The HM150, and the camera it replaced--the HM100, are the only cameras that record natively in an .mov format that can be dropped right into FCP. I don't know why that is. (Maybe because there's more people using Premier which doesn't need .mov files so camera manufacturers don't see the need.) The HM100 was at the top of my wish list for a long time because of that fact, but I ended up requesting the Panasonic HMC150 instead. Lots of people like the JVC, but lots of people don't--and, as Sara Lee would say: nobody doesn't like the HMC150. It was a tough choice, but I went with what was the better camera and not what worked more easily with FCP. I haven't gotten approval on the purchase yet, and to be honest, I'd be happy to get the JVC because it's still way better than the standard def camera I have now.
So if the JVC sounds good to you, get it, and enjoy the fact that it's a nice camera and the fact that it works so easily with FCP. I don't think anyone can say whether it will work with future versions of the program, as Apple has been known to throw us... what's the phrase, curve balls, monkey wrenches... into our workflow. But I can't imagine that it would ever not work.
A ton has already been written on interlaced/progressive, so you can look that up, or just shoot progressive and don't worry about it.
Soooo ... did you end up getting the JVC HM150? Curious minds (well mine anyway since I'm the one who bothered to reply) want to know.
BTW, I was lying in bed last night thinking about how I called the Panasonic a "better" camera in my first post, and while many would argue that it is, for your purposes the JVC could very well be the "better" camera—especially in light of the fact that you need an HD camera for a project that is due in a few days. (Sorry, I have a tendency to over-analyze things so I wanted to make sure it didn't seem like I was putting down your camera choice.)
You may have made your choice, but I thought you might appreciate hearing from an actual user of the JVC HM100. I have my own Marketing and Multimedia development company, so I do not make a living promoting products as some do. With that being said we love this this camera, sharp images, easy to work with and is perfect for FCP and the new FCP X users. We are getting ready to purchase the NEW JVC HM150 as a second camera for our event productions. We are also very pleased with our transition over to FCP X. For our work, it is perfect and we like the workflow of FCP X so much better than FCP 7.
So, is this camera for you? The key has to do with what you are going to use it for and under what conditions. We shot mostly under ideal lighting conditions so low light capability is not a problem and if we do, the manual mode works well enough for what we need. Some else may be the better judge of this, like wedding video producers. So if you are going to be working in low light conditions most of the time, this may not be the camera you want to use. We develope training and product marketing videos. Most of our content is for the internet, but we also create trade show promotional materials. The HD quality is really nice on this camera.
This is one of the few cameras that I have seen that has an extensive tutorial for the operation of this camera.
You might want to take a look at Rick Young's 13 Part review and the tutorial on YouTube that he has put together.
It will get you started and really give you a feel for how nice this camera is to work with. Here is part 1 of 13.
A Guide to the JVC GY-HM100E Camera - Part 1 of 13
You can also check out this website MacVideo for some very helpful info in the world of FCP.
Hope this helps, I have spent allot of time looking at other cameras for our next purchase, and I keep comming back to the JVC. For example, I looked hard at the New Panasonic AG-AC130 very nice camera. The video compression AVCHD and the auto focus which was slow was the deal breaker..
I'll give you both "helpful answers" rewards. Sorry for not replying, but for some reason I'm not getting notified of replies the way I used to, so it seemed that no one had responded to this.
Anyway, I ended up buying the camera. I'm still working on the "project that was due in a few days" (heh-heh) but that's how it goes. But so far, I'm loving this camera. Why?
I make web videos and marketing videos for my own company, which relates to musical instruments, specifically electronic keyboards. So I need to shoot talking heads (usually myself), and then hands playing keyboards, pressing buttons on them, interacting with them (usually my own), etc. All in a studio environment (mine). And I have semi-pro video lighting gear - so low-light shooting isn't a concern.
I had an SD camcorder previously, and I hadn't produced a substantial video in a couple of years. Everything's HD now. I decided I had to get with it. But after doing some research, I was worried about all the formats, the capturing and logging, etc.
The single most wonderful feature of this camera (for me) is that it truly is painless and drag n' drop (so to speak). I shoot the footage - I plug in the USB cable, the camera goes into USB mode, the media shows up on the mac as a hard drive, you go in and there are the clips, in .MOV format. Open them immediately in QT and watch, and decide which ones you want to keep. Take those, drag them to your project folder, then drag them into FCP. Done. Drag into a sequence. Done. No problems, no issues at the moment. I'm shooting 1080x720p30 for this project.
Video quality is excellent, I don't have a lot of experience with HD cameras so take it FWIW, but it's crystal clear and looks great. The included external microphone (+48v phantom) and audio unit performed well enough in the studio (I did set it to manual level control) in the few talking heads clips I needed for this project so that I didn't need to hook up my own external mic and all the bother that goes with that.
The beautiful part of the way the camera works for my workflow (and other cameras may do this, I don't know), is that I do try to map out shots ahead of time, and then shoot them all. But while I'm editing, laying out the video, I may decide I need another shot. Everything's still set up, I just turn on the lights, unplug the USB cable, the camera goes back into camera mode, I shoot another shot of what I suddenly decided I needed, plug the USB cable back in, there's the hard drive, drag the MOV clip to my folder and FCP - done. I like this kind of work flow. Editing and shooting at the same time, if needed. Or sometimes you have an idea - maybe it would look better if I shot it from that angle, now that I'm looking at it in the final thing. The amount of time between getting that thought, and shooting a new idea and getting it into FCP onto the timeline, is pretty minimal.
So, I'm really liking the camera so far. It does what it says it would do.
Hi Stephen - Just purchased the GY-HM150U and am researching which version of FCP is best for the camera. I've heard there has been compatibility problems with some versions of FCP when shooting HD (not Standard) and combining HD and Standard on the same timeline. Have you experienced any problems dropping HD into FCP with the version you're currently using? Which version is that? If it's not FCPX, do you know how compatibility with GY-HM150 is with FCPX?
Looking forward to getting started!
We recently purchased the JVC GY-HM150 for our small cable TV station. We have never used HD before and I am a bit overwhelmed with all the different settings I need to change.
I am struggling with finding the right setting in FCP 7 that match the clips I shot (1920X1080 60). I select one of the options I think is right in my FCP settings, but when I put the clip on the timeline, it always tells me that my video clip doesn't match my timeline settings. What are the settings you use in FCP (and I know you use FCPX so it may be a bit different)?
Also, do you know of any good resources for switching from SD to HD? Like I said, I am in over my head here! I can't get my monitor (ViewSonic HDMI) to work...I am not sure if it's possible to edit in an HD timeline and also use SD clips? I am just looking for some good resources to guide me Thanks so much!