Mac compatible camcorder recommendations

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by jaykingfunk7239, Mar 11, 2010.

  1. jaykingfunk7239 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    Location:
    Yorkshire, UK
    #1
    Hi,

    I work for a school and we're looking to buy 4 new camcorders for use in Media studies.

    We use final cut on macs so need something mac compatible. Up until now I've always gone with DV camcorders but obviously with HDD and media cards increasing in popularity DV seems to be disappearing.

    We're looking for HD quality but it doesn't have to be full of pro features as they will mainly be used for 6th form work etc.

    The best cameras we have at the moment are Canon HDV30's.

    Thanks in advance, J.
     
  2. AWalkerStudios macrumors member

    AWalkerStudios

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Location:
    Austin
    #2
    I was going to recommend the Canon HDV 30 but since you've already got a few, how about getting a Panasonic HMC-150? Not quite as pro as an HVX but still really good. Or maybe Canon XH-A1?
     
  3. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    USA
    #3
    DV is not disappearing--not even close. Obviously, other formats are growing in availability and popularity. However, it is not a zero-sum game. The market can support more than one format.

    If you are taking a course in media studies, then you want use media that approximates what the pros use. HDV uses the same media as DV Pro--mini DV tape cassettes. AWalkerStudios gave you some excellent suggestions. Get the best HDV camcorder with FireWire that you can afford. If you can't afford HDV, then get the best mini DV camcorder with FireWire that you can afford.
     
  4. puckhead193 macrumors G3

    puckhead193

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #4
    what's your budget?
    JVC has a camera that records on to SD cards in native quicktime format so all you need to do is drag the clips over to the HDD and then 'import' them into FCP and start editing.
    link

    If you can wait, I would wait for NAB, maybe something new might come out that better fits your needs.
     
  5. AWalkerStudios macrumors member

    AWalkerStudios

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Location:
    Austin
    #5
    Or maybe a HMC40. Almost just like the HMC150 but no XLR input and a smaller sensor. Still takes great images, but it's only $1,700 vs the 150's $3,500.
     
  6. matthewmilam macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2010
    #6
    I'm looking for a rather inexpensive camcorder that will work with a PowerPC Mac G5, a good SD one since all you have to do is transfer the recorded files from the SD card(?)

    Somewhere between 100 and 200 dollars.
     
  7. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

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    forlod bygningen
    #7
    With your first "SD" do you mean Standard Definition or Secure Digital memory cards?

    With all camcorders recording to SD memory cards you have to do some transcoding in order to edit them, as SD cards don't support uncompressed video footage or even compressed footage that stores every video frame (important for editing).

    The Flip Mino series might be something what you want:
    http://www.amazon.com/High-Definiti...&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=497533431&pf_rd_i=502394

    Unless you have other requirements besides 100-200USD and SD card storage.
     
  8. fehhkk macrumors 6502a

    fehhkk

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    Jun 11, 2009
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #8
    I gots a Canon Vixia HFS100, and works great with iMovie '09, records in AVCHD format.
     
  9. jgraider macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2010
    #9
    How long does it take you to donwload your AVCHD files to your Mac? I've heard it both ways......much longer than real time, and much shorter. Which one is it?
     
  10. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

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    #10
    That depends on the CPU speed of the Mac in question, as the transcoding process uses the CPU to calculate.
     
  11. jgraider macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2010
    #11
    For instance, on my 2.53hz, Intel, 2gb ram, 260 GB IMac? How long would it take,? You don't have to be exact, just a ballpark guess. i now the HV30 downloads in real time, for instance.
     
  12. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

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    #12
    I personally can't give you an estimate, as I don't work with AVCHD footage. It's too compressed for my taste.
     
  13. jgraider macrumors newbie

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    Feb 13, 2010
    #13
    I didn't think it was that tough of a question.
     
  14. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

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    #14
    Was that a reply to my reply, or to the others which aren't home yet?

    How can I estimate or guestimate when I have not used AVCHD encoding?

    When I used HD footage it was from the Sony FX 1 HDV camcorder, thus the footage got ingested in real time.

    My guess: 108 minus 4 minus 23 minus 16 minus 42 minus 15 minus 8 minutes.
     
  15. jgraider macrumors newbie

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    Feb 13, 2010
    #15

    A simple question to the numerous people who've actually used it. There's obviously a lot of people who do. Stupid guess by the way.
     
  16. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

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    #16
    At least you solved it.

    The Digital Video sub-forum is one of the lesser frequented forums on this board, thus the traffic is low, therefore answers are rare, especially in an older thread.

    Maybe you can try MRoogle to find some threads about AVCHD, as there are some around here. Or use the little sister, Google, to find what you want to know. Someone out there must have written it down somewhere.
    Or go to www.creativecow.net, as they are quite film and video orientated.
     
  17. bumzo1 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2009
    Location:
    Dallas, TX
    #17
    on my iMac 2.93 its about 75% of real time so on the 2.53 probably 80 or 85% of real time. the only problem I have with it is that you can't use your computer during the import process because it uses 100% of your CPU and it takes up a tremendous amount of storage space. A 1.5 min video clip is almost 2gb :O. Plus if your adding effects (I use chromakey often) the rendering times are horrendous. My HF20 produces some pretty high quality video though once I'm done. I even made a review of the camera if you are interested.
     
  18. sigamy macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    Location:
    NJ USA
    #18
    If your school is looking to step up from the Canon HV30 then any of the prosumer cameras will be fine. The main thing you are getting is larger and multiple CCDs or CMOS chips and more manual control.

    You really have to decided if you are ready to go tapeless. It's a whole new workflow and computing power is required.

    If you do go tapeless I agree with the Panasonic HMC40 recommendation. It is probably the best budget prosumer cam right now.

    If you want to remain with tape then Canon or Sony.
     

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