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Hello. I was thinking about getting a Sony HDR-SR11 high def camcorder. However, I want to make sure I get a camcorder that does well recording high speed stuff. I'll probably be using it a lot to record skate videos, and I want to be able to see how many times the board flips if I slow down the video.

Is the Sony a pretty good choice, or is there something else that would record HD video at a higher frame rate for a similar price? I can't seem to find any specs on the recording speed of any camcorders. Does anybody know where I could find such information? The only things I've seen listed for this one as far as recording speed are HQ, LP, and SP, but that doesn't help much. Thanks.
 

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LP and SP are terms used in old consumer products like camcorders and VCRs, as well as HDV 'prosumer' cameras that used miniDV tape.


"HQ" has many references. It was used in old VCRs, featuring a type of processing that the industry adopted for a better picture. The 'HQ' logo on a vcr distinguishes itself.


Secondly, it's used in digital still cameras to offer a high quality standard video at 480i (60 fields per second). Different manufacturers may call it different things(High quality, Fine quality, Ultra-Fine quality, etc.). This feature is usually limited, and can be frustrating when your 'movie' mode locks you out of a zoom or focus control.


confused yet?


Digital 'still' cameras may record video at 'HQ' but it's not hi-def, just standard def recorded at a higher resolution (the 480i mentioned above). On the other hand, a high-definition camcorder may record at many resolutions, but they'll all technically be 'high' definition. It's analogous to VCR tape speeds (standard-play, extended-play, extended-long-play) where the higher recorded tape speed yields better quality. In HD camcorders, higher bit rates record more information, yielding higher quality. The flip side is, like vcr tape, you get less recording time the higher resolution chosen.


About your other concerns, Sony is a great camcorder, but I can't speak to which specific models have high-speed capture. There are other manufacturers with this feature, but making it look professional depends of having plenty of light and a stable support. Skate video is alot easier outside than in, with the sunlight giving you practially unlimited depth-of-field.


What is Depth-of-Field? If you already know, skip the next paragraph.


Depth-of-field can be figured roughly by a ratio, 1/3 in front of subject, 2/3 behind the subject. Where ever your focus point is, add those ratio's for an area in-front/behind your subject that will appear sharp. The more light (such as sunlight), your 'field of sharpness' gets wider. Less light, such as an indoor rink, reduces the depth of your focus' field. Zooming-in reduces the field, but backing the camera away from your subject increases it. Trial and error will quickly show you the sweet spots.


Lastly, if you want to get down on the skateboard's level, budget for a compact tripod, or combine tools to get best compromise. I combined a monopod with a shoulder-pod, and got an adjustable-height column that I can pivot(better than stooping).


Good luck.
 

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Thanks for the info elifino. What is a "shoulder pod" and how do you combine it with a monopod? I love my monopod, but maybe I can get better stabilization with a shoulder pod.


I am also thinking of getting an HF100, and I am also worried about digital artificats. In the case of shooting something like skateboarding isn't it likely that the HV20 would render the quick motion significantly better than the HF100?
 

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Here is one example of a shoulder pod.

http://www.ritzcamera.com/product/594890014.htm


Its' tightening screw has a 1/4" threaded hole, so I attach my camcorder first, tighten it, then screw the monopod into the bottom of the tightening screw. Your shoulder pod becomes an adjustable handle, allowing a different choice in panning while the monopod sits on solid ground.


Of course, you could always use it like the picture shows



About your second question, I can't speak to it since I've never compared the two technologies side-by-side (here comes the BUT). Compression artifacts aren't a concern if I can't hold a camera still, especially with fast motion. Each of the cameras you've mentioned have a 'sports' mode which selects a faster shutter speed for moving objects. Of course, this does not replace a high-speed camera.


You may want to research this product, the Samsung SC-HMX20C. It boasts a 10 second, 300 frames-per-second, capture combined with a slow motion playback of that capture. There's a catch, though, as this amazing trick is achieved by reverting back to standard definition for those 10 seconds.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...php?p=14189914
 

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Ordered the shoulder pod, thanks!


Sammy looks nice, but it sounds like the HF100 outperforms it for less money.
 
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