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General HD (720 / 1080) Acquisition
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Old January 4th, 2008, 08:27 AM   #1
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Shouler Mount HD Cameras

Im looking to invest in a shoulder mount hd camera.

What are some of the cheapest hd shoulder mount cameras out there and how do they perform.

I currently have the A1 and HV20 but need to add a thrid camera. And I also want a "professional" look as well with the addition to my thrid camera.

I have been looking at the Sony HVR-HD1000 which is very cheap and lacks manual controls and only $1600. But this camera just came out and there is a lot of unanswered questions, performance wise, from these forums. So besides this camera, any recommendations for a low budget shoulder mount HD camera?

Thank you all
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Old January 4th, 2008, 09:31 AM   #2
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You COULD buy a 'shoulder mount' for one of the smaller cams, if that's your defining need.
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Old January 4th, 2008, 09:32 AM   #3
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These days it's possible to beef up virtually any camera into appearing more impressive, if that is a stated goal--I would think that you would want to find the camera that has the right specs for you and then start adding baseplate and rods etc. to get the look you want. The DVRigPro is a solid system also.
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Old January 4th, 2008, 07:56 PM   #4
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I use a stabilizing system for my A1 and my HV20 is on a tripod all the time because i use that for the reception only. So im looking for a shoulder mount camera now...and nothing is under 3k...or am I wrong?

Thanks for all the comments.
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Old January 4th, 2008, 08:35 PM   #5
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If you're looking for a 'pro' look,well, all I can tell you is after 25 years in the business, I've found that TODAY even the fortune 500 clients I do work for don't care if I come in with a 35 lb shoulder cam or a 2 pound palmcorder as long as the quality of the work is what they expect.
Having said that, the newer shoulder HDV/HD/XD cameras that are out now or coming out soon are not going to be in the under 3K range, at least nothing that's of any real use. There are pre-owned JVC100s out there that can probably be had for around that price but keep in mind that with a shoulder or fullsized camera you incur other costs. Batteries are generally either AB mount or V mount and are far more expensive than the smaller batteries needed for the small form factor cameras. The charger alone can run well in excess of $1000. AAMOF the AB 2702 4 position intellicharger is right around 1300.00.
Now add to that 4 batteries to power the camera at about $350 to 400 each. If you use V mount (Sony or IDX) the charger and batteries are slightly less.
Having said all of that let me now give the advantages of full sized cameras. (IMO) One complete unit, with on camera light running off the camera battery, wireless receiver has a nice place to live and can also run off the camera battery. Pick it up and go. Now back to the downsides. Tripod head needs to be heftier than one might use for small cameras. Tripod legs might need to be upgraded also. Bag to carry it. Don't laugh. When I carried my last fullsize, the bag was around 40 pounds plus. Camera with receiver, 4 batteries, tapes, headphones, a couple of XLRs, wireless transmitter, handheld mic, wireless plugin transmitter for same-it all added up. It finally got to the point that I gave it up, went back to small formfactor, less money for accesories, got a DVRigPro and I'm off to the races.
Not trying to sway you one way or another just laying out the facts.
Your money your choice.
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Old January 4th, 2008, 10:19 PM   #6
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Thanks Don, great post.

I think with all that said, I might just wait a little bit more and invest in another A1.

But im still waiting to see the performance of the Sony HVR-HD1000 but it does lack a lot of manual controls.
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Old January 4th, 2008, 10:52 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andre Tira View Post
and nothing is under 3k...or am I wrong?
1. performance quality
2. aesthetic appeal
3. low cost

pick any two. ;-}D

I was working in a TV studio north of Philadelphia and someone on a tour asked how much all the equipment in the control room cost. Their jaw nearly hit the floor when i started pricing out each individual component. . . this business isn't cheap, not by a long shot.

What are your needs in this additional camera? How do you plan on using it? Is it to be used along with your A1 and/or HV20? If you want another cam to use in a two-cam set-up, having another A1 or HV20 may be the better way to go in order to be able to have matching picture quality. I understand the feeling of "camera inadequacy" (my dinky little GL2 next to a HL-X1 or a Sony D50, oh the shame), but as Don intimated, its more important for your work to look pro than your gear.
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Old January 5th, 2008, 12:13 AM   #8
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The two main reasons I want to buy another camera is to offer 3 cam weddings and my business is growing rapidly after just one season and I'm getting a lot of wedding dates that i already have booked and I have the personnel but not the gear so im forced to turn them down.
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Old January 5th, 2008, 12:36 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andre Tira View Post
The two main reasons I want to buy another camera is to offer 3 cam weddings and my business is growing rapidly after just one season and I'm getting a lot of wedding dates that i already have booked and I have the personnel but not the gear so im forced to turn them down.
My 0.02 would be to go for matching cameras. It would save you much time and pain in the post process by having your cams' matched. Having to correct footage from three different cameras with three different colour representations is a colourist's nightmare. It would indeed help your turnaround time to avoid that scenario.

I would even go so far as to say dump the oddball camera (eventually, when you can afford to replace it with another).
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