Which camcorder for Final Cut Express?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by 66217, Jul 23, 2007.

  1. 66217 Guest

    Jan 30, 2006
    I have just purchased FCE, and I am wondering which camcorder would be the best.

    I have read that DVD camcorders are just not an option. But I am not sure if miniDV or Hard Drive camcorder is better for FCE.

    My budget is around $300.

    Any recommendations?


  2. CanadaRAM macrumors G5


    Oct 11, 2004
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    MiniDV camcorders with Firewire will give you the fewest hassles, and at your price range, probably better quality and features.

    HDD recorders use one of several different encodings for the video data which may force you to get additional software or go through extra steps, or suffer reduction in image quality compared to DV.
  3. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    You want DV. Tapes. The hard drive recorders don't record in a format the can be used.

    The neat thing about DV is the time code. The tapes
    ARE your backup.

    With a $300 budget you might want to check out used cameras. A lot of people are moving to HD now and selling the miniDV cameras.

    Which exact camera to get? You'd have to tell us how you are going to use the camera first
  4. 66217 thread starter Guest

    Jan 30, 2006
    I would only use it to take some video of a working place. Nothing to complicated, basically I only want to take some video, and then put it in FCE to edit it and add titles, etc.
    I do want to have a decent camcorder, I don't want HD quality, but do need a good quality one.
  5. AviationFan macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2006
    Cedar Rapids, IA

    a miniDV camera (possibly a pre-owned one, as suggested by ChrisA) should be a good choice for you.

    For what you have in mind, most miniDV cameras in your price range should be able to record a decent picture under good lighting conditions. Two differentiating factors that I would suggest you look at when comparing different cameras are how well they do in poor lighting (I had a feeling from what you wrote that you'll be recording indoors) and how good the audio recording is (e.g., can you connect an external microphone?).

    - Martin
  6. 66217 thread starter Guest

    Jan 30, 2006
    What do you think about these camcorders?

    - Canon Elura 100
    - Canon ZR850
    - Sony DCR-HC96
    - Sony DCR-HC46
    - Panasonic GS59

    Basically most are between the same price range (except the Sony DCR-HC96), all of them are MiniDV, and as far as I know all of them have firewire.

    Most reviews tend to say the Canon Elura 100 is just superior, but I have doubts in which is better for low-light conditions. With low-light I mean inside a building, where not much sunlight enters (just a bit), but there is good artificial illumination.

    Thanks for the help

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