He's going to Long Beach State, he is a typical Film Student slacked off in HS, then has done well in JC, but math holds him back a bit so he is limited to where he can get in.
He is making an effort to get into Chapman University, but its an uphill fight.
BTW, sound is one of his biggest worries. What accessories does he need to forecast in his budget for sound. How well do the onboard microphones work?
We found a site that has a Canon XL2 for like $1900 bucks. I dunno how solid the site is. http://www.digitalliquidators.com/detai ... CDOIOGDGIA
Another thing we have come across is cameras that also have PAL versions which cost about $500 more. What is PAL?
All I can tell you is, SERIOUSLY consider spending a good chunk of change on audio equipment. The visuals can look great, but if there's background noise or poor sound, it'll completely wash everything else. You don't need to go out and buy some super-expensive boom mic, but you'll want something that will pick up voices clearly without all the background. Generally with camcorders, the aspect that suffers is sound. I couldn't tell you where to go, but if you search around I'm sure you can find some info somewhere. I'd hate for your buddy to put all kinds of effort into it, and then realize after the shoot that the sound sucks.