1. Join Now

    AVForums.com uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Mini DV wanted capable of lower light ?!

Discussion in 'Camcorders, Action Cams & Video Editing Forum' started by gsnowdon, Aug 24, 2004.

  1. gsnowdon

    gsnowdon
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Hello.

    I am looking to replace my old 8mm canon analogue camcorder with a mini dv, mainly because of the ease of editing on a pc and transferring back / creating dvd’s. However, I have noticed that all of the models that I have tried do not seem to be able to handle lower light conditions. By lower light, I do not mean darkness, but my house does not have much natural light going into it and is quite dark even with all the lights on. The thing is, the old 8mm handles the lighting fine, and I need to be able to record in lower light conditions as the majority of the filming will be for my children’s birthdays etc. I have tried various Sony models up to the £1000 area, a canon mv630i, a Panasonic or two and a JVC model. They are all the same. I have scoured the magazine reviews and they tend to skimp over this pretty important point (or am I the only person that wants to film his kids indoors with not brilliant light ?!). The reviewers tend to say something along the lines of ‘the low-light performance could be better but it pretty standard for this price range’. From what I’ve seen, this price range is pretty broad as I’ve covered most models from £300 to £1000. Does anyone know of a good sub £1000 camcorder that works well in lower light, or is this a pitfall of the digital techonology ? I never get any help in the high street shops and as soon as I mention ’lower light’, the staff start :boring: waffling on about the night recording capabilities, to which I mention that I don’t really want to record my daughters birthday in ‘greeno-vision’. The additional requirements I am looking for are DV In & Out, True 16:9, microphone socket and manual adjustments.

    Please, somebody must know of one that’s out there. I was hoping the Panasonic 3 CCD’s would be better, but they appear to be the same……

    Thanks,

    Greg
     
  2. Roy Mallard

    Roy Mallard
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    You could look at some of the JVC models with the f1.2 lens (most camcorders are f1.6), none are true widescreen at this price point.

    You are not going to get round the fact that cameras need light to work, have you considered a camera top light such as made by hahnel?.
     
  3. gsnowdon

    gsnowdon
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Thanks for that.

    Ok, so basically I need to aim to get a camcorder with an aperture of 1.2 or maybe 1.4, this could do it. I appreciate that I need some light, but the degradation in quality is big in the models that I've tested, especially compared to my 8mm analogue, which handles the amount of light in my house much better. I don't expect to have to need to stick a light on top as this wouldnt look natural enough, and as mentioned the 8mm handles it fine, so I think its a case of waiting til the right one comes along, or increasing the budget.

    Thanks again,

    Greg
     
  4. Bassbin

    Bassbin
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2003
    Messages:
    2,395
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Leicester
    Ratings:
    +56
    I've got a JVC DV4000 which has a f1.2 lens. Managed to get it at a Dixons tax free store for £442 a couple of weeks ago. However, it's a discontinued model so may be difficult to find. If you keep an eye out on ebay and on Jessops website you may get a used one. The previous model the DV3000 is almaost the same but has a a bigger CCD (so it's even better in low light) but it doesn't have a mic input.
     
  5. MarkE19

    MarkE19
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2002
    Messages:
    17,107
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    Rainham Essex
    Ratings:
    +2,380
    The thing is that digital camcorders are just not that good at low light filming. Analogue camcorders are far better, but obviously overall are of a lower quality. No consumer digi camcorders will be that great at low light filming. I have a £1500 Sony TRV-900 cam that is about as good as you get before going far higher in price, but this is only ok at indoor badly lit filming and is now discontinued and has been replaced by the not so good TRV-950.

    Being in real danger of constantly repeating the same advise I would suggest you try and track down a TRV-33. Although this has again been discontinued and replaced with newer models, they are not as good as the TRV-33 according to a few others on this forum that have tried both the old & new models.

    Mark.
     
  6. MarkE19

    MarkE19
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2002
    Messages:
    17,107
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    Rainham Essex
    Ratings:
    +2,380
    TRV33 Here for £478inc VAT

    Mark.
     
  7. Gary D

    Gary D
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2002
    Messages:
    7,770
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Ratings:
    +826
    I've got a Sony HCE -14 (think thats right? :rolleyes: ) and its got a low light button on the top. Also i've set it to 16:9 and it works fine, the picture on my tosh switches to widescreen as soon as the camera comes on.


    Gary
     
  8. shard

    shard
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2004
    Messages:
    20
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    1
    Ratings:
    +0
    Glad I found this article as it reinforces the fact that my 8mm camera seems much better indoors than digital ones I've tried.
    That camera just died, I now need to get a new one (pay up to 600)
    and soon as my daughter hasn't got a pause button. Any cameras now
    available any good for this?
     
  9. Quilgy

    Quilgy
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Messages:
    153
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    London
    Ratings:
    +12
    I could be wrong but I think that the 3CCD DV cameras perform a bit better than the 1CCD'ers in low light so that may be a consideration.
     
  10. kwestwood

    kwestwood
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    I had a Panasonic NV-DS11 which had a f1.6 lense. This worked fine in lower light. I now have a Canon MVX10i with a f1.8 lense and this is really poor in lower light. Its that bad that i'm thinking of changing it.

    The Canon MVX3i is a possibility or those mentioned above.
     

Share This Page

Loading...