Video Cameras forum

General discussion

Shopping for a new Camcorder

by soontobedadof2 / February 6, 2010 2:21 AM PST

Good afternoon! I am new here but have done a bit of research on new camcorders on the site. I am getting a bit overwhelmed with information.

We are expecting a baby this summer and would like to purchase a good camcorder. We purchased one before our first child was born and it was more of an inconvenience than useful.

We have a mac (OS X 10.4.11)> We would like something that plugs in, is immediately recognized (our digital camera works like this) and easily transfers the videos.

A 40-60GB hard drive would be great. High definition is not a requirement.

We have a budget of about $500 to purchase the camcorder, extra battery and case.

Any suggestions would be great!

Thanks!

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Some questions...
by boya84 / February 6, 2010 2:49 AM PST

1) Which Mac?

2) How did you decide that the camcorder needs to have a hard drive?

3) Photos are different from video. iPhoto and iMovie are different applications used for different reasons.

4) Why was the "more of an inconvenience than useful"?

There will be more questions and discussion, but we need to start somewhere.

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Some Answers
by soontobedadof2 / February 6, 2010 3:06 AM PST
In reply to: Some questions...

1) Which Mac? - We have a mac mini desktop.

2) How did you decide that the camcorder needs to have a hard drive? - I figured it would be more convenient. Also, it seems to be more cost effective. The SD cards can be quite expensive and will add to the total cost of the camcorder.

3) Photos are different from video. iPhoto and iMovie are different applications used for different reasons. - Yes, iPhoto and iMovie are different but they both will automatically important files from the device once connected.

4) Why was the "more of an inconvenience than useful"? - It was more of an inconvenience because it used a mini-dvd which had to be formatted a certain way to be imported into iMovie and you couldn't use the software (that it came with) that was incompatible with the mac to do anything with the videos.

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sony hdr-cx100
by chickenorfish / February 6, 2010 3:39 AM PST
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chickenorfish's suggestion is one...
by boya84 / February 6, 2010 12:44 PM PST
In reply to: sony hdr-cx100

but whether your MacMini can deal with AVCHD/MTS compressed software is unknown. Apple's making them for several years - we don't yet know which you have.

For AVCHD video, iMovie '08 or newer is required. It is *strongly suggested* that 4 gig of RAM be in the computer. And when the MTS files - or even the standard def MPG files - are decompressed, they use a lot of hard drive space. An external drive for the video files is also *strongly suggested*.

Just setting an expectation - you are on the path of having a low-end, entry level, computer perform very computer-resource intensive work.

Perhaps this is helpful reading
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1793

But I'm only guessing at which editor - for all I know, you are using Final Cut or something else.

And yes - DVD based camcorders should never be used... Now I know why you had such difficulty. My condolences.

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