Need help choosing a new "budget" HD camcorder - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 09-11-2013, 08:21 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm trying to choose a new camcorder, and could use some help in finding out what's the best camcorder I can get for what I can afford.I've been looking at entry level to mid range camcorders from Panasonic and Canon.I've been back and forth and kind of hovering around the Panasonic HDC-SD600k, HC-V520 and the Canon HF R400, HF M40, HF M50, HF M500.I've been looking in the "used" section on Amazon because my price range is $330 to maybe $400.Although there are several factors I take into account.....still photo quality, zoom range, storage space, battery life, recording format and bit rate....i've been focusing primarily on the sensors of these camcorders, particularly sensor size and how new it is, because I know that's what makes the difference, especially in more low light conditions.

I've seen sample videos for the high end models like the Canon G10/G20/G30 and Panasonic TM900K, HS 900K, X920 on Youtube.I know those are prosumer grade cameras and way out of my price range and i'm probably crazy for even trying, but I still would like to get as close to that level of image quality as possible in my price range.I guess what i'm asking is are the entry level and mid range models I mentioned above the best in my price range, or are there others that maybe give a little more for the money that I should be considering?

P.S. it doesn't have to be Canon, or Panasonic.Those are just the ones i've been looking at so far.
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post #2 of 19 Old 09-11-2013, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spinner456 View Post

I'm trying to choose a new camcorder, and could use some help in finding out what's the best camcorder I can get for what I can afford.I've been looking at ... HF M50

HFM50, refurbished by Canon:

http://shop.usa.canon.com/shop/en/catalog/camcorders/refurbished-consumer-camcorders/vixia-hf-m50-refurbished?WT.mc_id=C126149

It's an upgraded version of the older HF11, which I used to own but have HF M50 now... HF M50 has much better Dynamic image stabilization and bigger HD CMOS Pro image sensor for lower light shots.

Panasonic TM900 takes great video and is a solid camcorder.. maybe you can find a used or refurbished. TM900 has more pro features and 3 image sensors.
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post #3 of 19 Old 09-11-2013, 09:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Wow.Thanx for the link.
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post #4 of 19 Old 09-11-2013, 09:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Oh, I forgot to ask....how good are the still pictures on the M50?
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post #5 of 19 Old 09-11-2013, 10:01 AM
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HF M50 can take 2MP stills, but it has no features for still photography.

If it's just for casual pictures on the internet, the camcorder stills will suffice/you will see everything just fine..anything more serious, you would be better off buying a camcorder and a separate point and shoot with at least 8MP.

These camcorders you mentioned are not really for stills. A DSLR can do both.

You may want to consider an EOS M:
http://www.amazon.com/Canon-Compact-Systems-3-0-Inch-EF-M18-55mm/dp/B00A2BVCO0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1378919108&sr=8-1&keywords=eos+m
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post #6 of 19 Old 09-11-2013, 11:30 AM
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i would keep a sharp eye out for a panasonic v720
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post #7 of 19 Old 09-12-2013, 07:37 AM
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If you want the absolute best video and still image quality in this price range, I agree with xfws - you may want to take a look at the Canon EOS M with the 18-55mm kit lens ($342 on closeout from Amazon). It shoots 18MP stills, has an external mic jack, autofocus and full manual control of exposure.

Here is the video image quality you can get from this camera:



And here is the still image quality: http://www.flickr.com/groups/canon_eosm/


Another, lesser known, large sensor interchangeable lens camera in this class with an external mic jack is the Samsung NX1100 with the 20-50mm kit lens and a bundled flash ($344.95 in white and $355 for black at Amazon). It shoots 20.3MP stills. Here is the image quality you can expect from this camera (shot with its sister camera, the NX1000):



Stills: http://www.flickr.com/groups/nx1000/


Hope this is helpful!

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post #8 of 19 Old 09-12-2013, 08:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brunerww View Post

Canon EOS M with the 18-55mm kit lens

hmm not sure how that applies to good battery life and zoom range
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post #9 of 19 Old 09-12-2013, 02:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Fishywishy brings up a good point.I've been researching the EOS M since you all mentioned it.It does take gorgeous video, but it's hard to find info on the zoom range and in almost all of the reviews I find they comment on the very slow auto focus and poor battery life.From what i've read, I might need atleast a few extra batteries if I plan on shooting video of an event for a few hours.The Canon HF M50, by contrast, has extended batteries available that each last that long.Right now I seem to have narrowed it down to the Canon EOS M and the refurbished HF M50 xfws pointed me to.I'm bouncing back and forth between them because they both have their drawbacks.I'll look into that Samsung NX1100 first before making a choice.

Truthfully I kind of want to get the M50 camcorder because it's what i'm used to.I like the secure feeling of having a small camcorder strapped to the palm my hand as opposed to a camera that's primarily for point and shoot hanging around my neck and the awkward way I would have to hold it, but the video from the EOS M is undeniable.
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post #10 of 19 Old 09-12-2013, 05:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spinner456 View Post

Fishywishy brings up a good point.I've been researching the EOS M since you all mentioned it.It does take gorgeous video, but it's hard to find info on the zoom range
Depends on lens, obviously.
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and in almost all of the reviews I find they comment on the very slow auto focus...
Quote:
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...and poor battery life.From what i've read, I might need atleast a few extra batteries if I plan on shooting video of an event for a few hours.
Stocking up with batteries is always a good idea no matter what camera.
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post #11 of 19 Old 09-12-2013, 05:29 PM
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I had a TM900 and considered the video image quality horrible. I like the video quality of the Panasonic LX7 much better (far brighter and more lively video image) and the LX7 is half as costly. I like the colors of the Canon EOS M even more so I'd go with that if I were in your shoes.
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post #12 of 19 Old 09-12-2013, 07:58 PM
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the eos m is the new gh2 around here rolleyes.gif
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post #13 of 19 Old 09-13-2013, 03:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishywishy View Post

the eos m is the new gh2 around here rolleyes.gif

In this case, it's the price. At $340, it is the winner in its class.

At $750, it's the G6 that's really the new GH2 smile.gif
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post #14 of 19 Old 09-13-2013, 07:51 AM - Thread Starter
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Does anyone know of a lens that will go with his camera that has atleast a 10x optical zoom?
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post #15 of 19 Old 09-13-2013, 08:32 AM
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For example the EF-S 18-200mm, but you will need an adapter, it is currently $140 at B&H.
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post #16 of 19 Old 09-13-2013, 08:35 AM
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i think this one will work. it will give you a wide angle and telephone

Tamron AF18-270mm

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/747927-REG/Tamron_AFB008C700_AF18_270mm_f_3_5_6_3_Di_II.html
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post #17 of 19 Old 09-13-2013, 08:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ungermann View Post

For example the EF-S 18-200mm, but you will need an adapter, it is currently $140 at B&H.

lol i 1st read that as the lens is $140 eek.gif
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post #18 of 19 Old 09-14-2013, 02:38 AM
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spinner - the great thing about buying into the Canon interchangeable lens camera system is that you can try lenses and accessories before you buy - or just rent them when you need them.

For example, when you need a zoom, instead of buying a $449 lens and a $139 adapter that cost more than your camera, you can rent the EF-M to EF adapter for $12+$19.95 shipping and the Tamron 18-270mm for $26+$24.95 shipping (3 day rental from borrowlenses.com ).

Of course, if you bought a $348 NX1100 with the 20-50mm kit lens instead of the EOS M - all you'd have to do for a total 10x of zoom would be to buy a $245 50-200mm Samsung NX telephoto smile.gif

Good luck!

Bill
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post #19 of 19 Old 06-03-2014, 01:29 PM
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I use the Sony Bloggie Sport camera. If you were wanting one for under 100 you could get a first generation, which is still pretty clear and boasts high reviews. http://www.squidoo.com/best-camcorder-for-the-money

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