Sony XR520V Vs. Panasonic TM300 at DVinfo.net

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Old May 27th, 2009, 09:34 PM   #1
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Sony XR520V Vs. Panasonic TM300

I've been reading up on the comparisons between Sony XR520V vs. Canon HFS10, however, my question is how does XR compare to TM300? I have an XR sealed in the box, but I am waiting for the reviews about TM300. My source for reviews is camcorderinfo.com.

Some posts here talk very positively about XR's low-light/OIS/LCD performance, however, the review of HS300 (sister cam of the TM300) at the above site shows that it beats XR in low-light.

My previous camcorder was Sony SR7, which hugely sucked in low-light. Since a lot of my filming happens in low-light I don't want to make a mistake by not getting a strong low-light performer.

Do you guys think that TM300 is worth selling the unopened XR for?

Any coherent comments are truly appreciated

Thanks so much

Renat
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Old May 28th, 2009, 05:25 AM   #2
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Camcorderinfo .com is a great site but, IMHO, their tests are still not enough homogeneous and are more and more too much focused on the figures computed by some specialized softwares: the sens of criticism of their reviewers is lowered by theses figures, and, too often, is even made totally dumb...

The low-light test is a typical example of this problem: the results computed by their expensive test softwares say "TM300 is better in low light than the XR-520V".
But if you spend a little more time to found some other tests and to read some pre-owner reviews, you can heard a totally other story:

- here a test on an another Web site (I'm not saying that this site is better, it's simply another point of view): HD camcorder tests and comparison of Panasonic HDC-SD300 (HDC-SD300EG/ HDC-SD300K) and Sony HDR-XR520V (HDR-XR520VE) Best values highlighted
Check their test done at 12 lux: globally, the resulting brightness of the picture produced by the 2 cams is quite the same, but the image produced by the HDC-SD300 (same optics/sensors than the series HDC-TM300/HDC-HS300) is clearly less sharp/detailled than the image produced by the HDR-XR520V.

- here a feedback of a pre-owner: "I received one of the first TM300 .../.. to be honest it was not an upgrade on my SR11. Low light was not great and detail was not as crisp as the Sony which is a year or so old. This was all a live comparison to my Sony Bravia 40 inch LCD via HDMI."
It's an extract of a feedback given by a member of this other great other site that is... DVinfo.net ;)
(full post at http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/1127777-post9.htm).

Sure, we know that the best option is to be able to test by yourself the 2 cams... but we know too that is not easy -- or, sometimes, even unrealistics--: so, if you need to trust another voice, try to catch more than one voice.
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Old May 28th, 2009, 12:03 PM   #3
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I've been looking at the Panasonics for the manual control (I've owned a couple Pannys in the past and loved them), but I've yet to see low light footage that doesn't go so soft as to be mush... this seems to contradict the CCI tests, so I don't understand it, but early Panasonic users have not been that impressed. It's impossible to know unless you or someone you trust has had hands on with both in real world conditions. There is one poster here who did have one of the new Panasonics and shot some test footage - check the HF-S10 vs XR500 thread for links, the Panasonic didn't impress me, though the specs seem good.

I've got the XR500V, and it holds up extremely well in low light, in real world conditions, retaining sharpness, color, and detail, while maintaining a low noise profile. Some feel the Canon is better in "good light", but for low light conditions, the Sony is the one to beat with the "R" sensor and the firmware on board - turn the low lux switch on to get the equivalent of the old auto slow (30 vs. 60) shutter, and it's still usable under most conditions, and can almost see in the dark (I'm convinced CCI ignored that option while testing all the other cams at 24/30 frame rates).
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Old May 28th, 2009, 05:15 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Blackhurst View Post

I've got the XR500V, and it holds up extremely well in low light, in real world conditions, retaining sharpness, color, and detail, while maintaining a low noise profile. Some feel the Canon is better in "good light", but for low light conditions, the Sony is the one to beat with the "R" sensor and the firmware on board - turn the low lux switch on to get the equivalent of the old auto slow (30 vs. 60) shutter, and it's still usable under most conditions, and can almost see in the dark (I'm convinced CCI ignored that option while testing all the other cams at 24/30 frame rates).
I'm convinced to keep the XR.
Dave, what do you mean "firmware on board"? Does one need to upgrade the XR's firmware?

Thanks
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Old May 28th, 2009, 08:30 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruno Donnet View Post
Check their test done at 12 lux: globally, the resulting brightness of the picture produced by the 2 cams is quite the same, but the image produced by the HDC-SD300 (same optics/sensors than the series HDC-TM300/HDC-HS300) is clearly less sharp/detailled than the image produced by the HDR-XR520V.
I like the comparisons that site does, but you have to be careful with their verbiage. I'll never understand how these reviews (CCI included) can so contradict themselves.

Take a look at the 'test small ISO image'. That image is a partial resolution chart and it's VERY clear from that chart that the Sony has better resolution than the Panasonic. Further, it's very clear from that image that the Panasonic is using TONS of in-camera sharpening. This can be clearly seen in the severe outlining around the numbers and chart outlines. That would make for an image with many artifacts.

Yet when you look at their summary, they give the nod in resolution to the Panasonic!!!! I just don't get it and I'll never understand these reviews and the very obvious contradictions.

Yes, there is absolutely no substitute for a comparison done yourself...assuming it's practical.
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