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HDR-HC3E missing important features?

dekoded

Novice Member
I'm really tempted to buy a sony hdr-hc3e, mainly due to some excellent reviews and of course it's HD ability.

What's worrying me though is that it hasn't got some features that I would really like:

external mic input (except for hotshoe)

a higher optical zoom

optical image stability (as opposed to digital)

no dolby sound option

As this is my first ever camcorder I'm not even sure I would need these features anyway, but should I just go for another model that has these features? the HD ability is really appealing though, as I want any recordings made now to still look good 10-20 years later.

Is there a decent camcorder that has all the features of the hc3, except the HD, but also has the features on my wishlist?

I bought a copy of 'digital video/what digital camcorder' the other day and it has a review of the hc3, it scores 94% !!!, which is brilliant, but I found the buying guide to be unhelpful due to almost all the models rated get a score of between 80-90% !!! the lowest score was 70%, which isn't very helpful, the ratings should vary much more than that surely!
 

MarkE19

Moderator
Johnnie said:
I'm really tempted to buy a sony hdr-hc3e, mainly due to some excellent reviews and of course it's HD ability.

What's worrying me though is that it hasn't got some features that I would really like:

external mic input (except for hotshoe)
IIRC the older hc1e has a mic input. This can be a useful feature if you are likely to need better audio pickup, but for many users the input will never get used - only time will tell if you will require this feature.
Johnnie said:
a higher optical zoom
Why? A handheld cam on 10x zoom (even with image stabilisation) will be shaky. Anything more and your audience is likely to get sea sick :devil: . Even on a good quality tripod you will get shaking if you go too high, therefore I would suggest sticking to a max of 10x and if you do need more then you can always zoom in when editing on a PC as the loss in resolution should not be too noticeable with HD.
Johnnie said:
optical image stability (as opposed to digital)
optical & digital stabilisation both have their advantages & disadvantages. Do a search on here as it has been covered in the past.

Hope this helps,
Mark.
 

MarkE19

Moderator
Found it! I knew I had been in a thread about IS on cams - the thread can be found Here.

Mark.
 

dekoded

Novice Member
Thanks, I had pretty much made up my mind on getting the hc3e but I just had a few niggling doubts.

These are getting cheaper by the day now (literally!) so it's just a case of having enough self control not to click the buy it now button!

What about the dolby audio? does anyone bother with it on a camcorder anyway?

If/when dixons get more stock I'm all over it!
 

patmyhead

Standard Member
did you get the sony ?
if so where from & price please
they are going on flebay for 660 including post extra battery & a couple of tapes
considering one of these myself
dixons still have no stock

Pat
 

redsox_mark

Novice Member
Regarding the lack of a 5.1 dolby mic:

This is a feature on some DVD and HDD cams... I don't know of any DV or HDV cams with it. (Edit): DV camcorders can't support this, as DV is only stereo audio. I believe the same is true for HDV.

While some who have it like it, really to do good 5.1 sound you need multiple mics or audio sources. Most of the time when you are recording with a camcorder mic you want the sound of a subject in front of you.

When you watch a hollywood movie with 5.1 it's great, but they mix those tracks separatly.... in my opinion a 5.1 mic on a camcorder is not essential at all.

Mark is right that the HC1 has an ordinary mic input... but the HC3 does not.

This baby which should be out soon also has a mic input jack
http://www.camcorderinfo.com/content/HDR-UX1-and-HDR-SR1---Sony-Unveils-AVCHD-Camcorders.htm
 

patmyhead

Standard Member
there is a chance that import duty will have to be paid on the Sony have a read of the terms & conditions
Dixon's have them priced @ £649 but last time i looked none in stock

Pat
 

RecordablDVDfan

Active Member
No the feedback from that US store puts me off somewhat and yes I'm sure Customs will stick another £100 if not more on top plus say £50 postage so just a few 100 cheaper then

There is one being auctioned on ebay btw. There was a site where someone had produced a soap style 'programme' done on a HD camcorder, forget the link..you could download 'episodes'
 

jwramsay

Active Member
No the feedback from that US store puts me off somewhat and yes I'm sure Customs will stick another £100 if not more on top plus say £50 postage so just a few 100 cheaper then

There is one being auctioned on ebay btw. There was a site where someone had produced a soap style 'programme' done on a HD camcorder, forget the link..you could download 'episodes'
Is this the site you mean ?

http://www.mariposahd.tv/episodes

Also, HC-3 now gone from the Dixons website:confused: :thumbsdow
 

patmyhead

Standard Member
SONY can see in total darkness using the night shot /super night shot mode
i am still playing with the camera i only got it a couple of days ago
videoed the wife in total darkness quite weird really as see looked like a zombie so this mode is true to life:devil:
Pat
 

RecordablDVDfan

Active Member
SONY can see in total darkness using the night shot /super night shot mode
i am still playing with the camera i only got it a couple of days ago
videoed the wife in total darkness quite weird really as see looked like a zombie so this mode is true to life:devil:
Pat
LOL ..

Hmm really, yes I'll have to buy one of these but the shop I gave a link to is basd in Hong Kong. I guess the purchase will be ok though

Any chance you can upload a few stills or video even of your wife or whatever ? So night video is black and white or weak colour ?
 

patmyhead

Standard Member
no stills yet as i am waiting for the memory stick duo to arrive (there ain't one in the box)
also i have to get the I link lead to connect Sony to Lappy for video
also i don't think that i have the Sony set up right for night shots yet haven't had a lot of time to play yet

Pat
 

RecordablDVDfan

Active Member
OK sure understand. I can see HD camcorders being very popular in the next few years. How things have changed in the last 5 years huh ?

What's the max capacity for the memory stick and can you reocrd video also onto it ?! ht

The only thing with the HC3 is there's no light for video and the 10x times zoom is a bit on the low side still being a bit picky here maybe. Indoor shots not too good I guess
 

RecordablDVDfan

Active Member
OK sure understand. I can see HD camcorders being very popular in the next few years. How things have changed in the last 5 years huh ?

What's the max capacity for the memory stick and can you record video also onto it ?! ht

The only thing with the HC3 is there's no light for video and the 10x zoom is a bit on the low side still being a bit picky here maybe. Indoor shots not too good I guess
 

jwramsay

Active Member
Is there an echo here?

HC-3 was on the "Gadget Show" C5 last night, is repeated soon too.
 

redsox_mark

Novice Member
What's the max capacity for the memory stick and can you record video also onto it ?!

The only thing with the HC3 is there's no light for video and the 10x zoom is a bit on the low side still being a bit picky here maybe. Indoor shots not too good I guess
I don't think there is any maximum size for the memory stick - the biggest you can find (2 GB?). But it won't record HD video to it. (In fact I don't think it records video to the memory stick at all.

I don't see 10x zoom as an issue. You can add a light using the AIS shoe, or via a bracket attaching to the tripod mount.
 

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