I was wondering if using an HDSLR would be okay for shooting sports highlights? Currently, I am using a Sony pd-150, which is dated I know, to film high school basketball. I have two HDSLR's: 1) Canon T2i and 2? Canon 7d. I would like to purchase a prosumer camcorder to use as I would not need to use tapes anymore, but I do not have enough money to spend on purchasing a prosumer camcorder with tapeless capabilities. Or does anybody know any decent and cheap prosumer camcorder under $2,000? Thank you in advance for any suggestions and feedback!
You might want to look into the Panasonic HMC40. It has a downfall at low light, but for your use that shouldn't be much of a problem. If you are worried about the time limitations of the Canons, you might want to consider a Panny GH1 as it has no time limitations, and right now there are some deals on them (closeout).
The T2i and the 7D both shoot 720 60p which is great for action sport and creating smoother slo mo replays.
You will need to spend extra money on suitable lenses for the HDSLRs though. You can save money by buying good used 35mm lenses and adaptors to fit various lens mounts to the EOS cameras. (Fotodiox?).
Audio is another issue too. You'll get best quality by recording dual system sound on another device (Zoom H4n?). The 7D only has AGC for audio levels, you can overcome this with something like a Beachtek DXA SLR. All this means extra expenses though.
Finally there's the duration of record issue, you're limited to approximately 12 mins maximum per shot with the HDSLRs, so if you nedd a record of event this may not work, in the time you button off and on a critical basket point could be scored and you missed it.
If you're not doing record of event but just some some really great action sequences you'll get great results, but research and budget for the lenses and audio issues I've mentioned.
Research all this before committing, maybe hire some kit and try it out before making a possibly expensive wrong decision. (There are many other options other than the brands I've mentioned here, they are simply what I use and they work well for me.
Cinematographer, Steadicam Operator, Final Cut Pro Post Production.
[Phil Balsdon] "Finally there's the duration of record issue, you're limited to approximately 12 mins maximum per shot with the HDSLRs"
Exactly. I can just see it.
He's at the 30, the 20 the 10 Card Full, but im sure you can get another card in there by the time they kick the extra point. It's not like they wanted to see the touchdown anyway.
For sports, I just dont think DSLR video is a good choice.
**Hindsight is always 1080p**
I'm doing a lot of sports videos (most of the time tennis) and I wouldn't recommend a DSLR.
Rolling shutter is a big problem with fast panning imho.
Keeping focus is very hard with DSLRs.
A camcorder (especially a shoulder cam) is more ergonomic than a DSLR (even with a rack). You can more easily react to any kind of shooting situation.
(Semi-)Pro camcorders are bigger and heavier than DSLRs and will give you more stabilization without carrying a lot of extra gear with you.
The lens-stabilization is better with camcorders, since they are designed for shooting videos rather than still frames.
Although I focus manually with my camcorder I use the "Push AF" very intensly, which is a lot easier and faster than the auto focus features of most DSLRs.
A viewfinder plus LCD-screen and ND-filters come in very handy for shooting sports, which are all built-in in most (semi-) pro-camcorders.
So, if you want to use a DSLR: A rack, a viewfinder and a Fader ND are a must imho.
Thanks again everybody for the feedback and help, it is greatly appreciated. Yeah, I don't want to use my DSLRs for sports, I came across this camcorder, let me know if you think it is good for sports. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200569007677&ssPageName=...
As I stated earlier, I have a Sony pd-150 and I'm looking to go HD or close to it, but I am also on a budget (prefer lower than $2000). This camera seems affordable, but I know the audio isn't as good as the pd-150's. What do you guys recommend, holding off or purchasing this camera on ebay? I want a shoulder mount to get used to shooting sports that way as I want to do sports videography professioanlly. Thank you!
HDV isn't a bad format. I did a lot of work with the Sony FX1 and the Sony Z1 and then decided to get a V1 myself, which I really like.
When researching what camera to get, I had the HD1000 in mind as well, because of it's price. But then decided against it, cause this cam lacks a lot "working comfort" as it doesn't provide direct access to all manual controls ("not a special button for every function"), it's a one-chip camcorder, doesn't have XLR-jacks and has no progressive-scan feature.
It's also very plastic-like and the shoulder support (although a very tempting feature) is extremly hard.
A funny and sometimes very useful feature (especially with sports), is slomo. It records with real 200 fps into the camera buffer and then writes it on tape, but only maximum 12sec and in low quality which is then internally interpolated up to full-res.
The overall picture quality seems to be o.K but it's no low-light queen...
If you have the opportunity, try to test the cam for yourself before buying. Maybe rent it for a day or so. I wasn't comfortable with it at all. But maybe it's just to get used to working with it...
Hope this helps a bit.
To add: HDV cameras are very sensitive when it comes to tapes. Never (and I mean NEVER EVER) change your type of brand. So when buying a used HDV cam... I don't know. I had big problems (dropouts) with rented HDV cams. Every type of brand uses differend tape material and using different brands can cause a smear film on the video-heads. Cleaning tapes may help, but they wear out the video-heads. So be very careful!
Another thing: I never used special HDV tapes, I stick to my Sony Premium DV tapes and never had any problem. They are basically the from the same material, but quality control is higher with HDV tapes.
I use tge T4i to shoot basketball and baseball. My settings are iso 800-1600, f3.2, shutter 80 to 125 . Mostly 125. 1920x1080 29.97 , tamron 28-75 and a sigma 17-50. Staying wider helps eliminate most panning isuess. Also use a neutral pic. Style or standard. Works great.
google for "Go Pro HD Cameras"