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PTZ Cameras for Church — or Camcorders?

PTZ cameras

When it comes to houses of worship and the cameras they use to film or live-stream their sermons and other events, nearly all of them at one time used basic camcorders. Although these are excellent cameras, more and more of these organizations are switching to PTZ cameras for church (pan/tilt/zoom cameras) instead. Known as PTZ cameras, they have a lot of the same advantages as camcorders but offer perks those cameras just don’t have. If you belong to a new church and you’re looking into the perfect camera for your own needs, it’s good to know a little bit about both of these cameras so you can make the right decision in the end.

PTZ Cameras for Church – or Camcorders?

When you’re comparing PTZ cameras for church to camcorders for church, you should compare all of the features of each so that you can decide which one of those features is most important. Both PTZ cameras and camcorders are able to zoom into certain subjects on stages and other locations, but camcorders don’t always have usable controls that allow you to pan, tilt, or zoom remotely. In addition, since camcorders typically run off of batteries, they have to be plugged in a lot of the time and can’t be installed on walls or ceilings permanently. With PTZ cameras, you can mount them almost anywhere because they are operated via a power source or Power over Ethernet (PoE).

These things being said, if you are still unsure about PTZ cameras for church (or camcorders), you can take a look at the pros and cons of each type to help you make the right decision.

Pros and Cons of a Camcorder

Some of the pros of using a camcorder include the following:

  • It tends to be less expensive than a PTZ camera.
  • It can capture very high-quality stills and videos.
  • Its lenses tend to be top-notch.
  • It can record to a DVD, memory card, or even a hard drive.
  • It can even record extreme closeups.
  • It usually has built-in 4K support.
  • It can capture video at higher bit rates than other cameras.
  • It can support external microphones and other peripherals.
  • It is able to record surround sound audio.
  • They are now even more comfortable to hold for long periods of time.
  • Many of them have LCD displays that rotate.

If you’re curious about some of the cons of using a camcorder, here they are:

  • They have to be run off of batteries, which sometimes have a short life span.
  • They do not have all of the features that a good PTZ camera has.
  • They usually can only zoom up to 2x the size of the original image.
  • They usually have very small LCD screens.
  • There is usually no external memory.
  • You sometimes have to have perfect lighting conditions for them to work right.
  • You often don’t get speed-up and slow-down features when you’re playing something back.

It isn’t that camcorders are not quality items; it’s just that their capability and features are somewhat limited when you compare them to other cameras, such as PTZ cameras.