So, I was finally able to get some time, and as planned, worked with the wife’s DSLR camera, in an attempt to improve the video quality of the various projects. Dedicated power cord so that the battery doesn’t die – check. Large enough memory card to hold many hours of video – check. H1 Zoom audio recorder functions and records directly to video – check. Significantly improved resolution and frames per second – check. Ability to record continuously for several hours – umm, we have a problem.
Apparently, a common factor with DSLR cameras is a software limitation on the recording time, to prevent overheating and damage to the components. This was a fact which I was unaware of, it having never come up for consideration before. In the case of the Nikon D3200, that limit is 20 minutes – no exceptions, and no means to bypass.
Unfortunately, that pretty much kills my plans of using it as a source camera for gaming activities, since those are typically several hours in length. I can still use it for wood working projects, or other efforts that require several distinct steps, so the concept is not entirely dead, but it was a rather disappointed revelation regardless.
Now I am back to my original plan of several months ago, to obtain a higher quality camcorder, that can actually run for a long period and provide better detail in the 1080p resolution, along with ideally a higher frame rate and the ability to link an external mic. For now, I am eyeing the Canon Vixia HF R800, which appears to meet all my requirements, not include any unnecessary extras, and maintain a reasonable (if currently out of reach) price at $300.