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Newbie seeking DV Camcorder Buying Advice...

Discussion in 'Camcorders, Action Cams & Video Editing Forum' started by Starnzy, Jun 19, 2003.

  1. Starnzy

    Starnzy
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    Hi
    I am looking into buying my first camcorder and don't really know which are the best rated models within my budget.
    I am looking at spending no more than about £800 really.

    I will be using it mainly for taking footage of snowboarding events, and using on snowboarding holidays.

    I have seen the new Panasonic NVGS70B for about £780 and that 'looks like' it has quite a good range of features for the money, but I've not yet found any reviews on it, or heard how this model compares to perhaps other models from Sony & Canon?

    I would be most grateful if anyone could please give me any feedback/advice on which models are highly rated within my budget, or if anyone knows how this Panasonic performs in comparison with other models in this price range.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. MartinImber

    MartinImber
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    I rate the Sony TRV33
     
  3. Tunes Man

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    I own two Sony camcorders and am very happy with them. I have nothing bad to say about Panasonic because they make some very good products of which I own, but when it comes to camcorders, Sony has the features which I prefer. Both of my cams have interval recording, which allows you to take one frame of video at a time, one of my cams allows me to take "nightshot" video which allows you to film in total darkness, and both cams have a slow speed shutter also usefull for shooting in dark situations. Both of my Sony cams also have firewire input/outputs
    which allow me to record my video onto my computer.
    I know you said that you only have so much money to spend, but if you've thought about checking around, check out some of the Sony models. They're well worth it. Tunes Man.
     
  4. Starnzy

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    Thanks both of you for your replies. Since reading your replies I have checked out some of the Sony models and the TRV33 in particular does look like the kind of unit I'm after, the only drawback that I could see with it was a) all options are tucked away on the touch screen menus (I'd prefer to be able to access such features by means of buttons but maybe this isn't too much of an annoyance?), and b) I have read that the zoom control on these units are VERY small indeed making delicate zoom work slightly finicky? Having never actually used a DV camcorder myself I have no experience in knowing whats likely to be awkward and what isnt.
    Is nightime shooting ok with these kind of units with quite a small lens only I have a Sony P50 stills camera and as soon as u try taking a photo when it starts getting dusk, the image really seems to suffer, no light at all.
    You have both certainly swayed my opinion towards the Sonys more than the panasonic at the moment though.
    Are the Sony PC108, 109 etc models all older models than the TRV range or..?

    Thanks again for your help!
     
  5. JimM

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    I have the TRV22 which I opted for over the 33 as it is apparently slightly better in low light situations.

    It has the same zoom control and I don't have any problem using this whatsoever. The slider is quite small but my no so little fingers can operate it smoothly.

    The touchscreen also hasn't been an issue for me as I just really point and shoot. You can flip it over and fold it back against the camera and use it that way, it's just a case of getting a feel of where the touch points are then

    I had trouble making up my mind what camera to get but in the end the fact that Sony products have the best after market support (filters/ mics etc) swayed me.

    HTH

    Jim
     
  6. scott69

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    My advice is - Go to your local electrical retailer and play with all the diffirent models. Decide on one or two, then get online and check prices www.letsgodigital.co.uk if you are unhappy about buying online then go to jessops, who will price match the cam (or get near the price).
    Happy bargain hunting !!
     
  7. Starnzy

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    Thanks for the good advice Scoot. Ill go to Jessops tomorrow and have a look at them 'in the flesh' and narrow it down to a couple different units.
    Will Jessops match LetsGoDigital prices then? I noticed one of the new panasonics was £220 cheaper at LetsGetDigital than at Jessops!! :O

    Thanks again!
     
  8. scott69

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    I got my panasonic GX7 from Jessops.
    They wouldn't match letsgodigital(£680), but were only £40 more(jessops retail price was £999). As long as the cam is in stock and not a grey import then they should match it.
    The extra £40 was worth it in my opinion because you can easily take it back if anything goes wrong.
    Make sure you do check cams out "in the flesh" as I found the small sony cams were too small and uncomfortable, and at the time opted for the GX7.
    Hope this helps.
     
  9. Starnzy

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    Thanks Scott. I'll definately visit Jessops in the morning then check them out.
     
  10. JimM

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    The advice to check out the camera in the flesh is spot on, but if funds are tight then I can highly recommend letsgodigital.
    I found them to be absolutely terrific. The prices include next day delivery and when I wanted to return the JVC cam I bought originally they were happy to do this with no questions asked.
    I have no connection to the company but on the rare occassion you get good service do like to let people know

    Jim
     
  11. Starnzy

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    Thanks Jim.
     
  12. MartinImber

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    I got the TRV33 from Jessops price matched to £610

    It also has a 16x9 CCD and does anamorphic recording
     
  13. Starnzy

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    Martin - How have you find your TRV33 for night-time footage, and also fast paced footage (i.e. I will be using it mainly for recording snowboarding footage)?£610 sounds like a good price as I think it was £599 on letsgodigital. If possible Id rather buy from Jessops as I want to get an extended warranty that covers accidental damage (as I WILL be falling on it whilst snowboarding at some point! :/)

    Thanks
     
  14. Erpland

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    Jim

    do you mind me asking why you returned the JVC?
    Ive held the Sony TRV33 and JVC DX95 in a shop and prefered the feel of the JVC, I too will be using the camera mainly indoors for a new baby. I also liked the bigger screen on the JVC.

    cheers
     
  15. MartinImber

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    Night Time - I have used Night Shot - fun but not THAT much use

    As to low light AFAIK it is ok - it is a LOT better than my old HVC4000P.

    Fast motion - seems fine

    Anyway the results look good especially after DVD ing (better than of tape) as you don't lose by going SVIDEO from camera because DV is a form of component - MPEG works on component and my DVD player is RGB connected
     
  16. JimM

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    Erpland

    The DX95 happens to be the model I returned :)

    The indoor quality was hopeless, I tried it out in our bathroom which has white tiles but when viewed back it had a severe blue tint to it, and everything looked un-natural. The Sony gives a much truer picture, still not 100% perfect but close enough that you have to look hard for its faults.

    Overall I'm extremely happy with the 22 and don't think you can currently find much better for the money, but then as an owner of one I'm biased :)

    HTH

    Jim
     
  17. edsm

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    I have the sony 19 which is the same as the 22 without the analologue input and the memory stick. As I don't have old videos I want to convert I choose this model and aved myself the extra money.(The quality off digital stills is anyway not good on a camcorder) I am very happy with it!
    A forum just about sony 19-22-33 which helped me to decide, you can find here:
    http://www.camcorderinfo.com/bbs/forumdisplay.php?s=&forumid=21
    Good Luck!
     
  18. BlindcopUK

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    It looks like I might be returning my DX95 as well... Night shooting was aweful (I first tested it at the summer solstice at stonehenge:)) and the tape motor is too loud for my liking. The worst part though is that it is just a bit tooooo big to fit comfortably in one hand, and the strap is useless, so it is not much use as a compact camera.

    I am looking at replacing with a Sony, but can't decide whether to go for a really portable one like a 103, or a slightly larger 33...

    Decisions decisions...

    Dom
     

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