The History Behind Today's Camcorders

A camcorder, also known as video camera recorder, is one of the most revolutionising technologies of the modern world. It is a small device that contains a video camera as well as a recorder. The modern camcorder is quite different from its predecessor, the simple video camera. Video cameras were originally designed to be used for broadcasting purposes only. They were weighty and had to be connected to a recorder placed in a different location.

With advancements in technology, it made outdoor recording feasible. With the help of easy to carry cameras and portable recorders, shooting could take place at different locations. Both Sony and JVC produced portable recorders. Sony named its version as U-matic with Betamax whereas JVC called its product as VHS. This method, however, was not too much sound. While the cameras were portable, the recorder was still a separate unit.

Sony introduced the Betacam system in 1982. It consisted of a single camera unit that did not require anything to attach the recorder to it. The Betacam system had an integrated recorder with the camera. Although it contained the Betamax cassette tape, it was comparatively faster in running. This enhanced the performance and quality of the recorded videos. This creation earned its name in the broadcasting and editing world very quickly.

Relying on the response that Betacam received, Sony came up with another product. This time, the target audience was the general public. The design of the new Betamovie BMC-100P also incorporated the same Betamax cassette. This camera had to be positioned on the shoulder of the operator as it could not be managed with one-handed grasp. Later JVC also launched its version of camcorder which was created on the VHS-C format. The VHS-C was a compact version of the VHS.

Advancing in the field of video recording, Sony brought in its personal compact video cassette design as Video8. The designs by both Sony and JVC were supposed as both advantageous and difficult because of their particular features. Panasonic, Hitachi and RCA initiated manufacturing camcorders that used full size VHS cassette for recording which had the capability of saving up to 3 hours of recording. These designs were made public which crafted a place for commercial videographers and college TV studios. The super VHS camcorder’s, released in 1987 increased the broadcasting quality. The S-VHS granted an economical mean to gather news fragments. Improving the Video8, Sony commenced the launch of Hi8 in competition to the S-VHS.

Today in the 21st century, technology has evolved much further. Now the world relies on digital camcorders which record videos using compact disks and memory cards rather than those analog tapes. This digital method has enabled a much better quality in film-making. Also the introduction of HD and 3D technology has benefited us in providing the ultimate experience of video recording.

About the Article:
This article was collated with help from the 
Jessops website. You can read more about the history of camcorders on the Internet Video Mag.

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