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Camcorder between $500-$1000?
Posted by: freescotland
Date: April 10, 2006 01:25PM
I need a camcorder to do some simple videos for an awards dinner at work.

I will be using mostly imovie to edit then probably export to idvd using a intel imac 2 with 2 g or ram.

I would like a camera, extra battery, tripod, case and microphone for less than $1,000. Firwire preferred, but I suppose usb 2.0 is ok.

I need an audio input for a mic. I'd like audio/video inputs to transfer some old vhs to digital as well.

I don't need a camera that shoots stills.

I do not want mini dvd but mini dv tapes unless there is a compelling reason to buy something else. Video quality of the hard drive units seems to be in question in some circles.

Panasonic GS-300 looks interesting but lacks firewire and throughput.

The Sony-DCR-HC96 seems to have most of what I am looking for at a similar price.

Anyone have a camera they like that is at least similar to my wants?

thanks



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/10/2006 01:31PM by freescotland.
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Re: Camcorder between $500-$1000?
Posted by: incognegro
Date: April 10, 2006 01:37PM
take a look at the Canon ZR500.

[www.camcorderinfo.com]

it mentions that it has an audio input port.

i just ordered the ZR700 today, which lacks that port but has longer battery life and does pass-thru analog to digital conversion, which i need. under $300 shipped from Dell after coupon codes.



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Re: Camcorder between $500-$1000?
Posted by: jonny
Date: April 10, 2006 01:39PM
[www.camcorderinfo.com]

I just got one of these. ~ $300. Top rated on Consumer Reports. The auto iris is not great (a bit jumpy), but manual is fine and otherwise, I've been pretty happy.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/10/2006 02:05PM by jonny.
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Re: Camcorder between $500-$1000?
Posted by: davester
Date: April 10, 2006 02:00PM
There are tons of camcorders in that price range. You need to decide what is important to you first (i.e. compact size, manual controls, point-and-shoot ease, good low light ability, etc) and then go browse [www.camcorderinfo.com] reviews to figure out which items suit your needs.

Low-light shooting ability is an often forgotten about and very important feature to indoor shooters. As I recall, the JVCs and Canon ZR series have been pretty bad in this quality compared to the equivalent Sony and Panasonic cams, but things change fast in this field so that generalization may not be true with current models.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: Camcorder between $500-$1000?
Posted by: davester
Date: April 10, 2006 02:02PM
There are tons of camcorders in that price range. You need to decide what is important to you first (i.e. compact size, manual controls, point-and-shoot ease, good low light ability, etc) and then go browse [www.camcorderinfo.com] reviews to figure out which items suit your needs.

Low-light shooting ability is an often forgotten about and very important feature to indoor shooters. As I recall, the JVCs and Canon ZR series have been pretty bad in this quality compared to the equivalent Sony and Panasonic cams, but things change fast in this field so that generalization may not be true with current models.

I ended going with Sony because it and Panasonic had the best picture and low light ability at the time, and the Panasonics had crummy image stabilization. Also, some of the Sonys have their great hybrid LCD, a must in bright outdoor shooting.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: Camcorder between $500-$1000?
Posted by: incognegro
Date: April 10, 2006 02:09PM
the ZR700 got good marks for low light, at least equivalent to other brands.

i just checked my order status at Dell - May 5th!? do orders from them usually take almost a month?



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Re: Camcorder between $500-$1000?
Posted by: Racer X
Date: April 10, 2006 09:05PM
but the Canon ZR series has a common problem that crops up after about a year of use (I don't recall what it is, but a lot of users here and back at the "old place" have had it), and the tape transport mechanism is noisy.

I'd stick with Sony personally.
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Re: Camcorder between $500-$1000?
Posted by: incognegro
Date: April 10, 2006 10:44PM
racer x,

i think it was rewinding. i plan to get a mini dv rewinder for $15.



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