Best video solution for backpacking

cam camcorder data be transfered to ipod graphic

This is a bit of a long shot, but I was wondering whether someone knew what was illustrated above was possible?

Basically I’m looking for the lightest and most minimal effort way of filming my 6 month trek across America. I’ve got a mini DV tape camcorder that’s done me proud on previous treks, but it’s about 10 years old now and could do with an upgrade. HD seems to be the future proof way forward, but the availability & cost of HD tapes in the towns I’ll be passing through is a worry, so I’ve been having a look at the other solutions on the market.

My uncle at Christmas had Sony HDR-SR8E with a 100GB hard disk. Although 100GB is a lot, it’s only 12.5 hours of full quality HD footage, not really enough for a 6 months trek. I came across a discussion about camcorders for backpacking that suggested if you had a camcorder that recorded to SD cards you could then back them up on a big portable hard drive. On the forum they were taking about the Sanyo HD1, but reckoned it’s image quality wasn’t up to scratch, so I was thinking about the Sony HDR-CX6EK instead. It isn’t as light as the Sanyo, but 340g isn’t bad and apparently the image quality is top notch.

Ok so here’s the set up I have in mind: Film on the Sony HDR-CX6 and a couple of 8GB memory sticks. Then transfer the video to a portable hard disk, I’m thinking Me and Paul could both get a 160GB iPod (which would also be quite useful when our conversation dries up). This’ll give us 320GB of storage (8GB is an hour of full quality video) so that’s 40 hours of footage, which I reckon is probably enough (certainly wouldn’t want to edit any more…)

The problem is, would it work? I don’t really see why it shouldn’t, but I’ve been searching the web and haven’t been able to find any confirmation. The thing that worries me is getting the video from the memory stick onto a iPod without a computer. If I had a Memory Stick USB adaptor and iPod photo Camera Connector would it transfer the video to the iPod? Then I suppose is it possible to get everything back on a mac and in iMovie or Final Cut from an iPod?

Well if anyone has any experience of the above please let us know how it went, or if anyone has any better suggestions I’m all ears.

7 thoughts on “Best video solution for backpacking

  1. Pingback: Made in England by Gentlemen Update of my video solution for backpacking

  2. I realise that you’re up in the hills but when you come back to civilisation every now and then would one of those camera wifi upload cards make sense?
    I dunno. Do they work with video? I guess the upload times could be insane…

    Be good to keep the footage safe…

  3. Nice one John, that wolverine 250 looks like it might be the ticket. Are you still going to be in LA this spring? Me and Paul might need a place to crash for a couple of days while we sort our shit out before the walk :)

  4. not sure if the ipod connector would allow video files, the ipods can be very restrictive on what you can do without a computer. I would recommend something like the Archos 605 (160gb – $399) which is much more like a protable hard drive and really flexible or the wolverine ESP 250GB $599 (which has a built in 7 in 1 (including sony memorystick) card reader)….
    that’s my 2 cents (currently worth 1p)

  5. why only Sony? Memory Stick is not available for every device. I prefer the one with SD, althought it seems to be a little troubled. Almost every device can read SD card, even copy it intactly.

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