New Digital Camera: Should I shoot video in 16:9 HD (1080p) or 4:3 SD (VGA)?

Mr Burns

Honorable
Dec 24, 2012
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So I just got a new digital camera for Christmas.

It is a Polaroid and the model number is iS426.

There are different settings for photos and video.

I know this seems like a silly question but HD is not nessesarily better in my case. You see, my camera has a 4:3 screen and the lens/sensor is 4:3.

I have 4 different settings for video:

HD:

1080p 1920x1080
720p 1280x720

SD:

VGA 640x480
QVGA 320x240

When I shoot video in SD it fills the entire viewfinder. When I shoot in HD I notice 2 black bars at the top and bottom of the viewfinder like watching a widescreen video on a fullscreen monitor/tv. Now instead of giving me more space at the sides for HD, it simply crops off the top and bottom giving me less vertical space.

So, I have a dilema. Should I shoot SD and get more vertical field of view? Or shoot in HD with better quality and have less vertical field of view?

I should also note I still have a 4:3 computer monitor, so the SD video will fill the screen, whereas the HD video will have 2 black bars on top and bottom. And that I cannot zoom in when recording videos.

I would also like to know how much space each option uses on my memory card (it's an 8GB Sandisk) and how long I could record for before I fill the memory card. I am also curious about the whether recording in HD will use more battery (the camera uses a lithium ion battery that can be charged via USB or through the mains socket).

BTW, for photos for the most part it shoots in 4:3 with a maximum resolution of 16 mp (4608x3456). You can lower the resolution with all the other options being 4:3 except for 7mp HD, and 2mp HD. I just tried shooting in 7mp HD and yes, the top and bottom was cut off again.

I'm also wondering if my camera has most field of view in 4:3, why can't I shoot HD video in 4:3 as well, making maximum use of my camera.


One last thing. Should I wait until the battery dies before I recharge it or should I recharge whenever I can? What can I do to make my battery last longer?

Thanks to all in advance.



 

Brodie Lawrence

Estimable
Apr 29, 2014
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4,520
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The 1080p has a different aspect ratio, and so the video will be a different shape to SD. 1080p is larger than standard def but since the aspect ratio is different and the video is bigger it seems like it is being scaled to fit the viewfinder, and the aspect ratio is what's causing the bars. Despite that, 1080p is pretty much the video standard now, the size of youtube video cameras, the size you watch TV shows (or at leas the same aspect ratio) so you could go with HD but it depends what you're using it for. As HD has a bigger pixel perimeter, the files will be larger than standard def. It all depends if you're using it to show or just to document things with choosing high quality or standard quality.
 

Brodie Lawrence

Estimable
Apr 29, 2014
1
0
4,520
1
The 1080p has a different aspect ratio, and so the video will be a different shape to SD. 1080p is larger than standard def but since the aspect ratio is different and the video is bigger it seems like it is being scaled to fit the viewfinder, and the aspect ratio is what's causing the bars. Despite that, 1080p is pretty much the video standard now, the size of youtube video cameras, the size you watch TV shows (or at leas the same aspect ratio) so you could go with HD but it depends what you're using it for. As HD has a bigger pixel perimeter, the files will be larger than standard def. It all depends if you're using it to show or just to document things with choosing high quality or standard quality.
 
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