Panasonic HC-V700 vs X900M - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 11-27-2012, 09:51 AM - Thread Starter
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I am looking for a quality indoor and outdoor camcorder with good image stabilization. I take a lot of family video and adventure video, capturing wildlife and scenic landscapes (I already have a GoPro and TS3, so not really in the market for a rugged camera).

With the current pricing: X900M @ $668 and HC-V700 @ $399 (the M500 for $299 is a steal, but the lens is not wide enough)

I am trying to determine if the X900M is worth the extra $268, or if the V700 does everything I want. The more powerful zoom (21x vs. 12x) on the V700 would actually be better for wildlife and sports.

If the video quality and image stabilization is the same between these camers, and I don't really need all of the manual controls that the X900M offers, do I really need to spend the extra money?

Any feedback or alternative recommendations appreciated!
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post #2 of 9 Old 11-27-2012, 10:16 AM
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"If the video quality and image stabilization is the same between these camers, and I don't really need all of the manual controls that the X900M offers, do I really need to spend the extra money?"

Look at this chart: Panasonic Camcorder Lineup.

There are more differences than manual controls. Perhaps the biggest is the sensor. The "3mos" should get better color and the Leica lens should be sharper. For tracking fast moving family members, a viewfinder can be a huge difference. If you want to get serious about audio (recital or school concert?) the headphone jack and 5.1 sound could make a difference.

If long distance wildlife is critical, more zoom is important. But, to get more zoom, there is a sacrifice in sensor capability.

The only way you will be able to examine stabilization is to find someone with both cameras and check them side by side. That may be hard!

Unless you have an acute need for the $268, I would buy the X900.

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post #3 of 9 Old 11-27-2012, 11:09 AM
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This can be a bit subjective but I know in my case, I'm sometimes aggravated by my SD600 since it's a little difficult to have the video quality be 100% to my liking just by using the LCD screen in bright sunlight if I'm adjusting the camera manually. Basically the viewfinder to me is a very big deal and since I don't think the V700 has a 24p mode, that's the more reason why I'd pick the X900 over it. I'm much more into 60p but it's always good to have as many features possible. You also get 32GB of storage verses 16GB of the V700. Also, the X900 supposedly has better lens coating.

I sort of agree with bsprague that if you really need that extra cash and extra zoom, the V700 is fine especially for that price but for the price of the X900, you're also getting a remarkable value if you feel the extra features will be important.
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post #4 of 9 Old 11-27-2012, 07:08 PM
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If money is not a big issue the evf, zebra and histogram features of X900m will help you shoot the best video you possibly can, and in a big way. The V700 does not have these features. They alone are worth the xtra cost imo. The X900m is the better all around cam, offered at a great price right now.

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post #5 of 9 Old 11-27-2012, 08:55 PM
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Get the X900M now for $668 at Amazon. Then next spring and summer it will be worth $700-800 because a replacement model will become available with a price of $1100. That's been the pattern with Panasonic camcorders in recent years. You can literally sell them 6-8 months later for more than you paid if you purchased between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

However, if video picture quality (brightness, colors and detail resolution) is a top priority i would ditch camcorders altogether and get a mirrorless micro-four thirds interchangable lens camera like the Olympus OM-D ($919)
http://www.cameta.com/Olympus-OM-D-E-M5-Micro-4-3-Digital-Camera-14-42mm-II-Lens-Black-Black-Factory-Demo-68986.cfm
or Panasonic GH3 (available in Dec)

Camcorder video is just not a bright, colorful & detailed as the mirrorless micro-four thirds interchangable lens cameras, but they are less expensive and there is no need to buy an extra zoom lens.
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post #6 of 9 Old 11-28-2012, 10:26 AM - Thread Starter
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I appreciate all of the great feedback, thanks everyone. I see the X900M is the current favorite. smile.gif

I forgot to mention, I am upgrading from the Canon M300. I use the wide angle lens (WD-H37 II -- which makes it bulky) -- so I'm looking for a wider angle lens built-in. The image stabilization on zoom is not great and better video quality is always nice. This might put things in better perspective.

I understand the X900M is packed with more features and it's an overall better video camera, but I just want to be sure I need all the extra bells and whistles. The video footage from the V700 blows me away, especially the macro at the end of this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5JRInOcaXrI

Will I be satisfied upgrading from the M300 to the V700, or will I regret that I did not get the X900 in a few months?
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post #7 of 9 Old 11-28-2012, 01:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhiskeyHat View Post

The video footage from the V700 blows me away, especially the macro at the end of this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5JRInOcaXrI
Will I be satisfied upgrading from the M300 to the V700, or will I regret that I did not get the X900 in a few months?
The video footage of the X900 won't be noticably clearer or brighter so I think the V700 is the best camcorder deal around in terms of video quality for the money. It will just be harder to film outdoor stuff in bright sunlight because of the lack of a viewfinder. And the audio quality may not be as good For folks who desire even brighter, sharper, more vividly colorful video and even better audio than the V700 or X900 I think one needs to use a compact interchangable still camera that has good video capability. Like the Olympus OM-D: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ybP0JGJksV8 But the OM-D costs twice the price of the V700. Still another option is the Olympus E-PL5 which has the same video quality of the OM-D, but lacks the 5 axis image stabilization and built in electronic viewfinder.

I had a TM900 (almost identical to the X900) last year but was fustrated by the mediocre white balance control, bland colors, subdued brightness of the images and wierd background noise in the audio. I am much happier with the landscape footage of my OM-D which takes great macro shots too with it's standard 14-42mm kit zoom lens. i could never go back to using a camcorder.
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post #8 of 9 Old 11-28-2012, 02:33 PM
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Theirs actually 2 versions of the V700. A $400 V700 version without any built in memory and a $450 V700M version with 16GB of internal memory.
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post #9 of 9 Old 11-28-2012, 07:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paulo Teixeira View Post

I'm sometimes aggravated by my SD600...
Still, for $299 this was a super-deal.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paulo Teixeira View Post

I don't think the V700 has a 24p mode, that's the more reason why I'd pick the X900 over it.
Some would say: who needs 24p if you can have 60p :-) The SD600 cannot do native 24p, and I think that X900 cannot do either, so you need additional - and possibly costly - tools to remove pulldown.
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