Sunday, October 5, 2008

JVC Everio HD: Footage from the Trenches

Well, it's almost impossible to get away from the commercials on TV. It's here. The JVC Everio. Affordable HD filming with easy one-button upload to YouTube, etc...

In this case, we are looking at the Everio GZ-HD low end series (meaning the HD3 through HD7). This should be noted because there are several models of Everio and even several models of Everio GZ-HD.

The HD3 through HD7 all utilize three 1/5" CCD chips. Obviously, at 1/5", this is not the camera for you if you happen to be a shallow-depth-of-field fanatic. When you get up to the HD30 and HD40 models, you have 1/3" CCD chips (like the Canon XHA1 or XLH1, or the Panasonic HVX).

The low end GZ-HD series is fairly cheap at $1000-ish (with some upward and downward range depending on the model and rebates). They feature a 10x optical zoom and some manual controls, as well as a limited tapeless recording option. So make no mistake, this item is not too bad for its price point.

However, it is more or less the "point and click" of HD cameras, and while it does provide a bit of ability to manually change the settings, this unit is really not marketed toward consumers with the knowledge or experience to take full advantage of a wide range of manual tweaking options.

That said, the footage you are likely to see out there from the JVC Everio is likely to have a hard time living up to the XHA1 / HVX / EX1 footage out there - not only because of any inferiorities of the camera, but because it is likely to be placed in the hands of consumers who are less likely to have a cinematography or technical background. It's not their fault. They're just buying some affordable HD quality and running around having fun.

Anyway, here is a small handful of clips from JVC Everio users. And in one or two instances, you have to give the users credit for trying to take full advantage of the camera's (limited) manual controls.


JVC Everio GZ-HD7 (Mini Test) from Joseba1 on Vimeo.


Short Trip to the Audubon Zoo with the Everio JVC GS-HD3U Camcorder from Robert Dabdoub on Vimeo.

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