I got a Sony HDR-FX1 and am now thinking about HD video editing. My question is this...if you shoot HD video, edit with HD video, and then burn a DVD, will that give you a better quality product then if you shoot HD video, downconvert to DV when you run it onto your computer, edit normal DV, and then burn a DVD? Either way you'll have to "downconvert" it to get it on the DVD, I'm just wondering if you retain any quality by editing in HD. I hope this isn't a stupid question, but if I don't have to purchase HD software I don't want to.
this depends on your choice of video editing software, and how much time and power you can throw at the encoding process.
For standard def work the fastest and most efficient way to edit is to let the camcorder do the downconvert. Not only does it give you super quality, but now the NLE only has to deal with DV footage. It will rip through it.
On the other hand editing in HD gvies you the best possible quality and the ability to export your production on blu-ray or any other HD format in the future. You can export your HD tiemline to SD and get great results, but you will find that this encoding can take quite a bit of time - even with a killer new computer.
We decide which way to go based on the project and the need for HD down the road.