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    purchasing a camcorder help

    My wife and I are expecting our first child in a couple months and we were starting to look into buying a camorder. Is there any camcorders that we should definately give a look at or stay away from? Any help would be fantastic as I dont even know where to start to look at for a camcorder for us.

    Thanks in advance for any help!!



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    Re: purchasing a camcorder help

    Get an HD one. There great.


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    Re: purchasing a camcorder help

    Quote Originally Posted by cyinne View Post
    My wife and I are expecting our first child in a couple months and we were starting to look into buying a camorder. Is there any camcorders that we should definately give a look at or stay away from? Any help would be fantastic as I dont even know where to start to look at for a camcorder for us.

    Thanks in advance for any help!!
    huge fan of Flip Minnow HD


    As far as depth goes though, the combination of White, Woodbury, Olaseni, Basabe, and Uthoff is much better than Niang, Ejim, Edozie, Gibson. Not because of the top 2, but because of the next 2 or 3. -DeanVogs

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    Re: purchasing a camcorder help

    I have a Sony. Hard disk drive is the way to go. You pay a little more, but you don't have to dick around with anything.



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    Re: purchasing a camcorder help

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclonepride View Post
    I have a Sony. Hard disk drive is the way to go. You pay a little more, but you don't have to dick around with anything.
    This. No need for tapes or anthing. Just plug it into your computer and you can get your video files as easy getting something off a USB drive.
    Also, spend the extra money and get something HD.


    When Prepared, Fear No One.

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    Re: purchasing a camcorder help

    As I've posted in other threads, I personally prefer MiniDV or, preferably HDV (uses the same tapes).
    The tapes are a bit of a hassle to deal with, but they really only mean that you have to spend a wee bit more time capturing files as opposed to just being able to copy them from other medium.

    The big, huge benefit that tape has is that you have a backup copy of the original footage. Unless you're willing to lose it, every clip you create with a HDD or Flash based camcorder needs to be backed up somehow. I truly don't trust hard drives as a backup solution, and you're putting all your eggs in one basket with that. If you're comfortable with those risks, that does eliminate most of the risk, so long as you're willing to drop a hundred bucks on a new HDD from time to time. Online backup isn't really feasible for that much data. Burning to DVD is fine for SD, but you'll lose HD if you do so unless you backup the raw files, and there you're looking at 3-4 DVDs for an hour of video, and you can't just pop them in a DVD player and play them. So your other option is Blu-Ray, which is fairly expensive.

    My second choice would be SD card-based readers, as you can buy new SD cards and archive video that way.

    My third choice would be HDD-based camcorders. There's just too much work to properly archive your footage to make it worth the convenience of capturing.

    My last choice is the DVD-based recorders. They do have the huge benefit that tape does with the archival media, but that media is very expensive. They are probably the most convenient of them all, though, depending on what your end goal is.

    If you can't tell, archiving is a very important consideration for me, personally. If it's less so to you, that's fine. The others are somewhat more convenient (honestly, it's not THAT inconvenient to plug my camcorder into firewire, and press "record" on HDVSplit and come back an hour later to find my clips all tagged with date/time and organized).

    Other things to consider are:

    Size - I like the small "flip" style camcorders for capturing impromptu things. I tend not to carry around a camcorder all the time due to size (and potential for theft/damage of a $500-$1000 camera) and save it for things I know I'll want to tape (birthdays, weddings, Christmas, etc). sometimes there are just spontaneous things that happen when your'e out somewhere, and that's where a nice, pocket-able camcorder can come in handy. For this type of footage, though, a good cell phone, or point and shoot camera might be just as good. The best camera sitting at home is worse than the crappiest one you have with you all the time.

    Video Quality - High def is clearly better for quality, but it also has a drawback that it takes some fairly serious hardware to really be able to work with it well, especially the AVCHD camcorders (most HDD and Flash based ones). If you're not planning to do much editing, it's not a big deal though.

    Low light quality - This is a biggie. A lot of your video is probably going to be indoors, and having a pretty good low-light camcorder will do a world of good for your videos.

    Something else to consider are the new dual purpose SLR cameras that do video as well. Canon has the T1X and Nikon has the D90. You get the added benefit of getting a great still camera and an ok camcorder for short clips. There are some interesting issues with them, but it's probably nothing you couldn't live with if you don't do video extensively.

    Camcorderinfo.com is a great place to research.

    That said, I use a Canon HV30, and I think it's just about perfect for my needs. I couple that with a point and shoot camera, and my cell phone which takes suprisin surprisingly good video most of the time.

    Good luck and hope that was of some help!


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    Re: purchasing a camcorder help

    Thanks for your help- the info really helps!



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    Re: purchasing a camcorder help

    Quote Originally Posted by cyinne View Post
    My wife and I are expecting our first child in a couple months and we were starting to look into buying a camorder. Is there any camcorders that we should definately give a look at or stay away from? Any help would be fantastic as I dont even know where to start to look at for a camcorder for us.

    Thanks in advance for any help!!
    The new HD Flip is great, 120 minutes of recording, plugs right into your computer for editing, transfering, and copying, fits in your pocket, about $200....


    Last edited by coachdags; 01-01-2010 at 11:18 PM.

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