Questions and Answers

How camcorders work?

Camcorders are ‘camera’ and ‘(video) recorders’ that capture high quality videos and images. There are two types of camcorders depending on the technology; the traditional analog ones and the digital ones. Camcorders are very popular among the general mass as they are both efficient and cheaper.

The basics of traditional camcorders

The two main parts of analog camcorders are:

• The camera section constituting the lens, CCD and motors, which help in, adjusting the aperture, focus and zoom.
• The VCR section that is like a small screen fitted to the body of the device.
• The viewfinder which enables you to shoot and also the plays back the recorded portion.
• Viewfinders are generally small, b/w or color TV’s. Modern camcorders feature wide LCD’s. The camcorder works by converting the data into electronic signals and saves it on an external storage medium or it’s own hard disk. Frequent technological changes are also been incorporated for all component parts of the camcorder.

Digital camcorders

The components that are present in the analog camcorders are also present in the digital ones. Digital camcorders have an edge over the analog camcorders, as they are to convert the analog signals into bits of data. Analog storing involves continuous tracks of magnetic patterns. Digital signals are encoded in the binary pattern of 0’s and 1’s. This is done so that computers can understand Digital signals. For this reason, storage of digital data lasts for a long time. Further, they won’t fade or destroy with time. However, analog signals tend to fade over time.

The semiconductor device

Semiconductors convert visual and sound signals into electronic signals. Visual signals are recorded according to the intensity of the light waves. Light waves coming from a darker area form the darker part of the image while light coming from the brighter areas form the brighter part of the image. A video is nothing but a sequence of images shown at a faster rate. Thus, the image capturing principle is the same. The lens of a camcorder focuses the images received onto an image sensor. The sensor is a charged couple device (CCD) that calculates the light in a ½ inch panel consisting of 300,000 to 500,000 light sensitive diodes is known as photosite.


The photosite converts the light information into electronic signals. A high electrical charge stands for a brighter image and vice versa. To create a color video, the camcorder also records the electronic signals associated with each color level and converts the information. Red, blue and green are primary colors that give us information about the whole spectrum of colors.
The digital camcorders also store the data in the binary format, i.e., 0’s and 1’s. Digital camcorders are less complicated and give better quality output than the analog ones.

Camcorders are the essential tool for recording the special events in our lives. They help us to capture the lasting memories of birthday parties, weddings, sports events, family reunions and even school farewell parties. This device has gained popularity all across the world. Camcorders are amazing inventions and is a must have device.

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