Friday, July 25, 2014

Best Professional (Pro) Camcorder – Comparison & Reviews

February 20, 2014 by  
Filed under Digital Camcorders

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Professional (Pro) Camcorders – This is a roundup of the best-rated professional camcorders. Professional (Pro) camcorders are larger than consumer camcorders, have larger imagers, superior image processors, and larger brighter lenses. They provide superior video which is a favorite of indy and professional videographers. Professional camcorders also have advanced features such as 24p, time code, and XLR Audio inputs that professionals demand. Some of these camcorders have been used in films seen on the big screen, or used for documentaries. The camcorders below are mid-range in price. The professional camcorders below are ones that have met Smart-Review’s ratings for best camcorders. See our glossary of terms at the bottom of the page.

Best Rated Professional Flash Camcorders
(Best features, imagers, and lenses)

Canon Professional XA10 Canon Professional XA20 Panasonic Professional AG-AC90 Panasonic Pro AG-HMC150
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10x Optical Zoom
64GB Dual Flash
High Definition
1/3-inch imager
3.5 inch LCD
Native 24p
XLR audio
Infrared Night Vision
HDMI out
f1.8 – 2.8 Lens
30.4mm – 304mm
1080p @ 30fps
1080p @ 24fps
1080 @ 60i
Dual Card Record
20x Optical Zoom
Flash Memory
High Definition
1/2.84-inch imager
3.5 inch OLED
Native 24p
XLR audio
Infrared Night Vision
HDMI out
f1.8 – 2.8 Lens
26.8mm – 576mm
1080p @ 60p
1080p @ 30fps
1080p @ 24fps
Built-in WiFi
Dual Card Record
12x Optical Zoom
Flash Memory
High Definition
3MOS 1/4.7-inch imagers
Backside Illuminated
3.5 inch LCD
Native 24p
HDMI out
Dual XLR Inputs
f1.5 – 2.8 Lens
29.8mm – 357.6mm
1080p @ 60fps
1080p @ 30fps
1080p @ 24fps
1080 @ 60i
13x Optical Zoom
Flash Memory
High Definition
3ccd 1/3-inch imagers
3.5 inch LCD
Native 24p
XLR audio
Time code
HDMI out
f1.6 – 3.0 Lens
28mm – 368mm
1080p @ 30fps
1080p @ 24fps
1080 @ 60i


Best Rated Professional Flash Camcorders
(Best features, imagers, and lenses)

JVC Pro GY-HM150U Sony HXR-NX30U Pro NXCAM HD Camcorder Sony HXR-NX5U NXCAM Pro HD Camcorder Sony NEX-VG900 Interchangeable Lens Camcorder

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10x Optical Zoom
Flash Memory
High Definition
3ccd 1/4-inch imagers
3.5 inch LCD
Native 24p
XLR audio
HDMI out
f1.8 – 2.8 Lens
39 – 390mm
1080p @ 30fps
1080p @ 24fps
1080 @ 60i
720p @ 60fps
35 mbit/sec record
dual card record
10x Optical Zoom
96GB Dual Flash
High Definition
1/2.88-inch imager
3.5 inch LCD
Native 24p
XLR audio out
Infrared NightShot®
HDMI out
f1.8 – 3.4 Lens
26.0mm – 260mm
1080p @ 30fps
1080p @ 24fps
1080p @ 60fps
Built-in Projector
Balanced Optical SteadyShot™
20x Optical Zoom
Flash Memory
High Definition
Three 1/3-inch Imagers
3.2 inch LCD
Native 24p
XLR Audio
HD/SDI Out
f1.6 – 3.4 Lens
29.5mm – 590mm
Interchangeable Lens
1080p @ 30fps
1080p @ 24fps
1080 @ 60i
720p @ 60 fps
SMPTE Time Code
Built-in GPS
Depends on Lens
Flash Memory
High Definition
1.4 inch Full Frame
CMOS Imager
3.0 inch LCD
Native 24p
XLR audio optional
HDMI out uncompressed
Interchangeable Lens
Interchangeable Lens
1080p @ 60fps
1080p @ 24fps
1080i @ 60 fps
1 sdhc card slot
28 mbit/sec + Uncompressed recording
24 megapixel raw



Glossary of Terms
IEEE 1394 = This refers to firewire, which is a connector like USB 2.0 to give a fast connection from your pro camcorder to your computer to transfer video.
XLR Terminals = Only on professional camcorders, XLR Terminals are used primarily as a balanced audio connector for high quality microphones.
Time Code = Using a Time Code allows for synchronization of audio and video. Very useful for editing.
Optical Zoom = This is the maximum zoom using the lens of the camcorder. A 10x zoom brings the action in about 10 times closer at its maximum.
LANC Terminal = This allows Tripods which have a control handle, to connect to the LANC Terminal (through a cable) and allow you to control the camera from the controller on the Tripod.
Flash Memory = This refers to the way the camcorder records video. Flash memory camcorders normally record to memory cards (SDHC or Memory sticks if a Sony). There are some that have no card, and just have a fixed amount of internal memory such as the Flip Camcorders.
Dual Flash = This type of camcorder has both internal memory and can also record to memory cards.
Imager = This refers to the Imager of the camcorder, where the light hits from the lens. This is like the retina of the eye. The larger the imager, the better the quality of the video and better low light performance. High end pro camcorders generally have a larger imager. Larger is better. A 1/2.6-inch imager is double the size of a 1/5.2-inch imager.
Megapixels = This refers to the camera function in the camcorder. This is the amount of megapixels available to take a snapshot picture while using the camcorder.
Dual Card Record = This means that the camcorder can simultaneous record to two memory cards at the same time. Thereby making a perfect backup, should one memory card fail during recording.
Uncompressed Out = This type of camcorder can also record video to an external recorder “uncompressed” for maximum quality.


Related Article: Best Flash Memory Camcorder Reviews and Comparison

Related Article: Best Low Light Camcorders – Reviews and Comparison


Shop All Professional Camcorders
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Camcorders at Amazon.com
Camcorders at Adorama.com
Camcorders at Canon USA
Camcorders at TigerDirect.com