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If you wanted to, you could upgrade to HDV production for under $5K

The following three items will allow you to shoot & edit HDV (the in-between format between SD MiniDV & full HD that requires expensive P2 cards):

Canon XH-A1 HDV Camcorder: $2999

2GHz Mac mini w/ SuperDrive: $799

Final Cut Express 4 - $199

Total: $3997 (not counting tax, perhaps shipping, etc.)

On top of those 3 items you'll still need the usual production & post-production related accessories (lights, mics, keyboard + monitor for the Mac mini, Firewire cables, perhaps extra storage for video, etc.), which you probably already have if you are already shooting & editing DV.

Or, for a small project that may be shot in a couple of days, you could also rent the camera for far less than it would cost to buy one.

For indie art/entertainment projects it is possible to shoot great images (if you are careful, will take your time, are an experienced shooter) even on a 1 CCD MiniDV camera. But, for event videography & other work-for-hire gigs, having an HDV set up might be useful/may provide a competitive edge. Also, on HD monitors, HDV images - if lit well, famed well, w/ good camera movement - may look better than video shot using standard definition DV gear.

If you've got any thoughts about shooting SD MiniDV vs. shooting HDV, share with us in Comments.

- Sujewa


The Sujewa said…
This blog could be useful for people looking into HDV production:
The Sujewa said…
also this post is a good read, re: using MiniDV tape of HDV tape:
The Sujewa said…
that last sentence should have said: "using MiniDV tape OR HDV tape"
1Way or Another said…
HDV is a pretty damn good format. "Carter" was shot on HDV, and it clearly shows on my flatscreen, as well as the way it looked at the CC screening in the "previews." Clear images, but still a little grain so that its not too, too clear. Plus looks superb after coloring.

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