Camcorders forum

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Poll: Will your next camcorder be a hi-def one?

by Lee Koo (ADMIN) CNET staff/forum admin / January 11, 2008 4:33 AM PST
Is your next camcorder purchase going to be a high-definition one?

Yes, and I'm ready to buy. (Which format and model do you have in mind?)
Yes, but I haven't decided on the format. (Please explain.)
No. (Why not?)
Undecided. (Please explain.)
I'm already in HD heaven. (Which model and format?)
I don't need no stinkin' camcorder.
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I'm already in HD heaven. (Which model and format?)
by boya84 / January 11, 2008 6:45 AM PST

Sony HDR-HC1

Contemplating Sony HDR-FX7, HVR-V1U or Canon XHA1 as an addition - not replacement.

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oop... forgot... format...
by boya84 / January 11, 2008 6:46 AM PST

HDV, of course!!!

No icky AVCHD here...

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by whizkid454 / January 11, 2008 7:14 AM PST

Waiting until 1) I need a new one and 2) the technology improves.

Format: AVCHD or any new technologies that do not rely only on tape as the form of media. Choice of media is the key.

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I Use My Digital Camera
by larrymcg / January 11, 2008 8:47 AM PST

I was pleasantly surprised at the quality of the video I get using my Panasonic DMC-TZ1. It's a very small 10x superzoom camera with image stabilization. You can use the zoom while filming (videoing?) which is unusual for digital cameras. The sound is mono but I don't find that a problem. No need for a separate camcorder!

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I don't need no stinkin' camcorder.
by lynknez / January 11, 2008 9:01 AM PST

Two reasons for me... 1. Now that the babies are grown I don' camcord as often. 2. My pricey digital cameral has all the camcorder features that I need.

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Don't Need One
by alaskaman05 / January 11, 2008 9:15 AM PST

Just as someone mwntioned upscale digital camera has everything I need.

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High definition camcorder the way to go.
by Masterherm / January 11, 2008 9:39 AM PST

Lets face it,still photos just dont cut it for me anymore.I need to make my web pages come alive with live streaming information.Which better way than to record high rich definition video.With prices coming down on high definition camcorders,my next upgrade shall be a
Canon HR10 AVCHD High Definition DVD Camcorder, 1/2.7" 2.96MP CMOS Sensor, 1920 x 1080 Resolution, 24p Frame Rate, with 10x Optical Zoom, Optical Image Stabilizer.

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Sony of course, Blu-ray would kick *ss!!
by ESUNintel / January 11, 2008 10:09 AM PST

I'm not really in the market for a camcorder right now, but if I were it make little sense to buy a non-HD one. My father is eagerly awaiting the release of the new Sony Blu-ray camcorders though; which should hold tons of data on a single mini-Blu-ray disc, as well as play back in full 1080P. Format wise, I would not go with one that isn't DVD based, hard drive, or Blu-ray, especially now that it seems Blu-ray is the future format of HD video.

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by haf canadian / January 11, 2008 10:14 AM PST

My analog tube TV must be really good, cuz I can't see that big a difference in picture on HD digital sets I've seen. Why would I want to pay for HD in any form? TV, DVD, or cameras. The govt. has seen fit to force us all into the same hole, watching digital. They gonna force us to HD too?
I bought a Sony DVD, Dolby 5.1 camcorder last year. It was supposed to be the new way to go, and it has its advantages. But the only frustrating thing, unfortunately super frustrating, is the 2 shooting formats you have to choose from, Video or VR, and the resultant fiasco if you choose the wrong one; I've shot video in both and still can't get diddly into my computer, via cables or via mini-disc, to edit as everyone said I'd be able to. Sony's software stinks and the whole concept of editability or even transfering videos without editing onto standard DVD disks is erroneous.
It's super nice to pick out scenes and view immediately them without scrolling back and forth through a minitape, but the problem with editing and copying multiple miniDVD's to a standard DVD is a real big pain. I bought Roxio's EMCreator 10 because some say it will do the computer work I want, but I haven't had a chance to try yet.
My advice would be to stick with the minitapes. My old Sony Hi8 may be put back into service again.

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can't see it?
by jaythird / January 11, 2008 11:45 PM PST
In reply to: no

You must be blind.

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by haf canadian / January 12, 2008 6:01 AM PST
In reply to: can't see it?

Brilliant comment. Why, I think I see the light.

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not so blind
by TheQmeister / January 29, 2008 8:57 AM PST
In reply to: blind

Haf, I understand your frustration. Honestly, if you don't have a High Def television I can see no reason for a High Camera. Your TVs only going to show 430 lines whether it's a 430 Hi-8 or a 1080p.
However... many of the camcorders coming out have some terrific abilities that were not affordable or available 5-6 years ago.
I too, wonder about the Digital TV thing. I mean really, it's 430 lines, it's been good for 60 years, why the change? Can you spell DRM?

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No, since I don't need one
by 7aji88 / January 11, 2008 12:26 PM PST

My Canon A630 takes some fine 640*480 video files. Although there is no optical zoom with it, the video still fine for me. I like to get the video as a file, not on a tape or on a mini DVD, and those camcorders with the hard disk are still expensive and don't take that good of a still photos. Even some digital cameras started having a higher resolution with stereo sound, so if I'm spending my money, I would rather spend it on one thing that does them booth (video and audio), so no camcorders for me.

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I own one.
by Plasmaplus / January 11, 2008 6:30 PM PST

I bought the Canon HV20 back in August after owning 2 3ccd cams. Let me say first that there will NEVER be the perfect camcorder, firstly because one mans meat is another mans poison, meaning what draws one person to like a camcorder has little interest for another.

I do read all the reviews from many different sources before I purchase what after all is an expensive item, and after weighing up all the pros and cons only then make a decision to buy or not. Next comes the job of finding the right price.

I never take the still image specs into consideration because I have a far better Digital Camera anyway.

The Canon HV20 is by far NOT the perfect camcorder. It is plastiky, its fixed viewfinder is a joke, as is the positioning of several of its onboard features. BUT...when I plug in directly to my TV and see the wonderful HD images of my grandkids on a large LCD screen I have to gasp at the quality, and surely the end justifies the means.

I could'nt care if my woman looked like a dog, if she loves me and treats me well then I could'nt care a sugar, the same applies to a camcorder. Rubbish build quality and several stupid design faults go by the board when the camcorder produces final images of such quality.

I have also tried the Canon HG10 but the software gave me so much trouble I sent it back. When Canon can let me plug in a firewire and just let me transfer image to my PC folder without keycodes and passwords for their own promotional software then I might consider buying a Hard Drive Camcorder in the future.

Let me say that if you want beautiful crisp HD footage then HD is the way to go, and with cheap software such as Pinnacle 11 Ultimate and Ulead VideoStudio 11 able to handle your images and being easy to use go for it. I know that burning in true HD is out of the question for the time being but upscaling DVD players will allow you as near as damn it to show what footage you have in your camcorder

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I don't need a camcorder yet
by elisasalat / January 11, 2008 9:30 PM PST

I have had camcorders before and took videos but have very seldom seen them. Perhaps when my kids start their own families we will have family reunions where we can watch them if the devices are still around to do so.... everything changes so much! now we have to save a VCR to be able to watch our kids when they were babies. i cannot watch my wedding videos because i don't have a betamax anylonger... I feel that there are awesome small cameras that offer video capabilities that give you enuf video time(for me). I LIKE THEM SHORT & SWEET... and you can then save them on your computer for later use and access from anywhere to share with whomever.

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Buy HD Camcorder?
by GregS13 / January 11, 2008 11:56 PM PST

My next camcorder will be HD if...decent software is available to edit HD on my Vista Ultimate computer. Also, a huge consideration is what to play it on? Blue Ray, or HDD? When the HD DVD format is decided, and the software is available, then I will buy an HD camcorder.

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HD Camcorder
by peterhb17 / January 12, 2008 12:46 AM PST

Already gone for an HD comcorder - JVC GZ HD7. Still getting the hang of it. Constrained by proprietary format *.tod files. Only editable initially with supplied software from Cyberlink which I didn't find very impressive !!

Although now Ulink video studio (Corel) in its latest release allows editing of native *.tod files and this is a lot better.

Peter Barker

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HDV on MiniDV
by NicksNotes / January 12, 2008 2:07 AM PST

when i step up to high definition camcorder, i'll likely go with one which records on MiniDV. so that my older previous footage shot on standard definition MiniDV format will be able to also be played-back, too.

more importantly, i still prefer tape-based, since the tapes themselves are the camera masters, neat and tidy; no getting into the morass of digital media management/storage/organization. standard def MiniDV already consumes about 12GB of disk space per one hour of video; let alone what the high def formats would consume. which would mean having to offline to some stage backup anyhow. whether that'd be DVD-R or another harddrive.

all in all, it's still easier to keep the camera master (MiniDV) and just ingest to the computer what select footage you want. it's a more straightforward process; than worrying about camera's internal built-in harddrive (and and their "different" codecs) or removable media (which is expensive compared to tape). MiniDV tape can be bought online for under $3.00 a tape.

beyond that HDV format on MiniDV is a less-compressed format, than the "esoteric" other formats written to harddisk or memory cards; which are compressed in more greatly. so, for quality and ease of managing the media, MiniDV tape stock still has my vote.

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by boya84 / January 12, 2008 8:48 AM PST
In reply to: HDV on MiniDV

My sentiments, exactly.

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Canon HV20
by richardlawler / January 13, 2008 10:09 AM PST

The Canon HV20 is a great little HDV and miniDV camcorder.

One complaint would be that the microphone isn't so good. It picks up lots of wind noise outdoors. I've got a Rode VideoMic that does much better when I need good audio.

The HV20 has a 24P Cine mode that works great. It's true progressive scan, and it works well in low light. The only problem with the 24P mode is that the editing/capture software I use (Sony Vegas 8 Pro) doesn't recognize the footage as 24P. This is not a big deal since it's fully compatible with 60i. But edits won't be frame-perfect.

One cool thing about HDV is that you can burn 25-50 minute Blu-Ray (using Vegas) or HD DVD (using Ulead VideoStudio 11 Plus) from the HDV footage onto regular and DL DVD-R discs.

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I have one, it's got great features and really stinks too.
by TheQmeister / January 29, 2008 9:12 AM PST

I was given the JVC Everio GZ-HD3 for xmas. It's going back tomorrow (last day to return). I tried. I really tried. But the neato features just could not overcome it's weaknesses.
The hi-def pic was outstanding.. if: you didn't move the camera, it was outdoors, and daylight.
Its still pics are HORRIBLE.
Now I know some of us have a good digital camera for stills. Me too. I have a couple. I prefer the Canon SD600 cause it was all I needed, it was $200, slips EASILY into a pocket and.. this is the most important reason... my wife could use it. I personally think it takes very nice movies. But, there's no zoom (other than the digital - which we all know counts for nothing) And, it's sound gets buffeted by the wind. So... I like to have an actual "camcorder". My current Sony Hi-8 is now 5-6 yrs old. Still runs like a champ but comparatively is bulky.

As for the Everio, I really like the ability to simply plug it in and transfer all my video to the PC. I picked up a 750GB HD for under $200 and it will hold several days worth of video. (60 GBs/7 hours on the camcorder).
I also like the ease of using the joystick on the viewfinder, the availability of the options, the wind "resistant" stereo mics, the 3 CCDs, the "sunshade" lens cover and compactness of it.
However, here are the deterrents.
- All video shot indoors is either green or orange. Yuck.
- The included "light" is useless past 5 feet.
- The stereo microphones are actually omnidirectional. LOL they're BOTH next to each other on TOP of the camera. No actual stereo separation.
- No viewfinder. This is a biggie. I don't want to have to open the 2 1/2" playback window all the time. It wears down the battery and is annoying to others when shooting video of kid's recitals etc.
- 10x zoom. I mean really. Are you kidding me?
Anyway, I'm going to try and find something else. I like the HD format. The videos that came out nice, look *wow* on my 73" HD screen.

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What about the new Sanyo?
by nomore801 / January 29, 2008 10:11 PM PST

HiDef, easy to hold, easier to use than Canon or Sony & takes stills....

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