I plan on trying to contact Panasonic USA tomorrow to see about this program as i am not doing anything elaborate.

    I look forward to any other comments or suggested programs.

    Cheers.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Bristol uk
    Posts
    8,938
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Ahh, you really need that f wire, it really is THE way to capture from dv cameras, do it any other way and you will loose quality or get poor captures.

    I am sure there is a way to get a f wire input on your laptop, maybe a pcmcia card? Have a google for sloutions but you really do need to get a f wire port to make the most of a new dv camera.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Dubai
    Posts
    9

    Default

    You can get cheap PCMCIA firewire cards - i have one and it works awesome - its about 4 years old now, but still goes strong... has two ports and was about $100 back then - now i'm sure you can get one for way cheaper - check ebay as well..

    Like Mark said - avoid the DVD models.

    good luck mate.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    407

    Default

    Today a PCMCIA card will cost you around $20 or 12, Do not go down the DVD camcorder route as it will all end in tears.
    ggmabaapbnebtrbatst

Similar Threads

  1. Camcorder Sony CCD-TRV15E to camcorder Sony DCR-HC40E
    By keithathome in forum Hardware Problems
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 02-12-2009, 09:57 PM
  2. What Camcorder
    By jon-t in forum Technology advice and tips
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 10-09-2007, 05:26 PM
  3. Simple question - DVD camcorder or DV tape camcorder ?
    By Jim276825 in forum Forum Announcements and News
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 03-30-2006, 03:48 PM
  4. which camcorder?
    By Jimboscomp.com in forum Technology advice and tips
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 07-15-2005, 08:45 PM
  5. DVD camcorder v Dv Tape camcorder
    By regg0 in forum Technology advice and tips
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 06-16-2005, 08:17 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •