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Old    Jay (ironj32)      Join Date: Jan 2007       06-24-2008, 11:54 AM Reply   
i'm looking to purchase my first video camera and was wondering if you guys have any recommendations?

what are the pro's and cons to miniDV vs. Hard Drive cams?

i'm basically going to be using this for only wakeboarding purposes. i'm willing to spend in the $800-$1000 range. obviously i want something that will give me awesome quality. i plan on doing a bunch of editing on the computer.

thanks for any input you can give!
Old    Nate Hudson (iamnathanhudson)      Join Date: Dec 2002       06-24-2008, 12:03 PM Reply   
depends on the power of your machine. I love my Canon HF100. I got it for like 668 bucks and that included overnight shipping from I think it was like 640 something originally. At circuit city and best buy they are selling the same camera for 899.99. I prefer the HF100 because it doesn't use a hard drive but SDHC cards instead. The HF10 is just like the HF100 but has a hard drive. I chose the HF100 because eventually, hard drives have moving parts and they eventually fail. Nevertheless, Hard Drives mixed with Water moisture just don't go well. I did a lot of research (months) to find the best camera for my needs. Look into the HF100 and read all the reviews.

Old    Nate Hudson (iamnathanhudson)      Join Date: Dec 2002       06-24-2008, 12:04 PM Reply   
did i mention that the HF100 shoots full HD?
Old    Jay (ironj32)      Join Date: Jan 2007       06-26-2008, 5:15 AM Reply   
how much footage can you put on an SDHC card? are they something that can be could i copy over the footage onto my PC or External Hard Drive and then re-use the card? if you can do that, is there any issues with reduction in quality?

(Message edited by ironj32 on June 26, 2008)
Old    Rich Dykmans (richd)      Join Date: Oct 2003       06-26-2008, 7:08 AM Reply   
When you say "miniDV" I assume you're talking about HDV. There's really 2 issues when you compare those 2 recording formats in regards to consumer cams. HDV, which records to miniDV tape and uses a long GOP, 25 mbs, mpeg2 constant bit rate compression scheme, has the advantage of easier archival of your footage and is easier to edit.

AVCHD cams record to harddrive or SDHC media and use a variable bit rate (max 17 mbs currently) long GOP mpeg4 compression. These cams have the advantage of no tape drive and full resolution off the sensor (which is what Nate is talking about above) but at this point are harder to edit and may be harder to archive depending on your needs. It's also not clear that AVCHD can handle high motion footage before the codec breaks any better, (possibly worse) then HDV (which isn't the greatest to begin with).

I'm hearing that it doesn't at the current bit rates in cams like the HF10 but I haven't seen that for myself, that's why I asked Nate to post up some footage when he gets a chance in an earlier thread.
Old    Jay (ironj32)      Join Date: Jan 2007       06-26-2008, 8:58 AM Reply   
yeah i think i'm talking about HDV, lol. i'm new to the picture/video world so am not familiar with all the terms. from what i've been reading in reviews and other forums i think i have it narrowed down to either the HV20, HV30, or the HF100. i don't think there is really any difference in the HV20 or 30, except for the megapixels in still photos...correct me if i am wrong.
Old    Rich Dykmans (richd)      Join Date: Oct 2003       06-26-2008, 1:04 PM Reply   
I think they added another shooting mode like 1080 24p to the hv30 as well. It's the same sensor in all 3 so it really gets down to HDV / tape vs AVCHD / solid state. You can reuse the sdhc card btw, record and erase to it as many times as you want. If you're shooting a lot of footage that you need to keep miniDV tape / hdv is probably better. As far as the IQ goes I know what the hv20/30 are capable of as I own an HV10, I'd like to see some HF100 wakeboarding footage.
Old    Nick Schrein (wakeboardern1)      Join Date: Aug 2007       06-28-2008, 8:59 AM Reply   
Yo, rich, if you have seen any of the videos that I've posted, that's AVCHD from my Canon HG10. If you're running the camera right and avoiding too much shaking, it handles high motion footage fairly well, minus at night, it gets dodgy then.
Old    Nate Hudson (iamnathanhudson)      Join Date: Dec 2002       06-30-2008, 6:00 AM Reply   
Hey Rich,
Sorry, I didn't get back to ya with footage. I was holding out for all the killer footage I am going to get this upcoming weekend. We have an awesome fireworks show across from my dock plus a bunch of other stuff I am going to shoot. I thought it would be better than my initial test shots.

Rich is right on about the AVCHD cams. I love mine but it can be hard to edit. Overall though, I like the workflow of pulling clips off a card better than having tapes to deal with which is my main reason for buying the HF100. I agree with Nick in the fact that my camera seems to handle high motion footage just fine. The only problem is a problem you get with most of the consumer cams out there right now, low light shooting is not the greatest.
Old    Nate Hudson (iamnathanhudson)      Join Date: Dec 2002       06-30-2008, 6:04 AM Reply   
oh and to answer your question about footage, I get about 31 min per 4gb card. I chose to get a few 4gb cards so I could rip the whole card to a data DVD for backup and achival purposes, instead of getting a huge card.


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