My school runs a significant stock of camcorder kits for loaning to students. we've been using the trusty (and cheap) Canon MD225 till now.
The time has come for me to add more cameras, but I was dismayed to find that the MD225 has been discontinued in favour of tapeless cameras.
The most suitable replacement it seems is the Legria FS200, which has the requisite Mic In and Headphone Out sockets (the students are studying Journalism & Communication). However, it records MPEG2 footage, file extension .MOD. I went down to the shop and took some test footage on my SD card. I can't seem to import this footage into the TRIAL version of PP CS4 I have downloaded (my school is currently all on CS3).
Question 1: is the fact I can't use this footage a limitation of the trial, and resolved when I purchase/upgrade?
Question 2: does anyone have any suggestions as to suitable alternative basic/cheap camcorders with known compatability to CS4? I used the "compatability checker" but it just lists a few Canon and Sony HD models.
I also noticed you couldn't import mod files into CS4. I wondered if there was a codec you could download.
Most every HD camcorder I've run across recently uses MOD files. It's beyond me why CS4 doesn't support them. My assumption is that they will have to at some point (hopefully soon.)
Until then, I am happily using a freeware program called SDCopy, which is available all over the web. Just use it to copy/convert the files directly from the camcorder into your computer. It converts to an MPG format that Premiere will open properly.
1. No. Even the full version often has trouble with these cameras.
2. That list is very incomplete. Any tape based model should work fine.