I don't know, but, at the time, I figured that a full-sized S-VHS camcorder was an affordable, professional-looking alternative to spending three or four thousand dollars for an actual "prosumer" Hi8 camera.
Now, Sony has a camcorder, an HVR-HD1000U MiniDV 1080i High Definition Camcorder with 10x Optical Zoom. It sells for about $1,500.
Here's what Sony says about it:
The HVR-HD1000U was created to meet the growing demand from users who are looking for mobility and professional appearance. This camcorder features a shoulder-mount design and black matte body similar to that of professional camcorders; making it perfect for weddings, corporate communications, colleges, universities, and sporting events where appearance makes a difference....It's a consumer camcorder made to look like a prosumer camcorder. It's for videographers who want to impress their clients.
Well. Seems like a good idea.
Years ago, someone posted on a message board. They were going to make a no-budget slasher movie. But should they use Super 8 film or a S-VHS camcorder? Other people discussed the relative merits of the two formats. I wisely told him to get S-VHS. A big, giant camcorder would impress the actors.
Video: HVR-HD1000u First Look