• Types
  • Zoom
  • Features
  • Storing Videos
  • Best Tips

Buying Guide: Camcorder

A camcorder can record series of images to form videos. It is true that in this digital world, smartphones and digital cameras play a great role in capturing videos. At the same time, it cannot be denied that camcorders are undoubtedly the best when it comes to capturing crisp videos. A full featured camcorder will help you to capture and preserve your videos for a lifetime. You can also connect it to the HDTV and show it to your friends on big screens.

Over the last few years, the camcorder has experienced a sea of change in terms of its features, specifications, and functionalities. The sizes are reduced, and they are more powerful being light in weight. They can capture vibrant colors, smoother videos and sharper videos than ever before. Moreover, with advanced controls they are absolutely easy to use. Even if, you are using it for the first time you will not experience any difficulty in getting hands on it.

Camcorder Buying Guide

Types Of Camcorders

Camcorders are available in price ranges of $75 to $3500 with different specs and options. Whether you want to buy a handy device or for professional quality video, you can definitely find a camcorder that is right for you. It can surely match your need and budget. A look at the prices of different camcorders:

Pocket camcorders

These are great options for anyone simply looking for pocket-friendly options and utmost convenience in HD format. The portability is another factor that makes them popular. They are easily available within the price ranges of $80 to $250. Most of these come with USB jack that can be plugged directly into your desktop or laptop. They are only slightly thicker than a smartphone due to which they are ideal for practical purposes.

Standard definition camcorders

If you are looking for something affordable, with a range of features, this might be a suitable option for you. it is true that SD is moving out of the scene slowly, yet for people with a tight budget willing to shoot good quality videos, it is a good option. You can find them in price ranges of $200 to $300. Since the video files are smaller, they are easier to work with.

HD consumer camcorders

With an aim for a good quality HD video, you might consider this option. It is priced reasonably, and easy to use. It is also portable, and it can be slipped easily into the coat pocket. They have better controls with SD card slots for removable storage media. You can expect to find them anywhere from $300 to $1000.

HD Prosumer camcorder

If you are looking forward to upgrading your conventional camcorder this might be the right option for you. They offer more advantages over the consumer models. Ranging from extensive shooting modes to manual controls and higher quality components, features in these camcorders help create videos that can often resemble the motion picture film. The audio options and quality are also better in these devices. The options of upgrading later are more with these devices. They are typically available from price ranges $1000 to $3000.

Twin lens 3D camcorder

With these camcorders you can go bold with your videos and give them a 3D effect. The price ranges from $1000 to $2000, but it is recommended to you only if you have a 3D TV or a 3D computer setup.

Professional camcorders

There is no denying that the professional levels of camcorders are pretty expensive. However, if you are serious about some video production career, it might be a good investment. You will come across a vast array of models, and each of these is designed for different shooting environments. Moreover, you will also get some of the highest quality components with customized options in more than ways you can imagine. These are priced over $5000, and they are larger than the other models.


Zoom refers to the finger control of widening the view. There is a variation in the zoom capacity where the rate of zoom changes, and this is often dependent on different types of zoom. Most camcorders come with two different types of zoom features.

Optical zoom

For optical zooming, the ratio ranges from 10:1 to 50:1 approximately. Therefore, the specification of such a camcorder will be 10X optical zoom or 50X optical zoom. In the case, the zooming features are highly dependent on the optical lenses.

Digital zoom

Some camcorders also come with the special feature of digital zoom where the range can be extended to about 400:1, and sometimes even more. However, it gives a lower picture quality than the optical zoom


Factor of Megapixel

Most camcorders are designed in a way so that they use image sensors. More the megapixel better is the quality of the video and images. Here is a guide for selecting the megapixels.

• The standard models come with 680k pixels, which are a good option.
• Some of the entry level models come with megapixel-plus chips, which gives better quality videos along with better quality stills

As the megapixels increase, the quality increases and so does the price. Therefore, it is best to say that you should pick up the highest megapixel count suited to your budget.

It is also important to remember that some companies mark the device with a megapixel count, higher than the actual pixel count on the sensor. Therefore, when shopping, you should try to check the actual pixel count of the chip instead of the megapixel figure on the model.

Wi-Fi Or 4K

You might often wonder whether you should opt for a Wi-Fi or 4K feature in the camcorder you choose. There are large numbers of camcorders manufactured today with inbuilt Wi-Fi facilities. With this feature, you can effortlessly and wirelessly transfer the photos and videos to your computer. In addition to that, it will also allow you to upload videos directly to your social media sites. Some models will even allow you to transfer the videos to your mobile device and control the device remotely through an app.

On the other hand, some models come with built-in USB cord. It is also a good option to go for a camcorder that comes with 4K resolution, which means that it offers 4 times the resolution offered by a full high definition camcorder. Since these offer higher resolution, you can expect to capture finer details and hence it can be worth the value of your money. However, in order to see the detail, you will need an ultra-high definition television

Storing Videos

The shift to the flash memory is one of the latest trends of the camcorders. Gone are those days when these devices used recordable disks and tapes to store the video footage, which made them heavier. The first HDD models were introduced in 2005, which reduced the weight and size and increased the capacity of tapes and discs.

With the progression of time, manufacturers have continued to innovate their products and reduce the size and weight. Today’s models just have slots for memory cards ranging from 8GB to 96GB. The SD card was also introduced that eliminated the need for external storage. This not a bad way to go because prices are lower now, and the costs of the SD cards have also fallen.

You can even find pocket camcorders today with onboard storage capacities of 8GB or 16GB based on the model. Most of these accept external storage cards, as well.


There are some important things that you should consider while shopping for the camcorder. Right from checking the type, size, controls and features to the LCD, lighting, audio quality, and recording format, you should check everything. This in turn will help you in making a fair decision regarding the ideal option.
Now that you know about the different features, models and prices of different models, it will be easy for you to finalize your decision on the basis of the one that suits your needs and budget.
Top Brands
  • Panasonic Camcorder
  • Sony Camcorder
  • GoPro Camcorder