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Old January 3rd, 2004, 06:55 PM   #301
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I read one article written by a cameraman in Iraq who used a PD150 for most things. He kept it wrapped in plastic and never opened it unless inside out of the blowing sand. He didn't have any problems, but people who didn't properly care for their gear under those conditions did have trouble. I would go with the PD150 or 170 also for what you're talking about, because it is a bit more rugged than the others and shoots DVCAM. Even so, you still need to care for it properly under all the different conditions you describe.
The main problem in climbing is going to be bashing the camera into rocks and things like that, so I would keep it in a well padded backpack or Portabrace bag. The hot steamy rainforest will probably be the biggest challenge, and you might want to use some of those dessicant packs in your bag, as well as a rain cover. For cold weather, the biggest issue is taking the camera inside or outside from cold to warm and vice versa. You can get condensation that will cause the camera to shut itself down automatically till it's dry. When I go inside from being out in the cold, I'll open the camera, take the tape out, and let them sit for awhile before shooting, till the temperature is equalized. You may need extra batteries in cold weather, too.
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Old January 3rd, 2004, 07:30 PM   #302
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I really like the PD150/170 but for climbing, I think their form-factor is just too big and too clumsy.

I'd go for a 900 (first choice) or PDX10 (if the light is going to be OK) because of their small size. I would tear a PD150 up if I were climbing with it. And it is really hard to hold steady in any kind of wind.

Another camera that I really like but is now obsolete was made by Sony about 6-7 years ago. Called the PD-1, it was a DVCam format camera sized just about the same size as the PC110 I have now. Either one of those cameras act very rugged because of their small size. I cannot tell you how many times my PC110 has been dropped inside its padded case. A nylon from Case-Logic a little smaller than a lunch-box.

The PD-1s have survived 7 years of use by students at the local community college. I've mounted one on a G-scale flatcar and had it pushed all over a backyard train layout, getting thoroughly whacked by bushes during the ordeal.

Did I mention that a zip-lock baggie will hold one of these cameras?

The PC110 is my #1 choice when I'm riding with the police during the day.
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Old January 3rd, 2004, 07:31 PM   #303
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<<<-- Originally posted by Mike Rehmus : I really like the PD150/170 but for climbing, I think their form-factor is just too big and too clumsy.

I'd go for a 900 (first choice) or PDX10 (if the light is going to be OK) because of their small size. I would tear a PD150 up if I were climbing with it. And it is really hard to hold steady in any kind of wind.

Another camera that I really like but is now obsolete was made by Sony about 6-7 years ago. Called the PD-1, it was a DVCam format camera sized just about the same size as the PC110 I have now. Either one of those cameras act very rugged because of their small size. I cannot tell you how many times my PC110 has been dropped inside its padded case. A nylon from Case-Logic a little smaller than a lunch-box.

The PD-1s have survived 7 years of use by students at the local community college. I've mounted one on a G-scale flatcar and had it pushed all over a backyard train layout, getting thoroughly whacked by bushes during the ordeal.

Did I mention that a zip-lock baggie will hold one of these cameras?

The PC110 is my #1 choice when I'm riding with the police during the day. -

Oh, and I can buy 2-3 of the little cameras for one PD150. The little cameras can also be multi-megapixel digital still cameras and have night-shot.
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Old January 3rd, 2004, 08:18 PM   #304
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Multi-megapixel stills aren't that good (some of them don't even have enough pixels and resize the image to get more megapixels!!!). Low light on a lot of the consumer cams isn't going to be anywhere close to a VX2000/PD150 or VX2100/PD170 but they can be workable. Nightshot has limited range and turns everything... green. You can change that in post to black and white.

A small camera could be a good idea though. You could even carry a backup, and any digital still camera.
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Old January 3rd, 2004, 09:24 PM   #305
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I'm looking for a camera that can tolerate heavy duty (such as mountain climbing (shaky), asia forest (hot), winter snowing (cold) etc.). XL1s probably a bad choice for this purpose since it needs good care and it's sensitive. PD150 is a good choice I think. How about DVX100 and VX2000?
From what I've read, Sony prosumer cams have a bit more tolerance when it comes to fuctioning in extreme weather conditions compared with Panasonics. All-weather housing, Zip-lock or Saran Wrap will help to keep the dirt out, keep it rain-free and warm, but humidity is another story.
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Old January 4th, 2004, 05:35 AM   #306
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Thanks guys for sharing all useful and at the same time interesting experience. I've been taking my JVC DVM1 around the world since Jurassic Park the movie (8-9 years ago?)...and yes, one of the major reason I bought this camera is because of the movie -- "they are shooting in forest with dinosaurs with this camera!", haha! It's a good idea to use smaller camera, but low light is also an issue. Looks like Sony has made more effort to make their camera a little more rocky.
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Old January 17th, 2004, 03:09 PM   #307
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I Need Help With Choosing A Mini Dv Camcorder

hi. i'm interested in purchasing a mini dv camcorder and need help deciding which one to get.

will be shooting video art and short films.

i'll make a list of things which are and aren't important:

ONBOARD MIC: if the mic is just so-so, i'll live with it
MANUAL/AUTOMATIC CONTROL: very important the camera has manual and automatic control over focus, zoom, iris and shutter speed.
PICTURE QUALITY: very important, but i realize my budget won't allow me to hit the top notch cameras.
SPECIAL EFFECTS / DATE AND TIME: no need for them.
SIZE AND WEIGHT: flexible. picture quality and the control issue go first.
LOW LIGHT PERFORMANCE: i rarely use lighting equiptment, so a camera which performs well under low light conditions, definately presents a plus. but again, quality (horizontal lines) and control are first priority.

BUDGET: $500

if you have any qustions for me, please don't hesitate to ask.

thank you very much.
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Old January 17th, 2004, 03:17 PM   #308
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$500USD? (you live in Israel is what your profile says) It's not much for a camcorder.

Not sure what your options are since you live in Israel. You can buy used to save some money.

Audio: Nearly all on-board mics suck a lot. If you need to record dialogue or whatever then you might be better off with an external mic like the MS907 ($80 at B&H). You should try out mics before you buy, but that mic shouldn't be hard to get your hands on.

Low light: All 1CCD cameras aren't that great in low light.

As for which old cameras are good, check out dvfreak.com's buyers guide. It has recommendations for old cameras. Some of the recommendations may be questionable so double check on sites like epinions.com and the user forums at camcorderinfo.com and at this site.
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Old January 17th, 2004, 09:03 PM   #309
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Low light: All 1CCD cameras aren't that great in low light.
I've seen great low light from inexpensive single CCD cams like the Panasonic PV-DV852 and especially the JVC GR-DV3000.

Not sure about Israel, but B&H had the Panasonic DV852 for $569 earlier this month and I've seen several DV3000s on eBay.
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Old January 17th, 2004, 10:41 PM   #310
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Adi, in Israel you use PAL cams.

USA/Canada uses NTSC cams.

$500US won't get you a lot in way of a PAL cam you describe. However, I'm sure this fellow may find you something used, if you ask him:

yowch@yahoo.com - Yow Cheong Hoe
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Old January 18th, 2004, 03:53 AM   #311
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thanks everyone. i know $500 isn't much. i already own a sony pd150, which i am very happy with and cost me much more. this additional camera is actually for a friend who is more into stills photography, but is interested in making her first step into video photography. she has know idea where to start and i thought i might help her out by posting her question here. thanks again.
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Old January 18th, 2004, 10:54 AM   #312
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In the U.S. it seems the best deals on cheap camcorders are the Panasonics. I don't know about PAL versions, but you might check out Panasonic at B&H. I think you get more for your money than with the equivalent Sony or Canon.
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Old January 18th, 2004, 01:43 PM   #313
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B&H has the Canon Optura 10 for 499.95. Probably the best camcorder you'll find for $500US but that's a NTSC camcorder.
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Old January 18th, 2004, 06:04 PM   #314
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If you get an idea what cam you want, go to
B&H's PAL camera pages and see if they sell it. Might get a better deal.

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Old March 21st, 2004, 03:19 PM   #315
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I don't know what to get for a first DV Cam.

I'm a film-maker that has been working with SVHSC for awhile, so I know my way around cameras.

I've decided to go digital but I don't know what camera to get.

I'm definitly getting a Sony, but which one? I have 2 days to decide while my brother is in England so he can get one a little cheaper then here.

I really have my eye on the TRV950, but I think that's a little too expensive, I know that one I'll defintily get isn HC18, but is this just consumer trash that wont be good for doing freelance video work (small-time band music videos, skateboarding videos) and serious film-making?

I can't find any specs on this cam, does it has manual controsl and mic-in or is it really a bad choice?

Any other reasonably priced, good models that can be reccommended??
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