Camcorders have come a long way in the past decade and these days the average videographer is limited only by their budget. If you want Hollywood-quality movies, you can pick up a high-performance video camera and start shooting.
But not everybody wants to shoot a motion picture. Most people just want to film a wedding or their kid’s birthday party, and they want to do it on a budget. For those people, here is a look at some of the best cameras for the money.
Best Camcorder for the Money
The Sony HDR-CX190 has been hugely successful with consumers. It’s an extremely compact model that makes clever use of space, including the compact 2.7″ LCD screen.
Shooting mode is in 1080p Full HD with SteadyShot to help you eliminate wobbles. Sony also have worked hard on the audio capture side of things, and the Intelligent Auto sound capture makes sure to capture the audio beautifully while you’re free to focus on the image.
PC connectivity is great and supported by Sony software, although the on-board UI is quite intuitive and flexible too. The average home user will be extremely happy with this model.
Best Compact Camcorder to Buy
The Panasonic V100K is a slightly older model but is available for a bargain $152 from Amazon right now. This camera offers an excellent 42x zoom mode and 32.5mm wide angle lens, as well as full HD recording ability.
Panasonic’s iFrame technology is great for editing videos together on the fly and there is even an option to upload directly from the camera to your social network accounts or to YouTube. It’s not the most up-to-date piece of kit, but it is a superb chance to grab a bargain.
Best Video Camera for Home Use
JVC are not quite the force they once were, but the JVC GZ-EX210BUS1080p has quite a few happy customers. At just around $200, it offers a raft of features including a LoLux with back-illuminated CMOS sensor and that all-important 1080p HD capture.
JVC has included a range of software features that are becoming increasingly common such as automatic face tagging and pre-set shooting filters. Some users have reported that the built-in wifi is a little buggy, but as a video camera this will give you your money’s worth.
Best Camcorder under $100
Is it possible to go even cheaper? Can you purchase a HD camera for under $100? You can, although you may find that you’re not quite getting the quality you might get from the products above. The Aiptek A-HD Pro costs under $100 and this small handheld claims many of the same features as the cameras above, including 1080p shooting and a powerful CMOS sensor. Like most things in life however, you get what you pay for.
At this end of the price spectrum, you find that overall performance is slow, that the software doesn’t quite have the image capabilities of more expensive cameras, and that focusing and light adjustment are a little more of a struggle. If money is a big concern and you want a dedicated camcorder, this is certainly worth checking out. But if you can stretch your budget even a little, try one of the other three cameras.
When you are looking for a video camera, you want something that will give you a decent picture. You will want to make sure you get your moneys worth and the best way to do that is by reading reviews. The above are all well rated and may be what you are looking for or at least they are a good place to start.