I'm looking for a decent quality video camera that I can travel around with and conduct short interviews. I also need to be able to use a lavalier microphone with it.

Someone recommended a GoPro but that seems better suited to lots of action.

Edit (more info):

Budget: $1,000 or less.

Quality: As far as quality, the videos will be going up on a website. Currently are videos are SD so I don't need 1080p or anything, just a good clear picture. Audio quality is more important.

Simplicity is very important. I'm actually the one that will be editing the video, and the person that will be filming is not a technical person. They will not know much about filming techniques, and certainly won't want to be messing with different lenses and stuff like that.

  • 1
    what is your budget? what is your needed level of portability? Do you prefer portability or quality? How much value do you put on increases in quality? As it currently stands anything more than a very general recommendation is pretty much impossible.
    – AJ Henderson
    Commented Jan 28, 2014 at 15:21

1 Answer 1


Often, the best option, particularly for interviews, is a DSLR. The particulars of your needs may change that or harden in on a specific level of DSLR, however in general they key thing for interviews is to be able to have a sharply focused subject with a nice blur to the background.

DSLR cameras shooting HD video with a fast lens (f/2.8 or faster preferably) can achieve very nice background blurs and make great looking video. Most also have a line input that you can run a mic into, though use of the best quality mics will often require using an external device first to deal with the mic and convert it to the type of signal the camera wants.

Personally, I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark iii and use a Zoom h4n for audio. I record the audio separately and sync in post production, but a line out from the Zoom can also be fed in to the camera directly. You don't need something as advanced as the 5D Mark iii, but it hopefully gives you an idea of how a setup can work. You could substitute any DSLR with a mic or line input for the 5D Mark iii.

If portability is super key however, it might be best to go with an actual camcorder. They can get a little bit smaller than a full fledged DSLR though the smaller the camera, the harder it is to get the background blur that you often see in interviews.

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