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Old February 7th, 2008, 12:18 PM   #1
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New Cam - What to get~HELP

I'm about to pull my hair out trying to figure out which camera to get next. I've narrowed it down to 3 cameras but after reading posts on each one, I get scared off. Here's what I need it for and what I have possibly narrowed it down to.


1. Needs to be HD
2. Using it for action sports primarily, then commercials, docs, and interviews
3. Low light is not a huge issue.
4. 24p not an issue
5. Tape or tapeless or both
6. I'd like a decent size, not tiny like HVR-A1U
7. Need XLR
8. Prefer 1/3" but will consider 1/4"

I'm thinking:

1. Sony Z1U
2. Panny AG-HVX200
3. Sony V1U

Budget = $5200 give er take a lil

now GO!!!!
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Old February 7th, 2008, 02:41 PM   #2
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camera choices

I shoot freestyle rollerblading on my v1u, and I love it. But if i had the budget, i pick up a HVX and a century .3x. The HVX's variable frame rates are awesome for capturing slow-motion footage, and the picture quality is incredible. Also the P2 cards are really nice for being able to importing footage when moving from spot to spot.

(Check out Ty Evans recent skateboard stuff. He shoots on a HVX.

http://skatefairy.com/archive%20march%2007.htm
This section of daryl angel shows the potential. Best viewed in HD
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Last edited by Jeff Kolada; February 7th, 2008 at 02:45 PM. Reason: adding a link
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Old February 7th, 2008, 02:43 PM   #3
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Thank you, very nice! So on the P2 cards are you able to just drag and drop footage files as opposed to capturing (sitting through the footage in real time)?
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Old February 7th, 2008, 02:44 PM   #4
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The shoulder-mounted Sony HDR-HV1000U ?
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Old February 7th, 2008, 02:47 PM   #5
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P2

Yes. It's records them into files on a memory card, which is just like you would do with pictures. Very simple and easy workflow. Check out the link I added to my earlier post as well.
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Old February 7th, 2008, 02:49 PM   #6
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Thanks

John,

I looked at that one, seems pretty limited for my needs.
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Old February 7th, 2008, 03:15 PM   #7
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While the HVX200 seems like a nice camera, a $5000 budget will be stretched pretty thin when P2 cards are factored. There is always a bunch of little things to also consider like batteries that add a few hundred to the mix and that alone gets you to your budget. I would guess that you would need two more 16Gig P2 cards for sports shooting unless you can not roll footage the entire event and shoot just what you anticipate to be the best stuff. Besides, for that kind of money I would get a Sony Z7 which can also work with flash memory and has larger CMOS chips than the V1.

The Sony Z1 and V1 are both nice cameras but you should also consider the Canon XH-A1. I own the V1 and I think it's color reproduction is the best of any camera up to the 3/4" HDCAM models. The Z1 has the benefit of shooting both PAL or NTSC but it is about $700 more than the Sony V1 or Canon. The Canon XH-A1 is about the same price as the V1 if you factor in rebates and it is getting favorable reviews and seems very popular. Between those, the individual strengths seem to be a better LCD for the V1 and more image customization for the Canon.
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Old February 7th, 2008, 03:26 PM   #8
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Thanks Marcus,


The Z7 is def. out of the price range. The $5k is for cam only, so I can stretch a lil more on the batteries and cards or other add ons.

Right now my choice order is

Z1U
V1U
XH-A1 (possibly)
Hvx200
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Old February 7th, 2008, 05:47 PM   #9
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Ugh

Ok, after pricing out P2 cards, omg, the panny is out.


So - Right now my choice order is

Z1U
XH-A1
V1U
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Old February 7th, 2008, 06:55 PM   #10
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16GB card free

Panny was, and still may be including a free 16GB P2 card with the price of the camera. not bad considering at 720pn24 you'll get about 40 min on that one card.

not trying to sway you one way or another, but if the price of p2 is the only thing keeping you away, it may be worth another look.
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Old February 7th, 2008, 07:29 PM   #11
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Thanks Phillip

I just noticed that. Still at several hundred for another card, hmmm, decisions decisions...just saw that it supports tape in addition, hmmmmmm
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Old February 8th, 2008, 01:38 AM   #12
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I own two XH-A1s. But I also think the V1U handles color beautifully compared to anything in it's price range. Plus, I really like the ergonomics and balance of the V1U, it's a camera that I like to pickup and use.

Went with the XH-A1s mainly for event work, with slightly better low light performance and I think the XH-A1 holds detail in it's image better, especially on shots with deep focus. Very happy with the image quality and all the options to tweak the image.

But, personally, I think the XH-A1 has the most awful balance. I won't hand hold it with out a DV MultiRigPro or something similar. Just something to check when you get some hands on with the cameras. YMMV.
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Old February 8th, 2008, 03:31 PM   #13
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Check my facts, but I believe the HVX only does SD to tape. That makes P2 essential for HD production. Also, would you feel comfortable with only one P2 card? You have a big important event and only one card? The HVX200 seems like a very nice camera but it is not the same price as the others. Think of it as a more affordable EX1 without the 1/2" chips.

BTW, I get decent low-light performance out of the V1. I shoot progressive and go with 1/30 shutter and 9db of gain (12 if it's critical). All of these HDV cameras are just tolerable in low light so I made an LED light and got a mini softbox to soften the light so it is easier on the eyes. I think the best in low light of the bunch is supposed be the Z1 but it can't do 1/30 shutter and it also needs a light. Don't let fractionally better low light performance be your judge. Look at a few clips from these cams and, more importantly, decide if you like the ergonomics. Personally, I would narrow it down to the V1 or XHA1 as the other cams are several hundred dollars more expensive.

I'll tell you why I chose the V1. I already had a positive experience with the VX2000. I also found out that the V1 is the same size and weight as the VX2000. The smaller form factor isn't critical but I felt the V1 would be easier to live with than the other cameras. Someone around here also said that the V1 has a better LCD than the Canon. I think the Z1 has the best but they all are a bit lacking in resolution.

The most important factor of all was the appearance of the CMOS video. The lack of smear and the rich accurate color is something that will make video of any resolution more beautiful. Considering that probably less than one tenth of one percent of U.S. households own anything greater than a 720p television, I figure that good color and no smear will have more visual impact than any other feature of the camera.
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