HD Webcam or HD camcorder?

Bambu

Dave Manasseri
Silver Member
How much do I need to spend for good quality(say 8/10)? This has been asked before I'm sure, but the technology changes quickly. By the time I get around to making a choice, there are newer and better options available.

Now that HD webcams are cheap, is it cost effective to film a match that way? You would need a computer too of course, but I happen to have an extra one. Or am I just being cheap, and it's still better to simply buy a cam corder? (I dont want to have to mess with the thing every hour or 2.)
 

RealLive

JUICEISBACK.COM
Silver Member
if you want a video camera for pool, you'll want to stick with a mid-range camcorder. since most poolhalls might be fairly dark on the inside, you'll need a better lens that lets in more light. i think almost all webcams are terrible in low-light situations. focus also gets trickier with movement in low light, and a camcorder would be able to focus more accurately.
 

Bambu

Dave Manasseri
Silver Member
Thanks Live. I should have mentioned lighting shouldnt be a big deal because I can adjust that(have my own table).
 

Papa Red

Love it or Leave
Silver Member
I had just paid $600 for a mid range camcorder to film my grandsons football game for my son who was working out of town. If you are using it inside it will work fine but out side in the bright sun I could not see the screen and I thought I was recording and I wasn't, all I recorded was my feet and the stands as I was walking up and down the stands. I took it back and am now looking at a professional model with the eye cover to look through so I can eliminate the suns glare.
 

JC

Coos Cues
Gold Member
I had just paid $600 for a mid range camcorder to film my grandsons football game for my son who was working out of town. If you are using it inside it will work fine but out side in the bright sun I could not see the screen and I thought I was recording and I wasn't, all I recorded was my feet and the stands as I was walking up and down the stands. I took it back and am now looking at a professional model with the eye cover to look through so I can eliminate the suns glare.

I have filmed my son's football games extensively and have learned some things. As you already know, a viewfinder is a must. You will need to spend a bit more than you already did but not up to a pro model. I used a canon vixia hv30 because I bought it a few years ago before built in media was mature. If I was going to replace it and start over I would buy a Canon VIXIA HF G10 for about a grand. It will do all you need and more. I found the most effective way to capture the action is using a cheap mono pod. You can get all the stability and flexibility you need for football and still be mobile if you need to relocate as happens often. Maybe an obnoxious person parks themselves near you and you don't want the audio. My son's high school has terrible lighting but I still was able to capture decent video under them. A daytime game would give fantastic quality. Most of all, resist the temptation to watch what's going on as you film. It's hard at first but just trust yourself that you will have it on film later. I also found it most useful to turn the filming off and on between each play. That way when you upload it to your computer the entire game is a series of files, each one being a single play that are in order. This makes it easy to find anything you are looking for from the game or to just roll along.

BTW op, not to completely hijack your thread. I would also highly recommend this camera for filming pool if you can afford it.:)
 

ctyhntr

RIP Kelly
Silver Member
I would avoid webcams, frame rates are too slow. If you can afford the Canon VIXIA, those have larger CMOS sensors. Which means they work better in low light situation. Most of the budget mino flip type cameras are sufficient for home use. Depending on the ambient light, if its bright you go 1080p with no artifacts. If its dark, dial it down to 720 to reduce the noise.

I filmed this in 1080p using Kodak Zi8 with no additional lighting. Valley Forge is pretty bright, so results may not be typical. My Kodak Zi8 was less than $100, and recently I picked up the successor model (Zi10) for $50 refurbished.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZeJkKtpej9Y

In a typical poolhall lighting condition, 720 seems to work better.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctLjIpgCcQw
 
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JC

Coos Cues
Gold Member
I would avoid webcams, frame rates are too slow. If you can afford the Canon VIXIA, those have larger CMOS sensors. Which means they work better in low light situation. Most of the budget mino flip type cameras are sufficient for home use. Depending on the ambient light, if its bright you go 1080p with no artifacts. If its dark, dial it down to 720 to reduce the noise.

I filmed this in 1080p using Kodak Zi8 with no additional lighting. Valley Forge is pretty bright, so results may not be typical. My Kodak Zi8 was less than $100, and recently I picked up the successor model (Zi10) for $50 refurbished.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZeJkKtpej9Y

In a typical poolhall lighting condition, 720 seems to work better.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctLjIpgCcQw

Very acceptable video for a low budget camera. It's really tough to reconcile the contrast in lighting of a pool room. The camera should be adjusted to table brightness even though you sacrifice the environment. The second video would have been more watchable stopped down a bit as the table was pretty bright.
 

Bambu

Dave Manasseri
Silver Member
I would avoid webcams, frame rates are too slow. If you can afford the Canon VIXIA, those have larger CMOS sensors. Which means they work better in low light situation. Most of the budget mino flip type cameras are sufficient for home use. Depending on the ambient light, if its bright you go 1080p with no artifacts. If its dark, dial it down to 720 to reduce the noise.

I filmed this in 1080p using Kodak Zi8 with no additional lighting. Valley Forge is pretty bright, so results may not be typical. My Kodak Zi8 was less than $100, and recently I picked up the successor model (Zi10) for $50 refurbished.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZeJkKtpej9Y

In a typical poolhall lighting condition, 720 seems to work better.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctLjIpgCcQw


Wow that first video looks as good as I could hope for. Looks like a great option for 50 bucks, thanks Cty! Thanks to all for your replies, much appreciated! I dont see it for less than 80 though, even a refurb. Where did ya get it, and how long can you record with it?
 
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ctyhntr

RIP Kelly
Silver Member
http://deals.woot.com/deals/details...corder-refurbished-3-touch-screen-display-usb

Ebay has it for $70 Buy it now price with free shipping, refurb
http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200638140369+&clk_rvr_id=253373200773

32 GB class 10 card should last 22 hours on 720, an 11 plus hours on 1080p. The battery itself last about 65 minutes. The zi8 on the same battery lasted as long as 90 minutes. You can leave it hooked up to the powerplug, or to an external USB battery pack.

There is nothing in this price range that has a microphone jack, and remote control ($9 on amazon). The camera, table top tripod, along with a couple of spare batteries, and a remote will easily fit in the accessory pouch for a 2x4 Its George case. I had it knocked over a couple of times. The camera is lighter than a cue ball, and suffered no damage falling onto carpeted floors.

Great option for 50 bucks, thanks Cty! Thanks to all for your replies, much appreciated! I dont see it for less than 80 though, even a refurb. Where did ya get it, and how long can you record with it?[/QUOTE]
 
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Papa Red

Love it or Leave
Silver Member
I have filmed my son's football games extensively and have learned some things. As you already know, a viewfinder is a must. You will need to spend a bit more than you already did but not up to a pro model. I used a canon vixia hv30 because I bought it a few years ago before built in media was mature. If I was going to replace it and start over I would buy a Canon VIXIA HF G10 for about a grand. It will do all you need and more. I found the most effective way to capture the action is using a cheap mono pod. You can get all the stability and flexibility you need for football and still be mobile if you need to relocate as happens often. Maybe an obnoxious person parks themselves near you and you don't want the audio. My son's high school has terrible lighting but I still was able to capture decent video under them. A daytime game would give fantastic quality. Most of all, resist the temptation to watch what's going on as you film. It's hard at first but just trust yourself that you will have it on film later. I also found it most useful to turn the filming off and on between each play. That way when you upload it to your computer the entire game is a series of files, each one being a single play that are in order. This makes it easy to find anything you are looking for from the game or to just roll along.

BTW op, not to completely hijack your thread. I would also highly recommend this camera for filming pool if you can afford it.:)

Thanks metmot, I'll check out the Canon G-10. I want to record some pool matches also so this may be better way to go.
 

Mickey Qualls

You study the watch......
Silver Member
I filmed this in 1080p using Kodak Zi8 with no additional lighting. Valley Forge is pretty bright, so results may not be typical. My Kodak Zi8 was less than $100, and recently I picked up the successor model (Zi10) for $50 refurbished.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZeJkKtpej9Y

My wife purchased this for me last Christmas. I love it. It's a lot easier than carrying around our old one that's about the size of a shoebox. The picture/video quality is great, and everything to put the film or pics on the laptop is integrated right into the unit (instead of a boatload of cables to carry around).
I've got the A/V cables for it hooked up to the TV near the pool table, and I just purchased a remote for it (the Kodak camera) off ebay for about $13. A little creativity with the tripod, and my home table looks like a TV table (lol).
 

nathandumoulin

WPBL / RUNOUT MEDIA
Silver Member
Most of the budget mino flip type cameras are sufficient for home use.

I bought a zi8 last year to sneak into after hours places to film content for my video magazine. The small size and inconspicuous look made it ideal for catching Rodney and Raj in compromising situations. lol

I'm not sure if I got a defective one, but the quality was so poor that I ended up just throwing it out (literally). Even in well lit situations the quality was worse than my ghetto cell phone's video recording capabilities.
 

ctyhntr

RIP Kelly
Silver Member
How did your zi8 compared to the footage others put up on Youtube? For the flip cams, lighting is key especially with a CMOS sensor smaller than a cue tip.

I bought a zi8 last year to sneak into after hours places to film content for my video magazine. The small size and inconspicuous look made it ideal for catching Rodney and Raj in compromising situations. lol

I'm not sure if I got a defective one, but the quality was so poor that I ended up just throwing it out (literally). Even in well lit situations the quality was worse than my ghetto cell phone's video recording capabilities.
 

nathandumoulin

WPBL / RUNOUT MEDIA
Silver Member
How did your zi8 compared to the footage others put up on Youtube? For the flip cams, lighting is key especially with a CMOS sensor smaller than a cue tip.

The footage was drastically inferior, which is why I wondered if it was somehow a defect (not sure how that possible given that it was fully functional). I have a bit of knowledge about cameras, so I was very much confused by the results.
 

Michael-Hoang

Omega Billiards
Silver Member
I would avoid webcams, frame rates are too slow. If you can afford the Canon VIXIA, those have larger CMOS sensors. Which means they work better in low light situation. Most of the budget mino flip type cameras are sufficient for home use. Depending on the ambient light, if its bright you go 1080p with no artifacts. If its dark, dial it down to 720 to reduce the noise.

I filmed this in 1080p using Kodak Zi8 with no additional lighting. Valley Forge is pretty bright, so results may not be typical. My Kodak Zi8 was less than $100, and recently I picked up the successor model (Zi10) for $50 refurbished.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZeJkKtpej9Y

In a typical poolhall lighting condition, 720 seems to work better.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctLjIpgCcQw

Wow, the picture quality is very, very acceptable to me for such a low budget cam....That's coming from someone who spent (wasted) high 5 digits on stereo equipments in the past.
 

ctyhntr

RIP Kelly
Silver Member
If you still have the camera, try a full reset. Also check if you have the latest firmware. Upgrading to the latest, 1.06 may fix your zi8 issue.

Windows
http://support.en.kodak.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/17450/kw/zi8/selected/true

Mac
http://support.en.kodak.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/17453/kw/zi8/related/1/selected/true

Video on how to install a firmware update on the zi8
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TuXSmfaGI00

The footage was drastically inferior, which is why I wondered if it was somehow a defect (not sure how that possible given that it was fully functional). I have a bit of knowledge about cameras, so I was very much confused by the results.
 

nathandumoulin

WPBL / RUNOUT MEDIA
Silver Member
If you still have the camera, try a full reset. Also check if you have the latest firmware. Upgrading to the latest, 1.06 may fix your zi8 issue.

Thanks for the suggestion, but I really don't have the patience for such things....not to mention that I threw it in the garbage a few days after I bought it. :p
 

Bambu

Dave Manasseri
Silver Member
In case anyone is wondering, I have been pouring over options for a couple of weeks now. What a pain, takes time to even know what card to buy. Anyway, I finally decided on a Toshiba Camileo H30 Full HD Camcorder. Got it for $135, brand new at amazon with free shipping. Looks like an upgrade to a pocket/mini cam at a very low price. Also got a SanDisk Ultra 16 GB Class 6 SDHC card for $20, and a flexible tripod for $2.33. Total video investment: $158.
 

h4xs4w

Registered
I've been looking as well....

In case anyone is wondering, I have been pouring over options for a couple of weeks now. What a pain, takes time to even know what card to buy. Anyway, I finally decided on a Toshiba Camileo H30 Full HD Camcorder. Got it for $135, brand new at amazon with free shipping. Looks like an upgrade to a pocket/mini cam at a very low price. Also got a SanDisk Ultra 16 GB Class 6 SDHC card for $20, and a flexible tripod for $2.33. Total video investment: $158.

Would you be so kind as to post a review of the device after you've had a chance to use it?
 
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