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But I'm thinking that 16GB-32GB SDHC is pretty common these days. Are flash memory cameras still recording lower quality video than DV cameras (thinking standard def here). Obviously you can get HD cams that record to SDHC, but I'm thinking just as it pertains to a cheap Std Def cam.
DV is lightly compressed, each frame of video is stored individually. MPEG does not store each frame, it uses content from other frames when it doesn't change. That's why you can have low bitrate video without any movement and it will look great until you get movement and the macroblocks flare up.
Comparing DV converted to MPEG2 to a MPEG2 directly from a flash cam assuming everything else is equal will show negligible differences however here is a simple experiment you can try. Find a high quality DV sample with a lot of action.
1. Convert the DV to a 720*480 3000kbps MPEG2.
2. Convert the DV to 720*480 6000kbps MPEG2(which is typical for flash cam) then convert that to 720*480 3000kbps MPEG2.
Note that 3000kbps is entirely too low for that size resolution when using MPEG2. These are both going to look bad but what you're going to find is #2 is significantly worse than #1.
While a SD camcorder using flash may be convenient for the consumer for anything professional especially where you will be converting to a highly compressed web format you're going to want to start with highest quality format you can as a source.
where you will be converting to a highly compressed web format you're going to want to start with highest quality format you can as a source.
That's precisely where I would think it would not matter. I don't have the equipment to do the experiment you suggest (as you might have guessed from my question), but I believe you.
Other threads had more or less convinced me that for my purposes, I did not HD and would have some downsides from that. I just don't see needing the HD... but it is tempting at current prices.
I think I'll look around for an SD cam that's not SD (i.e. Std Def that's not flash)!
DV >> WMV@ 2000kbps >> WMV@ 1000kbps >> WMV@ 500kbps....etc
DV >> WMV@ 2000kbps
DV >> WMV@ 1000kbps
DV >> WMV@ 500kbps
When you feed an encoder nice clean material the better off the results will be even at lower bitrates. For example a typical Hollywood DVD is 6000kbps and if done right can produce great results at that bitrate. If you're encoding home footage from VHS which is typically very noisy and hand held you need to apply much more bitrate to compensate for all the noise and movement.
Same thing applies with MPEG2 when comparing it to DV since the MPEG2 contains so much less information. Macroblocking in MPEG2 is not really noticeable at the higher bitrates but it is there on a very small scale.
FYI you don't necessarily need any equipment for that experiment except to produce the original DV file, you should be able to find samples on the web. It would all be done with software.
It does DV and HDV. It has progressive mode too.
I was looking at the HF20/HF40 and didn't see that there's also an HV20/HV40.
The GS250 is dirt cheap used on Amazon and has 3 CCDs. No HD (500 lines resolution). GS400 is $1000 used, which means there are a lot of options.
One thing is that I also want a small camera. I'd be taking this doing things like backcountry skiing and such, so size and weight are fairly significant considerations.
And yes, I mostly imagine myself shooting moving people at a fair distance.