Video Cameras forum



by Taymiyyah / October 10, 2013 5:08 AM PDT


I need to buy a camcorder and find many, many choices, but not sure how many are real options.

What I'm trying to do:
I want to record soccer games. Generally the best way to do this is up high from a far enough distance back to capture most of at least the defensive side of the field (for my purposes).

What I know I need:
* HD, preferably if I understand correctly, 1920x1080, with 60FPS: I want the best possible image quality I can get, so this is critical.
* powerful optical and digital zooms. I don't need exactly how much I need per se, That way, if I really had to go far back to get for example the height I need, I can zoom in to get the coverage I need.
* battery that can record at least 105 minutes without going dead. I guess I can get another battery, so if I have to sacrifice to get the image quality I need, I will, but I would really prefer not to have to go that route.
* strongly prefer internal memory, though not a show stopper
* finally, I tried borrowing one and an interesting issue came up: on sunny days, I have a heck of a time seeing the LCD screen. I don't know if this is just life, or if some manufacturers have dealt with this, but it was a bit of a nuisance if I can avoid it.
* fun feature, but not necessary: the capacity to operate it remotely, specifically recording. I saw a camera that does this. Use: I can set it up prior to the game and then start recording later, rather than having to stick right by it.

Any suggestions would be great. Thank you!

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All Answers

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Football camcorder
by Terfyn / October 10, 2013 4:14 PM PDT
In reply to: camcorder

1) Most are HD nowadays.
2) Always go for good optical zooms. Digital zooms reduce picture quality. Some cameras have "intelligent" zoom which is a mixture of optical and digital but corrected to give a good picture. These are IMO OK.
3) Longer life batteries are on the market for most of the cameras. The camera manufacturers supply at inflated prices but there are many outlets on the web. Buy from a reputable supplier.
4) Stay with the SD card. Reliable and replaceable. Go for 32 or 64 Gb and you will have all the memory you need for a football match. Once downloaded to your PC, re-format (in the camera) and use again.
5) If you need a viewfinder, you will have to go to the top of the range. (Panasonic 920 for example) I made a simple shield from card and black tape to cover the screen. I have never needed to use it as the screen brightness can be increased.
6) This years cameras have Wi-Fi control so you can control from your Smartphone.

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follow up question
by Taymiyyah / October 10, 2013 11:20 PM PDT
In reply to: Football camcorder

Thank you. That was good information. Are there any particular makes or models that particularly stand out to you in a good - or bad - way? Like I've been considering the Sony HDR-PJ380V, as one example. One feature that I wasn't selecting for but heard it had is a tracking focus feature. It allows you to touch a subject on the LCD touchscreen and have the camcorder follow it and keep it in focus.

I don't know if the other manufacturers have this?

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follow up
by Taymiyyah / October 11, 2013 1:28 AM PDT
In reply to: Football camcorder

okay I think if I have done my research properly then there were two cameras that are pretty close in features. one is the Sony hdr-pj380 and the other is a canon hfr40. do you have any thoughts or recommendations between the two cameras? or do you suggest a third option? I appreciate the help.

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by Terfyn / October 11, 2013 4:09 AM PDT
In reply to: follow up

The third of the unholy trinity is Panasonic. Any one of the cameras plus the Pany 920 are good.

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by Taymiyyah / October 11, 2013 4:26 AM PDT
In reply to: Panasonic

LOL! I excluded it b/c I didn't see a model that got my attention! Happy Does that mean you prefer Panasonic to the 2 I've suggested? Or are you saying any of the 3 would all get it done? The one feature that stands out for the Sony is the 26.8 mm lens, which may be useful for getting a good wide view of the penalty area for some shots without having to grab more length-wise than I wanted.

If you have any suggestions on how to break the tie, or maybe the 3 way tie, please share!! Happy

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Your choice
by Terfyn / October 11, 2013 3:38 PM PDT
In reply to: Panasonic

Any would do generally but if there are certain features of a model that would be beneficial, go for that model. I have a Panasonic HC-V700 with a 28mm wide lens and a 46x zoom so I like Panasonic!

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