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Old January 30th, 2011, 05:58 PM   #1
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What HD camera should I buy?? help!

Hey there folks, I'm new here so bear with me! delighted to find such an extensive info site.. brilliant!
HELP: I'm soon to buy a new HD video camera and need a stabilising system also (perhaps DVtec Multirig or Glidecam 2000). Looking at the Canon XF300... but certainly hunting some tips and advice on the changeover..
I'm coming from a Canon XM2 (SD) - shoot documentaries (potentially for broadcast) & weddings - budget of apx 5,000 - want solid state only (leaving tape world) - use Final Cut pro 7 on Mac Pro Quad Xeon, so whatever camera I get will need to be compatible with same.
Any tips or info would be HUGELY appreciated!
Thanks !

Caroline Clancy | Pink Lime Video Productions | Sligo | Ireland > Pink Lime Video Productions Sligo | Home | Wedding DVD and Video Specialists | Caroline Clancy
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Old January 30th, 2011, 06:47 PM   #2
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Caroline, as you'll gather from some of the thread started by Amanda Duncan, this isn't an easy question to answer. In your shoes I'd rent a few models and try them out, see what suits you and your style of working best.

Good luck
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Old January 31st, 2011, 03:28 AM   #3
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Thanks Philip!
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Old January 31st, 2011, 03:54 AM   #4
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I'd endorse Philip's suggestion. I've worked in this business for over twenty years and always found it a worrying time when it came to camera buying. However it was usually a matter of choosing a brand as the formats and media considerations were pretty similar when shooting on tape. However last year I moved away from tape based DVcam and found it to be a real nightmare trying to make the right decision. Almost everyone I spoke with had a different preference. Should I shoot in XDcam, P2, .MOV, MP4, AVCHD. Full size ENG type camera (as I've always been use to) or a lighter more manoeuvrable type. I researched and took advise where I could get it and narrowed the decision down to 3 or 4 contenders after sampling them at trade exhibitions. After deliberating, and striking a good deal I plumped for the one I have (two in fact). I wish though that I'd hired each of the contenders for a real shoot before making that decision.
I will be changing again this year and that is what I will do. I will spend a few hundred pounds but I may save that, or at least know that I have the camera that suits me and my working method best. You never know it might even change the way I work.
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Old January 31st, 2011, 04:05 AM   #5
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I know that it's the camera I change most often. I keep my mics for years - my tripod too. I upgrade the pc every now and again but cameras seem to come and go.

I too deserted tape to move from the Sony Z1 to the NX5 but I do read that Apple are dragging their heels on native AVCHD editing Caroline, so it's probably best you check this out before you look too deeply at specific camcorders.

tom.
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Old January 31st, 2011, 10:54 PM   #6
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The analogy which keeps coming to mind when dealing with this question is that of people's choice of airline.

Back in the days when price wasn't a consideration because all airlines charged roughly the same price as each other all year round, it was said with much evidence to support it that people made their choice on two bases.

1 They didn't have a favourite airline they always flew with but a least favourite airline they always avoided.

2 The choice of airline was invariably made because of someone else's bad experience.

Seems to me it's much the same with cameras.
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Old January 31st, 2011, 11:47 PM   #7
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It's also a bit of habit when it comes to manufacturer and type!! (Better the devil you know????)

I started off in the 80's (yep both Philip and I as classified as "mature") and with Pansonic shoulder-mount cameras (probably cos they looked more cool than tiny cameras!!!)

I have kept with Panny right up to now and also with shoulder-mount units too!!! so it's part sticking with what you like and I know some will be shocked but I dislike Canon!! (a mate of mine had enormous problems with XL1's and I guess that made me class them as the "bad airline")

However I'm sure they and all the others make awesome gear so fly with them all and make your decision based on what you are comfortable with. All the major manufactures will make good, reliable cameras so it will come down to your choice of what feels good in your hands!!

Chris
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Old February 1st, 2011, 05:12 PM   #8
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I've shot with various brands, and somehow go back to Sony, but you're really asking a question akin to "what car should I buy"? The answer is different for everyone, but it's really hard to go too far wrong with the current cameras out there, the tech is pretty solid and image quality may "differ" but if properly shot and handled in post, you should be able to get great results.
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