Video Cameras forum

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PV-GS320 vs FS 100/GZ-MS100

I am upgrading from an old Sony TRV68.

I am looking to use this to film my 9 month old son and to use at conventions like dragoncon.

The GS320 gets some great reviews and it seems like 3CCD really helps. The downside seems to be that you have to order online and it uses the older minidv format. Would using something like videostudio 11.5 plus make the transfer to DVD relatively easy?

I love the idea of recording on SD, with less moving parts in the camera to possibly break. The FS100 seems to get better overall reviews, but the MS100 is supposed to be better in low light. Do they compete in video quality with the 3ccd gs320?

Of the 3, which do you believe will have-
1. The best quality, especially indoors/low light
2. Ease of transfer to DVD

I've been wracking my brains out trying to figure out which will be best for me.

Keep in mind, I don't need microphone support or any of the extras that people complain about with the gs320.
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In reply to: PV-GS320 vs FS 100/GZ-MS100

Anyone?

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Are you going straight

In reply to: PV-GS320 vs FS 100/GZ-MS100

to DVD or is there an intermediate stop-over in your computer for editing?

Personally, I see miniDV tape as an advantage. Least amount of compression when compared to other consumer camcorder video storage formats which results in best available quality. Don't reuse tapes and you have a good, stable, archive on the tape - no extra step to make another copy somewhere.

I do agree that the idea of recording to flash memory is great - if the video was not so highly compressed. Apply lots of compression and stick it in a MPEG2 container? You can keep it. Make that flash memory storage in DV or HDV format and I'll sign up.

Video compression = discarded video data = reduced video quality

I'll choose the PV-GS320 over the other two... but that's just me.

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reply

In reply to: Are you going straight

Appreciate the reply. I wouldn't mind editting it just a bit...but not much, mostly just adding a menu and different chapter points.

Outside of the format differences, do you think the GS320 takes better video? I believe in good lighting it should, but indoors is what I am unsure of.

I am fairly new at this, but as I understand it, and pleae correct me if I am wrong.. the minidv would be transferred to the computer as an avi, then editted, and then converted to mpeg, correct? Since both formats end up in mpeg, would there be much of a difference? In other words, I understand raw minidv footage is higher quality, but would that higher quality make the transition to dvd?

If there wasn't the stopover of going to my computer, would the quality be higher?(I am guessing just going straight to a dvd recorder?-which I do not have currently outside of my computers).


Also, if I were to get the GS320, do you suggest getting one of those ripoff service plans , 70 for 2 years or $100 for 4 years, or should I just rely on the panasonic name and hope it doesn't break down?

Thanks!

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In my little pea brain, I look at it like this:

In reply to: reply

If I take a still picture - lets say 7 megapixels or so - that will be about 2 meg or so. Not too much compression as a jpeg and looks pretty good at full screen. But I decide that I don't want to use so much space, so I compress that file... to about a 1"x1" window on the screen. Looks good there but when I fill the monitor screen it gets all pixelly and I cannot recover that data. This is an extreme case, but it is what image compression does.

If my first step is to apply a lot of compression (i.e., discard data), then any images downstream can only be as good as that first "generation". The trick is to get the best quality video to start - then anything downstream is however you decide to compress it for whatever audience or format you want.

I have not done a side by side comparison of the specific cameras you are looking at. I think in good lighting their video will be very similar - but the GS320 will do better is lesser light.

My perspective:
I have a single CMOS HDR-HC1 and a 3CCD HDR-FX1. Their video is quite similar in good light. The FX1 blows the HC1 out of the water in low light (the FX1's lens is also a lot bigger to let more light in).

Extended warranties are a personal decision. I typically do not get them - for anything.

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Gotcha

In reply to: In my little pea brain, I look at it like this:

So, essentially you are downgrading with compression, then downgrading it again,. whereas you only do that once with DV, correct?

http://www.camcorderinfo.com/ -"Low Light Performance (2.01)
The Panasonic PV-GS320 has three small chips, which is great in bright light color performance, but not the best choice for low light."

That is what worries me, but some people seem to disagree and other sites say it is acceptable in low light.

While I have you, would getting an older version of like Ulead's videostudio, like version 10, cheap on ebay, be a viable tool for simple authoring if I got the gs320 or would just using the free windows movie maker on windows XP along with dvdflick be just as viable?

Thanks a TON!

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Honestly, all the cameras on your short list

In reply to: Gotcha

will have similar low-light capabilities. The key (I think) is having the largest chip footprint + largest lens. The chip itself is only part of the "system". If the lens is teeny, a large chip cannot capture enough light... if the lens is huge, a teeny imaging chip will have issues...

I regret that I can't help you with your video application selections at a detailed level. I do all my editing on Apple Macintosh computers... but you do need to know that if you go the miniDV tape based route, your computer needs to have a firewire port (aka: IEEE1394a, DV, i.Link) to transfer the miniDV video from the camcorder's DV port. USB won't work. Adding a firewire port is typically easy (and affordable) if your computer has available expansion slots.

Yes, MoveMaker should work just fine (you might consider downloading and installing WinDV, too), though you may want to upgrade to something better at a later point. Since this is just standard definition DV stuff, there is no reason older versions that indicate it can handle the format should not work. uLead has a very good reputation. I have only heard that DVDFlick does the job... Maybe someone else can step in here.

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Alrighty

In reply to: Honestly, all the cameras on your short list

Was I correct about the formats?

"So, essentially you are downgrading with compression, then downgrading it again,. whereas you only do that once with DV, correct?"

Will the higher quality and less downgrades transfer once put into dvd format?

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Close, but more like

In reply to: Alrighty

"So, essentially you are downgrading with compression, decompressing for editing, then recompressing it even more when writing to DVD. Whereas you only do that once with DV"...

My eyes interpret the standard definition DVD video from a high definition source to be a lot clearer than a standard definition DVD video from a standard definition source. My extrapolation of that translates into, "get the best quality you can at the first step and compress later"...

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Ok

In reply to: Close, but more like

I think you convinced me to go with the GS320.. just wish I could find a store that had it!

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I'll

In reply to: Ok

I'll have to go online I mean.

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USB2 works fine for transferrring minidv to PC

In reply to: Honestly, all the cameras on your short list

FWIW, I own a GS500, and the minidv footage transfers just fine, even on my relatively low-end Compaq laptop with the following specs:

Compaq F572US
AMD Athlon X2
1.7 GHz
2GB DDR2 RAM
80GB HDD
Vista Home Premium

The trick is making sure the Panasonic supplied driver is installed correctly on a Vista rig.

-Pedro

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