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Old Jul 12, 2006, 5:08 AM   #11
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The good thing about miniDVD recorders is that it's good for people who don't need to edit their video. They can just pop the disk into their DVD players without even a thought of using cables. The problem with them is that they are a bit bulky and use MPEG2 compression. MPEG2 highly compresses the video so if you want clarity, you might as well stick with miniDV. The same is true with harddrive based camcorders. They also use MPEG2.

DVD is 720x480 BTW. Plus the MPVR doesn't have a LED light.. it does have a flash for photos though which is suprisingly bright. Don't even bother taking video indoors low light with a hybrid unless you have an external light source.

rgvcam wrote:
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The problem with hybrids at the moment is that the pace of change is much slower than digital cameras at the moment but I am sure this will speed up as they get
better and more mainstream.

Currently hybrids are looked down upon as mere toys but they already have the same memory capacity for recording as a MiniDVD recorder, but then they are also looked down upon.

I would rather see the optics improve first rather than higher resolutions as 640x480/30fps is already good enough for most purposes and they are already moving towards DVD standard of 720x640 so I don't see the need for anything higher on a TV. Often when they first introduce a higher resolution video capability it seems to be at the expense of framerate. This can be seen in the Canon S80, which has a new XVGA movie mode but at 15fps. We put up with 15fps in the past as a trade off for expensive flash memory but now it is cheap.

We need cheaper hybrids with a proper autofocus lens rather than fixed focus as this makes a big difference in the clarity of the image. Aiptek seem to be the first so far for fixing my other want, that is adding an LED video light. While this isn't sufficient for proper low light video recording, it may be enough for close ups which is better than nothing and you can't expect a powerful lamp in a small lower power device anyway. After all even miniDV camcorders only have LED lamps these days.
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Old Jul 12, 2006, 9:21 AM   #12
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Rodfather wrote:
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The good thing about miniDVD recorders is that it's good for people who don't need to edit their video. They can just pop the disk into their DVD players without even a thought of using cables. The problem with them is that they are a bit bulky and use MPEG2 compression. MPEG2 highly compresses the video so if you want clarity, you might as well stick with miniDV. The same is true with harddrive based camcorders. They also use MPEG2.

Quality is not really the issue with the DVD camsas they are good enough for the consumer who wants convenience and most of these people are unlikely to do any editing anyway.The main problem is that you can only capture roughly 20 minutes in the best quality mode whichtakes us back to the VHS-C daysso you can't record a complete birthday party, only highlights which may be fine but if you have hired a clown shown for instance then this could be a real problem. At least the 60 minutes of a miniDV means you'd only need to change the tape at most once for most long events.

Apart from the length of video, the other thing that puts me of DVD camcorders is the reliability of the finalizing. If it goes wrong or messes up , then your video is gone! Optical media also doesn't have longevity.

Quite why Harddrive cams have poor video at the moment is a mystery since even with a basic 20GB hard drive that is enough to hold 1 1/2 hours of DV quality video. You'd think they would have a DV mode as well as an mpeg2 mode. Still it should be able to store true DVD quality mpeg2 video in any case and I am sure that as time goes by they will get better. In my opinion the future lies with Hard drive camcorders and the flashmemory devices.

One of the real benefits of a flash memory device is that there is no mechanism of any kind to introduce unwanted background noise into the video as I keep hearing oncertain makes of miniDV camcorders.


DVD is 720x480 BTW.

Yes I know, that wasa typo, thanks for pointing this out! :-)

I noticed that the quoting of a reply doesn't seem to work properly in firefox. Anyone else noticed this? or is it just me?
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