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Sony HC19 or JVC DF420 - Opinions needed please

Discussion in 'Camcorders, Action Cams & Video Editing Forum' started by stevef, Jun 26, 2005.

  1. stevef

    stevef
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    Hi,

    I am searching for a sub £300 camcorder to replace my Panasonic NV-DS27 which although is not too old, it's a little chunky and heavy compared to what is now available. It has served me well for 2 years of recording mainly me daughter amongst other things.

    I basically need something that does the same job for me but is smaller and lighter. So far after weeks of looking I have narrowed it (I think) to either the Sony HC19E or the JVC GR-DF420EK. Both having excellent reviews in What Digital Camcorder. However I just can't make up my mind which one to get! I can't find a huge amount of reviews on the net for them, especially the JVC, although I have read a couple of reviews for the US counterpart models - they seem to say the Sony is not too good with low light.

    I have been to a stor and had a play with them both, and I think I prefer the feel of the JVC, it seems to fit better in my hand. I like the idea of the touch screen with the Sony, but have read a lot of commments with people getting frustrated with dirty screens and of course the low light issues mentioned above. But I do like the manual flexibility of the JVC, but not sure if I'd evr really need it. I am swayed to the JVC, but then with it being new, there don't seemt o be any alternative replacement batteries and other accessories about yet.

    So I guess my question is, does anyone here have experience of either of these and can offer me some clue as to which one to get with regard to quality of picture etc?

    One thing I'm particularly interested in is the 16:9 options - it seems they both have the same: either letterbox or squeezed. Are either of those any good? The sony seems to offer a 16:9 view for the squeezed option by squashing the picture down as well, whereas with the JVC, you get an elongated image in the LCD - does anyone use that method? If so is it OK to use like that?

    Dam it, I hate being a Gemini!! Please help.

    Cheers.
     
  2. MarkE19

    MarkE19
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    If you prefer the feel of the JVC to the Sony, and the JVC has all the features you require then this is the cam you should go for. Handling is one of the most important things to consider when useing a camcorder. If it is awkward to use then the chances are it will get left at home collecting dust!

    All consumer digital camcorders are poor in low light conditions, including the JVC I would think. The smaller the cam the poorer it will be. Look for a bigger lens and CCD to get the best possible performance in low light conditions. A single CCD will also help, but this will reduce overal picture quality at other times compared to a 3 CCD cam.

    Some people hate the touch screen LCD cams, but others love them. I think it will just be a matter of trying it and see how you get on. Like most things, I think they will take a bit of getting used to but once you have will wonder how you managed without a touch screen before!

    Find the best price on the net you can (UK sites only!) and take a printout along to a Jessops and they will pricematch for you. They also give a 30 day money back guarentee, so if you buy one and don't get on with it, or don't like the results, you can take it back and swap it for the other one!

    Good luck with the searching,
    Mark.
     
  3. stevef

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    Hi Mark, thanks for the reply. Useful info about Jessops, I didn't know that, so I'll probably give that a go.

    I think you're right in your first paragraph, that if they both do what I want but one feels better I should go for that - so definitely swaying towards the JVC.

    Cheers.

    Steve.
     
  4. boybrown

    boybrown
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    SteveF,
    if you haven't already purchased your camcorder and you are thinking about the JVC have a look at the JVC GR D290. It scored 93% in the latest issue of WDC. Jessops have it in at £399 but i've found a price of £265 on digital direct (i think) I used Pricerunner. Beware Jessops will not price match against Pixmania as the company is French. I purchased a Sony HC-22 yesterday but i'm going to swap it for the JVC today. The HC-22 is nice but i thought it had AV input. I'll tell you how i get on later and post some impressions.
     
  5. stevef

    stevef
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    yep, I decided to have one last throw at reading reviews so bought the latest copy and the sony sort of went out of the equation when I saw the D290 review! I was still very tempted with the DF420 because of the comment about the image stabilisation not being overly brilliant on the D290, but I wasn't hugely conerned about the f1.2 lens, so the 25x zoom and 93% score won me over in the end as I couldn't really see any other major differences apart from the shape! I ordered it today :) Thanks for replying anyway.
     

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