World of Digital Video Cameras

Digital video cameras are extremely simple to use. They are lightweight and compact. Also, the transfer of video data to your computer for editing is extremely simplified in a digital video camera using today’s Firewire cables.

So, now the question arises that how does one go about choosing a camera for himself/herself?

Before you go shopping for a digital video camera, it is essential that you answer a few questions. These will help you to pick up the best camera which is most suitable to your needs.

Since voice clarity is critical in a digital video camera, you need to know whether you will be shooting indoors or outdoors.

Also, what kind of videos do you plan to take – are they going to be of people shopping around in a mall or mostly of officers giving multimedia presentations in a conference room?

What is the kind of lighting that you are going to get? Is the weight of the camera an issue?

What is the battery life of the camera that you will need? Do you plan to shoot for a couple of hours together or only a few minutes? Do you plan to use any special effects while shooting?

Once you have answered all these questions, you will be able to get a basic idea of the kind of camera that you need.

Let’s go over the types of digital video cameras for consumers and hobbyists. First there is DV, HDDV, Mini DV. Handheld palm size cameras, larger full featured cameras with great audio options, and finally cameras that rival professional quality and can be used to make some very professional looking video products.

It is also important that you have the correct software for enhancing the images once you have loaded them onto your computer. These will help you to edit your work in the best possible manner and also easily load them for video conferencing, emailing etc.

Many software programs for NLE editing (non linear editing) exist for the consumer and pro alike. Adobe makes it Premier line of editing software which has proven to be quite popular and effective over the years. This is more of a mid level software and is relatively expensive. I use it for my corporate editing needs. Other mid to high level software packages include Final Cut Pro (on the Mac platform), and DV Express (from Avid). Final Cut is an awesome product if you use the Apple computers. Hollywood uses it to edit movies nowadays, and it has tons of amazing features to it. However it is not user friendly to the novice. The learning curve is steep. On the cheaper side of things you can use the Imovie software on the Mac side of things, Pinnacle Studio 9, Ulead Video Studio 8, and My DVD5 from Sonic. These products will get you editing your DV in no time.

Hence, if you do your homework in advance, you will be happy in the end. So, go and check out websites and shops for information on what you need, talk to shop keepers, and then simply zoom away! There are so many wonderful things you as a consumer can do today with digital video cameras. Don’t wait for the next wave. Jump into digital video today and have some fun with it.

Camera Gear Safe

Especially in strange or difficult areas you should consider carrying your equipment in a universal unmarked holdall. This will reduce the chances of people knowing that your expensive equipment is inside.

Ensure that you don’t leave equipment alone even for a minute. Especially when you are distracted, thieves will strike with lightening speed and once they have your property, you won’t stop them.

A good trick used by thieves is to attack your property whilst you are in crowds. Expecting to be harried and bumped means that you are less likely to notice the thief taking your equipment. Distraction techniques, such as making a scene, are also favoured.

Some thieves will stop at nothing to release you of your goods. In some areas blatant daylight attacks with weapons are commonplace. Know in advance where to walk and travel and which areas to avoid at night time.

Travel with the least possible equipment. Especially when sightseeing, there is little need for all the extra equipment you have. A camera and lens should suffice and will draw you less attention. Have your equipment safely on your person as you travel and keep it out of sight when left alone in the car.

In all circumstances, keep safe and don’t take unnecessary risks. And, make sure your equipment is insured.

Auto Exposure and Auto Focus

Exploring the information in slight more details it can be stated that auto exposure cameras are provided with a fixed focus lens or manual focus lens. These cameras are the simplest to set exposure. To obtain the correct exposure for a particular subject of photography, the only thing that needs to be done is to simply lock the exposure by pressing the shutter down halfway on the digital cameras upon a reference object that is about one fifth gray and also illuminated by the aid of the same source of light as subject of photography. After locking the exposure, the photographer has to recompose the frame and shoot the picture. Auto exposure and auto focus cameras are to some degree harder for setting the exposure, because they contain the exposure lock that is generally tied to focus-lock. However, the users or photographers using these auto exposure and auto focus cameras can still make adjustments for the correct exposure and correct focus using the digital cameras and make the photographs perfect! Again, the exposure can be adjusted by locking on an 18% reference that is illuminated by the aid of the same source of light as subject of photography. The users have to only ensure that the distance to this so-called reference is the same as the distance to the subject of photography that actually sets the focus.

Now discussing the auto focus and auto exposure lock (AE/AF) a bit more in detail. The shutter release button on a digital camera has more function than just snap a cool picture. The users have to grab a technique where he or she has to depress this shutter release button half way down thereby locking both the auto exposure and auto focus. This enables the users or photographers to have more control on exposure in difficult lighting situations while using the digital camera. Moreover, this entire process also helps him or her to determine where the camera focuses. Like if the photographer intends to set the exposure before composing the final shot of the photograph then he or she can move the digital camera slightly so that only the subject to be photographed is visible prominently in the auto focus frame in the viewfinder. As a next step he or she can depress the shutter-release button down half way to set focus and exposure and then recompose the picture and finally completely depress the button in order to capture and freeze the moment of time! It is to be noted here that the auto focus and auto exposure lock (AE/AF) is available in all photography modes of the digital cameras that are nowadays available for the general people.

Not much remains to be discussed about this particular topic of auto focus/auto exposure and a brief discussion as above is enough to reveal a bounty of information regarding this fantastic feature of the digital cameras. At the end of this discussion it can be expected that both the novice and expert photographers and user of the digital camera would benefit from whatever has been revealed and the effort to bring out the human mind from the dark oblivion about auto focus and auto exposure lock would be a success in the magic light of the digital camera!