The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread! - Page 122 at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Open DV Discussion

Open DV Discussion
For topics which don't fit into any of the other categories.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old March 13th, 2011, 03:00 PM   #1816
Tourist
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: US
Posts: 4
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Had a look at it and it certainly looks good.

Honestly, I really want to splash out and buy it, but I'm debating whether it's really worth it if the other cameras I've mentioned will still work well. And I might end up having to buy a spare battery which is gonna cost more.
Oni Mina is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 18th, 2011, 04:44 PM   #1817
New Boot
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 5
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Anyone with experience using the HVX200a want to weigh in with pros and cons?
The same would be appreciated for the XH-A1s as I'm trying to decide between the two at the moment.

thanks.
Jimmy Mehiel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 6th, 2011, 09:34 AM   #1818
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Wales, UK
Posts: 25
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

I'm in the market to buy a full HD camera. I work as a trainee camera operator for a TV production company. I use a Panasonic P2 HPX500.

I'm interested in taking on more freelance work.

The work I aim to produce on this is camera would be web based, exhibition and gallery content and corporate.

My budget is around 4,000 - 5,000, although I have been reading about the Canon XF105 (thoughts?)

My post workflow is in Final Cut Studio 3, using mostly FCP, Motion, Colour, Compressor and DVD Studio Pro.

I have a Canon 7D as a B camera, for the pretty/shallow stuff.

I'm looking at the Vinten Vision Blue sticks too...

Thanks in advance,

Richard Collins

Last edited by Richard Collins; April 6th, 2011 at 10:29 AM.
Richard Collins is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2011, 11:49 AM   #1819
New Boot
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Barrie, ON
Posts: 14
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Hello ladies & gents. Total newbie here, looking for advice (right, because you've never heard THAT one before). I've been searching the net for weeks for information on compact, entry-level semi-pro/high-end consumer video cameras, and my head is just spinning with all of the available information. I'm trying to narrow down my search list to 4 or 5 cameras, but every time I turn around, there's another one to add to the list. I'm hoping you all would be so kind as to point me towards a handful of video cameras that might suit my needs.

Currently, I'm using a JVC Everio and iMovie to create my videos, which has worked fine 'till now. I've landed myself in a position where I'm the "official" photog/videographer for my Taekwondo club. Among other things, I've been asked to shoot some video for the club that will be posted to their website. I'm thinking I now need to go HD at the very least. Not that this is a hardship ... hubby and I are both complete gadget freaks, so any excuse to get a new toy is fine by us. ;)

- I'm usually shooting in less than ideal lighting conditions...think school gyms, industrial lighting on high ceilings with fans rotating beneath them, or large windows back-lighting all the action.
- I need something with a really good zoom feature, as a lot of the time, I'm shooting from elevated stands down onto the (again, poorly lit) arenas, or through the plexi-glass/protective netting around a hockey rink, through and around lots of moving bodies (doesn't that sound like every videographer's dream?).
- I'm not a fan of tapes, and would rather have a handful of SD cards in my pocket.
- My days are usually 12 hours long, with shooting happening in 2 minute spurts with some sleep time (for the camera, not for me) in between and no access to power outlets, so some high-capacity batteries are probably a must.
- Audio may also be a bit of a consideration. While I usually delete audio when filming tournaments (because all you hear are the shouting parents anyway), I will soon be shooting testimonials, and may be asked to do a low-budget wedding next year as well.
- I'll be trying out Final Cut Express, so something that transfers well to FCE would be a good idea.
- Budget! I'm hoping to stay below $1,000, but would consider going a few hundred higher for the perfect machine.

So sorry for the long thread, but I figured more information is better than less when asking a question like this one. :)

Thanks for your patience! Looking forward to learning a whole bunch of stuff so I can start contributing to the threads!
Vicky Orsini is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2011, 12:30 PM   #1820
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Washington D.C. Metro Area
Posts: 384
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Vicky,

Welcome to DV Info, its really a great community and a great place to learn about video gear.

First off I recommend Final Cut Pro X. Apple is not selling or supporting Final Cut Express anymore.

FCP X is just $299, and its very easy to use. It should be a real delight for someone like you to use.

Don't worry about the backlash against it by "professional editors." They are mostly worried about things that won't concern you for a long time, if ever.

As far as a camera ... I may be the wrong person to help you out. I usually shoot narrative feature films and news - I spend my time on the other end of the market from you.

What I would warn you against is using a DSLR as a video camera, or other "large sensor" cameras. Those are great systems when used properly ... but they are hard to keep in focus. (I use a crew member, called the first assistant camera to keep those cameras in focus.) These cameras are very "hot" right now, but they are not right for your use.

I did search B&H Photo Video, which is a sponsor of this site. I frankly think B&H is the best place to start your internet shopping. I also suggest you go to your local camera store. Many will match prices, even with internet sales, of the same product.

What I found was, as usual, discouraging. The cameras in your price range lack features I think are important. These are separate focus, zoom and iris controls and 1920x1080 recording. You also need audio input with XLR connectors. The camera should also offer 24p recording, although you will mostly use the 60i recording mode for sports I'd think. I also picked cameras that can use SDHC media, because its cheap and readily available.

The cameras I found start near $2000.

In addition to these cameras, I do recommend you get some lighting. Most of the places you sound like you are going to shoot will have adequate light, but when you stop shooting the action a lot of times it gets dark fast, so an on camera light will help with any spontaneous interviews. A single stand mounted LED light will give you enough light for darker areas, perhaps a locker hallway or a party ... places that are not adequately lit. Don't spend a mint, for your application you should be able to get both lights for under $500.

One warning about shooting hockey ... if you use the auto modes the camera will get tricked into making the image too dark by all the very white ice. You pretty much have to use the manual exposure modes and set the image so the ice is very white, but not glowing. (On pro cameras, I set the zebras for 95% and 105% and try to make sure all the ice is always in the 95% zebra range.)
__________________
Alexander Ibrahim
http://www.alexanderibrahim.net
Alexander Ibrahim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2011, 05:03 PM   #1821
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Washington D.C. Metro Area
Posts: 384
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmy Mehiel View Post
Anyone with experience using the HVX200a want to weigh in with pros and cons?
The same would be appreciated for the XH-A1s as I'm trying to decide between the two at the moment.

thanks.
Well, I am really late to the party here Jimmy.

I wouldn't select either of these cameras at this point. I've shot with both- they aren't bad cameras, but their day is past.

I'd have a look at the Sony EX series with their 1/2" sensors. Gives you a bit extra shallow DoF and excellent light sensitivity. My complaint is the 8 bit 4:2:0 recording.

Canon has a great value on their hands with the XF series. This is a great 1/3" camera, but it still uses 8 bit recording. The upside is that its 4:2:2, with a higher bitrate than the HVX200/DVCPRO HD.

Another camera of interest is Panasonic HPX 250. This is a real successor to the HVX200 cameras, and offers AVC Intra recording at 10 bit 4:2:2, which is by far the best in camera codec under $10,000 USD.
__________________
Alexander Ibrahim
http://www.alexanderibrahim.net
Alexander Ibrahim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2011, 05:10 PM   #1822
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Washington D.C. Metro Area
Posts: 384
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Collins View Post
I'm in the market to buy a full HD camera. I work as a trainee camera operator for a TV production company. I use a Panasonic P2 HPX500.

I'm interested in taking on more freelance work.

The work I aim to produce on this is camera would be web based, exhibition and gallery content and corporate.

My budget is around 4,000 - 5,000, although I have been reading about the Canon XF105 (thoughts?)

My post workflow is in Final Cut Studio 3, using mostly FCP, Motion, Colour, Compressor and DVD Studio Pro.

I have a Canon 7D as a B camera, for the pretty/shallow stuff.

I'm looking at the Vinten Vision Blue sticks too...

Thanks in advance,

Richard Collins
If you already have the Canon 7D, then I recommend holding on for a bit and just trying to get the work with the 7D. See if you can't strike a deal with your company to rent their HPX500's, which as you know are great cameras.

Now I mentioned waiting because Red will soon release their Scarlet cameras. I've gotten a chance to play with one, and its going to knock your socks off. They should come in at your price point, and they'll give you image quality unmatched by any 2/3" sensor camera anywhere.

If you need to buy right now the Canon XF series is a good value, but if you've been training on HPX500, I think I'd rather point you a bit upmarket at the Panasonic HPX 370. It's still a budget camera, but it has a full shoulder mount like what you have been using, and excellent 10 bit recording.

I'd also point you at the Sony XDCAM cameras on the low end, but you may want to consider an outboard recorder like the AJA KiPro, which gives stunning results from the XDCAM series of cameras.
__________________
Alexander Ibrahim
http://www.alexanderibrahim.net
Alexander Ibrahim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2011, 08:52 PM   #1823
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Boca Raton, FL
Posts: 2,979
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

@Vicki: Take a look at the Panasonic TM900 camera. It should serve your requirements well and fit your budget. For the low budget wedding, add a Rode Video mic.
Les Wilson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2011, 09:40 PM   #1824
New Boot
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Barrie, ON
Posts: 14
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Thanks, Alexander and Les! I like what I've been reading about the Panasonic TM900. Hubby has come home today with an ad for a Canon HFG10 for $1000, used but only a few months old and with the full warranty (minus 3 months) still intact. From what I've been reading, the HFG10 is better in low light, but the TM900 shoots 60p, correct? How does that translate into layman's terms (please forgive my newness)? What about the Sony MC50U? How does that compare to either of these cams? I like the idea of going with a smaller, less "scary looking" camera, since I'll be dealing with a lot of small children who might be intimidated/distracted by a big "professional" rig.
Vicky Orsini is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 25th, 2011, 03:04 AM   #1825
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Billericay, England UK
Posts: 4,711
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Vicky - I'd back Les on this one. The TM (or better value SD) 900 is THE camera to beat - not only at its price point but at price points double its asking price. It is indeed an astoundingly competent camera.

Alexander is so right in all he says, but to get you into the game the SD900 will give you full manual control and some very clever intelligent auto modes as well. It's stabilisation beats my Sony NX5's hands down, and it has a far better, bigger and brighter side-screen.

tom.
Tom Hardwick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 25th, 2011, 05:43 AM   #1826
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Boca Raton, FL
Posts: 2,979
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Vicki.... these conversations can end up in camera wars. I hear the HFG10 is a fine camera. I didn't mention it because it only has a 10x zoom. The same is true for the MC50u. Both of these are single chip sensor designs whereas the Panny is 3-chip. Also, I had a TM700 (predecessor to the TM900) and I know it delivers what it claims.

The TM900 shoots 60p as you say and it has a longer zoom which you mentioned. Without getting all technical, 60p gives you smooth motion and it's the latest video format that pretty much sets the bar for the cameras to match. Panasonic was early in the game with it and the TM900 is their 2nd generation of it. It's good stuff.

Don't forget you have some accessories like a couple extended batteries and a shotgun mic to buy with that budget. You'll need a tripod or mono pod to shoot those long zoom shots you mentioned. Handheld won't cut it at long zooms without serious investment in vomit bags for your viewers. You can save some bucks by getting a used or leftover TM700.

At this point, you need to do some searching and reading on the cameras on your shortlist. Don't outsource the decision. These couple of posts have narrowed the field. Now you should read up and decide according to what's important to you. Every camera has tradeoffs and if you find a special deal on one, it changes the cost/benefit for you.
Les Wilson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 27th, 2011, 09:32 AM   #1827
New Boot
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Barrie, ON
Posts: 14
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Hi all. Yes, I realize that asking a question like "which camera is best" is kind of like asking "which car should I buy." Brand loyalty and strong opinions exist in every neck of the woods. I've seen some heated arguments occur over brands of dog food! But you all were extremely helpful, for which I am grateful.

We had placed videos produced by both the TM900 and the HF-G10 side-by-side on our screen. I'm sure in a few years, I'll be able to pick apart a video for clarity and quality. At this early stage of my "career," I honestly couldn't see the difference.

As it turns out, our local camera shop had both a TM900 and a HF-G10 in stock, so we drove out to manhandle both models to see which one felt better. I'm not a "dainty" woman. The Panasonic felt a little more breakable in my hands. The Canon just had more oomph to it. The focus ring felt more robust than that of the Panasonic. The controls were easier to manipulate, and we liked the larger lens.

So we bought the Canon, and I tried it out last night at one of our belt gradings. I have to say, the picture was amazing, even on full auto, and the sound produced by the on-board mic was incredible. I can't wait to get to know this little camera better!!

Thanks again for all your help. I'l sure you'll be hearing a lot from me! :)
Vicky
Vicky Orsini is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 30th, 2011, 06:59 PM   #1828
Major Player
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 773
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Howdy.

I have a Canon 7D, and I'm happy with it. But I do most of my shooting on the Canon HG20 that I got a few years ago, mostly because the shallower depth of field and seamless autofocus helps me shoot a lot of run-and-gun stuff that I'm only going to get one shot to take.

I was thinking about upgrading the Canon HG20, but I don't know what's out there. My price range is <$1200. I was hoping for a price drop on the NexVG10, but I already have an investment in Canon lenses.
__________________
Equip: Panny GH1, Canon HG20, Juicedlink, AT897, Sennh. EW/GW100, Zoom H2, Vegas 8.1
Brian Boyko is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 1st, 2011, 05:14 PM   #1829
New Boot
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Reston, VA
Posts: 8
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

Vicky, I'm also very new to this but one thing you also might want to consider for the low lighting conditions is getting on-camera lighting. They range from $35 on up. One thing the video I saw mentioned is make sure the light projects..not just light the immediate area where your standing.
Wendy Sarrett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 10th, 2011, 11:07 PM   #1830
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Jackson, MS
Posts: 44
Re: The gigantic "which camera should I buy" thread!

I have a budget of $4,000 or less (preferably less!)

I need a camera for filming indoor white screen, green screen, white board presentations, video training, etc. type situations... So camera does not need to be portable. All video will be for Internet and maybe some DVD.

I definitely don't want tape. I'd like the easiest way to film and go straight to computer to edit with Sony Vegas.

I also have a 2nd camera I will use for 2nd angle shots to help with editing out mistakes, etc... I will probably do black and white or something on this camera for effect so I don't have to worry about color matching, etc... It is a canon vixia hf s10

I will use an XLR mic such as a Sony lav mic or an Octavia on a boom...

I will be using Daylight LED lights 5600k...

I hope that's all the info you need to make a recommendation! I know a lot of new cameras have come out so I'm excited to see your response!

Thanks!
Michael LaHatte is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Open DV Discussion

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:29 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network