Digital camera with large sensor or camcorder with small sensor?

Started Jan 23, 2013 | Discussions thread
Jezebel Masterson Forum Member • Posts: 71
Re: Digital camera with large sensor or camcorder with small sensor?

snph83 wrote:

For video, should I use a digital camera with a larger sensor or a camcorder with a smaller sensor?

Digital camera (Canon SX260): 1/2.3" sensor

Camcorder (Canon Vixia R400): 1/4.85" sensor

If it's any consolation, I seriously looked at mirrorless and DSLR options for video vs camcorders. I own an a77 and a33 for starters. Wasn't happy with video, so I was planning another purchase. Looked at GH2, 60D, NEX7, and various bridge cameras. I ended up getting the Panasonic X900m as it was just better overall for what I needed.

UPS delivered today, played around a bit with it, totally amazing IQ. There are a few quarks that bother me, but overall it is amazing. After holding heavy DSLRs for years, it feels almost flimsy and cheap because it's so light, but it is still well made. In direct comparison with my DSLRs, the camcorder is by far better IQ, AF is great, and the image stab. is hard to believe. Long story short, camcorders nowadays are nice.

As for what YOU need, well that depends on what you need. If you want shallow DOF, you have to get a large sensor camera, DSLR or whatnot. If shallow DOF is not a must, camcorders are best IMO. There are other issues you may care about, but DOF is the main issue that is totally different because of sensor size. So, what kind of needs do you have?

EDIT: I wanted to add one more point, cost. Some people would compare the $700 X900 with a camera like the A57 w/kit lens, for example ($650). For video, even putting aside the IQ differences, the cost of the a57 doesn't end there. That kit lens is F3.5 at the wide end, vs F1.5 on the camcorder. a57 has a reach of 27mm-82mm, vs 30mm-690mm. So if you were going to shell out for some better glass in hopes of better video, it is no longer fair to compare it to a $700 counterpart. There is a definite advantage to having a good built in lens, power zoom, AF, ect. Just my 2c.

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