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Old March 12th, 2007, 09:30 AM   #1
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3 Chip SD vs. 1 Chip HD?

Hi there. I am looking for a smaller camera to compliment my professional HD camera. Of course I want the best pictures but I want a smaller camera than say the Sony Z1 or even the V1. (Maybe the HC-5) I want a small camera and want to spend at most $1000.

At this price what will give me the best picture, a 3 CCD SD camera or a 1 CCD HD camera?

Thanks!
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Old March 12th, 2007, 10:26 AM   #2
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Hi Sal, the way you're wording that question, it's pretty much an "apples and oranges" thing. First, 3 chip vs. 1 chip is a matter of color reproduction. If the 1 chip camera has an RGB color filter, then it will come very close to the color accuracy of a 3 chip camera (in fact, 1 chip with RGB will usually match a 3 chip in good daylight conditions.

And then, SD vs. HD is not much of a comparison. If you need HD, then choose HD. And of course, HD can always be easily downconverted to SD.

You're not saying what make and model your professional HD camera is, but the good consumer level, smaller 1 chip HD camcorders start at around $1000 to $1100, and at that low of a price level, you're not going to have much of a choice.
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Old March 12th, 2007, 10:43 AM   #3
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thanks!

Chris:

Sorry for the confusion.
I have a JVC HD110u. The camera is wonderful and I don't expect a smaller prosumer camera to match it's quality.

I want a smaller camera for my personal use (family events, vacations, etc).
I am still concerned about quality and have seen the HC-5 and think it looks pretty good. (B&H has it for $999).

There are also some SD cameras that are 3 chip and shoot 16:9 and shoot mini-dv. Those cameras are cheaper still.

Should I get the small SD cam and wait for the new generation of small HD camcorders?

Again, I'd like a small camera and not the bigger ones.


Thanks for your opinions.
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Old March 12th, 2007, 06:08 PM   #4
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Go for the HD cameras, the quality is great, the prices are right... I think we have a solid current generation of small HD camcorders.
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Old March 12th, 2007, 07:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sal C. Martin View Post
I want a small camera and want to spend at most $1000.

At this price what will give me the best picture, a 3 CCD SD camera or a 1 CCD HD camera?
1 CCD HD: Terrible video in low light (i.e. indoors). But outdoors you get beautiful HD.

3 CCD SD: Nice, standard definition in low light. But outdoors, it's still just SD.

So what matters more to you: indoors or outdoors?

(I find it takes about 400+ watts of lightbulbs before 1CCD cams start to look nice.)
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Old March 13th, 2007, 11:46 PM   #6
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decision

At this point, I have decided to get the 3 chip SD camera for some side work and will wait for a 3 chip HD camera that is smaller.

The small SD cam will be hidden in my trunk and basically always with me. I have occasionally happened on spot news and been paid good money for the footage.


pros: The small Panasonic GS-180 is tiny and has good SD pictures and is only about $350. Great in low light (read: without having to carry any of my pro light gear).

At $350 it's almost (almost) a disposable camera. (especially if my car gets broken into).

cons: not an HD cam.

At this point I might also get a smaller HD camera at the end of the year. I wish there was a tiny 3-chip HD camera right now. Am I missing something? Any idea how long it will be before they start rolling out small 3-chip HD prosumer cams?

Yes, I am becoming somewhat of a camera collector. I still have my very first camera--an old one chip high 8! (What do you guys do with those old cameras?)

The opinions on this board are awesome. Thanks again.

Extra side note: I am very happy with my pro camera and am not expecting anywhere near the same results with a prosumer model.

Last edited by Sal C. Martin; March 13th, 2007 at 11:48 PM. Reason: typo
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Old March 14th, 2007, 06:02 PM   #7
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They don't really need to make small 3 chip HD cameras, the CMOS chips currently used do a very nice job of compensating for having only one chip. I do agree with your idea of getting a semi-cheap $350 camera for throwing in your car, though.
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Old March 14th, 2007, 09:32 PM   #8
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I've never used either, but I'd be somewhat surprised if the PV-GS180 produced a better image in low light (or in good lighting) than the HDR-HC5.
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Old March 14th, 2007, 09:42 PM   #9
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be careful

I just wanted to put a quick warning out - be careful with leaving your cam in the trunk. I also like to always have a camera (video or still) with me at all times. I used to keep one in my vehicle always.

Until the second time I ruined the camera by doing that.

Living in a warm area (even mildly) in the summer can create heat in your car or trunk well over 100F. After a couple weeks, your LCD monitor will be completely ruined, and whow knows what other innards of the camera will be damaged (perhaps the CCD/CMOS). I know it's cooler where you are then it is here in the desert....but th second camera I ruined by leaving it in my car was in Reno - and Reno is about the same temps as you have.

While I definately agree about keeping a camera with you at all times. I'd recommend a small case so that when you leave your car you can take the cam with you - leave it with your keys so you always remember to grab it on the way out the door.
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Old March 14th, 2007, 10:41 PM   #10
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Especially if you live near Phoenix, lol
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