SD or HD Camcorders, what ‘s the difference?
If you are in the market for a new Camcorder, or even your first, now is an exciting time to buy. However, the explosion of products now available can make things tough; which one should you buy? One of the first choices you’ll come up against is whether to buy HD or SD. Let our short guide help you make the decision, and move a little closer to owning the right camcorder for you.
What are we talking about – SD and HD explained
In its very simplest terms the difference is between standard and high definition pictures; literally the pictures recorded and played back are presented more clearly in high definition.
The Differences – what do SD and HD mean for your footage?
There are several areas in which SD and HD camcorders provide a different result. Deciding what is important to you will help you to decide which type you need.
Picture Quality – crystal clear yet?
The bottom line is that a
HD camcorder will produce a better picture than SD. SD camcorder screens usually have up to 5 mega pixels, whereas a high definition alternative will have up to 20. This makes a significant difference to the quality of the pictures recorded. The picture captured is bigger, meaning that less stretching is required when you view it on screen.
Frame rates – capturing the action
The amount of frames recorded per second affect the smoothness of your picture. If you are trying to capture fast action sequences, such as sports scenes, the more frames the better. More frames will also grant you better slow motion images. If you are buying a camcorder to record family events, or holiday footage you may need to worry less about high frame rates.
Light – night owl or early bird?
HD camcorders definitely record far better in low light. If you are hoping to record in the evening, or even at night, they may be a better choice for you. If you are recording in low lit rooms, you’ll experience fewer white lights on the screen if you go for HD than when using SD.
Sound – can you feel the music
Like picture quality, the sound quality on HD camcorders is better than on SD versions. Your SD camera will replay sounds at less than CD quality, while an HD camera will be better. Traditionally, SD recordings used for broadcast are boosted by external microphones and post production sound editing. With HD you can record sound direct for tape in almost all amateur circumstances.
In the end the most persuasive factor in your decision will probably be price. An HD camcorder is likely to set you back more than an SD camcorder. It is up to you whether the differences outlined above will influence your decision away from the solely thrifty. Do research thoroughly though. With patience you can find some excellent deals, even on top of the range HD camcorders.