Point and Shoot vs Bells and Whistles


I’m just sitting here at the B&H corporate offices on this cold winter’s day wondering which consumer camcorder format is going to win out: traditional or point and shoot? The ways things are heading it’s obvious that pocket camcorders like the Flip are becoming the most popular format, especially in light of the turbulent economy and the prevalence of social media.

Yet, I can’t help but think that there will always be a contingent of manufacturers faithful to the traditional camcorder format.
 What do you think? Will point and shoot camcorders be the only option in the future as social networking continues to take over the universe? Or will the home movie camcorder remain strong with these two formats existing side by side in harmony?

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I don't think there needs to be a clear cut answer; I also don't think either will win outright.  There's always going to be a place for each type of camera.  I'm certainly not bringing my HV30 outdoors with on a trip somewhere and conversely i would not shoot a film with a Flip, even thought technology affords me the possibility to do so.   

How about the digital photo cameras displacing both the Flip mino and HV30s of the world?

All gadgets are quickly shrinking down into one little handheld thing. Smartphones may eventually get displaced by the hi-tech badges used in in the TV show Star Trek. But the thing is, if Spock tried to shoot a feature film with his Communicator, would the optics look as good? Stabilization is always something to consider. Can that badge even be mounted on a tripod? And what about audio, Spock? I sure hope subspace technology is capable of picking clear dialogue in a busy and acoustically challenging environment.

No matter how small cameras get, many people will still want the option to be able to hold the camera steady. It's nice to be able to add on microphones, lights, lenses, and monitors when we want to get into more elaborate productions.

So we might need a camera with headphone jack, manual exposure, hdmi out, xlr, etc. but why do we need the Flip Mino, point and shoot photo camera and an Iphone ? I believe the Flip Mino and point and shoot photo camera will eventually bow down to the king "the iphone".

i am dropping my camcorder to my digital camera that has HD video build in i don’t see a need for a extra gadget, while traveling or going to family events it was always a fight between me and wife who should carry the camcorder now it is a breeze with my point and shoot camera http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/search?ci=8612&N=4294538180+4291296566+4294949783

"Daniel notverified" is on the right track as far as my organization's needs are concerned. Our membership association needs a camcorder or DSLR that can take at least two microphones, has a sound meter like the latest upgrade to the Canon 5D Mark 2, has a dedicated headphone jack (not one that has to be switched between audio and headphones), and has autofocus while shooting. Manual exposure is important. It needs to be in one box, such as an improved DLSR camera, for airline travel. Loading a pile of stuff for stills and another pile for video is overloading the carry-on, and no, taking three or four boxes of stuff and checking it as baggage isn't the answer. 

Thanks for the comments everyone. These are definitely interesting times we live in. Personally, I'm thinking that there will always be a place for both. I also think there will always be those with a need for adding on mics and lights, with image stabilization and the like - and of course I don't see professional camcorders going anywhere. Yet, I also agree with Daniel Zana - I don't think there are any clear cut answers. My thought is that it all boils down to personal preference. One thing: whether it be point and shoot camcorders or DSLRs that do video - I see the one size fits all gadget continuing to grow in popularity for the majority of consumers. That is, those not planning on creating the next big budget film. But then again, who knows?

Hey Megan, I just received my Zacuto Pro Iphone holder and now finally will be able to make a big budget film! Oscar 2011 here I come.