Now I need help picking out a camcorder

Jay H

PFG, Picture Framing God
Dec 8, 2003
Yall was all so helpfull helping me pick out my Vivitar camera that I thought I would pick your brains for your opinion on a camcorder.

This is the one I'm looking at. HERE

Whatcha think. I was hoping to spend under $300. This one looks like winner and its way under $300.

Don't tell my wife. Thanks friends.
I've heard a bit from the staff here recently with video cameras and there is two options from what I can understand. Canon and Sony, the Sony is great but if you want any additional acessories then get ready for a surprise, Canon tend to be a bit dearer but when you need an overpriced part theirs are only just overpriced (not "totally extremly-heart attackingly" as one girl described it).
Hi Jay,

Gotta love Walmart.. I didn't know you could shop thier online...I wonder if they ship to Austraila,

I'm not sure on the camcorder but I do love the Sony over the Cannon. But it does make you wonder about the description of that camcorder about being able to capture intimate details from afar....hmmmmmm (hahaha)

All I wanted to say is that I love the Happy RamaHanaQuanzMas! YOu don't forget anyone in that one.

So on that note...... Happy RamaHanaQuanzMas to you and your family.

Happy Holidays

PS to bad we don't have little holiday gremlins to jazz up our replies.
I don't know much about this topic, but here's what seems to be a great deal (courtesy of the daily deals web site).

JVC GRD230 MiniDV Digital Camcorder w/10x Optical Zoom, 1.33MP
List price $699
Sale price $324, less $50 rebate, free shipping = $274
I do a lot of videos for various projects including creating DVDs. Here's what I look for in a Camcorder:
- MiniDV tape format: Used everywhere and very reliable.
- Prefer 18X optical zoom but 10 will do.
- Lense must accept adapters. You will want to buy and use the glass wide angle lense indoors.
- Must be able to focus manually. Many times the auto-focus will "hunt" as you pan around a room.
- I like a camcorder that has analog record inputs. I record off the cable TV, VHS decks etc and use that to upload to a PC (with firewire) for editing. You can go stright to PC with a capture card but often the recording source is not near my PC.
- Firewire output so you can connect full motion video to the PC.
- I really like the bigger LCD displays. Most of my recording is done viewing the display and bigger is better.
- The best batteries in the business are the smart batteries from Sony. They tell you, truly, to the minute how much battery you have left.

I use a Sony TRV27. I like Sony, Panasonic and JVC in no order but almost any brand will do these days as most are made well. I do buy the extended warranties for the expensive camcorders cause they are often dropped and are expensive to repair. Most of my warranties have paid off over the couple of years.

I've started all my videos, including home videos in 16:9 format. I really love it. But, this format will not work well if you are sharing videos with family. Most folks are not set up to view 16:9 on their TVs.
I looked at the camcorder you listed at Walmart. That's a great package. The Hi8 format is excellent but has some limitations for advanced users and will not be around for too many years. (I've converted all my Hi8 to MiniDV and DVD). For home videos you'll be very happy with that camera. The price is excellent.
can anybody compare the one I listed with the one Mike did. That looks like a mega sweet deal to me also. It uses MiniDV.

From what I can tell, the JVC's a little nicer. The Sony has better zoom (20x optical vs. 10x on the JVC), but the JVC has better options such as firewire and USB output, a color eyepiece, higher res CCD (higher pixel count), digital stereo audio (the Sony only has mono), and it's about half the weight of the Sony.

JVC Product Specs on Amazon
Sony Product Specs on Amazon
For printers and cd-burners and other tech buys I go to and check out their product reviews. They check out the costs of use and price versus cost of consumables. What kind of savings is a $60 printer if the next cartridge is going to burn out in 250 pages and costs you $99!

They also do technical reviews of digital cameras I'm sure they did one on digital camcorders.

And check consumers reports. We can say this one, no that one, but they check them out. If you don't get the mag, can't get it on-line then go to the library.Or call and ask a librarian to research it for you! My mom in law is a librarian and she is shocked and delighted by the questions she gets! (Sorry she works in a private high school or I'd ask her for you!) Might anyways, but she'd think I was going to get one for my wife!

Dang Mike. I decided I would buy that one all afternoon. Then by the time I got around to buying it, they were out. If you find anymore sweet deals like that let me know.

I know your the 'dealmaster'.

I think I want digital for sure. With digital outputs anyway.

Carry on!
I recently bought a Panasonic GS-11 with a 24x optical zoom and 800x digital zoom. I think the digital zoom is ridiculous, but have tried using it up to about 80x zoom and then after that the picture is pretty sad.

One of the features I like about this one is that I am able to connect my old Sony Hi8 to it and capture the video onto the computer.

The video from this camera is excellent! I am taking it with me to USA next week to use it at Denver, Mesa Verde, Monument Valley, Bryce Canyon, Zion NP, Hoover Dam.

I would never buy another Sony after the saga I had with the one I bought back in 1995. Pretty much top of the line. It went to the repairers (a few weeks out of warranty) several times, once for 11 months and was in worse condition each time it returned. Eventually got it fixed...$600 + several lots of $150.