Question:

Peo­ple often ask for buy­ing tips on equip­ment, so here’s what to look for in a less-expen­sive ‘fam­i­ly’ lev­el video cam­era. This spe­cif­ic request was for a teen and they were won­der­ing what it would be like using an iPad for video, so we dis­cuss that as well. The next lev­el above these cam­eras men­tioned, real­ly is the sweet spot these days if you are a fam­i­ly want­i­ng a nice cam­era that you’ll be hap­py with the qual­i­ty, low-light per­for­mance over the next few years.

Ken Says:

Should some­one just use an iPad for video & what’s the best way to buy an iPad:

  • Here are  refurb iPads: On Apple Site Here
  • It’s awk­ward to use for video and not real­ly the best qual­i­ty… the way to think about it is if you *real­ly* want an iPad, the video and pho­to are OK add ons. But if you want to take nice video, there are a mil­lion bet­ter ways to do it.
  • Here’s an exam­ple video tak­en on iPad: YouTube Video HERE
  • Real­ly any snap­shot cam­era video would give you that qual­i­ty.

What’s good as an inexpensive video camera for a teen or family:

  • If the goal is to take good video, a ded­i­cat­ed cam­era is great and the least expen­sive $129: On Ama­zon HERE
  • A real video cam­era is best for quick focus, zoom­ing, etc. You want a dig­i­tal cam­era that takes lit­tle SD cam­era cards to record onto.
  • You MUST make sure your com­put­er is up to the task of video edit­ing!
  • Bet­ter in low light (which mat­ters more than you’d guess), a step up $199: On Ama­zon HERE
  • Here’s sam­ple footage HERE
  • Review: HERE
  • They say not good in low light, but at that price, you’d expect that… and have to go up high­er in price or to the still cam­era with video like the Canon Rebel.

 

Amazing Video Quality, Nice Still Photos… Not as Easy to Use: The Digital SLR Camera with Video

  • If the goal is to have a great still pho­to cam­era and stun­ning HD qual­i­ty video (but not as easy to use for video, to zoom and focus, etc) then some­thing like a Canon Rebel Series is great: On Ama­zon HERE
  • Look at this video qual­i­ty: YouTube Video HERE

 

General Notes:

  • Make sure any cam­era is full HD 1080.
  • You can learn a lot here, but it gets pret­ty geeky: Dig­i­tal Pho­to Review
  • And it doesn’t have to be these spe­cif­ic cam­eras or Ama­zon… but use them as a guide.
  • You’ll want an SD card— You want a ‘Class 10’ or faster to record video well $20: On Ama­zon HERE
  • You want  a nice opti­cal zoom (dig­i­tal zoom is nev­er good, just ignore it when you see it… it adds no val­ue).
  • If you real­ly think your needs are real­ly just get­ting  a few sec­onds here and there clips of friends goof­ing off, you might want to con­sid­er the iPod touch instead or car­ry­ing a full video cam­era.

Hope that helps some folks nav­i­gate all of the options and ways you can get HD video today!

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