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Need some help from you pros...

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Ok so I'm in college and am doing Video Production classes. I am needing to invest in a camcorder. I've gota $2k limit and basically am looking for the best bang for my buck. I've read up on the sensor size differences and single vs multiple and have narrowed it down to basically a Canon or Sony camcorder. Any suggestions for specific models would be greatly appreciated.


Thank everyone in advance for your input.
post #2 of 15
Save your money for the next generation when you graduate. Get the minimum spec'd one IMO. It'll teach the most about what to look out for. And still leave you enough cash to upgrade later. Now if you're dependent on the camera to pay your rent while you're in college, but all means splurge. But if you do, only to change majors later...
post #3 of 15
I agree with saving your money, but if you really mean NEED when you say NEED, waiting may not be an option, plus technology is ALWAYS changing. Get something that has HD recording, XLR audio inputs and manual control on everything. For $2,000 you will have to make a compromise between either older technology (and more professional equipment), or newer equipment and technology, but gear that is more orientated toward the consumer. The pros on the latter will be better imaging sensor technology with better color and resolution. Perhaps even better image stabilization. The cons will be that only consumer grade mic inputs and lack of manual control.
You should also decide what kind of videography or cinematography you want to do. If you want to do traditional ENG style videography, then I would probably consider a used Sony Z1. If you want to go digital cinema, then maybe get a Canon 5D Mk2, and get ready to buy a bucket load of expensive accessories to make it all work.
You should be able to pick up a used Sony HVR-Z1 for around $2000 off eBay.
post #4 of 15
The Panasonic GH1 with LUMIX G VARIO 14-42mm / F3.5-5.6 ASPH. / MEGA O.I.S. for $375 is the best bang for the buck today unless you want a small sensor SD600.
post #5 of 15
AFAIK, the above was shot at 720p. 1080p24 would break into mud. If this GH1 was hackable, then it would be a terrific deal. If it is not hackable, then... well... it is good for 720p only.
post #6 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ungermann View Post

AFAIK, the above was shot at 720p. 1080p24 would break into mud. If this GH1 was hackable, then it would be a terrific deal. If it is not hackable, then... well... it is good for 720p only.

Then get the GH2.
post #7 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by jogiba View Post

Then get the GH2.

Twice more expensive.
post #8 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ungermann View Post

Twice more expensive.

It's better than any DSLR for video.
post #9 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by jogiba View Post

It's better than any DSLR for video.

The video that you linked looks good (by the way, I think that the dude who uploaded it on YouTube, stole it someplace else from the real author). But it has no shallow DOF silliness that DSLRs are craved for. Such a video can be shot with any decent camcorder. I applaud to the author though, it is done very nicely, sort of a family amateur video, which is in fact carefully staged. But is it a good ad for the GH2? Not really.
post #10 of 15
The HG10 is a small sensor camcorder and the GH2 has the same sensor as the Panasonic AG-AF101 .

post #11 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by jogiba View Post

The HG10 is a small sensor camcorder and the GH2 has the same sensor as the Panasonic AG-AF101.

I know. I also know that the Corvette ZR1 has 6.2 liter 640 hp engine, while my car has 2-liter 130 hp engine. But we drive with the same speed on a freeway.
post #12 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ungermann View Post

I know. I also know that the Corvette ZR1 has 6.2 liter 640 hp engine, while my car has 2-liter 130 hp engine. But we drive with the same speed on a freeway.

Is that a joke or what ? Do you not understand sensor size and FOV/ DOF ?
http://www.abelcine.com/fov/
http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html
post #13 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by jogiba View Post

Is that a joke or what ? Do you not understand sensor size and DOF ?

I do understand it, and I mentioned this in my message above. Apparently, you did not read it fully. Take it easy.
post #14 of 15
The OP specifically says needs to invest in a camcorder (not DSLR). Not that there's much difference these days. No mention of needing this or that like shallow DOF or wide FOV. For that cash, pick up a decent mic, a H4n, and a TM700 and still something left for rigging and cables and stuff.

I've actually got more invested in LED lights, *pods, and stuff than I do in my camcorder at the moment. Although I do intend to upgrade my camcorder SOMEDAY. But I've also got more invested in just Audio, than the OP listed for the whole kit.

Besides MOST camcorders currently out there are little more than glorified 720p camcorders anyway. They might save in a 1920x1080 pixel format, but their image is derived from say 900x800 pixels. And that's probably one of the good ones.

Was there even mention of needing HD? If it's anything like the college I went to, the curriculum was devised long ago and the tech never upgraded. People were being taught to splice tape and stuff at my college in the MID-90's. As in this is what you'll do (and get paid) scenario??? Chances are that the school is still in SD mode IMO. Although if you want to exploit your peers with your pretty toys, you'll definitely want HD. Music majors are often required to have their major things recorded, and to pay the recorder. And the theater department and other things which could help fund your pursuits without having to do other more menial work.
post #15 of 15
I would not touch a SD video camera in 2011 with a 10 ft pole. IMHO youtube should delete every SD video and only allow HD video from now on. Heck even my iPod has HD video built-in.
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