We are expecting our first baby within 10-15 days and I am thinking* to get a budget SD camcorder for simple point and shoot purposes. We have a Canon 20D for photography and my mother-in-law brought a compact Sony digital camera for less serious photo shooting sessions (also for 640x320 video).
It seems like the best bet is Sony DCR-HC90 or 96. Panasonic had some good cameras with a lot of manual options (like GS250, 320, or 400) but from what I read Sony is best for shooting in low light conditions and in AUTO mode. Furthermore, HC90/96 is on par with Pannys when it comes to PQ.
Do you have any other recommendations? Spending $220 on HC90 or $280 on HC96 is a wise decision compared to getting a Canon HV20 or HV30 for 3 times the money?
MiniDV is completely OK with me - I'm definitely against DVD or hd camcorders....
PS: also, I bought a brand new Kodak Z1012 IS digital camera 15 days ago from Kodak for its 720p video capability; but it is going back due to very, very poor performance... Therefore, I am not buying a digital camera for their video capability.
PS2: one other concern is the fkin PAL vs NTSC issue. We are going back home within several years and I need to sell whatever I buy today. Video editing from 24p to 25p (for hd camcorders) are too cumbersome for me.