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Best High-End Consumer Camcorders / Camcorder HQ Buyer's Guide

Last updated on 07/16/2013

Are you looking for a camcorder to match your Rolex? Is no price too high for performance? Then you'll probably find what you're looking for in this roundup. These camcorders all sit at the top of their manufacturers' consumer lines. They represent the best quality HD available before making the massive leap to "Pro" price tags. They are the perfect camcorders for recording the countryside as it whizzes past the window of your BMW. In all seriousness, these are as good as the consumer class gets.

Sony HDR-PJ790V
Create Video and Watch It on the Built-in Projector
from $1,598.00
Expect great things from Sony's back-side illuminated sensor, 1920 x 1080 24p/60p videos and 24.1 megapixel stills in the PJ790. This cam is about more than just smooth footage though, it includes a 5 channel mic and enough flash memory to hold over 37 hours of video. The projectors built into Sony's PJ line are quite popular, and the 790 has one of the brightest projectors in the line, which can also project from a computer through the HDMI port.
Sony HXR-NX30
from $1,089.00
Fans of Sony's PJ line looking for a bit more will find it in the NX30, which still includes a built-in-projector and is much more compact than most professional level models. Despite the palm sized body, the NX30 includes a shotgun mic and audio pod. With 1080p video at 60 fps, video quality should be suberb as well.
Panasonic HC-X920
from $720.00
[Read our full Panasonic HC-X920 Review] Priced at around $1,000, the Panasonic HC-X920 is a good option for consumers looking for high quality video in an easy to use camcorder. Of course, the X920 has advanced features like manual modes and focus, but you can still get pretty good results using the basic settings, thanks to the three sensors which also give the X920 an edge in low light scenarios.
Best from JVC So Far
from $689.99
Photographers looking to add a professional level camcorder to their aresenal will appreciate the look and feel of this JVC, which resembles a DSLR camera. With 1080/60P 36 Mbps recording, the PX100 is one of the best models that JVC has on the market. Consumers should be pleased with the video quality and smooth panning. And while most dedicated camcorders are rather sluggish at taking stills, the PX100 has a continuous burst of up to 60 fps.