It’s quite impossible to choose a camera without
knowing which format best fits your needs. Below,
you’ll find many of the most popular formats.
Based on the standard definition of DVCPRO format,
the DVCPRO HD from Panasonic uses a data rate of 120
MBps and intraframe compression, both of which will
provide strong protection from generational loss.
The DVCPRO HD also has supporting cameras and decks
that use FireWire I/O, which is a very important
feature for keeping an eye on your bottom line. The
cost of the equipment is a bit pricey, as it can
cost upwards of 80,000$.
The HDCAM format from Sony is based on DigiBeta and
can record in 24p, 25p, 50i, and even 60i. It
uses a high data rate of 140MBps, which produces a
great looking picture with few glitches. Because
of the very unusual 17:6:6 color sampling scheme,
the color detail is half of DVCPRO HD. The
picture is top of the line, proving to be among the
best available on the market.
There is quite a bit of buzz surrounding HDV as
the newcomer to the high definition marketplace.
With high compression rates, HDV has enabled
high quality shooting and editing with low cost
tools, including the convenience of high
definition video to Mini DV tape. This has also
helped to open up the HD field to a wide
variety of videographers and producers who
would never have even considered going high
The biggest drawback to going the HDV route is
also the greatest strength – high compression.
Both audio and video can suffer dramatically
from too much compression. The audio in theory
isn’t up to CD quality, although some users
report that they are perfectly happy with it.