“I’m a JVC loyalist,” Bell declared. “I just love the look JVC cameras give me. The image quality is excellent. Plus, I have a new client that needed special effects for an HD commercial, and the GY-HM710 produces nice, clean keys.”
For a small shop like Miller-Bell, perception is everything – and a small camcorder will not be up to the standards that Bell sets for the company.
While the GY-HM710 is smaller and lighter than earlier shoulder-mount models, Bell said its large lens and flip-out LCD screen makes a serious impression on his clients.
Bell claimed there is a degree of expertise involved with the choice of the GY-HM710.
“Everyone claims they can do video production. There’s no way that I could walk in with a handheld camera,” Bell said. “For me, a shoulder-mount camera is a professional camera.”
When the company was film-based, Bell upheld strict policy to never rewind footage in the field to avoid erasing content by mistake.
However this policy has now changed. The GY-HM710 records to inexpensive, non-proprietary SDHC media cards, so he can shoot footage and provide instant playback for his clients. “The LCD on the camcorder is so clear, they are just blown away,” Bell added.
Business expenses and postproduction were also affected by the switch.
Miller-Bell is seeing operating cost savings with the use of SDHC cards. Bell estimated he has saved close to $500 on tape this year – and with JVC’s native file recording, he does not need to spend time transcoding footage for editing. “Being able to drag and drop to Final Cut Pro is amazing,” he said.
The AVTA (Antelope Valley Transit Authority) hired Miller-Bell to produce a video documenting the construction of their new Lancaster facility, which opened in 2004. The new video was to provide a look back at the ATVA’s 20-year history and include archived footage from the earlier project. Rather than shoot the new footage in HD, the client specifically requested SD footage so it would match the archival footage.
“There’s still a huge market for SD out there. Some of my clients are still in that SD niche,” Bell explained. “I needed a camera that could shoot SD and HD to satisfy the different types of clients I have.”