Variable speed cassette recorders
Cameras differ in the tape format used
- Cameras that play regular VHS casettes are huge, but it is very convenient. These cameras are not very good under low light. SVHS is of higher quality, but more expensive.
- VHS-C uses cassettes that can be played, placed in an adapter cassette, in a regular VCR. These tapes are 30 in SP and 90 minutes in EP mode.
- Hi-8 and 8MM cameras need to be dubbed onto regular tapes, and they can be reused only a limited number of times. Tape length is 1 or 2 hours depending on speed.
- Digital cameras are getting cheaper: I have seen them under $1500. You do need FireWire or so to get the output into your computer, but if you want to edit digitally, this is the way to go.
Here are some features you may want.
- LCD viewers are very convenient. Usually you can flip them over, so that you can see yourself being taped. Handy, if you don't have anyone behind the camera to aim it. Unfortunately, the price of cameras goes up sharply with the size of the viewer. At the time I'm writing this, there are a couple of Sony models that only differ in scrreen size, and their price goes up with $100 for every inch of screen size.
- In that situation a remote control can also be convenient.
- Many of the Hi8 cameras are low light or zero light. This makes it possible to tape unobtrusively in bars and such.
- A regular viewfinder is much better than an LCD viewer for taping competitions.
- Manual focus and exposure override can be convenient. If you try to follow one couple in a dance comp, you don't want autofocus.
- Attachment for wide-angle lens. You should be able to get such lenses for about $60.
This file is part of the FAQ list for the newsgroup rec.arts.dance. The FAQ list is being maintained by Victor Eijkhout (victor at eijkhout dot net, talk about vanity), who appreciates being sent additions or corrections on the material in this collection. Copyright 1994/5/6/7/8/9/2000 lies with the maintainer and the contributors of various parts.
Listen up: Victor did not write most of this stuff; he just collected it. So don't send him any dance questions.
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Last modified on: Saturday, October 9, 1999.