Posted Thu Aug 20, 2009 1:46AM
My son wants to get a digital camcorder (not for stock) and I am looking for advice on what features etc to avoid/include. Would the 2nd hand route be viable from someone who has recently upgraded? If there are any UK stockers who would like to pm me on this, I'd be grateful.
Posted Thu Aug 20, 2009 10:07AM
I'm not in the UK, so I can't help you there. I bought a second hand video digicam for my son two Christmases ago. I got him a handheld panasonic -- he didn't want it to be bulky, because he wanted to be able to take it to school, etc... for his senior year of high school. The worst part for him is that it has pretty bad audio recording. Even if we're recording and talking right next to the camera, it's fairly quiet -- a subject 5 or more feet away is barely audible unless they shout. IIRC, I paid in the $250 range for it, secondhand. He's now starting to think about film school and upgrading to an HD camera... so I'm on the market too
Posted Thu Aug 20, 2009 3:50PM
Thanks PAP I hadn't thought about the audio quality. Back to my Google research
Posted Thu Aug 20, 2009 5:04PM
The most important feature I look for is low light performance. The majority of videos seem to be shot in social and dimly lit situations, so low light performance is the first thing I check. I have very good quality video cameras that shoot down to 1 lux whereas many cheap ones only go as low as 5 lux - the lower the number the better quality & more sensitive it is. Many of the manufacturers "cheat" by quoting their night mode figure. Which is fine if you want to film a wedding or graduation as though it's being shot by a sniper.
Posted Thu Aug 20, 2009 9:00PM
ooh, a Camcorder question, that I can do! There are lots of great options out there right now.
Important info is:
- What is your budget?
- How old/what is the skill+ambition level of your son?
- What types of things will the footage be used for?
The most important features for a general use camcorder is how comfortable you are using it and espeically how comfortable you are with the editing workflow. Tape camcorders still deliver the best quality for the money in the low price bracket, but if you son wants to shoot video and upload it to facebook, there's little chance he wants to log and capture the footage in real time, so a hard drive or flash memory camera would be a better fit.
Lots of choices, we can help you sort it out with a little more info.