Digital Video Camera and Burning DVD's newbie questions.

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Jason Harbaugh, Nov 15, 2003.

  1. Jason Harbaugh

    Jason Harbaugh Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2001
    Messages:
    2,968
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I've finally finished some scripts that I wanted to shoot just as a fun project for myself and was in the market for a digital camcorder. After researching all the specs and jargon I'm lost and could really use some guidance.

    Basically what I want to do is to be able to shoot digitally, transfer to my computer via firewire, edit the movie on my computer and record it to a DVD.

    My requirements or wishlist if you will are:
    • Good daylight and low light recording
    • widescreen aspect ratio
    • 480p recording
    • anamorphic enhanced dvd burning[/list=wishlist]
      What I don't know is if the digital cameras record progressively. I noticed some cameras say they are progressive but looking closer it says for stills. Not sure if it is for video as well.

      I also don't know if burning your own anamorphic or "enhanced for widescreen tv's" DVD's is possible.

      I'm looking at a $600 budget and was hoping that this holiday season may lend itself to some good deals but I have no idea what to look for.

      Any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Laurence_C

    Laurence_C Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2001
    Messages:
    174
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    110
    Location:
    North Florida Panhandle
    Real Name:
    Laurence
    Jason that's a whole bunch of areas of information you're needing to research. Not sure if you've been there yet but for the digital camera part try www.dpreview.com
     
  3. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 1999
    Messages:
    3,301
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Unfortunately, there may not be any true progressive cameras in your price range. The defacto standard "affordable" 24P (480p/24fps) camera, the Panasonic AG-DVX100, is somewhere in the $3000 range. And it doesn't do true 16:9 out of the box, you need an $800 adapter. (Their AJ-SDX900 does, and its MSRP is $25,000. Although, who pays retail?)

    With 24P, you can go to film, NTSC, or PAL, and of course it has that "film look". A few other cameras (Canon XL1S, GL2) offer a "Frame Mode" which gives you effective 30fps progressive at the loss of some vertical resolution. 30P gives you the advantages of progressive frames and a more "film-like look", but can only be targeted to NTSC. Also, those cameras really aren't that much cheaper.

    Your best bet for progressive might be to use a good consumer camcorder and then a program like DVDFilm Maker ($99) to convert the interlaced footage to progressive. (I have no specific consumer camcorder recommendations.)

    The bad news continues: I don't know of any consumer camcorder that does true widescreen. If they have any "16:9" feature at all, they just ignore the "black bar" parts of the picture, then interpolate. If you want to use the whole CCD without interpolation, you'll need an adapter lens, which is probably more than your $600 budget.

    The good news is that once you get your footage, you can definitely make a widescreen and/or progressively-encoded DVD with the right (and inexpensive) tools. That's discussed in the Computers and HTPC Area of HTF.

    //Ken
     
  4. Jason Harbaugh

    Jason Harbaugh Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2001
    Messages:
    2,968
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thanks for all of the info. So it looks like I can just start looking for a decent camera that can record the best picture for my pricerange then do all the rest within the PC.

    I noticed a slim few listing their widescreen feature as 16x9 squeezed. Does that mean the same as DVD as in they are using all of the given resolution or is that just another marketing ploy?
     
  5. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 1999
    Messages:
    3,301
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I would guess it's not the real deal, especially in your price range. When they cheat, they are "stretching", which does end with the picture being "squeezed" in a sense. When done the right way, the picture starts out "squeezed" without any electronic monkey business (although to be technical, the picture is always squeezed in one way or another; it's never square).

    Which models were they?

    //Ken
     

Share This Page