Buying assistance

Discussion in 'Camcorders, Action Cams & Video Making Forum' started by GTGeek88, Sep 2, 2012.

  1. GTGeek88

    GTGeek88
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    I've been researching camcorders. What I have not found is a good site where I can select from a detailed list of features I'd like (EVF, Zoom, type of sensor, size of sensor, low light performance, etc.) and get a list of cameras that meet the criteria I select. I've found some sites that have a bit of that, but not a really good one.

    Does anyone know of such a site? I'm in the US, so I'd need cameras available here (I'm not sure if there is a difference, but I did find one site in the UK that recommended a particular camera that seemed good, but then I couldn't find anyone selling that camera - maybe it was not offered in the US?).

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. rogs

    rogs
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  3. Bob++

    Bob++
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    Wouldn't it be great if there was such a site.
     
  4. GTGeek88

    GTGeek88
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    Your reply said "our" . . . do you work for that site?

    Regardless, I had already visited that site and found it helpful. However, it didn't have some of the newer cameras I was looking at (or maybe it was just that it listed specs only and had no review). Also, the filters are not nearly what I was looking for and I found them hard to use (had to keep resetting them and a few times, though I had certain things checked, when I clicked Apply Filters what I had checked did not get applied).

    It was one of the better sites, but it falls short of what I'm looking for.

    Thanks for your reply, however.
     
  5. rogs

    rogs
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    No, I don't work for the site -- the forum software automatically modifes the 'link' wordings......

    As Bob++ says --if only there were such a site!

    Sadly I don't think there is --or is likely to be. Some of the manufacturers do allow you to compare the features of several models, but it's a failrly limited function --and apart from applying to only their own models, tends to be fairly slesctive in what features they choose to 'compare'.

    But to set up a site with a comprehensive data base of the type you describe....where's the incentive?...
    The consumer camcorder market is shrinking, as more folk are happy to use the vidoe capabilities of their compact cameras, DSLRs - or even phones! - for their family videos. So no real incentive for manufacturers to publish much in the way of technical details.
    They tend to rely on the current 'trendy' marketing phrases to sell their wares.... '1080p'...'full HD' that sort of thing.....
    And when it comes to sensors, for example, they often choose the 'features' that sound the most attractive. Size often gets mention, but it's not always the only important factor. For example, most modern consumer camcorders now use CMOS sensors, rather than CCD. Not an important change for most folk, but the rolling shutter can be a big problem to some, and that fact of course never gets a mention!

    So that leaves the so called 'prosumer' market, and of course the full professional camcorder market. Details for those units seem to be more technical, naturally. The problem with that world is trying to get objective reviews on the different models. 'Pros' seem to get very protective of their favourite brands... and proceed to 'slag off' models by any other make! Not helpful!.....

    What sort of area are you looking into?...'consumer', 'prosumer or 'pro' .. or to put it another way, what sort of price bracket? :)
    And do you have any specific type of shooting in mind? In certain situations, for example, the newer DSLRs can give stunning video performance, at a very reasonable price, but the ergonomics are hopeless for many types of shooting....
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2012
  6. GTGeek88

    GTGeek88
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    Rogs - Presently, I mainly shoot my daughter's soccer games, but also shoot family events, etc. I have been using my Nikon P100. It has an articulating LCD as well as an EVF, so I can shoot by holding it down in front of my stomach or up to my eye. That's been pretty good, but it's recently had mechanical issues (it was repaired under warranty by Nikon, but they didn't get the problem fixed and I've just gotten it back from them a second time).

    I was thinking of just upgrading my Nikon D60 to the Nikon D5100 and using that, but - as you say - the ergonomics are not great and I'd be losing an EVF, which I have on the P100. Also, the P100 is more like a camcorder in that it zooms from a wide angle shoot (maybe 35 mm or so) out to something equivalent to 250 mm. It's a 26X zoom. That zoom range works well, but to get that on a DSLR, I'd be spending quite a bit for a lens and I'd be working it manually. So for what I'm shooting, a DSLR does not seem to be the right choice at all.

    I'm thinking of buying the Sony HDR-CX760V. Pricey, for sure, but it has the EVF, the new Sony IS system, good low light performance for those indoor family shots, a nice still resolution at 24 megapixels, lots of memory, quality video images, etc. I'm thinking it's best to have the EVF for the soccer games, though I might could do without it and that would give me more options to choose from and would save me some money.

    Suggestions?
     
  7. rogs

    rogs
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    Well, the one thing I regret about buying my first Panasonic HD camcorder was losing the EVF. I'd never buy another camcorder without one again, but that's just me!!

    The Sony model you mention is not available in the UK, AFAIK, so not sure you'll get much comment on it here, on a predominatantly UK site?

    Personally, I'm not keen on internal memory storage. 'All your eggs in one basket' etc... and SDHC cards are cheap enough these days. (I don't even like those to be too large.. same reason! :))

    You might like to look at the Panasonic HC X900 as an alternative? Not sure how similar it is to the previous TM900, SD900 series, but you if you scroll down the threads here on the forum, you'll see a pretty big thread about those models. Mostly favourable comments, I think you'll find...

    Not sure how many folk (apart from the pro reviewers) will have tried both the Sony and the Panasonic?.... We do seem to get a lot more posts about Panasonic than Sony here, not sure why?....
     
  8. GTGeek88

    GTGeek88
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    Yeah, I need to find a US-based forum, I guess.

    The Panasonics seem to be good. The one you mention is one I have on my list.

    Supposedly the new Sony IS system is quite good, so that interests me. I did see one person say, however, that the system was trying to compensate on shoots where it shouldn't have been and actually causing the optics to move, resulting in shake in the video.

    I think the Sony I'm looking at has all that internal storage, but also takes an SD/SDHC/SDXC card. I'm not sure if you can tell it to use the external card or what. The eggs in one basket thing is something to consider, though I've never had an SD card fail me.
     

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