This week I bought a JVC GC-FM1A HD camcorder. Although I am starting to suspect that this camera might suck, other than the complete lameness of the included MediaBrowser LE software, which does not even recognize HD video on the camera, the jury is still out. I do like the fact the camera records onto a flash card, which allows me to remove the card and manipulate the video within Corel VideoStudio 12 (VS 12 users should note that non-HD video is in 4:3 format, to avoid the squished appearance that will result if you set your non-HD video project files to 16:9).
I decided to test the camera by combining two of my favorite things: tech and shotguns. When I went out to shoot some sporting clays today, I took the camera and my spider tripod and filmed a few shots at each station. I inadvertently shot the video in non-HD, so the resulting video is in lower than ideal resolution. One of the features this camera needs is a way to lock the resolution, to avoid accidental resolution changes.
When editing the video footage, it became apparent that my camera placement and, more importantly, the lower resolution made it difficult to see the clays in flight. It is likely that you would need to follow the clays with the camera to get a good shot shot (to coin a phrase). Since I was by myself, that was not an option today. Cassidy and Delaney often go shooting with me, so we’ll have to try a moving camera next time. I hope that HD resolution will allow you to see the clays in flight, even with a stationary camera.
I love the fact that HD video cameras are getting smaller. What I would really love would be for the iPhone to shoot HD video. When that happens (and eventually it will), I will be a happy camper. In the meantime, I continue to search for a small, full feature HD camcorder that will let me shoot video and easily upload it to YouTube or Vimeo or download it to my computer for use within an editing application. Suggestions would be appreciated.
As far as the shooting went, I did good with everything in the air, particularly since the pull-delay wasn’t working at some of the stations and I was shooting alone, and horrible with the rabbit shots, where the clays bounce along the ground. It’s hard to believe I can hit so many of one and so few of the other.