Saturday, February 14, 2009

A slow transition to HD

Going from SD to HD is not easy and it takes upgrading many of your tools. If you have a library of SD materials like stock footage and elements you will need to begin purchasing HD elements.
You need to make sure your computer will edit HD and, you will need a HD camera.

I have slowly begun the transition to HD with a new camera purchase. The Vixia Hv30. As I write this the camera is charging so tomorrow I can go out and shoot something. But from just playing with it tonight I think it will be a good addition to my video arsenal.

It shoots full HD 1920x1080 plus 24fps for cinema shots. It's mini-dv so it will merge with the format I've been shooting in and it will shoot HD & SD so I can use it as a second camera to my Panasonic AG-DVC20 which is SD. This is one of the reasons I bought this camera, it shoots in both HD & SD! So making the transition is a bit easier.

It is also a 3.1 megapixal digital still camera and can be used as a analog to digital converter, you can feed a VCR image into the camera, convert it and then export to the editor. That is a nice feature too! Plus its a Canon, known for their optics and good lenses.

It is small and I am used to a larger camera. I like the AG-DVC20 as it will sit on my shoulder and I can get steady shots. This thing is tiny compared to it. It is also a heavy camera compared to others its size.

But it is a step toward HD, something I've been thinking about recently and knowing that eventually I will have to make the switch. I got it for about $500 on sale so the price was right and I grabbed it.

I have a vast library of SD elements such as Digital Juice, Footage Firm and more that will still be the staple of my videos so I have to consider now purchasing HD elements, not something I'm looking forward to. The documentary I'm working on now is SD and I doubt any major productions in the near future will be HD, but the capability is now here. I can shoot in HD and use less elements until I can get some. I do have many 16:9 elements from New Dog Digital and Phoenix clips so no worries.

My PC, running MEP14+ & Video Pro X is up to the task so no worries there either. The Vixia HV30 has a mic input so my wireless mics and shotgun microphones will work fine too.

This was a big step and choosing the right camera took some time with all the cameras available out there and trying to read reviews, look at specs, and make a decision. Plus finding a camera in my budget was critical.

Tomorrow I will go shoot something and get a better feel for the HV30. Look for some footage shot with it soon. :-)


Owen McGoogie said...

Grats dude! You're going to have fun with this, I can tell already :)

Bill said...


You'll love the little cam. I bought one a few months back and the image quality is incredible. I use a DSR250 at work and am a bit old school in that I like the stability of larger cams. It's isnt' that good in low light, but there are some workarounds. I had hoped to be using it for a band promo video for some old band mates, but they delayed the project.

FWIW I am working on a project and have some SD Jumpbacks. I just up sized one(to 1440x1080) in After Effects last night and it still looks good.

Working on a DIY should support, but need to find more time. (don't we all!)

NilmaBostonRio said...

on my "A slow transition to HD"
I bought a cheap Aiptek Action 1080p HD Camcorder ( $170 ), but now I found out,I need a good edit my HUUUGGGE files...rsrsrs