[ This article was first published in the March, 2009, issue of
Larry’s Final Cut Pro Newsletter. Click here to subscribe. ]
Jennifer Koreny, of Cal State Sacramento, has a great question:
What are the benefits, if any, using High Def cameras for video that will end up on the web? We are looking to purchase a few cameras for staff to capture events around campus. It’s not something we intend to invest a lot of money in (I’m sure you’ve heard about Cal’s budget issues) but is something we’d like to expand on our website. We will probably make a few DVD’s of lectures as well.
Larry replies: Jennifer, this is an easy question to ask, and very hard to answer.
The short answer is that there isn’t a LOT of benefit if all you are doing is creating web videos at 400 x 300. That’s well below the resolution of standard-def, much less high-def.
Almost all DVDs, too, are standard-def.
However, since there are very, very few SD cameras being sold today, you’ll probably buy high-def.
My feeling is that if you want the best pictures for the web with the least hassle, shoot 720p HD — JVC or Panasonic make good cameras for this.
Others, I am SURE will have their own opinions – which I am happy to share. But, if it were my money, that’s what I’d buy.
UPDATE – April 2, 2009
Steven Ludlow, from Cessna Aricraft, adds:
Regarding shooting HD or SD for the web… I don’t pretend to understand all that happens to downconverted footage, but I know from just looking that I get a better image for the web when my source is HD than I do when it is SD. I realize pixels are pixels…but there is something about the original crispness and detail of HD that still looks noticeably better when downcoverted for the web.
For instance – www.flycessnaforfun.com – I shot this with a combination of an EX3 and a small Canon HG10)
Larry replies: Thanks for the comment, Steven.
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