Camcorder for recording dog agility?
September 11, 2014 1:48 PM   Subscribe

(I have looked at the other camcorder questions and didn't find an answer) I am looking for a new camcorder for recording dog agility. Having a hard time wading through the choices out there. Reputably refurbished is OK. Criteria inside.

- under $300-ish
- reasonable optical zoom (I don't need to be able to count nose hairs from a mile away, but I do need decent picture quality from 50-100 feet away or so)
- memory card or flash preferred
- HD
- easy to use (since I often hand my camera to complete strangers and would like to be able to more or less say "press the red button")
- good low-light/changing lighting conditions/ fast action recording
- good autofocus
- this one seems to be a great option, but I found a review complaining about the file format (MTS) being annoying to deal with for uploading to YouTube etc. (I post most of my videos online), any thoughts about that?
- reasonably small and light, since it will get stuck in a chair pocket
- I download videos to my home computer and noodle around with them there, so I don't need any fancy in-camera editing capabilities
posted by biscotti to Technology (1 answer total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I could only think of one model that isn't technically a camcorder, but i have a feature to add to your bullet list that should absolutely be available in that price range...

Optical Image Stabilization. Not cheesy software stuff, but real image stabilization. Different brands call it different things, but you want to look for it. It makes a massive difference with these types of videos.

Something that meets all your stated requirements and is also a killer camera, would be the sony rx100. Refurbs are around $300 when they're available, and i think there's other places that have reputable refurbs that aren't sonys online store.

Note that if you're researching it, people often talk about the OIS(which sony calls "steadyshot") for photos which it's meh at. If you find people talking about videos, they sing the praises of how impressive it is.

It's small, light, good battery life, easy to use, good low light performance, etc. I've seriously heard nothing but good things about them, and was very impressed when i played around with one. In fact, i almost bought one instead of the NEX i have.
posted by emptythought at 6:11 PM on September 11, 2014 [2 favorites]

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