What is a good HD camcorder?

by tedmrh
40 replies
I know that there must be a thread for this question already. Maybe someone would point me in that direction.

Looking for a decent HD camcorder for IM videos. Want lower end of the price range but something I'll be happy with for a while.

Recommendations?

Thanks.

Teddy Herzog
#camcorder #good #recomendation #review
  • Profile picture of the author ehicks727
    Exactly what is "lower end" to you? What's your exact price range, this makes a difference on recommendations.

    I have both a Canon FS100 ($300) and a Canon Vixia HF20 ($850). The difference between the two is remarkable... I wish I would have just started with the Vixia... worth every penny.
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    • Profile picture of the author tedmrh
      Well, good question. I was thinking in the under $600. range. But I don't want to be kicking myself and wanting to buy another one in 6 months. I will take a look at the Canon Vixia.
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  • Profile picture of the author Marty S
    I have 3 HD cameras now, but recently purchased a Sanyo Xacti GC10. I needed something much smaller and convenient for carrying around. This camcorder is excellent quality for it's value ($250), and with a small wire-frame tri-pod it could easily be used for head-shot videos. It also shoots 10mp digital photos.
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    • Profile picture of the author mr2monster
      Originally Posted by Marty S View Post

      I have 3 HD cameras now, but recently purchased a Sanyo Xacti GC10. I needed something much smaller and convenient for carrying around. This camcorder is excellent quality for it's value ($250), and with a small wire-frame tri-pod it could easily be used for head-shot videos. It also shoots 10mp digital photos.

      I've got this camera, only mine is the Red version from Radio Shack and cost about $179.

      It's worth about $500 to me because the amount of use this thing gets, plus the ease of using it is just plain crazy.

      100X better than my flip. Takes better video and has optical zoom, plus it's just designed better and has thus far been more sturdy.

      I really can't recommend this cam enough. Only "draw back" is that it's only 720P - but most people A) Can't edit 1080 with their current computer without pulling their hair out, and B) don't use 1080 for online video anyway. You certainly don't need it, and most people can't easily stream it anyhow.


      I LOVE that you can go back and take photos from within videos (i.e. record a video, play it back, hit pause and use the step forward to find a great frame, push the photo button and you have a still from the video).

      You can also take photos WHILE shooting video... Love that too.
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      • Profile picture of the author Chris Faraday
        LOVE THIS CAMERA!!!!

        Xacto CG-20 (best model - $180 - just got mine at radio shack as well

        A notch above the CG-10 - for sure - quality & sleekness

        How are you finding the sound / mic quality? :confused:

        Originally Posted by mr2monster View Post

        I've got this camera, only mine is the Red version from Radio Shack and cost about $179.

        It's worth about $500 to me because the amount of use this thing gets, plus the ease of using it is just plain crazy.

        100X better than my flip. Takes better video and has optical zoom, plus it's just designed better and has thus far been more sturdy.

        I really can't recommend this cam enough. Only "draw back" is that it's only 720P - but most people A) Can't edit 1080 with their current computer without pulling their hair out, and B) don't use 1080 for online video anyway. You certainly don't need it, and most people can't easily stream it anyhow.


        I LOVE that you can go back and take photos from within videos (i.e. record a video, play it back, hit pause and use the step forward to find a great frame, push the photo button and you have a still from the video).

        You can also take photos WHILE shooting video... Love that too.
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      • Profile picture of the author JayPeete
        Originally Posted by mr2monster View Post

        I've got this camera, only mine is the Red version from Radio Shack and cost about $179.

        It's worth about $500 to me because the amount of use this thing gets, plus the ease of using it is just plain crazy.

        100X better than my flip. Takes better video and has optical zoom, plus it's just designed better and has thus far been more sturdy.

        I really can't recommend this cam enough. Only "draw back" is that it's only 720P - but most people A) Can't edit 1080 with their current computer without pulling their hair out, and B) don't use 1080 for online video anyway. You certainly don't need it, and most people can't easily stream it anyhow.


        I LOVE that you can go back and take photos from within videos (i.e. record a video, play it back, hit pause and use the step forward to find a great frame, push the photo button and you have a still from the video).

        You can also take photos WHILE shooting video... Love that too.
        Thanks for the info. This will definitely help in my decision. There are so many cameras out there. It is good to hear from someone that is in the online marketing game.
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  • Profile picture of the author jusmon
    I'm in the market myself and the Canon Vixia and the Sony are leading the charge. But JVC has a new one coming out in June so I may try to hold out for it. Seems you really need to drop the 800-1000$ if you want quality.
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  • Profile picture of the author Josh Anderson
    Canon Vixia HV30 is the best buy on the market today for a quality HD camcorder.

    By far the best discussion forum for this subject is:

    Canon HV20, HV30 & HV40 User Forum - Powered by vBulletin

    You will learn a lot there.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kyle Tully
      Originally Posted by Josh Anderson View Post

      Canon Vixia HV30 is the best buy on the market today for a quality HD camcorder.

      By far the best discussion forum for this subject is:

      Canon HV20, HV30 & HV40 User Forum - Powered by vBulletin

      You will learn a lot there.
      Agree 100%

      Love mine
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      • Profile picture of the author tessmac9708
        The Flip Mino

        Great little camera for a really cheap price. Great for shooting those video intro's you see on sales pages.

        Graham
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    • Profile picture of the author lifeonfire
      Canon Vixia HV30 is the best buy on the market today for a quality HD camcorder.

      You will learn a lot there.
      What's the best HD Flash consumer camcorder? I noticed the HV30 require miniDV.

      thanks,
      Life
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      • Profile picture of the author M Thompson
        I've been researching this myself and the kodak Zi8 comes highly recommended and it has an external mic jack so you can use a wireless lapel mic.
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    • Profile picture of the author AwesomePossum
      Originally Posted by Josh Anderson View Post

      Canon Vixia HV30 is the best buy on the market today for a quality HD camcorder.

      By far the best discussion forum for this subject is:

      Canon HV20, HV30 & HV40 User Forum - Powered by vBulletin

      You will learn a lot there.

      Yeah...Eben Pagan uses the HV20 and it's pretty good considering everything he makes for his "online business" business" is from that baby...that's millions in sales backed behind this camera...I imagine HV30 would be just as good though ; )
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    • Profile picture of the author Russ Emrick
      Josh's advice got quickly blown past. I doubt many people here know video or cameras better than Josh. Look at the products Josh has created. I've had the pleasure of doing business with him and his video/gear/tech chops are remarkable.

      Originally Posted by Josh Anderson View Post

      Canon Vixia HV30 is the best buy on the market today for a quality HD camcorder.

      By far the best discussion forum for this subject is:

      Canon HV20, HV30 & HV40 User Forum - Powered by vBulletin

      You will learn a lot there.
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  • Profile picture of the author anonymous123567
    If you want to produce on a budget, the Kodak Zi6 is cool!

    I doubt it's a patch on the Canon but for the dosh, not a bad deal atall
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  • Profile picture of the author John M Kane
    A few things to consider when you go shopping.
    size
    tape recording or hard drive or memory card
    can you hook up an external microphone
    zoom range
    image stabilization methods
    battery life
    light/lamp accessory shoe
    its ability to record good quality in low light levels without adding lights
    Happy hunting
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  • Profile picture of the author bigmomma1967
    Banned
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    • Profile picture of the author Josh Gould
      If you're looking for super high quality stuff (ie: for important videos) the HV30 is definitely one to consider.

      If you're looking for a small camera that produces good quality, and you want it to fit in your pocket (ie: for fun videos), check out the Creative Vado HD.

      Hit up Vimeo for some killer samples of both cameras.
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  • Profile picture of the author tedmrh
    OK, all. Let me do my research. Plenty here to go on. Appreciate it.

    Teddy Herzog
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  • Profile picture of the author internetwarrior97
    I confidently and strongly recommended the Sony HD Hr-11 camcorder! You can buy one for around $500 online (cheaper if you don't mind the used ones). This is the one I use for my videos and the quality is amazing. Just make sure you read the user's guide! The camcorder works beautifully with iMovie and Final Cut Pro for post production.
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  • Profile picture of the author enterpryzman
    I own a vixia 30 and love it, it is very-very good quality video. I use a shotgun mic and a lavilier mic which no matter what camera you buy, you will want to use another mic rather than the built in mic.

    I also have a JVC HG-7 and it is OK but does not compare in quality to the Vixia....the downside to tape is the real time download to edit which is worth it.

    Enterpryzman
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  • If you want something super cheap and simple to use, check out Flip's HD camcorder. It's similar to the Creative Vado mentioned already.

    Travis
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  • Profile picture of the author Troy_Phillips
    I use the flip 360 hd . One side note . HD requires so much more resource wise . While the quality is great ... a lot of your clients ( even on fast connections ) will complain because they slow down and buffer a lot on You Tube .
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  • Profile picture of the author SocialBookmarkPro
    I got a great deal on the Cannon HF100 and I must say it captures fantastic video, and you just cant beat the price. The low light video is slightly grainy, but unless you step up into a much higher level of camcorder, that is par for the course.
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  • Profile picture of the author MJ Sterling
    I'm also a fan of the Kodak Zi8, it's a very good camera for the price.

    The mic jack is what really makes it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kevin AKA Hubcap
      Keep in mind that a bargain basement camcorder will fulfill your needs but if you want to expand you'll have to pay for something more capable.

      It might be better to get something that will produce a quality image ( and sound) in a variety of different conditions.

      Just a thought.

      Kevin
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  • Profile picture of the author lifeonfire
    Kevin -

    You're exactly right. I have some low end stuff (flips, Canon $220).. I'm seeking an HD with decent features, superb quality, record to flash, ext. mic jack, etc...

    I looked at the VIXIA line but they're so many!! The HF11 looks great.

    Any advice for any experienced video techs?
    (I do not want the Kodak or Flip models)

    Lifeq
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  • Profile picture of the author lifeonfire
    Does any know of if any cameras in the VIXIA line uses CCD?

    I have the HF11 uses CMOS.
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  • Profile picture of the author marklyford
    I use A flip HD cam... excellent for the money.. i shoot a podcast with it and alot of in car video too.... cant say enough good things about it ... . Amazon.com: Flip UltraHD Camcorder, 120 Minutes...Amazon.com: Flip UltraHD Camcorder, 120 Minutes... excellent
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  • Profile picture of the author Deepak Media
    Whatever model you choose, I recommend that you go for a good brand. In my opinion, SONY.

    Some HD cameras have a feature called steady shot... If you are taking videos while walking or driving in the car (like the IM guru Frank Kern or John Reese)... the video will not be shaky.
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    • Profile picture of the author lifeonfire
      Originally Posted by Deepak Media View Post

      Whatever model you choose, I recommend that you go for a good brand. In my opinion, SONY.

      Some HD cameras have a feature called steady shot... If you are taking videos while walking or driving in the car (like the IM guru Frank Kern or John Reese)... the video will not be shaky.
      Thanks.. by the review Sony has the best low-light cameras out there.

      However, I cannot find one with a mic jack. I looked at a few of the highly rated HDR-CX... series but no mic jack. Any suggestions?
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  • Profile picture of the author Qaisar
    Ive got a Canon HF11 and love it. Great picture quality. You cant go wrong with the Canon range of HD cameras
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  • Profile picture of the author oldgamesware
    Many said that canon is better than others. But I also hear of Nikon. I think it still depends on your personality that will suits you.
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  • Profile picture of the author Glenn72
    Don't bother with any of the flip cameras. You can't use them handheld because the CMOS sensor causes some severe rolling shutter artifacts. That's where the video has that 'jello' look and all the vertical lines become diagonal.

    I would highly recommend this camera - Canon | PowerShot SD960 IS Digital Camera (Silver) | 3576B001 It's less than $200, has amazing image quality, uses a CCD sensor so you don't get that rolling shutter skew, offers exposure lock so the lighting won't change when you move the camera, has great audio quality and is also a nice stills camera with a 1cm macro mode. I use one myself and have shot 3 music videos with it.
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  • I recommend a Kodak Zi8 it's a pocket camera which shoots 1080p 30fps and 720p with 60fps. It's a great camera, and it costs ~$150
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  • Profile picture of the author Glenn72
    The HV20/30/40 are still good cameras and I still use my HV20, but in that price range most people have switched to buying digital SLR's for the shallow DOF. The Canon 7D is popular, as is the cheaper 550D. Although I wouldn't recommend them to marketers due to the more extreme rolling shutter. The same problem the Flips and the Kodak Zi8 mentioned above suffer from. I found a video here Kodak Zi8 Test on Vimeo that will show you how bad the problem is. Look at the amount of shake. It's horrible!

    That's why I recommend the SD960. With the CCD sensor and it's optical image stabliser, most video shot with it will look great. Plus, it uses the AVCHD codec at 24mbps for better image quality than any of these other cheap cameras. I wrote a review a while back here Canon PowerShot SD960 IS / Ixus 110 IS / Ixy 510 IS Review | Glenn Thomas with a few videos included I shot with it. Brilliant camera.
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  • Profile picture of the author TJCarter
    Watch ya there

    If you are looking for a good camcorder at a low price l would suggest the Sony SR35 but if you looking at the other end of the price range l would recommend the Sony HDR-XR520.

    Hope you find what you are looking for
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  • Profile picture of the author Quentin
    I like the ZI8. I have a professional camera also but it is very bulky and for online videos the ZI8 is great.

    Here is a review.

    Mission work in Bangkok and the Kodak Zi8 | Thailand Projects

    Q
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  • Profile picture of the author tyroneshum
    I use Canon HD video camcorder (HG21) - http://www.youshop247.com.au/store/s...=search&page=1

    I believe it's great since I always use this tool in my video presentations and I'm happy I've received good amounts of feedback on the quality of the videos I create as well.
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  • Profile picture of the author MATTYLLL
    I'm with the Kodak Zi8, the external Jack did it for me.
    Good value for money, and is perfectly adequate unless you are filming in difficult low lighting areas etc.
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