Im new here and I need some advice from someone who knows what they are talking about! Long story short, I'm heading over to Iceland for 2 weeks in November for my 30th and I want to purchase a video camera to capture some of the awesome things we plan to see and do over there. Theres only about 4 or 5 hours of daylight a day so I need something that will perform well in low light conditions as I will be filming at both dawn and dusk and preferably night time in case we are lucky enough to capture some northern lights action. I had pretty much settled on a Panasonic v700 until I went into the store today and was told that the performance of the g3 and especially the gh2 dslrs would hugely out perform the dedicated consumer camcorders. I have since done some research that suggests that this is true but that filming on a dslr has downsides and be very tricky. So I really just don't know what to do!
To summarise my needs I reaquire a device that is:
-reasonably easy to use (although I dont mind spending some serious time with the camera to know how to get the best out of it)
-films beautiful crisp hd footage in low light conditions, I may be filming from in or on vehicles, filming waterfalls from a distance, fast moving objects, close up volcanic activity etc both during daylight hours and when the sun is on its way up or down
-something that performs at least respecably should I be in lava caves or should I want to capture some northern lights footage at night time.
Results 1 to 10 of 16
08-01-2012 01:24 PM
- Join Date
- Aug 2012
08-01-2012 01:26 PM
- Join Date
- Aug 2012
Premature posting! Anyway, I know Im asking a lot especially for under 600 quid but any advice would be greatly appreciated.
08-03-2012 01:35 AM
- Join Date
- Apr 2009
A dedicated camcorder might be better for your needs, but ideally you'd have a gh2/g3, a few lenses, tripod and a dedicated camcorder.
The advantage with an m4/3 camera is you'll be able to shoot stills as well, but really to get the most out of it, you will need to take along a few lenses.
Enjoy the trip, it's a beautiful place.Adrian
08-03-2012 04:26 AM
You don't have enough money for DSLRs and a range of useful lenses.
You may not have enough skill, or time to gain it, with them before you go.
Do YOU want a camcorder that is simple to use, has all the useful features, decent sound from the off and something that can be placed on auto and given to the wife to take pictures when you don't wish to?
DSLRs are great stills cameras with video functions for those able to manage them. People who hate DSLRs will advise a camcorder, DLSR lovers will advise a DSLR, but insist on something able to do wide and telephoto, stuck on the front - and for your budget you'll get a nice camera with budget lens.
08-03-2012 12:21 PM
youre not going to find ANYTHING that will meet your needs well for $600. just isnt going to happen.
if low light situations are key, than id say stick with a dslr. ive owned two GH2s and theyre pretty good in this capacity. but you need to use good glass to get the best out of them. and decent m4/3 lenses generally start at about $600 even used - OR just get used to "artistic grain"
GH2s hold their value pretty well and you wont get a combo for less than about $650
you might look into a used canon 60D. but then youre dealing with the dreaded canon alias / moire issues (a problem if youre shooting a lot of grass, bricks, car grills, sweaters or herringbone suits)
here is a pretty good small camcorder that does a decent job at what you want - but its more than 2x your budget:
Last edited by wgzn; 08-03-2012 at 03:00 PM.
08-03-2012 06:01 PM
- Join Date
- Jun 2007
- Austin, TX
You really are asking for a lot for that budget, and you are simply not going to get that lowlight performance, at least not footage that will be relatively noise-free. On top of that, cheaper cameras mean CMOS and that can be problematic shooting out of a moving vehicle.
Best bet is to go to a camera/electronics store and play with the cameras in your budget and pick the one you are most comfortable with. Then shoot with it in similar conditions and see what you can bring to the table to make the most out of the camera itself.
08-03-2012 06:10 PM
Find something that is easy to use and take out every now and again but don't forget about the two best camcorders out there. Those two eyeballs of yours will make the best memories you can have.
08-04-2012 07:45 AM
i'd suggest the gh2 and kit lens for that price. Use the kit lens and video in the day. and Use the same combo in stills mode for timelapse in the night for the northern lights. In stills mode (im assuming since u can do this with canons) you can get very slow shutter speeds allowing alot of light to be captured. String the pics together in post or beautiful smooth footage. I suggest an intervalvometer ( i assume they have ones for the gh2) and a tripod for this time lapse.
08-19-2012 05:26 AM
- Join Date
- Jan 2011
jimmy - I apologize. Sadly, many of my fellow Americans don't know that "quid" means pounds ;)
For less than £600, you can get a £370 Panasonic G3 with the 14-42 kit lens for daytime plus either the £175 Panasonic 14mm f2.5, £150 Sigma 19mm f2.8, £134 Sigma 30mm f2.8 or £229 Olympus 45mm f1.8 for shooting at night (all amazon.co.uk prices).
Yes, you'll get higher quality video, but you'll be giving up the V700's 46X zoom, external mic jack, built-in movie light and unlimited video clip length.
I have both a GH2 and a Panasonic camcorder (TM900). I would get the V700 or X800.
BillHybrid Camera Revolution