Mac-friendly SD flash video cam recs?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by Dave00, Aug 20, 2008.

  1. Dave00 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2003
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    #1
    So the baby's due in 4 weeks, and it's getting time to buy a video camera. As my target viewing medium will be DVD's I produce with iLife, I'll be sticking with standard-def for now, though I'd like something that can shoot widescreen for DVD.

    My criteria are:
    - Mac-friendly. This is critical. I have a macbook and an iMac G5.
    - Uses flash media, probably SD.
    - Small, with a quick startup.
    - Good image quality. I tend to like the way Canons render on still-frames.

    Models I was looking at include:
    Sanyo Xacti VPC-E1
    Canon FS100

    What should I add to my list?

    Dave
     
  2. TEG macrumors 604

    TEG

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Location:
    Langley, Washington
    #2
    Flip Video. Has built in storage or can use SD Cards, are Widescreen, and can record at 720p.

    TEG
     
  3. tominated macrumors 68000

    tominated

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2006
    Location:
    Queensland, Australia
    #3
    the newest sanyo xacti is apparently very good (the hd1010), although it is high-def.
     
  4. Dave00 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2003
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    #4
    But no zoom whatsoever. For this type I can just use my digital cam. I wanted something where I could just zoom in or out on the fly. (Guess I should've mentioned this in my specs.)

    Dave
     
  5. Courtaj macrumors 6502a

    Courtaj

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2008
    Location:
    Edinburgh, U.K.
    #5
    For standard definition SD-card recording the Canon is probably the go.

    You mention you want to stick with standard definition because your output is going to be to DVD. Also, chances are your G5 may not be especially adept when it comes to handling HD video. But downscaled HD is going to look at least as good if not better than native standard definition when printed to DVD, and there is an argument to be made for going with an HD camera now - so long as your machine can handle it or you're likely to upgrade in the near future. Also, check the specifications on the Canon to make sure that it doesn't drop the resolution to make its 16:9 picture, as many consumer-level standard def camcorders do just that. On the other hand, 16:9 widescreen is part of the HD spec.

    Cheers,
    Andrew.
     
  6. txhockey9404 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2008
    #6
    I don't think non-Intel macs support AVCHD but I may be wrong so please, no one flame me on that. If you want to take the footage off the camera on your macbook, then export it in SD, then move it to your iMac, you can use AVCHD, but if I were in your position, I would just use the Macbook for everything. I say go for the AVCHD cam because if Apple adopts BluRay, and you upgrade, you can already burn in HD without needing a new camera, and most HD cameras have an SD mode for the time being.
     
  7. berkleeboy210 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2004
    Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
    #7
    um Flip can't record HD, and it can't use SD cards.

    I'd recommend the Kodak Zi6 -- $179 - 720p 60FPS, up to 32gb SD Card. Built in USB just like the Flip.
     
  8. TEG macrumors 604

    TEG

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Location:
    Langley, Washington
    #8
    Depends on which Flip and what you mean by HD. The $200 + Flip records in 720p and uses SD cards. At least that is what it says on the box.

    TEG
     
  9. Courtaj macrumors 6502a

    Courtaj

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2008
    Location:
    Edinburgh, U.K.
    #9
    Intel Core 2 Duo is recommended as a minimum for high def video. But you might get by on a high-spec G5 - I imagine that HD wouldn't be smooth in playback, however (dropping frames etc.). I'm not sure a G5 iMac would crack the HD nut, but it might. If you don't run iMovie 08 then you need a third-part app like VoltaicHD to convert AVCHD to Apple Intermediate Codec.

    Assuming that "SD" here means "standard definition," not true. Among consumer camcorders, it is only HDV cameras like the Canon HV20 / HV30 that allow you to record in high def and downconvert to standard def on playback. None of the AVCHD cameras do, as far as I'm aware.

    The point was that the OP wants to stay standard def because he's on a G5. To go to HD and keep tapeless would probably necessitate upgrading his Mac.
     
  10. Dave00 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2003
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    #10
    There are several reasons I want to stay with SD. One is ease of editing; it's my impression at least that it's easier to work with SD video (smaller size, less compression) than HD. I'd like to have something I can edit on the G5, although that's not mission-critical; I could always just get a big monitor and hook it to the macbook. But the main thing is that my target audience is going to be family, who I don't anticipate getting any sort of Blu-Ray or HD device for at least 5 years or so. I might consider getting an HD cam and shooting in SD for now, with the option to change in a few years; but I figured SD quality would probably be better on an SD cam, as there is no integer multiple to convert between the two standards so one would have to be interpolated.

    Do people have good experience with the Canon & mac use?
     
  11. yotoad macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    #11
    i have the hd1000 and use it to shoot HD and standard def. everything imports perfectly to iMovie 08, then i edit it and export to Apple TV format (large)

    i'm reading these forums today trying to figure out how to get my movies exported from 720p from the SANYO to 720p for the AppleTV, and i stumbled across this post.

    i did a lot of research on the HD1000 and have enjoyed it - i have a 16 gig SDHC class 6 card and i can get a ton of HD footage on there
     

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