"GRL" <GLitwinski@CHARTERMI.COM> wrote in message



> Have a Sony TRV81 Hi8 camcorder I bought some 5 years ago. Thing was about

> $1500 and has had light use because I was never really happy with the

> fuzziness of the picture. For example, shooting outdoors on Hi8 tape grass

> is a blur. You see no indications of the blades of grass. Looks like a VHS

> movie.


> Now I have the bug to try a camcorder again and am wondering if a digital

> camcorder will be MUCH better in terms of resolution than my old high-end

> Hi8. I am not about to drop another $1500 on a Sony TRV950, three CCD's or

> not. I am willing to spend the money that a used TRV740/840 or a TRV27 will

> cost.


The best in Hi-8 compact camcorders could be quite good

(Sony TR700, VX3), but the best of the Mini-DV small

1-CCD camcorders *in good light* can look better (though

not always in all ways) - and the best of the compact 3-CCD

Mini-DV camcorders (I do *not* include the TRV950 among

these...) can easily surpass the best Hi-8 in every respect

(I like the Sony VX2000/2100/PD150/170 and Panasonic

DVX100 [and variants] here - though none is perfect, and

though I own three VX2000's which I like a lot, I'm not

quite as enthusiastic about them as "PTRAVEL" is...;-]).

BTW, I have used gear FS (including the TRV740/730 and

TRV900 and VX2000 [both are good 3-CCD models],

with honest/accurate descriptions) at



> Consumer Reports says that good Digital8 and MiniDV camcorders are much

> better in picture quality than the current crop of Hi8's which I understand

> are basically junk sold in the under $300 price range and not comparable

> with the old Hi8's like mine. So that does not tell me much.


The top-end Sony D-8 models are no longer sold, alas - and

I do not think much of CR's audio/video/photo reports. The current

Sony D-8 models are roughly equivalent in quality to their low-end

Mini-DV models, but with fewer features - not bad, not outstanding...

BTW, these may be interesting:










> What I need is an opinion from someone who had a very good Hi8 camera, like

> mine, and replaced it with a medium or better quality (under $1,000)

> Digital8 or MiniDV camera. Did you see a dramatic improvement in resolution

> and overall picture quality. I mean like when you go from seeing a DVD movie

> on a non-progressive rear projector TV to the same movie on a progressive

> rear projector TV. Was there a "holy cow this is really good" moment?


Um, IMHO, commercial VHS tapes on a good player, viewed on a

good SD TV look VERY good, and most commercial DVDs played

on a good non-progressive-scan player and viewed on a good

interlaced TV look VERY, VERY good (as in, WOW!), showing

very fine picture detail (I have no interest in PS-mode motion-images

at this time...;-). The display device can vary in image quality considerably

for ALL types, and plain ol' SD displays of the highest quality can

still look VERY good with all decent source material, including VHS

tapes and broadcast material. It may be that what you see now would

look better on a good older TV (most of the newer mass-market ones,

including HDTVs, don't look very good to me...).



 David Ruether