What was that shot with? (camera/webcam bargain hunting)

(I'm hoping this isn't just a "How can I make my video awesome but spend no money on a decent camera" question.)

I'm an elementary art teacher who's been doing animation with children. I just talked my schools into getting Dragonframe (the guides and templates I can put over the live view are HUGE helps when teaching ease-in & out, etc.) and I just assumed that we'd use a webcam (I've got virtually zero knowledge of high end cameras, can't even tell you what DSLR means, except "digital slr" ).

Anyway, some discussion in other threads got me thinking and I was wondering if people had more visual examples of "this was shot on a __________" so I could cost v. benefit compare. 

There's _no way_ my school is gunna pop for a $400+ camera -- nor is that quality my projects demand. I just figure since I'm so green I'm bound to not be considering other options. Like...

--Older model dslr

--Other cameras with live feeds

-- Other Decent webcams that can focus/white balance manually? (I've really only looked into the aGent and Logitech pro 9000)

Thanks for any help!

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It sounds like webcams are definitely what you need. Sorry, I know very little about the models available now - I haven't used one for about 8 years now. Hopefully somebody can fill you in on good models. 

One thing I can offer though is this - if you want the students to see great examples of how to do ease-in/ease-out and sea-weed motion etc, you should show them this page of excellent examples: http://www.brianlemay.com/animationexamples/animationindex.html

Ok sorry, that's all I got. Good luck! 

Oh, and be sure to step through the example videos a frame at a time using the left and right arrow keys on your keyboard - it's almost like looking over a pro animator's shoulder while he works. 

I found my QuickCam for Notebooks Pro on eBay for twenty bucks! I chose it because it has a glass lens and is all manual. It will work with both Mac and PC. I have been pretty happy with it so far. I use the snap shot button on the top of the camera to record the frame.

Thanks for the tips - and that's a great site Strider, thanks much!

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