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Best DV camera with anamorphic widescreen for under $1000

by GoldChain / February 25, 2005 4:00 AM PST

Hello all. The subject line says it all. As usual the lower the cost the better, but I want a DV camera that does a true anamorphic widescreen, not just cutting off the top and bottom.

I've seen the JVC GR-D200(US) has 3 modes, the "Squeeze" mode is s'posed to be true anamorphic, but I can't find any reviews or anything talking about how it works.

I also saw the Canon Xi and the Sony TRV-80 are s'posed to do this, but the Xi is a bit above my price ceiling and I can't find anything out about the TRV-80.

If I had the $3K+, I'd just pick up one of the new HDV cams out there =)

Any input would be appreciated.


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Canon Optura Xi
by leahdax / February 25, 2005 6:20 AM PST

How much under 1K do you need to be. The Canon Optura Xi is available at B&H for $929. Other online shops have it for less, but I've heard that some of them are "questionable."

Please post back if you get the Xi. I'm thinking about getting it, too, and I'd like to know how it works out for you. Good Luck.

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Any thoughts on the DCR-HC42?
by GoldChain / February 25, 2005 11:31 AM PST
In reply to: Canon Optura Xi

Well, I'm getting this camcorder in honor of our having our first baby. So I want DV for sure (one of those Sony HDV cams would rock tho) for the quality. I used to do videography, even remember the VX1000 when it was coming out, so I'm familiar with the differences between a good 3 CCD cam -vs- a standard single CCD consumer model. However, I want something small, convenient that I can use around the house and on our trips to DisneyWorld =). And paying all that money for a "pro/prosumer" level camera isn't all that important for me. About my only other request would be for true widescreen, so thus my question.

So, even $1000 is a bit much for my liking. Could I afford it? Sure, but I'm thinking for the difference in price, this might be a better option:

I've found it around the net for around $475, so at 1/2 the price of the Xi, this cam might be what the doctor ordered. I'm still looking to see if I can find out 100% if the DCR-HC42 gives TRUE widescreen (i.e. the CCD is actually 16x9). The HC42 has the 16x9 LCD on it, but that really doesn't mean anything as far as the actual CCD.

Anyway, I'll keep an open mind on the Xi side, since it appears I can get one online for around $850. I'll keep y'all posted on what happens.


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Actually, how about one of these choices?
by GoldChain / February 26, 2005 8:16 AM PST
In reply to: Canon Optura Xi

So, after doing some more research, it would appear the DCR-HC42 isn't a good choice.

The Canon Optura 30/40 and the Elura 70/90. I know the Optura line has a 50/60/500/600 and the Elura has an 80/85. But I'm still sorting thru the details to know their differences.

As far as the Optura30/40 and Elura 70/90 goes, I know they have the "MegaPixel" CCD which lets them do a true anamorphic widescreen. I played with the Optura 30 and the Elura 70 today at BestBuy. I liked the zoom control and speed on the Optura 30. The zoom on the Elura 70 was, at it's fastest, slow to say the least. Both had the same menu system, but the Elura has the menu button/wheel in the better position on the back, as opposed to on the bottom-left-front, which is not convenient when the LCD screen is open. Both also show you a letterboxed widescreen on the 4x3 LCD when in widescreen mode.

So between the two, I liked the Optura 30 better. The 40 seems to only add a flash/video light and the ability to adjust audio gain, which isn't much for the extra cost.

The Elura 90s should be out soon, so I'd like to compare that one to see if they made the zoom speed any better than the 70.

Any thoughts on these cams would be appreciated.


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Which did you choose.
by myg218 / February 15, 2006 1:56 AM PST

I know Opturas are better than Eluras, but I'm deciding upon either the Canon Elura 90 or the Sony dvr hc42.

We are having a baby girl next month and want to get a camcorder to record the happy event.

I am leaning towards the Elura 90 because of the optical image stabilizer.

Does anyone know if there is a tremendous difference between the optical IS in the Elura 90 opposed to the electronic IS in the Sony HC42?

Thanks for any help.

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by drhiberd / February 15, 2006 7:58 AM PST
In reply to: Which did you choose.

The Elura does not have OIS.
I believe the Elura has a larger CCD, a better optical zoom, and comes with a wide angle lens. That would be enough to sell me.

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