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Need to buy a good outdoor camcorder

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
I am looking to buy a camcorder that can handle morning and evening lighting. (plus rainy days) I will videotaping horse shows from dawn to dust. I use Imovie so has to work with that. I have a Panasonic HC-v500m and I need to buy another camera but was checking if there is anything better out there. I was just given this camera and have not been able to test it as it is WINTER ;(

Should I get the Panasonic V700 or V900? Are they that much better than the 500 model?

I need a good zoom

Sometimes I will be videotaping in the indoor so handle low lighting.

Any help would be great..

Tracy
post #2 of 17
  • Have you used your camera for anything yet?
  • What improvements do you need or want?
  • Is it rugged enough?
  • Does rain or dust become an issue?
  • Do horses perform in arenas that are darker than used in other sports?
  • How much to you want to spend?
  • What will do you do with the video you shoot?
  • What would the second camera be used for that is different from the first?
  • Are you going to be combining video from both cameras in iMovie?
  • Does it have to be iMovie?
  • How new and strong is your computer?

Bill
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
1. Yes a little but not enough. It is not so good in the indoor riding ring with the low light.
2. low lighting
3. seems rugged enough
4. yes rain and dust will later on
5. no same as like a baseball field diamond
6. less than 1000
7. I make fun memories of the person show day for them. I make riders look good so I cut out any bad riding and I slow motion the good stuff. So I have to edit the video in Imovie. Most my friends like it up on Youtube and at the end of the year I burn them all to dvd for them.
8. Same use sometimes both my friends are competing so I need help which means 2 cameras
9. yes combining so they have to match up.. GOOD POINT! will the panasonic 900 and the 500 match?? hmm might not.. It is not that important as there are three phase at different times of the day so they will not match based on light anyway.
10. Yes I do not think I need to move up to Final Cut Pro.. I been using Imovie for a year now and it does everything I need.
11. I have a Mac Laptop Mac OS X Processor 2.8 ghz intel core 2 duo with not enough memory ;( 8 gb (at the moment I have to keep moving video clips to my external drive. (I think I might get another computer next year)

At the moment I am thinking the Panasonic 900?
post #4 of 17
Thread Starter 
Oh do you know that the TM stands for? Panasonic TM900K and what the K stands for?
post #5 of 17
The TM900 has been replaced by this: X900 .

Look at this page and scroll to the bottom for the current Panasonic line up:http://www.amazon.com/Panasonic-X900MK-Camcorder-Internal-HC-X900M/dp/B0072B5E2Y/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1361831893&sr=1-1&keywords=Panasonic+X900MK

The price on the 900 is very good because replacements have been announced. The 900 will do as good or better than anything else under $1000 for what you want.

If dust, dirt, rain and ruggedness matter, look at the Sony GW77. A long thread is running here with lots of examples of what it does indoor and outdoors.

The replacement to the X900 is here and called the X920.

I would buy the X900 due to its current relatively low price.


Bill
post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thanks Bill

I been staying away from the Sony as I do not think they are compatible with Imovie. Panasonic offers the iframe format that is quick and easy to use in iMovie.
post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 
Oh another question.. I am to assume the 900 is better than the 700 correct?
post #8 of 17
"Panasonic offers the iframe format that is quick and easy to use in iMovie."

The iframe format is substantially inferior in quality to the AVCHD 108060p setting of the Panasonic or Sony camcorder. Why spend all that money on a top camcorder only to use it to get cell phone quality video? Is it becasue you do not want to spend money on software?

Bill can tell you about software available for the Mac that will work with AVCHD and let you easily edit with top-quality video that the Pansonic or Sony camcorders can provide. iMovie is an inferior, out-of-date software program. If you want to upgrade your video, you need to upgrade your camera and software.
post #9 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrsGuichard View Post

Thanks Bill

I been staying away from the Sony as I do not think they are compatible with Imovie. Panasonic offers the iframe format that is quick and easy to use in iMovie.

The problem may be iMovie. The addiction to Apple can get in the way of doing good video. Consider trying other software like Adobe Premier Elements 11 that will work on a Mac.

Bill
post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrsGuichard View Post

Oh another question.. I am to assume the 900 is better than the 700 correct?

Of course!

But for your project goals, the difference may be minimal.
post #11 of 17
As a Mac and iMovie user myself, I think you should forget about Sony and Panasonic camcorders and look at an Olympus or Canon still camera that shoots video as they record movies as Mac friendly Quicktime .mov files and the file size is half as big as the Sony and Panasonic camcorders, plus the video quality is brighter and more appealing than camcorder video. Since you need zoom capability, a small Olympus E-PM2 or E-PL5 camera coupled with either a Panasonic or Olympus 14-150 mm zoom lens would provide you with a compact camera system with a wide zoom range.

If you have deeper pockets the next step up would be an Olympus OM-D, E-M5 with it's fantastic 5 axis image stabilization. The Panasonic GH3 is another expensive possibility that offers a Mac friendly mp4 recording mode, but I have not studied video samples to see if the video quality in mp4 recording mode is substantially degraded as compared to the usual Panasonic recording mode which is 108060p recorded as a Mac unfriendly mts file.
post #12 of 17
My native 28mb/s MTS AVCHD 2.0 1080p60 video files from my Sony NEX-VG900 , Panasonic TM700 and Lumix DMC-ZS20 play in QuickTime X 10.2 on my i7 MacBook Air with OS X Lion 10.8.2
post #13 of 17
I'm looking at the Sony NX70U. It looks like a perfect solution for outdoor, rain or shine conditions while filming soccer games. On the pricey side, however. Will need to look at Premier Elements or something similar since I am a Mac guy. I, too, have a i7 MacBook Air with OS X Lion 10.8.2.
post #14 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by SD90 View Post

...The Panasonic GH3 is another expensive possibility that offers a Mac friendly mp4 recording mode, but I have not studied video samples to see if the video quality in mp4 recording mode is substantially degraded as compared to the usual Panasonic recording mode which is 108060p recorded as a Mac unfriendly mts file...

The GH3 records in .mts, mp4 and .mov

1080/60p .mov at 50mbps is a great codec, and will edit fine with iMovie with no transcoding.

Having an alternative to AVCHD has been one of the best things about upgrading from the GH2 to the GH3 for me.

The GH3 is rugged, splash/dustproof and costs less than half the price of the NX70.

Here it is at 50mbps shooting horses in the snow, cut on a Mac in FCPX:

And here is a one minute clip of outdoor soccer shot with the GH3 at 1080/60p 50mbps .mov (slowed down to 24fps). Edited on a Mac with no transcoding:

Although the image quality is great, note the loss of focus at a couple of points in the video. Might not be as good for soccer games as a traditional camcorder if you need a parfocal power zoom and rock solid autofocus.

The GH3 is in stock now at Amazon for $1298 (body only), as opposed to $2739 for the NX70U.

Hope this is helpful,

Bill
Hybrid Camera Revolution
Edited by brunerww - 3/4/13 at 2:25am
post #15 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by brunerww View Post

The GH3 records in .mts, mp4 and .mov

1080/60p .mov at 50mbps is a great codec, and will edit fine with iMovie with no transcoding.

Having an alternative to AVCHD has been one of the best things about upgrading from the GH2 to the GH3 for me.

The GH3 is rugged, splash/dustproof and costs less than half the price of the NX70.

Here it is at 50mbps shooting horses in the snow, cut on a Mac in FCPX:

And here is a one minute clip of outdoor soccer shot with the GH3 at 1080/60p 50mbps .mov (slowed down to 24fps). Edited on a Mac with no transcoding:

Although the image quality is great, note the loss of focus at a couple of points in the video. Might not be as good for soccer games as a traditional camcorder if you need a parfocal power zoom and rock solid autofocus.

The GH3 is in stock now at Amazon for $1298 (body only), as opposed to $2739 for the NX70U.

Hope this is helpful,

Bill
Hybrid Camera Revolution

Thanks Bill. The price point of the GH3K is appealing. However, I do want the power zoom and crisp autofocus. Since I live outside Seattle having a waterproof camcorder is pretty much mandatory. smile.gif
post #16 of 17
I recommend Kodak PlaySport. I already had this for 5 months and i really enjoy using it. It has enough features for all i need. For more information, click on the link: http://www.squidoo.com/best-camcorder-for-the-money
post #17 of 17
Sounds like a decent camcorder, but the Canon VIXIA HF R20 is not water resistant or waterproof.
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