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-   -   How should this site handle consumer HDV camcorders? (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/general-hd-720-1080-acquisition/59318-how-should-site-handle-consumer-hdv-camcorders.html)

Chris Hurd January 28th, 2006 11:58 AM

How should this site handle consumer HDV camcorders?
Hey folks, I'd like to have your input regarding the directions in which this site should or should not be moving. This year we'll see a number of consumer-level HDV camcorders coming out. What does that mean to HDV Info Net. Would you prefer to have dedicated discussion areas for these little cams, or would you rather "keep it professional" and save the bandwidth for the bigger gear. Ideally I really am not interested in attracting an audience of consumers, but I can certainly understand how a professional shooter would have a marked interest in the smaller stuff. Your feedback will help me decide how to proceed, from the standpoint of how the pros want to treat the consumer product line. Thanks in advance.

By the way this is only the second "official poll" ever in our history. I started the first just yesterday over in the RED Digital Cinema forum. Maybe we'll do this sort of thing more often!

Evan C. King January 29th, 2006 03:07 AM

I don't see a huge point for it but if people feel a need to have it we should have it. At first they should all be grouped into one forum and after a year or so when that market has blown up give each manufactor one. Kind of like the Panasonic GS and Canon Optura forums but more generalized.

Panasonic HD Assistant
...and other Panasonic HD camcorders.

But I don't think there is a point until the content is there.

Mathieu Ghekiere January 29th, 2006 06:19 AM

I voted for yes, manufacterer and model, but I didn't read it well, I think you only mean real consumer HDV camcorders? I thought you meant HDV in general.
(Not used to polls here ;-))

I can't take my vote back, but if you mean the real consumer level ones, maybe one for all of them, or maybe one per manufacturer, but not, like I posted, one for each model.

Hse Kha January 29th, 2006 10:38 AM

I think there should be one forum for ALL other consumer HD (not just HDV) camcorders such as the Sanyo HD1, Sony HC3, etc... However the emphasis should be for professional use for them.

If there are numerous posts then you can create sub-forums for the most popular models.

I also think you should create a forum for XDCAM HD. If the Canon XL H1 at $9K and Panny P2 HD at $10K (with 2 P2 cards) are "affordable", then most certainly the XDCAM HD 300 at $16K is also affordable...

Just my humble opinion...

Boyd Ostroff January 29th, 2006 12:17 PM

The only problem with the single forum concept is that it may be hard for people to to decide what constitutes a "consumer" camera. For example, would you consider the HC1 consumer and the A1 pro? If so, does it make more sense to have the HC1 stuff in the same forum as the A1 (as they currently are) since they are so similar? And of course we already do have the "general HD" camera forum....

Jeff McElroy January 29th, 2006 01:33 PM

There is a massive library of interactive information to be found here, and it should be kept as accessible as possible for the people who need it most…the aspiring filmmakers, videographers, and the like.

The prosumer gear merits individual forums due to the quirks, idiosyncrasies, etc, apparent to each camera. They are all vastly different pieces of equipment, and as such, they are designed to be highly versatile. In contrast, the consumer brands are easymode-locked and marketed to the end of filming Billy’s soccer game. This is what the hc1, etc, was DESIGNED to do. In my mind, this... that is, what a piece of technology was designed to do, and then what in turn people actualy DO with it... constitute 'consumer' or 'prosumer' application.

I walked into the circuit city yesterday and saw an hc1 sitting in a nice little booth hooked up to a 20” HD display for people to play with. It was a revelatory moment… people are getting comparatively cheap HD acquisition at circuit city, worst-buy, Wal-Mart, and the like. The exclusivity is over, and, as they say, content is once again king (as if it wasn’t always).

The point is, in the next few years we are going to see tons of 1080i brand name camcorders. It would be pointless and futile to keep tabs on all of them, and would ultimately discredit the base user group already established here.

After all, you don’t want this place to turn out like the apple forums.
Check this out --it just doesn’t end!:


PLEASE don’t let DVi turn into that.

Cole McDonald January 29th, 2006 02:04 PM

I voted for one thread, but want you all to keep something in mind. I started coming to this forum as a potential customer for a video camera. The posts here gave me guidance when I was shopping for my first camera. I ended up purchasing a sub $1k camera which gives excellent footage when used correctly. I'll assume I'm not the intended target audience of this site based on this thread, but I absolutely use this site as a resource and have done so before the purchase of a higher level camera was even an option. I'm sure there are many more folks lurking out there who got here using google same as me. Be careful not to allienate them as they are starting out by creating a them vs. us schism.

"Ideally I really am not interested in attracting an audience of consumers"

I was a consumer when I came here first. Now I'm wrapping up principal photography on my first low-budget feature. Ultimately it's your board, but please consider the folks like myself who could be benefitting from the advice here.

Some of the recent responses to my posts have been answered with (mostly) the same answers...spend more on better equipment and all your woes will vanish. My budget (Money and time) doesn't allow me to consider purchasing new equipment, only working with what I have.

I have personally felt elitism on this board. With as few posts as I've made, that's a pretty rapid community response. It hasn't been heavy or blatant, but this community may want to make a decision whether it wants to be insular or accepting. It seems to me that this is the point at which you do that.

Peter Ferling January 29th, 2006 02:35 PM

Chris, that would be good idea. I don't classify any particular DV camera as pro or consumer, as I've used fixed single-chip palm-size camcorders along with the larger 3-chip models. They are all tools in their own right, be it faking security cams, placed in harms way, or mounted in situations that would be othewise difficult for the heavier models.

I don't think you would draw large crowds of gawkers or inexperienced. We have that already.... kidding : ) Exposure to the pros would do these folks some good anyway.

Jeff McElroy January 29th, 2006 03:25 PM

I have personally felt elitism on this board. With as few posts as I've made, that's a pretty rapid community response.

Well yeah, but it is nowhere NEAR as bad as it by all means should be. In fact, I would say that elitism is the exception here rather than the norm... but I feel you.

Now I'm wrapping up principal photography on my first low-budget feature.

...aaaand at least I would consider you a 'prosumer', if your work is done to a professional end, regardless of the technology employed (congragulations, btw). I just don’t see a real need or demand to have anything more than a singular thread… Questions associated with production in general, lighting, sound, NLE’s, and such things are already covered in their own respective forums.

But, definitely, alienation is the last thing anyone wants. This place’s allure remains a ‘down to earth’ atmosphere… which has been amazingly maintained despite its considerable size.

Exposure to the pros would do these folks some good anyway.
Exactly why I am here!

Okay, that is enough from me on this issue. :)

Robert M Wright February 17th, 2006 01:11 AM

I'd like to see all HDV camcorders covered for now. At some point, I think it will make sense to draw a line, but not yet.

Chris Barcellos February 17th, 2006 01:36 AM

Spirit of this Forum
From what I have seen of this forum, its spirit is in creatve people doing things with gear that no one envisioned. It should be open to all comers...

Jack D. Hubbard February 17th, 2006 02:02 AM

I concur with Peter. Cameras are tools; some are basic, some very sophisticated. But it's not just a question of talking about the hardware, but how creatively it is used. One forum would put all that together.

Fredrik-Larsson February 17th, 2006 05:24 AM

I voted for one forum per manufacturer. If one specific camera gets a lot of posts a new forum around that model should be made. I think that's the policy here anyway? If a pro model has a similar consumer version like Z1/FX1 and A1/HC1 then it's good to bundle them together.

Kevin Shaw February 17th, 2006 06:22 AM

I voted for one forum for each manufacturer, because otherwise it gets too complicated to know where to look for things. It might seem odd to some to have the HC1 discussed in the same forum as the XDCAM HD, but I can envision situations where a professional might use both, and it could be educational to consumers to see posts about the advanced gear. Hopefully people will use subject lines for their topics which indicate whether they have a basic or advanced question, and then everyone can read the threads which are useful to them.

Graham Jones February 20th, 2006 02:17 PM

Please strive for minimalism, not just in relation to HD/V but across the board.

One can always use the 'search' function to compile a list of posts pertaining to a specific model.

Wayne Morellini February 28th, 2006 02:03 AM

I accidentally found out about this poll, goign through a thread, what about a note on top of pages about current polls?

I agree, no elitism, or base level consumerism either.

I voted:
Yes, just one forum for all consumer HDV cams.

But the option that I have suggested before is not there:
Forums by type of camera and use. With no camera getting it's own forum unless it is a very good work camera/ or popular. This will keep too many cameras from being on one group, i.e:


Mpeg4/H264 Flash/Drive Cameras:

- Consumer palm cameras
For things like the Sanyo HD1 that have limited use at work.

- Work quality Palm cameras
For all other cameras that have work quality compression (like the future H264 cameras).

- Work quality camcorder cameras
For bigger cameras.

HDV HD Cameras:
(includes Palm HDV, I suspect there will not be enough to warrant there own section).

- HD Consumer camcorders

- Work quality HD Consumer camcorders

- Special use cameras (Bullet, Slow motion etc)
So what do you think?

Jeff DeMaagd March 8th, 2006 09:50 AM


Originally Posted by Cole McDonald
I have personally felt elitism on this board. With as few posts as I've made, that's a pretty rapid community response. It hasn't been heavy or blatant, but this community may want to make a decision whether it wants to be insular or accepting. It seems to me that this is the point at which you do that.

I don't consider myself a "pro" guy in the least bit, but compared to other professions and other special interests, I've appreciated this crowd. I know there is room for improvement, but there will always be petty disagreements and honest disagreements gone a bit overboard. Still, I've found this crowd to have a lot of genuinely helpful and civil people, with only a minimum of people with a negative agenda. It is a market that I am proud to serve in my own little way, from hobbyists to pros and trainers.

Anyway, what I would probably suggest is maybe one catch-all consumer forum, and break off subforums for models that seem to be popular enough. It is probably not good to have a model-dedicated forum with only a dozen threads, that is too isolated to me.

Andrew Khalil March 8th, 2006 10:13 AM

I originally voted for the first one, but in reality, I don't think it's the right choice anymore because the line is kind of being blurred. I don't think there should be a seperate forum for each manufacturer, just group them all into one forum and title it "consumer HD" or something like that. I think we'll see a lot of new HD models aimed at consumers this year and while I think those looking for one of those cameras shouldn't in any way be excluded, I do think maintaining a professional atmosphere around here will benefit those people as well as the pros or more advanced users currently here.

Graham Jones March 8th, 2006 11:59 AM

"It is probably not good to have a model-dedicated forum with only a dozen threads"

Mmm.. I can't imagine a forum at dvinfo.net with only a dozen threads.

If you're referring to the Sanyo HD1 forum, well, there will probably be more threads when the camera is officially released.

I take your overall point, though.

Kurth Bousman March 8th, 2006 12:31 PM

Chris - to me , your model for dv cameras worked quite well. Why change it ? I'd vote for a forum based on make. One for canon, one for panasonic etc. Then when a model takes off like the pd150 or dvx, you assign a separate forum. Seemed to work before. thanks Kurth

Bill Pryor March 8th, 2006 02:56 PM

Somebody mentioned an XDCAM area above,and it seems to me too that since P2 has a separate area as a recording format, XDCAM should also. That would cover both primary tapeless formats. And all the consumer stuff could be one thing, as others above have suggested--that seems logical to me too.

David Kennett March 16th, 2006 03:24 PM

I didn't vote, but I think the criteria should be how unique the product is. The Sanyo HD1 is so unique that pros might find a use for this camera. Consumer items are often a preview into the future of pro stuff.

I prpbably will get one soon. I love pocket stuff!

Chris Taylor April 17th, 2006 08:54 PM

I guess I would not be considered a pro :-) I don't do a lot of video (until now) the Sanyo is the first camera that makes me "want" to do video. I am primarily a Still guy I take well over 10,000 pics a year (its an obsession)

Until now video in my budgetary range was so unsatisfactory and I simply hated Mini DV (download my you know what 2 hours to move 2 hours of video no thanks)

the Resolution of the HD1 is mind Numbing and to think many of you are not impressed it boggles my mind to think of what WOULD impress you :-) wow

One thing I like about the sanyo is its size. I am drooling in anticipation of putting this thing inside of a rocket !

For years I have been using Hitachi MPEG10W's (they record direct to mpeg1) so the HD1 was a massive planetary scale upgrade for me !

I chose individual forum for each make model as I am really only interested in HD1 stuff since well thats what I have :-) hehe

Chris Taylor

Wayne Morellini April 18th, 2006 01:05 AM



I think that it is important to have a general forum by type, apart from forums for the most popular cameras, as I have previously said. I think it keeps you aware of what new cameras and equipment is out there, apart from more people to mix with, advice and contrasting views.

If the Sanyo HD1EX was $200 I probably would buy it myself, a useful little thing to carry around ;).

Trond Saetre May 13th, 2006 02:37 AM

I think the HD/HDV forum should be based on the same model as the DV part.

Start with one general consumer HDV, and as time goes by and more thread are written, expand to separate subforums for different brands if needed.

John Godden May 18th, 2006 10:05 PM

Manufacturer specific might be specific enough. If those grow out of control then a further split might be needed.


Mark Goldberg September 13th, 2006 12:44 PM

Consumer HDV cams
For now I am in favor of consumer HDV cameras being included. There are some applications where these cameras are a good logical choice. In the SD world, I teamed a Sony TRV-900, a classic camera design, with the professional PD-150. There was a pro model of the TRV900 called the PD100, but it only recorded DVCAM so runtime was shorter.

Similarly, I can see the upcoming FX7 as a good companion to my Sony Z1. The FX7 appears to include a stereo mike, while its pro equivalent appears not to.

I have found that a lot of new technology appears in the consumer line first.

Bill Pryor September 13th, 2006 01:03 PM

Good point. Also, a year or so after the TRV900 came out, I saw a PBS show that had been shot in China by students acting like tourists with TRV900s. And when the VX1000 came out, the producers of "Saltmen of Tibet" used it for that great documentary because they couldn't get pro gear into the country. However, it's probably a good idea to not deal with all the lower end consumer stuff. Maybe just keep it to nothing under a 1/3" chip camera, like the Sony A1U?

Roger Rosales September 13th, 2006 02:30 PM

Hey guys,

This is indeed a hard question to answer. When I first came to this site, it was because of my interest for the Canon XL1-S. I asked certain questions regarding this camera but it wasn’t until the XL2 that I finally bought (or rather, my father graciously bought for me) the XL2.

I didn’t come to this forum from a consumers point of view. I came to this forum because of professional level. I never came to this forum from the standpoint of “I want a cute little camera to film my family and make home movies!” No, I came because I wanted to expand my knowledge and build my career as a filmmaker.

At the same time I was looking for the cheapest, yet, valuable alternative (the GL2, etc) I don’t consider the GL2 a “Prosumer” camcorder. I consider it a high quality consumer camcorder, yet with proper care and proper practice could very well produce professional looking video. Of course, one had to go the extra mile(s) to achieve that look. With this in mind, I made the choice to delve deeper into camera operating and went with the XL2.

What I’m trying to say is, one never knows what will influence them to go a certain direction. The pro’s on this forum helped me sway to their direction and made me realize the value of going “balls out” not rather than later.

At the same time I don’t want what Jeff McElroy mentioned - an abundance of intolerable, clueless individuals. Consumer cams WILL bring them and we WILL get these questions:

“How do I upload my footage to my computer?”
“How do I import my clips into Windows Movie Maker?”
“How do I export my clips without it looking ugly and pixilated?”
“What’s this do…what’s that do…”

“What’s a camcorder?!”

My point is…Lets maintain a certain level of professionalism to prevent that from happening and lets be selective in which camcorders we make a dedicated forum to. Does a certain consumer camera have the potential of producing professional looking video? Or is it the equivalent of a JVC GR-D370 with the HDV brand on its title?

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