Video Camera Recommendations

One of my cohorts at work asked me this week for my suggestions on video cameras for general home use. (I guess that I should stop toting my SD video camera around.) You know, cameras suitable for quick outings with the kids, capturing the fun at a company event or a visual catalog of your household just before the hurricane/ earthquake/ [natural disaster of your choice] hits… 

If I was picking out a new camera for a reasonable fee (read "cheap"), I would still go miniDV (tape) as the DV codec is very rich, the devices plentiful and affordable. The Canon Optura 400 is a solid, highly-rated performer; for new purchases that can afford a little more, I’d recommend the new Optura 600 and Panasonic PV-GS250 as great choices with good form factors. If price is not an object, get the new 3-ccd model from JVC is great. (about $1K)

But a great new consumer form factor is miniDVD, especially if you just want to shoot the video and play it back (I do a lot of editing with Movie Maker 2 for the quick stuff and Adobe Premiere Pro for more complex projects). The best choices I’ve seen so far are the Sony DCR-DVD403 and Sony DCR-DVD92 – just avoid the funky Sony DCR-DVD7. Also look at the easy to use Panasonic VDR-M53  (under $550). 

Check out,1874,2347,00.asp, and for reviews and more info.

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One Response to Video Camera Recommendations

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