Author Topic: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone  (Read 5109 times)

Offline jasonrebecca

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Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« on: August 16, 2011, 05:46:35 pm »
Since the little guy will be coming home in the next month hopefully we have been offered to have a camcorder purchased to record the little guy.
However the DW and I both have smart phones (iPhone for me and Droid X for DW). Both phones shoot at 720p and the Droid has an HDMI plug. Both are 8gb phones and shoot 30fps.

Most camcorders either have a hard drive or use SDHC cards.

Question is for all of you that have used both, what are your thoughts?
I already have a DSLR and the iPhone and am not looking forward to carrying yet another item around with us and the DW is interested in the Flip cams, but they shoot the same quality as our phones.
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Offline KristinU

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Re: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2011, 08:03:58 pm »
Frankly I don't think you need one.  We've never had a camcorder and just use the recording capability of our little Olympus Stylus and now our Androids (DH and I both have Evos).  The biggest thing to consider is battery life when you are out and about.  We do still use our Olympus on trips and stuff where we can't rely on having a good battery  charge all day on our phones if we are using them for other stuff.

So exciting that you are getting close to bringing Oliver home!
Cheers!
Kristin
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luverofpeanuts

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Re: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« Reply #2 on: August 16, 2011, 11:03:02 pm »

ultimately, you'd have to consider what each of the options does best.. and then what is most important to you.   

If quality video is what you want... then an HD camcorder will, IMHO, provide a better video that your smartphones.... essentially for the one ingredient that generally makes or breaks video..... then lens.  Smartphones have teeny lenses.  In great light and not far distances. they look fine...   was light dims... that's when they fall off dramatically, IMHO.  If you just need the occasionally cool video.. then the smart phones might be enough. 

On the other hand... if you are a DSLR enthusiast... some of the prosumer DSLR's can have near camcorder type video recording... and they clearly have good lenses, so I guess if you're carrying around a DSLR.... consider upgrading to one that has great camcorder like functionality   

those are my two cents... ;-)

Offline jasonrebecca

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Re: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« Reply #3 on: August 17, 2011, 11:52:32 am »

On the other hand... if you are a DSLR enthusiast... some of the prosumer DSLR's can have near camcorder type video recording... and they clearly have good lenses, so I guess if you're carrying around a DSLR.... consider upgrading to one that has great camcorder like functionality   

those are my two cents... ;-)

That's exactly what I told the DW and got shot down in a heart beat  :'( I was looking at the Nikon 5100 as an upgrade from my D60, hopefully some other time.
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Bonnie West

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Re: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2011, 01:04:07 pm »
We have a miniDV that way we have a tape and then convert to a regular DVD to keep and play for friends and relatives in the DVD player. But is a pain to carry yet another thing, on the other hand it is a blast to watch the kids watch themselves on the TV when they get older.

Offline Nathan

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Re: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2011, 07:45:40 pm »
We had a mini DV tape.  Used that for the DS for the first year.  Then got a flip for the DD, but that was a pre HD flip, so it's laying around somewhere.  Now I use my D90 or the wife's point and shoot and an satisfied with the quality, but then again we aren't really video people either...
Nathan, DW, DS '03, DD '06 

Offline jasonrebecca

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Re: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2011, 11:51:43 am »
Thanks all for the input. I think we will stick with our phones and the DW has a P&S with video as well. We aren't video people but with family in Australia, they want to see the little guy so the phones will work just fine for that!
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DH (Jason) DW(Rebecca) DS(Oliver '11)  DD (Emily '14)DG (Penny '17)

Offline thefulminator

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Re: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2011, 01:35:59 pm »
I've got an EVo 4G which takes 720p.  It's fine for some of the spontaneous stuff but it doesn't have image stabilization so the video can end up pretty bumpy.  I also have an older Sony miniDV non-HD recorder that uses digital tapes.  The resolution is 340,000 pixels but the video looks really good.  If I'm planning on shooting movies I try to use the Sony.  The major drawback is the tapes are transferred to the computer in real time so it takes a while.
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Offline KristinU

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Re: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2011, 02:15:16 pm »
The major drawback is the tapes are transferred to the computer in real time so it takes a while.

Yeah, the beauty of the smartphone is the instant posting to Facebook for those far away family members to see stuff in almost real time.  None of our family is nearby so we keep in touch via FB and keep our camping blogs for them to see.  When our DS was a baby we had a website for him that we paid for, but that was pre-FB, pre-blogging, and pre-smartphones.  (man has technology changed in a few short years!)   And you can always spin the bumpiness of the video and say it is endearing like old super 8! ;)
Cheers!
Kristin
2008 Winnebago Chalet/Access 31C
My camping party: me ('71), DH ('70), DS ('04), and two labby dog boys

Nights camped off the ground since 2008: 236


www.winnieadventures.blogspot.com
www.visaadventures.blogspot.com
www.alineradventures.blogspot.com

CoolBreeze

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Re: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2011, 11:24:57 pm »
Since films of the little ones are indeed priceless I would go and get a camcorder. I'm a bit of a photography weenie cause I film my kids doing their activities but in the end I have great films. Camcorders are cheap enough now and well the phones have the optics of like a little telescope from a Cracker Jack box.

I also have a very good and latest and greatest pro-sumer DSLR (Nikon D7000) and well versus my Sony HD camcorder it sucks. Taking movies of still objects it is fine but once the object moves the lens starts moving and if you don't use an external mic then the lens motor gets recorded on or in some cases over the sound of the video. Even if it is a question of money well save up for the $300 dollars for a Camcorder. If it is worth doing and trust me 5 years from now when you view that video it really truely is then it is worth doing right. Every now and then my wife and I pull up the old pictures and video and it is just a real great little deal.

Here is a funny one that happened just today. I'm buying a new 5'er and the sales guy is at the Hershey show and I'm trying to pick interior colors. Problem is that they cancelled two interior colors but added two more to replace them and they are at the show. Sales guys says he has this great idea. The Factory rep has a smartphone and he will take a picture of the inside of the trailer and send it to me. Guess what ? The picture is useless. Smartphones are made for portraits at 5' or less with good light, standing still, etc, etc. The video from a smartphone---- well I'm not sure I would call it that and I'm a little camera weenie but not an outright $10,000 dollar camera snob.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2011, 11:51:24 pm by CoolBreeze »

Sled Hill

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Re: Camcorder vs. Smart Phone
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2011, 08:49:08 am »
When Oliver plays football, your going to want something that zooms, and is less shakey.  I use a sony hard drive camcorder when recording the boys playing football or soccer.   But for capturing prescious moments, the smart phone does great.  I take most video of our backyard luge with the phone so I can easily get the clips on u-tube.

 

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