Which HD Camcorder for iMovie 08???

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by johnjuniper, Jun 9, 2009.

  1. johnjuniper macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    #1
    Here's what I got:
    Macbook standard 13"
    iMovie 08


    I'm looking to buy an HD Camcorder, of which I will do light editing of my footage in iMovie. I've heard I should stay away from Sony cameras.
    My debate is a camcorder with a hard-drive, sd card, or tape. I would prefer a hard-drive as I don't want to mess around with tapes and cards, but what about these AVCHD files that balloon in iMovie? I don't want to plug up my system with massive files that need simple editing. Can someone explain these files to me?
    And do I have to burn multiple dvd's to store these massive files in HD?

    Please help with any thoughts on generating the best/fastest workflow between an HD camera and iMovie 08.
     
  2. Courtaj macrumors 6502a

    Courtaj

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2008
    Location:
    Edinburgh, U.K.
    #2
    Why do people still spread this mess? Here's a list of camcorders supported by iMovie: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1014. As you can see, plenty from Sony there.

    As for your other questions, a few searches on this forum should come up trumps, as similar if not identical questions are posted frequently.
     
  3. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2007
    #3
    I had heard that iMovie didn't play nice with true AVCHD video. Is that not true? (old info??)
     
  4. ftaok macrumors 601

    ftaok

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2002
    Location:
    East Coast
    #4
    As long as you have Firewire (and it sounds like you do), you can use just about any HD camcorder.

    If you download all of your footage into iMovie, it doesn't matter if you're using HDV or AVCHD. The video all gets converted to AIC, and at full resolution, it's 40GB/hr. Now, I believe that iMovie'09 has a feature that lets you import AVCHD directly to your library without converting. You would then convert only what you want to edit. I'm not sure if iMovie'09 allows the same workflow for HDV.

    Well, are you talking about DVDs that you can watch on a player ... or just back ups? If you intend to watch the DVDs, you do realize that they won't be in HiDef, unless you burn a "hybrid" disk (i.e. HiDef footage on a DVD that plays on a BluRay player). You'll need extra software to do this.

    If you're talking about back-ups, you'd probably want to buy a big hard drive, or archive your AVCHD footage onto a DVD-R. I'd probably do both if I were in your shoes. See more below.

    I would probably go with a SD card based camcorder and then I'd use 4GB or 8GB cards. After one fills up, I'd archive the card onto a DVD-R or DVD-R/DL. I'd also import into iMovie so that all of my footage in my library. Plus, I'd probably also back up the library onto a second hard drive.

    As it is right now, I use miniDV, so the original tape serves as my backup. I also have all of my footage on a single hard drive. I would love to get a second HDD to back up my footage, but I'm too cheap/lazy right now. I fell better archiving on tape than I do with DVD media.

    ft
     
  5. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2007
    #5
    Oh my. That doesn't sound too good.
     
  6. ftaok macrumors 601

    ftaok

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2002
    Location:
    East Coast
    #6
    Why not? Hard drives are cheap these days.

    If you really want to save hard drive space, you don't need to convert everything. And, you can also import at less than full resolution.

    If you want to edit everything and have a lot of video, you'll need more HDD space. Or you can wait until someone provides a Mac application that can edit native AVCHD files.

    ft
     
  7. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2007
    #7
    On a PC you can keep the files at the native (smaller) file size, right?
     
  8. ftaok macrumors 601

    ftaok

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2002
    Location:
    East Coast
    #8
    Not 100% sure, but I believe that Sony Vegas 7 can edit AVCHD natively. But you need a pretty powerful PC to edit that footage.

    ft
     

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