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Need advice - real bad!

motifstudios

Standard Member
Hi everyone,

My names AJ, and I am in need of advice from professionals!

I searched online for days trying to find the right camcorder, but to no avail..there are just too many options and I am not sure which one is right for me.

I came to a few options; the Panasonic HDC HS700, the Canon HF S21... That's it really..

I am a musician, and the camcorder will be used for high quality music videos, and recording sessions in the studio for the internet. I am looking for a excellent movie style quality/film quality... We are trying to get our videos to look professional.

My budget is around £800. But it is flexible above and below.

Main thing is that quality needs to be beautiful, or at an excellent level so that it can be made to look top notch (with post work)..

Sorry if I sound like a newb - I am a newbie with Cameras and need advice..as all the searching has become frustrating ;( ..

Any help is highly appreciated!

Thanks in advance.

Ajay
 

12harry

Distinguished Member
You don't say - but are you doing the filming?....it reads like it.

I'd be inclined to worry about the sound quality (of your DVD's) and then put a dreamy vid to it. Sound on camera is usually pretty poor. Also be prepared for poor vids in low-light.

To get more replies, we need more info, eg your vid experience,
 

chrishull3

Prominent Member
Yes to get what you want you may have to spend more or compramise,i dont think an £800 consumer cam will do all you want, at present the panasonic TM range are about as good as you will get but remember editing video from cams like this is not that easy at times especialy if you are just starting out,DSLR video is another option but needs more experience still.Good luck
 

noiseboy72

Distinguished Member
I agree. £800 won't even buy the video editing software suite required to make something look really nice. Adobe Production Premium is about where you would need to start.

Camera wise, look at something with a big chip, CMOS or CCD. This will allow more light in and take better pictures when using ordinary light sources. Worth having a look second hand. If you can put up with SD instead of HD, the JVC DV500 was always a great camera for low light. It also has XLR mic / line inputs to capture audio nicely as well. You can also record timecode, a must if you want to sync up to multitrack recordings later.

If you are looking for that edgy,slightly arty look, a DSLR is difficult to beat, and will cope with low light very well. Because of the way they record, they have a very filmic look about the picture. Sound is an issue, so best to capture seperately and sync up later.

Don't forget that editing HD needs a good PC. Macs don't really manage HD until you get up to their quad cores and a PC will require a fast NVIDIA graphics card as an accelerator if you don't want to wait for effects to render all the time.

A second hand Canon XH-A1 might sneak into your budget, but you will need to spend at least another £500 on a tripod, £600 - £700 on lighting and grip and you would probably want a Firestore or SD card based recorder instead of tape, and thats another £500 - 700.

Video to "Pro" level is not cheap. My edit suite cost in excess of £10K, just to knock corporate videos together to broadcast standards. We hire in camera crews for £700 per day with all the kit, as it would cost us over £30K to buy the equipment alone.

Sorry if this all sounds daunting, I think what I am trying to say is that a prosumer camcorder for recording sessions and sticking them up on Vimeo is never going to translate into a video on MTV.
 

motifstudios

Standard Member
Hey guys thank you for the responses.

Well in terms of experience, I have a decent level of experience using cameras, I know the basics of getting the right shots, using light etc. However I have only ever made films using home camcorders, I want something at least semi pro looking.

I have taken the advice of a DSLR and checked out the Canon 550d; sample video:

YouTube - Location scout (Canon EOS 550D/t2i)

This seems to have a really good look and is kind of what I am aiming for. To the previous poster, does this above video not fit in with the broadcast look? I mean I am not sure as I am just a rookie, but this video, at 1080p HD looks amazing in my opinion for just a £600 camera... (Obviously I appreciate there may be some after effects but I am looking to purchase Adobe Premiere Pro to accomodate, the software package is a seperate cost)..

Is the 550d alone a great camera, or is there a specific lense I require to get this desired effect?

Thanks for the help so far.

Ajay
 

noiseboy72

Distinguished Member
This video is a stunning use of the 550D. Some lighting and plenty of post, including some speed changes. It says they used the standard lenses, not prime lenses, so no reason that you would not get similar results.

My point is that the camera is a small part of the total package. If you have already budgeted for software and hardware etc. then the 550D might well be what you are looking for.

All the very best.
 

chrishull3

Prominent Member
Hey guys thank you for the responses.

Well in terms of experience, I have a decent level of experience using cameras, I know the basics of getting the right shots, using light etc. However I have only ever made films using home camcorders, I want something at least semi pro looking.

I have taken the advice of a DSLR and checked out the Canon 550d; sample video:

YouTube - Location scout (Canon EOS 550D/t2i)

This seems to have a really good look and is kind of what I am aiming for. To the previous poster, does this above video not fit in with the broadcast look? I mean I am not sure as I am just a rookie, but this video, at 1080p HD looks amazing in my opinion for just a £600 camera... (Obviously I appreciate there may be some after effects but I am looking to purchase Adobe Premiere Pro to accomodate, the software package is a seperate cost)..

Is the 550d alone a great camera, or is there a specific lense I require to get this desired effect?

Thanks for the help so far.

Ajay


That was very well made with the kit lens,clearly the maker likes to colour correct,i owned a 550D and it could produce nice colours as can my current panasonic GH2 with a lot more resolution.Adobe premier pro would be fine i had no problems with basic software editing the canon mov files,for low light work faster lenses than the kit lens is realy needed i suspect in the film it was made to look darker than it was as the 18-55mm kit lens is not too good for low light filming ,if you are seriously thinking of a canon DSLR remember the 550D is now replaced by the 600D only you know if the extrs features it has are worth it to you :smashin:
 

12harry

Distinguished Member
Noiseboy, you seem to know your stuff - but an Editsuite needn't cost that budget...I bought Sony Vegas 10HD(ten audio tracks, several vids and effects to die for...with SoundForge and 400 R-F mood tracks (not used yet), for £50 quid. That's a £500+ pro-package minus some bits but would need "lots of knowledghe" to use properly.

Yr point about XLR is good - pro's don't like anything else and whilst I think you can fit an XLR-audio box to a Canon DSLR, it's a great cost-adder (and the better Canon is outside the budget, with a large aperture lens).

I'm just not sure we really have enough "handle" on this user's need/experience to satisfy budget+Quality as we understand it....

FWIW, I don't find YouTube vids high quality and the sound is a bit so-so as well.
 

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