still cameras with HD video?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by RossClement, Apr 12, 2008.

  1. RossClement

    RossClement Guest

    Hi all. I hope somebody sees this post among all the spam!

    A few months ago I bought a Canon S3 IS camera. I'm quite pleased with
    it, and make extensive use of it. Particularly the movie mode.

    However, being the kind of inveterate shopper that I am, that doesn't
    stop me looking around and thinking at what level of new specification
    and price would be the trigger to upgrade.

    I'm interested by the new still cameras with HD video. The first one I
    noticed was the Samsung NV24, with 720p HD video. However, the zoom
    is only 3.6x. And the sample shots I've seen online haven't inspired
    me. The relatively small sensor S3 is a bit noisy (I knew this when I
    bought), so a lower noise level is also something I'd be looking for
    in an upgrade.

    Given that I don't intend to upgrade immediately, I was thinking of
    making 1080p/30fps/stereo sound a prerequisite of an upgrade. But I'm
    surprised that all the HD video still cameras I've found so far have
    been low zoom. Is there a reason for this. When filming with my S3, I
    make extremely frequent use of the full range of optical zoom (12x
    optical), and would feel very restricted with a lesser zoom.

    So, if I made my requirements for upgrade to be:

    1] 1080p HD video/stereo sound. Better compression options for movie
    than S3's motion jpeg. Though currently
    I'm OK for recording time on full quality with my 8gig of cards I
    carry around.
    2] 12x optical zoom
    3] (Note, not too worried about megapixels as current cameras fulfill
    my needs, but lower noise than the S3 and as good a lens)
    4] Optical image stabiliser as good or better than S3.
    5] Price, approx £200 (or less obviously, provided lens quality etc is
    competitive with the S3)

    Do people think I'm being reasonable in my expectations, and will find
    the opportunity to upgrade without waiting 10 years? Apart from the
    NV24 and the Panasonic FX35, what other still cameras with HD video
    are around?

    By the way, from this post it may seem that I would be better off with
    a video camera! However, I do make frequent use of still shots, even
    while filming video. (I'm filming "holiday snaps", not professional
    video). I find the balance between video and still camera functions
    (and sound recording) of the Canon S3 about optimal for my needs. So
    something that has about the same balance would IMHO be ideal. And
    this suggests to me still camera (+video) instead of video camera
    (+stills).
     
    RossClement, Apr 12, 2008
    #1
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  2. RossClement

    ~~NoMad~~ Guest

    Hi all. I hope somebody sees this post among all the spam!

    A few months ago I bought a Canon S3 IS camera. I'm quite pleased with
    it, and make extensive use of it. Particularly the movie mode.

    However, being the kind of inveterate shopper that I am, that doesn't
    stop me looking around and thinking at what level of new specification
    and price would be the trigger to upgrade.

    I'm interested by the new still cameras with HD video. The first one I
    noticed was the Samsung NV24, with 720p HD video. However, the zoom
    is only 3.6x. And the sample shots I've seen online haven't inspired
    me. The relatively small sensor S3 is a bit noisy (I knew this when I
    bought), so a lower noise level is also something I'd be looking for
    in an upgrade.

    Given that I don't intend to upgrade immediately, I was thinking of
    making 1080p/30fps/stereo sound a prerequisite of an upgrade. But I'm
    surprised that all the HD video still cameras I've found so far have
    been low zoom. Is there a reason for this. When filming with my S3, I
    make extremely frequent use of the full range of optical zoom (12x
    optical), and would feel very restricted with a lesser zoom.

    So, if I made my requirements for upgrade to be:

    1] 1080p HD video/stereo sound. Better compression options for movie
    than S3's motion jpeg. Though currently
    I'm OK for recording time on full quality with my 8gig of cards I
    carry around.
    2] 12x optical zoom
    3] (Note, not too worried about megapixels as current cameras fulfill
    my needs, but lower noise than the S3 and as good a lens)
    4] Optical image stabiliser as good or better than S3.
    5] Price, approx £200 (or less obviously, provided lens quality etc is
    competitive with the S3)

    Do people think I'm being reasonable in my expectations, and will find
    the opportunity to upgrade without waiting 10 years? Apart from the
    NV24 and the Panasonic FX35, what other still cameras with HD video
    are around?

    By the way, from this post it may seem that I would be better off with
    a video camera! However, I do make frequent use of still shots, even
    while filming video. (I'm filming "holiday snaps", not professional
    video). I find the balance between video and still camera functions
    (and sound recording) of the Canon S3 about optimal for my needs. So
    something that has about the same balance would IMHO be ideal. And
    this suggests to me still camera (+video) instead of video camera
    (+stills).


    I think you may find that the new Panasonic TZ5 may do what you want.

    NM
     
    ~~NoMad~~, Apr 12, 2008
    #2
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  3. RossClement

    RossClement Guest

    Thanks for the comments.

    I went through the whole still camera versus video camera thing when I
    bought the Canon. I decided that I was prepared to compromise more on
    the video side, given the choices I had for the amount I was prepared
    to spend. But given what I now have, improvements in the video side
    are more likely to get me to buy another camera than improvements in
    the still camera side.

    The Panasonic LZ5 is very close to what I hope to get. Though, it's
    720p versus the 1080p I wanted. But I'm sure that'll come in the next
    product iteration or two.
     
    RossClement, Apr 12, 2008
    #3
  4. I agree absolutely. I have both a videocamera (Sony dcr hc-32e) mini dv and
    a still camera nytech (www.nytech.de). Both are very small, and I use each
    when appropriate. I have never used the still capability of the camcorder
    (only 640X480) and neither the video mode of the still camera. A mini dv
    tape can old up to 14 GB, and there are even 80 min tapes. They are
    intraframe compressed in the DV-25 codec, and the editing and authoring of
    the dvd is fun. The sound of the camcorder is stereo, cd quality. Of course,
    the only real handicap is you can't use both at one moment, unless you are
    an octopus:)
     
    Tzortzakakis Dimitrios, Apr 12, 2008
    #4
  5. RossClement

    Mac Lynch Guest

    Kia Ora Ross

    I think your last paragraph holds your answer.
    I took the plunge and bought a Sony HDR- UX7E Handycam.
    It uses 6.1 Megapixels for both Still & Movie and 10x Optical Zoom plus
    Digital
    Still pics are readily available while videoing for up to 4 shots per
    scene & limited only by card capacity in still mode.
    The results are better than my still Ricoh Caplio R3 which I still use
    as it fits in my pocket!
    As the Sony records directly to a Mini DVD it can play immediately onto
    a TV.
    It barely fits in my pocket, & I find that is the only drawback.
    Be interested what you finally decide upon!
    Mac



     
    Mac Lynch, Apr 13, 2008
    #5
  6. RossClement

    RossClement Guest

    Well, you may have to wait a long time to see what I finally decide
    upon. I am mere ruminating on what performance I'd need to see for
    what price before I consider it worthwhile upgrading.

    The Sony you mention is over £700 on Amazon. So while it has most of
    the my requirements for an upgrade, it's more than I'm prepared to
    spend on my next upgrade. The Panasonic Lumix LZ5 isn't as good as the
    Sony for video (no 5.1 channel sound, 720p rather than 1080i HD), but
    it's an awful lot cheaper. And while I haven't got the time to go
    through the manual for the Sony, it doesn't seem to have anything like
    the photo functions that the Panasonic (or even my current Canon) has.

    So I'm not yet convinced that I'll get what I want from the video
    side, rather than the still camera side of the equation.
     
    RossClement, Apr 13, 2008
    #6
  7. RossClement

    John Turco Guest

    <edited>

    Hello, Ross:

    Kodak's new EasyShare Z1012 is "expected to ship by Apr. 28," according to
    the manufacturer, with a suggested retail price of $299.95 USD.

    Further information:

    EASYSHARE Z1012 IS - Overview
    <http://www.kodak.com/eknec/PageQuerier.jhtml?pq-path=12454&pq-locale=en_US>

    EASYSHARE Z1012 IS - Features and Benefits
    <http://www.kodak.com/eknec/PageQuerier.jhtml?pq-path=12455&pq-locale=en_US>

    EASYSHARE Z1012 IS - Specifications
    <http://www.kodak.com/eknec/PageQuerier.jhtml?pq-path=12456&pq-locale=en_US>

    Here are the camera's pertinent specs (for your own needs):

    STANDARD FEATURES -

    Sensor type - 1/2.33 in. CCD

    Effective pixels - 10.1 MP (3672 × 2748)

    Lens - 36–396 mm (35 mm equiv.) f/2.8–4.8 SCHNEIDER-KREUZNACH VARIOGON Lens

    Zoom - 12X optical, 5X advanced digital, total zoom range 60X

    Image stabilizer - optical

    Shutter speed - 1/30–1/32000 sec.

    Viewfinder - high resolution (202k pixels) electronic, 100% field of view

    Monitor - 2.5 in. (6.4 cm) high resolution (230k pixels) wide angle of view
    indoor/outdoor color TFT display, 5 level brightness adjustments

    Storage - 32 MB internal memory* available, SDHC/SD card expansion slot

    VIDEO -

    Format - QUICKTIME MPEG 4 with stereo sound

    Quality - HD (1280 × 720) at 30 fps

    VGA (640 × 480) at 30 fps

    QVGA (320 × 240) at 30 fps

    Length - HD: continuous up to 29 min. based on memory capacity
    VGA, QVGA: continuous up to 80 min. based on memory capacity

    Review options - play, rewind, pause, fast forward and rewind, forward and
    rewind by frame, multi-up, slideshow, multi-field search, bookmarks

    Editing - make picture from video (4, 9, 16-up), trim, video bookmarking

    File management - delete, undo delete, copy, protect, text tagging

    Summing up, the Z1012 IS looks like a real winner, and has everything you
    want; I'm not sure >any< other current model meets all of your requirements,
    for that matter.

    Good luck!


    Cordially,
    John Turco <>
     
    John Turco, Apr 18, 2008
    #7
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