They are offering a Canon Rebel T2i with a 18-55 mm lens for 800 and also a nikon d3 with a 18-55mm for 500
The nikon d3 is a lot cheaper, but I dont know if it would be the better buy
I will be using this camera as an extra camera to go with my schools hvx. I do VFX work and some side photography, nothing to hardcore, but I do want something that will look good and can be relied on for a few years
Hi Travis; sorry, but when you say "D3" I have to assume you don't mean the actual mac daddy (@2500$), but the D3000 or actually the new D3100. The 3100 is a great sign from Nikon that they are chasing Canon hard for DSLR video. http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/d3100.htm Only the AVCHD (lower Mbit rate than Canon), and the lack of formats other than 1080p/23.98 (which I use 98%of the time) limit the camera compared to the Canon. As far as "for a few years.." that's a tough one. I have a T2i, and love it, but already feel I'm outgrowing it as I do want a kelvin white balance, half step (well 16 multiples) ISO, and a more sealed (think rain) body. And again, sorry, but "hvx"; I'm assuming Panasonic P2 cameras. Kick butt camera, but you'll need a DOF adapter (like Letus,etc.)if your trying to match DSLR footage "look"-wise. It would come down to glass choice for me, as you are either/or with Canon/Nikon and that focus direction. Hope I interpreted your model #'s correctly; both good choices, depending on your needs/means. Just start shooting...ML
The T2i is a great camera, just sold mine after 6 months, in order to get an environmentally sealed body (in the Pacific NW this is a must if you shoot outside), and yes, white balance to match other cameras. The nice thing about the T2i is that the lens you buy will work with the 7D, which is probably the *right* one to buy. But it you are on a budget, then the T2i is a great starter camera. And Canon still has a commanding lead over Nikon for video, at least at this point in time.
The main issue with AVCHD, in my opinion, is that it is a more difficult format to work in. You need to maintain file structure with it. I know, I have an HMC150 also, which I love . It's nice to have your Panny at work and have the ability to get DOF with a B camera like the T2i. You will need to work on balancing color between the two. See my recent 1 minute video on doing just that. You should also expect to spend more than you are spending. Neoscene is pretty much a 'must', as the T2i MOV format is not good for editing, despite what Canon says about drag and drop. I've ended up spending about $3k, to get the right lens, body and accessories. Just about what a 150 costs...but could do it over time.