Traditional SLRs struggle when it comes to video autofocus. Contrast-based methods require that the focus point move just beyond the point of crisp focus and come back to it in order to lock on, which can be distracting when refocusing to follow a moving subject. SLR makers have worked to improve this, utilizing lenses with Pulse or Stepping Motors, which are are quieter and smoother during focus, but they’re still not on the same level as most mirrorless cameras.
The $600 Panasonic HC-V770K is the best video camera for those who want a bit more than what their smartphone or even DSLR has to offer. Also referred to as a camcorder, this video camera was proved best after 30 hours of research and testing, which included interviewing experts and shooting hours of video in a huge range of conditions. The HC-V770K captures video that has more detail, better color, and better sound than the footage from all the cameras we tested (or any camera up to twice its price). In our tests, it produced the sharpest footage in bright light, plus it had the best stabilization and the least noise in low light. It also features the best touchscreen controls of the bunch and, with a long 20x optical zoom, you can capture the action from across a huge space—try to do that with a smartphone.
Political protesters use camcorders to film what they believe unjust. Animal rights protesters who break into factory farms and animal testing labs use camcorders to film the conditions in which the animals are living. Anti-hunting protesters film fox hunts. People investigating political crimes use surveillance cameras for evidence-gathering. Activist videos often appear on Indymedia.
All of these video cameras fit well and are comfortable in the hand, and your fingers fall naturally on to the control buttons and adjustable hand straps for different sized hands. The Panasonic adds a number of extra options, with a dial just behind the screen that you can use to access its manual settings, which some other camcorders lack.This definitely makes it easier to use for more serious shooters who want to get in and control the video capture process themselves.
A dedicated device will have vastly better image quality than your phone, and the zoom lens will make it a lot easier to zoom in on what you actually want to record. But what really makes it better than your phone and worth carrying around is its form factor. Unlike a difficult-to-grip phone or a large DSLR, a video camera is actually designed for extended shooting from a variety of angles. If you’re planning on recording something for an extended period of time, like a sporting event or a vacation video—or anything at an odd angle that would otherwise require you to squat or stretch to see the screen, like a baby’s first steps—a video camera with a rotating screen, superior zoom capabilities, quick autofocus, and a high-quality microphone will be a godsend. More on this later.
Rangefinder cameras allow the distance to objects to be measured by means of a coupled parallax unit on top of the camera, allowing the focus to be set with accuracy. Single-lens reflex cameras allow the photographer to determine the focus and composition visually using the objective lens and a moving mirror to project the image onto a ground glass or plastic micro-prism screen. Twin-lens reflex cameras use an objective lens and a focusing lens unit (usually identical to the objective lens.) in a parallel body for composition and focusing. View cameras use a ground glass screen which is removed and replaced by either a photographic plate or a reusable holder containing sheet film before exposure. Modern cameras often offer autofocus systems to focus the camera automatically by a variety of methods.
Photo: The pros and cons of digital cameras and smartphones summarized in three photos. Even point-and-shoot digital cameras like my old Canon Ixus have bigger, better, telescopic lenses (top) and sensors compared to the ones in the best smartphone cameras, like my new LG (middle). But smartphones undoubtedly score on connectivity and they have bigger, better, and clearer screens (bottom). Here you can see my smartphone’s huge screen pictured in a preview photo on the Canon’s tiny screen.
The high end of the consumer market emphasizes user control and advanced shooting modes. More-expensive consumer camcorders offer manual exposure control, HDMI output and external audio input, progressive-scan frame rates (24fps, 25fps, 30fps) and higher-quality lenses than basic models. To maximize low-light capability, color reproduction and frame resolution, multi-CCD/CMOS camcorders mimic the 3-element imager design of professional equipment. Field tests have shown that most consumer camcorders (regardless of price) produce noisy video in low light.
Sensor: Full-frame CMOS | Megapixels: 36.3MP | Autofocus: 51-point AF, 15 cross-type | Screen type: 3.2-inch, 1,229,000 dots | Maximum continuous shooting speed: 5fps | Movies: 1080p | User level: Expert
Video-capture capability is not confined to camcorders. Cellphones, digital single-lens reflex and compact digicams, laptops and personal media players offer video-capture capability, but most multipurpose devices offer less video-capture functionality than an equivalent camcorder. Most lack manual adjustments, audio input, autofocus and zoom. Few capture in standard TV-video formats (480p60, 720p60, 1080i30), recording in either non-TV resolutions (320×240, 640×480) or slower frame rates (15 or 30 fps).
Most phones are perfectly competent at this. I would just make sure it is stabilized in some way (a product that may interest you is the DJI Osmo Mobile Gimbal Stabilizer for Smartphones – https://www.borrowlenses.com/product/dji/DJI-Osmo-Mobile?INTPR=BLOG-BL-COMMENTS-YOUTUBE). Sound is also a concern, so you may want to consider a simple microphone if you’re not just setting your videos to music.
Along the way we’ll explain some of the jargon and the differences between cameras, though if you need a bit more help deciding what kind of camera you need, you can get a lot more information from our special step-by-step guide: What camera should I buy?
Many incorporate a retractable lens assembly that provides optical zoom. In most models, an auto actuating lens cover protects the lens from elements. Most ruggedized or water-resistant models do not retract, and most with superzoom capability do not retract fully.
Another popular lens choice is a fast, normal-angle prime lens. Before zooms were popular, film SLRs were often bundled with a 50mm f/2 lens. Because of the smaller sensor in consumer DSLRs, a 35mm f/2 is the current equivalent. The standard-angle gives you a field of view that is not far off from that of your eye, and the fast aperture makes it possible to shoot in lower light, and to isolate your subject by blurring the background of your photos. Prices for these lenses vary a bit depending on your camera system, but you can expect them to run you between $175 and $350.
B&H Photo has been a staple in the photography and videography businesses since it was founded in 1973. Though we service more industries today, cameras remain the lifeblood of our business. We sell a wide variety of digital cameras from all the top brands like Canon, Nikon, Sony, Panasonic, Olympus, Fujifilm, Pentax, Leica, Samsung, and more. Digital camera types include Digital SLR cameras (DSLR), Mirrorless System cameras, Point-and-Shoot cameras, Medium Format cameras, and more. Read below to find out which camera type best suits your needs.
Multi-shot exposes the sensor to the image in a sequence of three or more openings of the lens aperture. There are several methods of application of the multi-shot technique. The most common originally was to use a single image sensor with three filters passed in front of the sensor in sequence to obtain the additive color information. Another multiple shot method is called Microscanning. This method uses a single sensor chip with a Bayer filter and physically moved the sensor on the focus plane of the lens to construct a higher resolution image than the native resolution of the chip. A third version combined the two methods without a Bayer filter on the chip.
It’s hard for me to say for sure, but I think either our main pick, or the cheaper Canon, should do the job. What’s the current camera you’re using? That might give me some indication of where the problems are.
Type: High-end compact | Sensor: APS-C CMOS | Resolution: 24.3MP | Lens: 23mm f/2 | Screen type: 3-inch, 1,040,000 dots | Viewfinder: Hybrid | Maximum continuous shooting speed: 8fps | Movies: 1080p | User level: Expert
For low cost and small size, these cameras typically use image sensor formats with a diagonal between 6 and 11 mm, corresponding to a crop factor between 7 and 4. This gives them weaker low-light performance, greater depth of field, generally closer focusing ability, and smaller components than cameras using larger sensors. Some cameras use a larger sensor including, at the high end, a pricey full-frame sensor compact camera, such as Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX1, but have capability near that of a DSLR.
There are also a number of add-on camera modules for smartphones called lens-style cameras (lens camera). They contain all components of a digital camera in a module, but lack a viewfinder, display and most of the controls. Instead they can be mounted to a smartphone and use its display and controls. Lens-style cameras include:
While the main specification of the OM-D E-M10 Mark III doesn’t offer a huge upgrade from the Mark II, Olympus has refined and tweaked one of our favorite mirrorless cameras to make it an even more tempting proposition for new users and enthusiasts alike. Some will criticise the smaller Micro Four Thirds sensor format (roughly half the area of APS-C) but the effect on image quality is minor and it means that the lenses are as compact and lightweight as the camera itself. Sporting a 5-axis image stabilization system, decent electronic viewfinder, an impressive 8.6fps burst shooting speed and 4K video, it’s no toy – the E-M10 Mark III is a properly powerful camera.
The forerunner to the photographic camera was the camera obscura. Camera obscura (Latin for “dark room”) is the natural phenomenon that occurs when an image of a scene at the other side of a screen (or for instance a wall) is projected through a small hole in that screen and forms an inverted image (left to right and upside down) on a surface opposite to the opening. The oldest known record of this principle is a description by Han Chinese philosopher Mozi (ca. 470 to ca. 391 BC). Mozi correctly asserted the camera obscura image is inverted because light travels inside the camera straight lines from its source.
If there is a camera that can give Canon’s T6i a run for its money for beginning photographers it is the Nikon D3300. This camera is a well-priced powerhouse, boasting 24 megapixels, and a burst rate of 5 FPS. A 3″ LCD (but fixed) screen and the ability to record 1080p video at 60 FPS makes this a good choice for videographers as well. The D3300 was released in 2014 and has been a very popular choice for beginners ever since. Because this camera is only sold as a kit, you won’t have to purchase lenses to go with it.
If you want a simpler point-and-shoot video experience in a smaller package, the $300 Canon Vixia HF R600 is our step-down pick (or last year’s slightly cheaper R500). While its audio and video aren’t up to the high caliber of the Panasonic, at half the price it’s smaller, incredibly easy to use, still miles beyond a smartphone, and can fit into a coat pocket or bag when you’re done.
Other digital consumer camcorders record in DV or HDV format on tape, transferring content over FireWire or USB 2.0 to a computer where large files (for DV, 1GB for 4 to 4.6 minutes in PAL/NTSC resolutions) can be edited, converted and recorded back to tape. The transfer is done in real time, so the transfer of a 60-minute tape requires one hour to transfer and about 13GB of disk space for the raw footage (plus space for rendered files and other media).
Combo-cameras combine full-feature still cameras and camcorders in a single unit. The Sanyo Xacti HD1 was the first such unit, combining the features of a 5.1 megapixel still camera with a 720p video recorder with improved handling and utility. Canon and Sony have introduced camcorders with still-photo performance approaching that of a digicam, and Panasonic has introduced a DSLR body with video features approaching that of a camcorder. Hitachi has introduced the DZHV 584E/EW, with 1080p resolution and a touch screen.
Photo: Digital cameras are much more convenient than film cameras. You can instantly see how the picture will look from the LCD screen on the back. If your picture doesn’t turn out okay, you can simply delete it and try again. You can’t do that with a film camera. Digital cameras mean photographers can be more creative and experimental.
You may also want to consider a mirrorless camera as an alternative. If so, you’ll find our video above or Mirrorless vs DSLR cameras: 10 key differences guide very useful. Or, if you’re not sure what kind of camera you need at all, then read our easy-to-follow guide to camera types: What camera should I buy?
Highly appreciated to your professional review on the top DV camera,i have uploaded videos to Youtube via my cell phone, but I’m starting a separate channel for reviews and am looking for something half decent that’s under $200.
Endless possibilities. If you know you are the type of person who really gets into your hobbies, you may as well start with a camera that will let you do everything. A good entry-level DSLR will give you the ability to shoot in manual mode, provide decent low-light performance, and have an endless array of lenses to choose from. And the good news is that the DSLRs that are designed for newbies offer a lot of automatic and semi-automatic modes that make shooting a breeze.
Canon’s Rebel line has been the entry point for aspiring photographers for a while and this latest edition is worthy of the moniker. The 24 megapixel crop sensor camera shoots photos at 5 frames per second (FPS) and 1080p video at 30 FPS. Its 3″ articulated touch screen makes it a great option for aspiring videographers. Released in 2015, the T6i has more megapixels than its predecessor the T5i (24.2 vs. 18) and more than twice as many autofocus points. Beginners will appreciate this camera’s accessibility — it gives you all the manual controls of a higher-end DSLR but with lots of automatic and semi-automatic options to use while you’re learning.
Most people within my circle of friends know me as the guy who knows more about cameras than they do, so I’m often asked for advice about which digital camera to buy. I don’t mind being asked for my two cents on digital cameras, but at this point I’ve decided it’d be easier to write one article one time than answer multiple questions about cameras time and time again.
The Canon 5D Mark III is the venerable workhorse of the photography world and, while it lacks things like a flip screen or WiFi, it makes this list because it is just that good. This camera has a full frame sensor, a whopping 61 autofocus points, great performance at high ISOs, and excellent dynamic range. The 5D Mark III is perfect for vloggers who require incredible image quality but not a ton of portability, like makeup tutorials or studio interviews.
Sensor: APS-C CMOS | Megapixels: 24.2MP | Lens mount: Canon EF-S | Screen: 3-inch articulating touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots | Continuous shooting speed: 6fps | Max video resolution: 1080p | User level: Beginner/enthusiast
Digital cameras and camcorders take entirely different types of lenses. A camcorder lens will typically offer a far more robust zoom, giving you greater magnification. While there are a number of long zoom still cameras on the market, they still can’t touch the 30x or 60x lenses available on some camcorders.
If you’re hand holding at that level of zoom, the challenge is not in catching the ball as it comes down, but in keeping the camera steady enough to get a good video of it. Having the camcorder on a tripod pointed at the putting green would probably be best.
By definition, a DSLR features an optical viewfinder that shows you the exact image the camera’s lens is capturing—but not all of these viewfinders are created equal. A mirror directs light from the lens to the viewfinder, which is one of two types. The first, the pentamirror, is generally found on entry-level cameras. This type of viewfinder uses three mirrors to redirect the image to your eye, flipping it so that it appears correct, as opposed to the upside down and backwards image that the lens is actually capturing.
Closed-circuit television (CCTV) generally use pan tilt zoom cameras (PTZ), for security, surveillance, and/or monitoring purposes. Such cameras are designed to be small, easily hidden, and able to operate unattended; those used in industrial or scientific settings are often meant for use in environments that are normally inaccessible or uncomfortable for humans, and are therefore hardened for such hostile environments (e.g. radiation, high heat, or toxic chemical exposure).
Type: Mirrorless | Sensor size: Micro Four Thirds | Resolution: 16.1MP | Lens: Micro Four Thirds | Screen type: 3.0-inch tilting touchscreen, 1,370,000 dots | Viewfinder: EVF | Maximum continuous shooting rate: 8.6fps | Movies: 4K | User level: Beginner/enthusiast
Unfortunately, the quality on the D3100 is probably going to be better than anything on a dedicated video camera unless you’re willing to spend a pretty significant chunk of change. The reason for this is the sensor—the sensor in the D3100 is significantly larger than the V750/V770, and can capture cleaner footage.
A variety of additional features are available depending on the model of the camera. Such features include ones such as GPS, compass, barometer and altimeter for above mean sea level or under(water) mean sea level. and some are rugged and waterproof.
This was something that I assumed the newer model could do because it had been reported that it could, and the older models did. I’m extremely sorry for misinforming you on that matter, it really was unintentional.
Thanks again, the 30 min. is the problem with a compact camera and I can’t take pics while filming. The only compact camera that does that is the Olympus MR25. Or, do you know about any compact camera that can film and shoot pics in high resolution with flash? (sorry for my bad English)
Why this randomly gets turned off isn’t clear, but its’ likely that users either disabled the camera at some point or perhaps were hiding other apps and included the Camera app erroneously. Some users report this happened without any user intervention, which is a curious observation.
The principal advantages of camera phones are cost and compactness; indeed for a user who carries a mobile phone anyway, the addition is negligible. Smartphones that are camera phones may run mobile applications to add capabilities such as geotagging and image stitching. Also, smartphones can use their touch screens to direct their camera to focus on a particular object in the field of view, giving even an inexperienced user a degree of focus control exceeded only by seasoned photographers using manual focus. However, the touch screen, being a general purpose control, lacks the agility of a separate camera’s dedicated buttons and dial(s).
The other option would be to alter the frame rate of the recording, which I’m pretty sure you can do. According to the manual, “Scene(s) recorded in the recording format [MP4/iFrame], scene(s) saved in MP4 (1920k1080/25p), MP4 (1280k720/ 25p) or MP4 (640k360/25p): “MP4/iFrame scene(s)”
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