Question

Buying first camcorder

Hiya,

I'm looking at buying my first camcorder and after doing some research I still feel lost on what to prioritise spec wise.

This camcorder is going to be used for a small production (sit-com style) a group and I are doing. As well as used for vlogging and and filming outdoors. (I know it's a broad range, I'm sorry.) So I guess most importantly it needs to be able to record well in Low light and have Mic input. I really don't want to go over $350 and am more than happy to buy secondhand camcorders.

The camcorders I've been leaning toward so far are the Canon Vixia r700/800 and
Panasonic hc v750.
I really like the panasonic but its a struggle to find it in the price range. I've seen some that are in between in price. I get the specs with sensor size. But I dont know how still image resolutions mean properly. I will be editing all the footage that is taken a lot.

If anybody would be willing to point me in the right direction or suggest a middle camera or another for my needs I would be incredibly grateful. Thank you!

Discussion is locked
Follow
Reply to: Buying first camcorder
PLEASE NOTE: Do not post advertisements, offensive materials, profanity, or personal attacks. Please remember to be considerate of other members. If you are new to the CNET Forums, please read our CNET Forums FAQ. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Reporting: Buying first camcorder
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
Comments
- Collapse -
Answer
Panasonic HC-V750

I am happy to comment on this camera because for a couple of years I have owned and used one.

First everybody wants good low light performance but, as you will know, the better the subject is lit the better the picture. Having said this, the 750 performs well in low light conditions. My example is a recent trip on a "Ghost Train", pitch black except for the spooks. The 750 picked up all the lit subjects perfectly and the clip only needed the brightness lifting in post production. I have also used it filming a Halloween Train trip with similar positive effects.
For general filming the 750 performs well. The "intelligent Zoom" allows extended zoom performance using digital zoom without any degradation in the picture quality. I set mine to 50x but going to 60x is acceptable, the maximum zoom of 1500x is not very usable!

Audio in still conditions is good but the wind muff on the on-board mics only works in light breezes. I use a tie-clip mic, a short shotgun mic and a wireless mic with the 750 and all work very well.

One advantage of the 750 and some other Panasonic camcorders is that the charging system uses a 5V supply, this means that the camera can be charged and can be run using a USB based electricity supply. So mains, in-car and USB battery packs will all charge and run the camera. I use an AUKEY 20,000mAh external battery and this will give up to 12 hours running. It also saves buying expensive Panasonic batteries. (third party ones are now available but have only recently come on the market)

One criticism is that the 750 does not have an electronic viewfinder. I do not find this a problem as the LCD screen works in bright sunlight and I have never lost a picture due to reflection from the screen.

Useful additions are remote control using an App on your Smartphone. This gives a picture of what the camera sees as well as record start/stop and zoom control. Slow motion option gives 1/2 and 1/4 speed filming and there is a focus assist for manual operation. Control of shutter speed and aperture are available in manual mode but are rather limited. having said that, I have never been let down by the automatic performance of the camera.
I also have and use the VW-CTR1 remote pan/tilt camera base. This is operated via a USB lead from the camera, has a number of settings and can also be directly controlled from the App mentioned above.
Hope this has helped.

- Collapse -
Panasonic HC-V750

Thank you so much for your detailed response. It sounds like it does everything is need it to do. If I can find it cheap enough I will definitely be buying it. Otherwise the other option I found which is a slight downgrade from the 750 is the HC-V720.

Thank you again though, it sounds like a great camera and you answered all the questions I had about i!

- Collapse -
Panasonic HC-V750

Thank you so much for your detailed response. It sounds like it does everything is need it to do. If I can find it cheap enough I will definitely be buying it. Otherwise the other option I found which is a slight downgrade from the 750 is the HC-V720.

Thank you again though, it sounds like a great camera and you answered all the questions I had about i!

CNET Forums