Your questions: "what type of camcorder should I buy?"

As I have a hobby of using camcorders in dangerous situations (for office satire and home movies 😉 I was asked last night…

“What type of camcorder should I buy?”

Richard Baguley, PC World has an article on selecting the camcorder formats that is best for you, given that there are so many different types. It’s a good quick overview on the camera types available, from miniDV tape to the latest high definition hard-disk based models.

“Comedian Buddy Hackett once declared: “As a child, my family’s menu only consisted of two choices: Take it or leave it.” If the Hacketts were choosing a camcorder today, they would be overwhelmed by the choices available to the modern home moviemaker. Peruse the camcorder section of your local electronics store, and you’ll be confronted with an incredible selection of models, from MiniDV and DVD camcorders to hard-drive and flash memory models, plus a few oddballs that fit into more than one category. Here is my guide to the different types, and the pros and cons of each.”

Update: And apologies: here’s the link in long form as the embedded link didnt take the first time around (thanks for the heads-up, Blake):

Comments (2)

  1. sprague says:

    So tell us: which one is on your wishlist?

    I’m thinking of the Canon HV20. My next camcorder absolutely has to be HD — in a few years anything else will look archaic.

  2. M3 Sweatt says:

    I’m in your camp: I’d like to move to a small HD – the new Canon HV20 is the current front runner, especially as it uses MiniDV tapes. But in waiting for the price to drop below $1K, I’ve also considered a hard disc-based camcorders, such as the models from Sony, Panasonic and JVC (which even has an HD Everio model, ‘tho it’s not cheap ;).

    So for the interim I may get an HD tape-based model: I find that DV tape is nearly as fast to edit as copying files from the models I use today (a Canon DV Optura with great video quality and a tiny Panasonic SD-card based video camera, which works quite well for quick-and-dirty, on-the-go shoots).