It all comes down to the sensor(s) and lens inside compared to the price paid, in my opinion.
As their first attempt at a 3CCD camcorder, Panasonic loaded their professional broadcast-grade 1/4" sensor cube into the now-discontinued HDC-SD1 model. Every single camcorder built since by any manufacturer has featured a CMOS sensor, only one color chip, or a smaller three-sensor cube. That is a full quarter inch of light collecting surface area per primary color, a fixed lens by a reputable optics manufacturer, it accepts secondary lenses, and it records h264 video to an SD card (admittedly interlaced at full 1080 resolution, so arguably it only does 720p), also it fits in the DiCAPac Wp-D20 waterproof case if you're not into dismantling and swabbing Lysol around inside your electronics to decon.
Any time one of these (admittedly outdated) camcorders hits the used equipment market for less than $300 I try and scoop it up for caving video purposes. Nothing else that I have used comes anywhere close to its color sensitivity in low light situations and I hate that nobody has made a compact video camera using such a sensor array since. DSLRs with three 1/4" color chips can now do stellar video too, but between the body and a lens that's too much money for me to take underground and break without crying. I use CMOS sensors when I have to (love my older ContourHD helmet cameras with easily swappable batteries and memory) but even when well lit it looks greyscale compared to a 1/4" 3CCD array under high-Color-Rendering-Index-rated video lights. Most of my caving videos I wouldn't show off as a professional though - caves are the hardest environments I've ever filmed in.
Lava formations filmed with such a sensor array, but before I switched to specifically "high-CRI" diodes in my video lights: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ybaLXhwbBCw
An even older and longer lava tube video using the 1/4" 3CCD without proper dedicated lighting: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XlHXWMlQNrE
For those who don't know, lava tubes are basalt and usually black-walled except where they have brilliant varied color. We also have marble caves here too, and I think only a 3CCD does justice to the colored striations in that rock.