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Baby Coming, Need Camcorder...Suggestions?

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
hello, my wife is due in a couple of months and we need a video camera. i would like one with good picture and sound quality, and easy storage of video. i have a xbox 360 that i use as a media extender for pics and music, and would most likely do the same with the home movies. i will not be editing any of the videos. i think a hard disk camera would serve this purpose best? $700 give or take a few is my limit. i will probably buy whatever is recommended...do not have time or desire to do a lot of research on this, so any help would be greatly appreciated. thanks very much!
post #2 of 18
I just went through this. I think a harddrive is not going to be what you're looking for particularly in the situation of a birth. You'll find that popping in a DV tape is really slick rather than dumping the harddrive to your computer. I went with the canon hv20, but if I were on a budget of $700, I would pick up the canon zr800 or 850. I just liked them in the store...haven't actually owned one.

If you want to do zero work, perhaps the dvd storage is best. Haven't tried one though.

good luck in the pending birth!

Nate
post #3 of 18
Thread Starter 
thanks very much. after reading through this forum, i might try to convince my wife that the HV20 is worth the extra money. it looks like it's a huge hit here.
post #4 of 18
We're in the same situation (but my wife is due next week). We recently watched some old videos of when she was a child, and decided it would be nice to have that for our child too (both for her as for ourselves). Seeing as these videos will probably be watched 20 years from now, I thought it would be best to go for HD (although by then, even HD will probably look outdated). I've ordered my HV-20 yesterday, and I'm going to pick it up on Saturday...
post #5 of 18
Best wishes on the impending new births!
post #6 of 18
I got the HV20 specifically for the birth and it was sweet. I could pop in minidv tapes on demand and the stock battery was actually quite good. The dim lights at the hospital caused no problems and the sound was picked up just fine.

Good luck!
post #7 of 18
XH-G1 with Century Optics wide-angle adapter, Glidecam, Sennheiser zoom mic operated by a boom operator fed through a tube mic pre-amp is the only way to go Recorded via HD-SDI only, of course
post #8 of 18
Thread Starter 
thanks everyone, pretty sure it will be the hv20. have about 2 months before the due date, so i am going to try to wait for a good price. se7end, that was good reasoning with the baby videos. i remember our family videos from when i was a kid. hd is the way to go. good luck and thanks!
post #9 of 18
don't forget the following, however, when you buy the HV20

1. WD-H43 wide-angle adapter (39mm field of view is not wide enough for most indoor shots)
2. Use premium-grade tapes only when taping to HDV. The chance of dropout / error is maybe one in one hundred tape, but if the error happens on your most precious moment, suddenly the $15 tape doesn't seem to be too expensive anymore. Use something like the Sony HDV tapes (about $10) or Panasonic AMQ tapes (same price) or Sony Master tapes (about $15).
3. Don't use anything more than 63 minute tape and only record in SP mode (if recording in miniDV)
4. Always carry at least an extra battery.
post #10 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Susilo View Post

don't forget the following, however, when you buy the HV20

1. WD-H43 wide-angle adapter (39mm field of view is not wide enough for most indoor shots)
2. Use premium-grade tapes only when taping to HDV. The chance of dropout / error is maybe one in one hundred tape, but if the error happens on your most precious moment, suddenly the $15 tape doesn't seem to be too expensive anymore. Use something like the Sony HDV tapes (about $10) or Panasonic AMQ tapes (same price) or Sony Master tapes (about $15).
3. Don't use anything more than 63 minute tape and only record in SP mode (if recording in miniDV)
4. Always carry at least an extra battery.

I agree with all of that except for "maybe" #2.

I use the $5.00 tapes and I have never had a dropout yet. Sure, it could happen, but I really don't think the extra money is worth it for an image that looks the same.

I'll take my chances and I'm willing to live with that. I think that as long as you don't overwrite the tapes over and over again you should be fine.

$15.00-$20.00/tape sure does add up fast.

Just my 2 cents.

Great advice overall!

Kyser
post #11 of 18
Kyser, I guess it's my paranoia Quite honestly, out of 200 tapes I've used, only 1 had a dropout. Unfortunately the dropout happened literally on my daughter's first word. From then on, just for the piece of mind (expensive, I know ) I go with the more expensive tapes.

Agreed too, that the price difference really adds up in the end.
post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Susilo View Post

Kyser, I guess it's my paranoia Quite honestly, out of 200 tapes I've used, only 1 had a dropout. Unfortunately the dropout happened literally on my daughter's first word. From then on, just for the piece of mind (expensive, I know ) I go with the more expensive tapes.

Agreed too, that the price difference really adds up in the end.

OUCH! That really is a stroke of bad luck...


Kyser
post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kysersose View Post

I agree with all of that except for "maybe" #2.

Me, too. I guess one other factor to consider is tape longevity. If the more expensive tapes last longer, they may be worth the extra $$.
post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by mansulta View Post

Me, too. I guess one other factor to consider is tape longevity. If the more expensive tapes last longer, they may be worth the extra $$.


Do they last longer? I'd like to see some data on tapes, data dropage, and longevity. Anyway know of any tests?
post #15 of 18
HV20...

http://www.thekmiecs.com/cora/day1video.php

I still can't figure out the artifacting...

overall very happy. i had the camera for only 2 days prior to the delivery. good luck.
post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by kmiecmonster View Post

HV20...

http://www.thekmiecs.com/cora/day1video.php

I still can't figure out the artifacting...

overall very happy. i had the camera for only 2 days prior to the delivery. good luck.

You mean the horizontal interlace lines?
post #17 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by miglo View Post

You mean the horizontal interlace lines?

Yes, it's interlaced. De-interlace it and you'll like it much better.
post #18 of 18
ok, when exporting what should I be exporting at for settings. currently using adobe premiere elements. the capture is being done at 24p. Thanks.
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