1 2 Previous Next 40 Replies Latest reply on Nov 17, 2011 5:33 PM by Zoop studio

    Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?

    Paul R Stark Level 1

      Hi everyone. Been busy and off the forums for a while, but need your expertise once again.

       

      I just found out that the Panasonic HVX-200p that's been on loan to me for 2 years has to be returned. Since I run a non-profit, I am thinking about asking my major donors to buy one for us. So, the question becomes which one? I own the CS4 MC, and you can see my other info in my profile.

       

      I only do educational-type videos in an interview format against a green screen so far. I've been capturing direct to OnLocation via 1394 FireWire at 720p/60fps and editing in an HDV 720p/30 sequence. I sometimes do "man on the street" segments (capturing to OnLocation on laptop). I integrate numerous PSD graphics as educational slides, a lot of AE projects I get from videohive and customize, render, & import into PP, and motion backgrounds like Pond5's weekly free stock footage (much of this stuff gets resized, of course). I do some scoring and some SFX and export the audio to SB for touchup. I use a bunch of Lowes/Home Depot worklamps with fluorescent bulbs for lighting the subject and background. I key my backgrounds using PP/AE Dynamic Link. Oh, and I'll need a lapel mic and a tripod, too. I would prefer not to rule out shooting at 1080i/p at some point.

       

      I export H.264 highlight clips which get uploaded to Vimeo and embedded in our website using prettyPhoto features. Ultimately, the finished PP project is exported as MPEG2-DVD, finished in Encore, burned via ImgBurn. If you want to see a good example, watch this http://vimeo.com/23346431. Caution: this is religious material. Be sure to repent before watching

       

      So, there's not really much heavy lifting here. But when it comes to what is the minimum I need with the options of capture formats, etc., I'm clueless. I've read about problems with AVCHD, and although low-cost, is it really a problem for what I do? I trust this forum more than online reviews, and I'd appreciate recommendations of specific models and where to buy, if possible. Also, what about used cameras? Please remember, the budget is tight.

       

      All suggestions and questions are welcome and very much appreciated.

       

      Paul

        • 1. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
          Harm Millaard Level 7

          With a lot of green screen material, your most affordable but good camera would probably be the Canon XF100, because of its 50 Mb 4:2:2 MPEG2 format and very affordable CF card use. Around € 2500.

          • 2. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
            Paul R Stark Level 1

            Still  pricey. Plus, I haven't needed a memory card so far. Isn't there a good, inexpensive camera where I can bypass the card route and just continue HD capture direct to OnLocation?

            • 3. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
              Harm Millaard Level 7

              Sure there are cheaper cameras, but the major drawback is that you can only record in 4:2:0 format and that means much lesser chroma keys.

              • 5. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                Paul R Stark Level 1

                Does anyone else want to weigh in on this, especially the aspect of 4:2:2 sampling being essential for a good chroma key result? But also another recommendation that can do full 1080 HD?

                 

                Thx.

                • 6. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                  Harm Millaard Level 7

                  Paul,

                   

                  I hope others will give their recommendations as well, but basically it boils down to:

                   

                  1. Tape based HDV, 1440 x 1080 in a 4:2:0 colorspace, like Canon MV30 or Sony Z5 or anything in between, but they are getting extinct now.

                  2. Card based AVCHD, 1920 x 1080 in a 4:2:0 colorspace, like Panasonic TM700 or 900 up to Sony NX5.

                  3. Card based XDCAM-EX, 1920 x 1080 in a 4:2:0 colorspace, EX1R or EX3.

                  4. Card based Canon XF 1920 x 1080 in a 4:2:2 colorspace, XF 100.

                   

                  I have intentionally left out P2 based formats, because the cost of the P2 cards does not make you happy, and essentially the same applies to SxS cards for the XDCAM cameras, which are out of your budget anyway.

                   

                  Of the four options mentioned, option 2 requires the most muscle from your PC, option 3 is the most costly, both in camera and recording cards, option 4 has the most robust and affordable CF cards.

                   

                  @Mark Mapes, if you happen to read this maybe you can weigh in here with all your Serious Magician experience and the cleanness of chroma keys of 422 versus 420 material.

                  1 person found this helpful
                  • 7. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                    Paul R Stark Level 1

                    Thanks, Harm. But remember, I'm capturing direct to OnLocation, bypassing the need for cards. The HVX-200p I'm using now does not have cards and I can capture up to 1080i. So, does that allow for any inexpensive P2's?

                     

                    Do you happen to know if the XF100 comes with any flash cards?

                     

                    Also, I think the MXF file format works in CS4, right?

                     

                    Here's a twist. Let's say I can convince the owner of the Panasonic to donate it since there have been significant improvements in technology since the HVX-200p was introduced and he'd be better off with a more recent model (he's very wealthy). Thing is, when he uses it, being a novice, he just sets everything to Auto and captures to tape. OR, would I be better off asking him to donate the XF100.

                     

                    Thx.

                     

                    Paul

                    • 8. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                      Harm Millaard Level 7

                      Paul,

                       

                      You are introducing new options and choices. You use OL for capturing and then importing the captured material into your project. Since a lot of this work is green screen material, have you considered to use instead HD-SDI to capture, with the right BM or AJA card, directly to your PC, because then your workflow may be easier and give you better quality. The downside is of course that the XF100 is no longer feasible, but requires the XF105, which is significantly more expensive (€ 3200) plus a BM or AJA card for HD-SDI. An alternative may be to use the 'poor-man's SDI', the HDMI out of the camera into the PC but it is limited to 3 meters length for your ingest.

                       

                      Both the XF100 and the XF105 lack the firewire connectivity to use OL, as do most (if not all) card based cameras and if firewire is lacking, then OL is out of the picture and you need a different workflow. I think you need to rethink your workflow and describe your current one a bit more to get sensible suggestions, because card based solutions are widely different than tape based workflows.

                       

                      The XF100/105 does not come with cards. You have to buy them on any street corner. On my XF300 I use Sandisk Extreme 32 GB CF cards, that give me 82 minutes recording time at the highest quality setting per card and go for around € 100.

                      • 9. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                        Paul R Stark Level 1

                        Well, the workflow going to OL with the firewire was not all that cumbersome, but I didn't know I was losing quality that way. I just did it because there were no cards and I wanted HD.

                         

                        The cards are less than I thought, so what would be wrong with the XF100? Is it because I would have to use an HDMI cable interface with the workstation (unless it supports HD-SDI and I get your recommended set up for that)? I'm not aware of the options for getting the XF-100 footage on cards to the workstation.

                         

                        Thx.

                         

                        Paul

                        • 10. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                          Mark Mapes Adobe Employee

                          I hate to show up here only to declare that I have nothing to contribute, but since I was summoned...

                          I can't speak with any authority on the relative merits of 4:2:2 vs 4:2:0 for keying. My responsibilities on Ultra did not extend to qualitative analysis of the keyed output, much less comparison of different types of inputs. Serious Magic had several people far more qualified for that side of things.

                          • 11. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                            Harm Millaard Level 7

                            Mark,

                             

                            Thanks for joining this discussion so very quickly and your contribution. Even though you may not feel qualified to answer the question of Paul, you have all the contacts internally for someone in the know to answer the question, so if you could pass this link on, I would be grateful. Also, give my regards to Carl, next time you speak to him. I'll contact you in the usual way.

                            • 12. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                              Paul R Stark Level 1

                              CS4 does not nativly support the Canon codec, according to Ann Bens, so the XF100 is out. http://forums.adobe.com/message/3458401#3458401.

                              • 13. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                Harm Millaard Level 7

                                Or you could upgrade to CS5.5

                                 

                                My XF300 material is ingested and edited very easily.

                                • 14. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                  Paul R Stark Level 1

                                  Yeah, I’d love to, but the $$$ keep adding up here and right now it’s just too tough to do in this economy.

                                   

                                  I don’t know what’ wrong with a P2 format camera using my current workflow. I get uncompressed AVI’s captured right on my editing workstation and it’s ready to import into PP—and I don’t need to worry about any expensive cards since when I’m on location, I can still use OnLocation on my laptop.

                                   

                                  Perhaps a good used P2 model for a good price?

                                  • 15. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                    Harm Millaard Level 7

                                    P2 format has one $$ disadvantage. The P2 cards. I have looked at the Panny HPX-250 and for 64 minutes of recording time the cost of a P2 card was around € 700 and with the Canon for 82 minutes it was € 100. In my case I needed at least three cards, so the choice was easy.

                                     

                                    One correction: Capturing means using firewire and thus means compressed material. It is not uncompressed.

                                    • 16. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                      Paul R Stark Level 1

                                      That’s true. It would not be a totally uncompressed AVI because of the firewire. But again, I’m getting some pretty good results this way. I know the P2 cards are expensive, but I don’t need them. I don’t have advanced knowledge of codecs, but isn’t MPEG-2 mxf also a compressed format?

                                       

                                      I own the CS4 MC, so what if I only upgrade PP to CS5.5 for US $299. Will it integrate seamlessly with the rest of my CS4 collection, including dynamic link with AE & SB? I am really liking this XF100 as I read more and more about it today, but if I have to go beyond just PP CS5.5 then I’m afraid it’s not an option.

                                       

                                      Thx, Harm.

                                      • 17. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                        Harm Millaard Level 7

                                        Dynamic Link only works within one suite with a single license/serial number. You can't DL between CS4 and CS5 or CS5.5, nor can you DL between individual licences of PR and AE or EN if they are are not in the same suite. Your only sensible option to keep DL capabilities is to upgrade to MC CS5.5.

                                         

                                        All cameras compress to some degree when recording on tape or card. In some cases, mostly on very expensive cameras, there is the possibility to avoid compression by outputting over HD-SDI to an uncompressed format, but that requires a bandwidth of 1.485 Gb in contrast to 25 Mb for DV or HDV or similar for AVCHD. XDCAM-EX compresses to 35 Mb (EX1R/EX3) or 50 Mb for the 350+ models and XF to 50 Mb, so you see the space savings of compression and the lesser disk requirements, In consumer and semi-professional cameras the positioning of the DSP in relation to the HDMI chip on the PCB determine whether a compressed or uncompressed signal is outputted and all manufacturers are very vague about this issue. HD-SDI is always uncompressed, but HDMI is not clear. But keep in mind that not all DSP's and sensors are capable of 10, 12 or 14 bit acquisition so in practice the point is rather moot and not relevant in your case.

                                         

                                        My son has a Panasonic TM-700 AVCHD camera and it is great and much more affordable, but...

                                         

                                        1. It is AVCHD and 4:2:0 colorspace, putting more strain on the PC requirements.

                                        2. It requires a very steady hand for such a small size, or a tripod.

                                        3. It lacks the 4:2:2 and lesser compression of the XF100.

                                         

                                        Personally I like to have a camera that you feel in terms of weight rather than a small camera. My camera, fully loaded with shoulder mount, on-camera lighting, shotgun, wireless receiver for lavalier, etc. comes in at over 5.5 kg and it is more to carry around, but also more steady to shoot than a tiny TM-700. But that is just me.

                                         

                                        OTOH, I admit that for skiing and hiking the TM-700 or even a GoPro Hero2 makes a lot more sense than a XF300, so it all depends on your needs. In my recommendations to you I have given major considerations to your green-screen work.

                                         

                                        Hope this all helps to make up your mind.

                                        • 18. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                          J.Elliott8652

                                          Gentlemen,

                                           

                                          This question comes 'round every now and then. Some people using AVCHD footage with chroma keying suggest that we'd be happier in a differing 4:2:2 colorspace. I hope I have this right, as I am not an expert.

                                           

                                          One solution which gets made is to convert the footage to Cineform Neoscene, some type of intermediate codec which is said to help turn the high-compression AVCHD into a more digestable codec, while also converting to the 4:2:2 colorspace beloved by chroma keying.

                                           

                                          I'd love to hear from anyone who has used Neoscene primarily to upgrade the colorspace for their green screen work, and whether the Cineform claim is valid. Is it possible to convert 4:2:0 to 4:2:2 and get a result which is reasonably close to a genuine 4:2:2 original?

                                           

                                          Neoscene can be bought for about $100. I think VideoGuys has it for $90 after a coupon.

                                          • 19. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                            Darren Kelly Level 1

                                            Have you considered the JVC 100U. It's been replaced by the 150, but the 100U is less than $1900 at B&H. You can record to onlocation via HDMI - say something like a Decklink Intensity card.

                                             

                                            It records XDCAM EX at 35mbps and the quality is great.

                                             

                                            Good luck

                                            • 20. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                              Paul R Stark Level 1

                                              Darren,

                                               

                                              I presume you mean the GY-HD100U, and that you're saying that I can get a 4:2:2 color sampling using an HDMI as opposed to 4:2:0 using the cards. I had not considered this. Although the it's 35mbps and not 50, I read that it was still broadcast quality (which i assume to mean in appearance, not specs). I know it looks good, but it's the chroma key that I need to be top notch.

                                               

                                              As it turns out, there appears a good chance that the Panasonic may be donated to us. If that happens, I'm happy.

                                               

                                              Thx for weighing in.

                                               

                                              Paul

                                              • 21. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                Darren Kelly Level 1

                                                Yes, that's the camera I am talking about. I have done Chroma Key off of the camera many times with great success. You can visit my youtube page - www.youtube.com/user/dbkcreative and watch any of the tutorials on the D7000. All Blue Screen, all recorded on SDHC cards and composited in FCP - now I have switched to Premiere CS5.5.2. I have not tried Chroma Key yet.

                                                 

                                                As for Broadcast quality..... a little station called CNN - you might have heard about them bought 250 of them from Panasonic about a year ago.

                                                 

                                                Good Luck

                                                • 22. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                  Paul R Stark Level 1

                                                  Now that's very interesting. If the P2 option doesn't come thru, I'll have to give very serious consideration to the 100U vs. the XF100, although the XF100 does have 4:2:2, a 1/3" sensor, and 50Mb compression, but for about $1000 more.

                                                   

                                                  Thanks again.

                                                  • 23. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                    Darren Kelly Level 1

                                                    I just re-read my post. I meant purchased from JVC. What a dummy I can be.

                                                    • 24. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                      Harm Millaard Level 7

                                                      Actually, two things surprise me in your statement and one is simply incorrect:

                                                       

                                                      As for Broadcast quality..... a little station called CNN - you might have heard about them bought 250 of them from Panasonic about a year ago.

                                                       

                                                      First, that CNN would buy JVC cameras not from JVC, but from Panasonic.

                                                       

                                                      Second, there are no JVC cameras on the BBC approved list at all, see http://downloads.bbc.co.uk/commissioning/site/BBC_Approved_HD_Cameras.pdf and the only affordable ones on the list in the handheld category are the Canon XF300/305. Maybe that is the reason the BBC bought 350 of these. Even the Sony XDCAM EX is only accepted in combination with a 50 Mb disk drive, not in the native 35 Mb format.

                                                       

                                                      The BBC approved list is a list that most broadcasters adhere to, including CNN, Discovery, ARD and NGC.

                                                       

                                                      The JVC GY-HD100U is definitely not acceptable for HD, and in no way HD broadcast ready. But that CNN bought that number of these cameras is probably caused by the fact that they think these deliver better quality than regular phones. And it does not use XDCAM, but a very simple HDV codec, limited to 1280 x 720 resolution. See http://pro.jvc.com/prof/attributes/specs.jsp?model_id=MDL101539&feature_id=03

                                                       

                                                      This simply means that the Canon codec is very acceptable to the BBC for HD programs. The XF100 uses the same codec, but is only a single sensor camera and for that reason alone not approved by the BBC.

                                                       

                                                      Paul, if you can live with the limitations of a single sensor camera - and given your intended purposes, I think you can - the JVC does not even come close and the XF100 material will be hardly worse than the XF300/305. To the untrained eye the results are almost the same.

                                                      1 person found this helpful
                                                      • 25. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                        Darren Kelly Level 1

                                                        WOW Harm, my first post from you, and your a little more aggressive and mean than I thought you would be.

                                                         

                                                        First, note that above your post, I corrected myself and said they purchased it from JVC. I even called myself a dummy.

                                                         

                                                        Second, here is the camera I am talking about:http://pro.jvc.com/prof/attributes/features.jsp?model_id=MDL101845

                                                         

                                                        It's not the same one you highlight in your link. It's a much newer camera, it does not shoot HDV, but XDCAM EX. It has 3 sensors and records to SDHC cards.

                                                         

                                                        I don't sell to the BBC, so I'm not familiar with their guidelines. I know that the toughest broadcast organizations in North America are Discovery channel and PBS. Whether they use or approve these cameras, I don't know. I know HDNET in North America approves of XDCAM-EX, and so do a lot of other stations.

                                                         

                                                        It seems to me the original poster doesn't deliver to any networks. His requirements were inexpensive, cheap media, or recordable to an external drive and the ability to do Chroma Key. In my oh so humble opinion, having used the camera for almost 1 year, this camera would suit his requirements.

                                                         

                                                        I know you are the reigning authority on this forum, so I apologize for stepping on your toes. No offence was intended.

                                                        • 26. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                          Harm Millaard Level 7

                                                          Sorry Darren,

                                                           

                                                          Your correction about Panasonic and JVC came up only after I had posted. Your correction was made in the time I was writing my answer.

                                                           

                                                          Second, on Pauls question whether the GY-HD100U (highlighted) was the one you meant and which you confirmed,

                                                          Yes, that's the camera I am talking about.

                                                          so I looked up the specs and found the differences between your claims and what JVC put on their site. However you meant the HM100U and that is a ProHD camera. But, in comparison to the XF100, the JVC is still using 420 colorspace and uses three 1/4" CCD sensors, not a single 1/3" CMOS sensor in 422 colorspace.

                                                           

                                                          I did not mean to offend you but the previous posts mislead me seriously.

                                                          • 27. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                            Darren Kelly Level 1

                                                            Harm said "But, in comparison to the XF100, the JVC is still using 420 colorspace and uses three 1/4" CCD sensors, not a single 1/3" CMOS sensor in 422 colorspace."

                                                             

                                                            Not if you do as the OP said he likes to do, which is record directly to his computer using Onlocation. The HDMI out on that camera delivers complete, uncompressed HD. Granted, he will need to add something like the Intensity Pro card, but it would satisfy his requirements, and make for a better key even. It would be 4:4:4 I believe

                                                             

                                                            DBK

                                                            • 28. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                              JFPhoton Level 3

                                                              Considering the nature of the actual use of the camera, as described in the first post,( 720p,  dvd vimeo),...anything beyond a Canon Rebel T3i seems like overkill...JFPhoton

                                                              • 29. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                Darren Kelly Level 1

                                                                JFPhoton,

                                                                 

                                                                I was thinking about recommending a DSLR, but thought perhaps he needed things like AF, and better control over sound and light. The problem is the codecs in DSLR's.

                                                                • 30. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                  Harm Millaard Level 7

                                                                  Darren,

                                                                   

                                                                  Even if that were true, which I doubt because of the CCD sensors used and the uncertain location of the DSP on the PCB, it would only increase the need for a huge raid array in his system with a dedicated raid controller, at least a 5 disk raid5 or better, no further away than maximum 3 meters from the camera at all times and a very powerful CPU. That is without taking into consideration that I'm not sure OL can handle 1.485 Gb data streams.

                                                                   

                                                                  I have said to Paul earlier that he may have to rethink his workflow if he moves from tape based acquisition to card based solutions. Then OL is no longer relevant. I understand that is how he used to work, but with card based solutions, whether that is JVC, Sony, Canon, Panny, it does not matter, but he better rethink his workflow. If you work with long form recordings, what is simpler than taking out one full card from the camera, attach it to a simple notebook and copy the contents to a disk and reinsert the card into the camera. All the time the second card is recording while the first card is being copied. No need for a 3 meter maximum distance over HDMI, no need for a very powerful PC and a huge disk array, but only say 20 minutes to copy an 80 minute card to hard disk, ready for ingest using the media browser.

                                                                   

                                                                  Mobility during your takes is much better with card based solutions, rather than HDMI ingest, the 'poor man's HD-SDI' because you are no longer attached to a max. 3 meter umbilical cord that hampers movement, let alone the electrical juice required to power a PC and raid with all its cables. Seen that on a dolly...?

                                                                  • 31. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                    JFPhoton Level 3

                                                                    No codec problem with that camera....esp. with 5.03 version of PPro.....Presets are included for  the Canon DSLRs.....I,ve successfully used an I7 laptop to edit that codec. NBC uses a Canon with the same cmos sensor for " House"...camera has direct input for sound with volume control....plus, can change lenses...too many features to list....this is not a choice to overlook.

                                                                    • 32. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                      Darren Kelly Level 1

                                                                      Agreed on the RAID, etc. Have you considered this option

                                                                       

                                                                      http://www.blackmagic-design.com/products/hyperdeckshuttle/

                                                                       

                                                                      The Hyperdeck shuttle is inexpensive, comes self powered (add a battery) and will record uncompressed.

                                                                       

                                                                      I think there are a couple of other options out from the last NAB

                                                                       

                                                                      DBK

                                                                      • 33. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                        Paul R Stark Level 1

                                                                        Agreed, Harm. With my current workflow, I have to take my laptop on location using OnLocation, and that is cumbersome. Fortunately, I have not yet had to do much out of studio, but it would encourage my options using a card based system.

                                                                         

                                                                        Also, don't forget, I said I would prefer not to rule out shooting at 1080i/p at some point. Plus, the uploaded Vimeo stuff is at H.264.

                                                                         

                                                                        I would really like to capture at 1080 at some point (lest I become a dinosaur), but I'm pretty sure the laptop can't handle it, and I haven't experimented with it yet on the workstation. I think my PC has enough power, but the file sizes increase dramatically at 1080. So it all depends on whether I ever do more than these educational, interview style videos or move beyond, which I admit, would be a great deal of fun.

                                                                        • 34. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                          Harm Millaard Level 7

                                                                          Paul,

                                                                           

                                                                          I have a very simple laptop, a Sony Vaio VGN-FW31ZJ for my normal Office work, but that is the one I take along in my backpack when on the road or on vacation, whenever I foresee the need to record more than my cards allow. I have three 32 GB CF Sandisk Extreme cards for my camera, so around 246 minutes of recording time on my XF300 and I use this notebook to upload a full CF card to an external USB drive over a USB2 cardreader. If I see that I need more time for recordings beforehand, I can always get an extra card. That takes about 20 minutes for a full 82 minutes recording. That is about 4 times faster than realtime and can easily be done on battery power, no power cords needed. I can do that in my hotel room in the evening if needed. When I'm back at my video machine, I simply copy the contents of the external 2.5" USB drive to my array and with Media Browser import the material into a PR project.

                                                                           

                                                                          For this kind of workflow you don't need a top-notch laptop, almost any laptop will do, even those that are too slow for OL. I haven't tried it, but maybe even a tablet will do.

                                                                           

                                                                          There is one giant advantage to using card based solutions over tape, that people tend to forget. When using tape, you took a shot and if it was ready for the garbage can, so what? You had plenty of new tapes, so who cares? You will throw it out in post. With card based recording, you can immediately trash the failed shot without fearing for broken timecodes, overwriting good shots, etc. so you will use the storage space on a card much more efficiently. I've had productions based on 27 hours of tape resulting in a 1 hour product, but that overhead is diminished with card based approaches, making the editing a lot easier.

                                                                          • 35. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                            Paul R Stark Level 1

                                                                            Harm,

                                                                             

                                                                            I've actually never used tape (see my original post) and can't imagine ever doing so.

                                                                             

                                                                            As for laptops, I've had no problem with my old HP DV2550 (Core 2 Duo T5250, 4GB RAM, Win 7, 64 bit) capturing at 720p60fps. It's the 1080i that I wonder about using with the HVX-200p for my desktop workstation, but you know its specs, and I think it's got enough juice. I don't imagine I can firewire 1080i to this laptop--I haven't even tried.

                                                                             

                                                                            That said, cards are certainly preferable to always having to lug the laptop.

                                                                             

                                                                            Thx.

                                                                            • 36. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                              Zoop studio Level 1

                                                                              HI, I just got a Canon Legria HF G10, it's the prosumer version of the XA 10, wich is the AVCHD version of the XF100.

                                                                              So it's XF 105 around €3500,- XF100 € 2800,- XA10 € 1900,- and the Legria HF g10 for just €1175,- all with the same lens, chip etc.

                                                                              Only difference with the XA10 is the lack of the XLR audio handlebar.

                                                                              Just 2 days playing and experimenting  with it (in low/night light etc) and it's a very very great camera for the € 2300,- less than the XF105.

                                                                              I didn't test the keying 420/422 colorspace issue yet.

                                                                              • 37. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                                Paul R Stark Level 1

                                                                                I think that's a PAL only camera.

                                                                                 

                                                                                Never mind. I just discover it's the Vixia HF G10 in the US.

                                                                                 

                                                                                It's not 4:2:2 color sampling and a codec that goes up to 50 Mbps.

                                                                                • 38. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                                  Harm Millaard Level 7

                                                                                  HI, I just got a Canon Legria HF G10, it's the prosumer version of the XA 10, wich is the AVCHD version of the XF100.

                                                                                   

                                                                                  Just to be clear, the Legria HF G10 is a typical consumer camera, the XA 10 is a reasonably high end consumer camera, the XF 100/105 are maybe entry level prosumer cameras.

                                                                                  • 39. Re: Which is the best low-cost camera for my use?
                                                                                    Paul R Stark Level 1

                                                                                    That was my understanding, too.

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