Which camera with great video? I'm looking to get a new camera that I will be using to video my grandkids. Like P & S size but not a requirement. Do want image stabilization and zoom with auto focus. Any first hand user opinions - good and bad - welcomed. Tnx in advance.
I really like my camera for it's flexibility. Granted, it's not a sports camera, but you won't find very many P&S cameras that are anyway. At least not for the price. It's a 720p HD video stereo sound video recorder & still camera all in one. A 16GB class 4 or 6 SD card will give you best results in both pictures and video and give you capacity to shoot for days without a need to transfer them off. I got the adaptor ring to use 58mm standard filters as well. The variable view finder works great and allows to be very creative in getting shots that are otherwise impossible to get. When the sun is bright, there's always the built in view finder too. Even the digital zoom looks great without looking low res. I used to own the previous model, SX10is, and liked it just as well. The upgrade was only to get HD video. But I did lose a couple of features in the process. The audio recorder that records audio to attached photos and the Superfine picture setting. If HD video does not interest you, 'by the book', the SX10is takes slightly better pictures due to the Superfine mode and the fact that the image senors are the same size between the two. The SX20is has a slightly improved built in flash range though. I carried my SX10is all over Italy without a problem. Being able to use AA's vs a proprietary special battery saved me from missing out on some pictures of a life time as well. Big advantage there for sure. Macro shots come out great too on both models. I put some protective film on the view finder. Then after the fact, I discovered an antiglare version here. There's a feature called iContrast that can also be used in post taken pics that can bring out lots of detail in shadowed areas. If used post, it does not replace the original picture, so it gives you a choice on versions. If turned on during picture taking, there's no choice. The latest software from Canon allows you to take still images from video and also panoramics which is really nice. The software also stitches still shots taken to be made into panoramics too. It's best to take those with at least 50% overlap for a good stitching results. Verticals can be done too.
I have a Canon SX20is that can take 720p HD video with stereo sound, just as the SX130is can. But the 130is has a ten minute limit of recording per session in HD mode only. (longer in lower resolution mode) My SX20is can record longer per shot. Both of these caneras can zoom while recording and the sound is in stereo. The SX20is has a one button video recording button that makes it very easy to start a recording at a moment's notice.