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Jared Hamilton
From: Jared Hamilton
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Tim Doherty

Tim Doherty President/GM

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Who has the best HD Video Camera

After trial and error with several cameras, I am curious to know what the Driving Sales community thinks is the best HD camera to use in the auto business.  By using the following criteria, please let me know what you're using and why it works well:

  • Picture/Video quality
  • Ease of Use
  • Software Interface (on PC)
  • Ability to load quickly to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, etc.

I have used everything....iPhone, Droid, Flip, Digital SLR w/ video, etc., but still haven't found anything that combines great video quality with ease of use.  I welcome your comments!

Jared Hamilton
Hi Tim, Can you prioritize your use of the camera, for example, will you be using it for: Inventory walk-arounds Meet the staff interviews for you website General social media production Capturing video testimonials Full commercial production etc. I think the best camera will be determined by what you tend to do with it most. Also, the software is a whole separate question so we will add that into the mix. Editing software will also be determined by the effects you need to create which will be dictated by how you intend to use it. Work flow, (ie filming, to capturing it on your computer, to rendering in your chosen format, to editing and finally posting) is super important. It will be determined by your combo of camera and software. Let me know your dream use scenarios and we will get you a bunch of feedback. talk to you soon
Tim Doherty
Hi Jared, Thanks for the response. At this point I would like the best camera for short-burst video: walk-arounds testimonials meet the staff These will all typically be relatively short, 1-3 minutes in length. As I said before, we've used other cameras before with mixed results. Once we get that mastered, then maybe we'll move to full HD commercial-grade production...maybe. Thanks for the help!
Adam Thrasher
The iPhone 4 works pretty well for most of this. We are using it to do inventory photos and soon video walk-arounds. We have a flip cam and I'm ready to ditch it in favor of the iPhone 4. Rob Fontano should answer this question...have you seen his YouTube channel? He's the best at video.
Rob Fontano
The type of camera that you choose should be based not only on what you are using it for but, your level of knowledge in editing software. For testimonials and basic walk arounds, the flip HD is still the best choice for ease of use. A lot of editing can be done either using the flip software or on YouTube itself. How you use the camera is the most important thing. Always use a tripod, either full sized or desk top for testimonials. Always have your customers sitting while doing testimonial. People are not accustomed to being on camera and don't know what to do with their bodies or arms. Sitting is more comfortable. Have a list of basic questions to place down in front of your customers will help guide them through a quick video testimonial. You will get better testimonials if your customers are comfortable. I have done some cool vehicle demonstrations with a flip, tripod and tripod roller (about $50 online) If you are a bit more advanced go for a $500 - $900 video camera and some good editing software like iMovie. The most important thing to remember is produce the best quality videos that you possibly can. No jittery camera movement, good lighting and the best sound you can have. Be aware of the outdoors, you could end up with nothing but wind and traffic. Also be aware of the volume of the music in the showroom. I hope this helped, feel free to email me with additional questions, I know this can be a nerve wracking investment in time and money. rlfontano@gmail.com
Tim Doherty
@Rob, Thanks for the great information. I already have (and use) iMovie. It's a great piece of software with fantastic templates and renders videos for web posting easily. Do you have some specific camera recommendations in the $500-900 range? I don't mind making that investment, I just feel like I'm flying blind. Thanks!

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