So, You’re In The Market For A Video Camera

There are momentous events that occur during our lives that later on, we will end up wishing we had on tape. Photographs are no longer the preferred method of storing memories, giving way to video cameras instead. As more technological advances are made, there are bigger and better video cameras on the market available for purchase. It is ultimately up to you to decide which video camera will best suit your needs.

A video camera can be a major purchase, and should be a well-informed and researched decision. There are a lot of resources available online or at your local bookstore that would be very helpful in your knowledge quest.

If you plan on recording for long periods of time, more than a couple of hours, you should try to opt for a video power that is an energy saver, or else you will spend your recording time changing out and recharging batteries. It is a good idea to have a couple of spare batteries anyway, just in case.

Most video cameras now come equipped with a viewfinder, which is much handier for the user than looking thru a little round hole, or eyepiece, to see what they are recording. The downside to recording and using the viewfinder, however, is that it sometimes can be a bigger drain on your battery time than just using the eyepiece. Using a viewfinder makes it much easier to film hard to reach shots, while allowing you better control over what you are filming.

Before making a purchase, you should familiarize yourself with digital and optical zoom. With optical zoom, you tend to get a nice sharp, well focused image. Digital zoom doesn’t offer a sharp picture; it’s basically a magnifying effect. You will probably be much better satisfied with a video camera that has both digital and optical zoom. Focus more on the optical zoom if you want high quality videos.

Many of today’s video cameras offer a feature called image stabilization. This feature helps prevent the video from being shaky and jumping all over the screen when you watch it, therefore producing a higher quality video. Image stabilization helps to filter out the normal shaking of the camera.

Some video cameras can now pose as still picture cameras as well, thus eliminating the need to take two cameras to events. You can get live and still shots in one piece of equipment.

One neat feature of some video cameras is the ability to record to DVD, which recently, seems to be the most preferred type of media.

If you are a newbie when it comes to shooting film, you can also opt for a video camera that will basically do everything for you but hold the camera. They come now equipped with auto focus and light adjustments, so all you have to do is press a button and shoot.

There is such a wide range of video cameras on the market today; it can become confusing when trying to decide which one will best suit your needs. Doing your homework beforehand, can help save you a lot of time, and possibly help ensure you truly do make a wise investment.

Satisfaction Guaranteed: Purchasing a Video Camera

Finding the right video camera requires a few simple steps. Start by researching the various products available in the marketplace.

If you’re unfamiliar with video cameras, doing your homework now can better ensure you’ll be satisfied with your final purchase. Many consumers are use to particular brand names, and the quality and features associated with each. If this is your first video camera, you may want to take the plunge and purchase a truly top-of-the-line model, or just get your big toe wet with a less expensive unit. The challenge is in selling yourself that the extra cost, whatever it may be, will be able to generate the results you need to make it all worthwhile.

This research process can be used when making any type of photo purchase. First set the price range. How much are you willing to spend? Determine if you’re looking for an amateur or a professional grade camera. Even if you’re an amateur, sometimes the pro shops can offer some surprisingly accessible products. Regardless, it’s helpful to go to a major photo and video supplier’s Web site to check out what’s available.

There’s one more step to be taken. Locate other folks who had already made purchases and shared their thoughts. User expectation is a big factor in a consumer’s experience. For instance, one person may make a negative comment about a feature. However, that feature is irrelevant to your need for that product. Read the good comments and the bad. Then shift through the details for what really matters to you.

Before, after or as you read consumer reviews, make a list of all the realistic scenarios as to how you plan to use the video camera. Will you use it in low light conditions? Do you care about audio? Does it need to be compact and portable? Will you need to carry it a distance? Will you be able to react to impromptu situations? Does it have a million accessories and how much do they cost? How long does the battery last? Is it complicated to download the contents? How much data can be held on the storage device? Will you need a tripod?

The next thing, to ask yourself is “What are you willing to sacrifice to get the majority of what you want in the price range you desire?” There is no single perfect camera (in an affordable price range of most consumers). Remember that old expression, “you can’t be all things to all people.” It’s called an average camera.

There’s a professional photographer who wanted to move into video. His choice for this first-time buy was a JVC video camera. It’s a lower end price range professional video camera ($2,000-ish). JVC has a reputation for making some great DVD/CD and stereo equipment leading one to believe that all their products should offer similar performance. The runner up was a highly rated, semi-amateur/professional Sony camera in a mid-range price ($1,200-$1,300). Then there was the highly-rated Panasonic for $900. It was reported that the results for this camera in low light conditions were poor and grainy. All things considered it was still a good camera. Like all video cameras, the built-in audio is considered sub-par. If you plan to digitally add sound that should not be an issue.

So ultimately what was the professional photographer’s choice? The photographer opted for the Sony.

Buying cheaper is not always the best option. Being happy with the equipment and using it rather than having it sit in the box makes all the difference.