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Old June 5th, 2006, 11:01 PM   #31
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Correct, there is in theory less pixels in 4:3 mode than in the DVX 4:3 mode but the extra sharpness from the XL2 masks it to the point they are indecipherable...
That being said, if you are doing mainly 4:3 work and dont intend to use any additional lenses, I think the DVX might be the better choice.



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Old June 6th, 2006, 12:22 AM   #32
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It's not that, just that all the paid work I do'll probably be 4:3. The widescreen I reserve for personal narrative stuff. Unless someone requests it, of course.
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Old June 6th, 2006, 11:55 AM   #33
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Can this 2 cameras work side by side..or do they show significant differences with the picture?
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Old June 6th, 2006, 12:32 PM   #34
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I'm hopefully within a month or so of buying a new camera. I've been working on it off and on for a awhile now. Right now my two choices are like the guys from Iceland. DVX100b or the XL2. Having owned the XL1s before the big drawback for the XL2 is the size. But before I was trying to use the XL1 for a event/wedding camera.

Right now my only reason to own a camera is to make a movie and docs. So the size might not be as big a factor.

The big drawback on the DVX100b is lack of 16:9. But again I guess that can be done in post. But in the end which is better or can you even tell?

Some have posted about the cost differance. B&H has about a $600 differnce if you include the Panny rebate. So not that big of a deal.

HD? HDV? I guess I'll have to wait on those.

No matter how many times you read these post it doesn't get any easier, if you know what I mean.

Bottom line. Which one to get for a film and documentry?
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Old June 6th, 2006, 05:07 PM   #35
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If the form factor is not an issue the 16:9 is actually a pretty big deal... the DVX only has one third less resolution than the XL2 in 16:9 mode.



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Old June 12th, 2006, 06:03 PM   #36
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Should I forget about PD-170?

Like many here it seems, I'm stumped as to which camera to buy.

Though I know this thread is comparing the DVX100b to the Canon XL2, what about the Sony's PD170? It's about the same cost as the DVX100b.

Any thoughts? Some say that they are comparible, other's that the Pany is in a class by itself.

Just so you know, I'm a documentary filmmaker, but my bread and butter is shooting corporate and educational videos. As well, most of my productions (I have an XL1) get streamed on the internet.

Thanks in advance!
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Old June 12th, 2006, 06:40 PM   #37
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I'd say the DVX100 is better than the PD170 for everything except low light shooting. The DVX has a much more useful lens (wide angle) instead of the Sony which is not very wide and not very long. I also prefer the controls on the DVX and XL2 along with many other things compared to the Sony.
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Old June 12th, 2006, 07:36 PM   #38
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DVX better than PD-170

Thanks. That's very helpful

Here are four questions (and/or problems) that I haven't been able to answer. Perhaps you have some thoughts.

1. They talk about the DVX being noisy. Does this mean mechanical noice (ie. zoom), or picture noise? Obviously I don't want to hear grinding as I zoom during a quiet interview. I've been using a Canon Xl1 for 5 years now, so I'm assuming that the picture quality (in 60i) is infinitely better.

2. The 16x9 shooting is vague. I know it's 4x3 stretched, but what do you see in the viewfinder? Is it stretched? Black bars? I know they sell an anamorphic adaptor, what does this do? Basically I don't often shoot in 16x9, but when I do it would be nice to have a WYSIWYG in the viewfinder.

3. Headphone echo. I don't understand this. I don't use a soundman or external mixer, so I'd like to be able to properly monitor audio. Also, can you switch which channel you monitor (1 or 2 or mixed) in the headphones?

4. Perhaps I'm blind, but does the DVX100b have bars and tone? I know the XL2 does.

I think I've decided on the DVX, but these questions have been plaquing me for a while.

Thanks again.
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Old June 12th, 2006, 07:52 PM   #39
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1. People mean in terms of image noise, but it's still pretty clean compared to other cameras.

2. With the DVX-100B, you can choose to view the image with black bars (letterboxed) or stretched when shooting in 16:9. The anamorphic adapter allows you to shoot 16:9 without loosing resolution.

3. I believe the headphone echo issue has been fixed in the B version. I'm not sure about monitoring the 2 channels the way you want though, hopefully someone who does will chime in.

4. It does have bars and tone.
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Old June 12th, 2006, 08:45 PM   #40
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I'm glad I have time to hash this out. I just keep seeing great stuff done with the Sony Z1. It has so many shooting choices. It is almost to the top of the list. Z1 or XL2.

Spot made some good points about not worrying about 24p. Any of you like to let me know what you do if you have the hope of going to film using the Z1?

DVfilmaker says shoot in 1080/60fps.

But the XL2 does it all without the HDV.
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Old June 30th, 2006, 06:11 PM   #41
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Fwiw

I'm coming to this a little late, but WTF.

I have used both the DVX100/100A and the XL2. After using the DVX for about a year, or so, I was about to buy one. Then, the XL2 came out. I was in the market for a good MiniDV camera (if there is such a thing) and the release of the XL2 made me do a lot of research. I rented an XL2 from Du-All Camera, here in NYC and I compared it with a friend's DVX.

I bought the XL2 because: it is native 16x9; has better rez in 16x9; has interchangeable lenses, including a manual lens; the color palette is very pleasing; accurate focus with the B&W CRT viewfinder; focus and zoom rings built into lens; Distance and focal length readable while shooting and from the AC's position; XL2 is more of a rig for film making. The cons are: lower rez in 4:3; bigger and heavier, esp when fully tricked out; audio is kind of messed up, but workable; most of the TV documentary people bought DVX's. I often get people asking me to match footage shot on the DVX.

The DVX is small, has good audio and a wider focal length than the Canon. Cons: electro focus and zoom- infinitely spinning focus ring; zoom and focus #'s are meaningless, but can be adapted to; need to get geared rings for zoom and focus if using follow focus; accurate focus sometimes difficult w/LCD.

A lot of this is moot as HDV is moving in quickly, but I think there is still plenty of room for MiniDV. I don't see too much time left, so I plan to squeeze as much out of my XL2's as possible.

The XL2 and DVX100A are both excellent cameras, but they each have their strengths and weaknesses as I mentioned earlier. For doccos I'd go for the DVX because it's small and light. If you are making a film, or are going to be on sticks, dolly, etc, get the XL2. I shoot a lot of TV docco stuff on the XL2, handheld and the Anton Bauer battery on the back balances the camera nicely. I have limited experience with the 100B, but it takes longer for the tape to load and I'm not sold on the "Peaking" function on the LCD.

You can get a Titan Twin charger and two Hytron 50 Batteries for a little over a grand. One Hytron 50 on the XL2 and you are good to go all day. If I use my onboard light, I may loose some time, but I have a spare Hytron 50 ready to go. On interviews, the only interruptions are for water, or tape changes. I may get Dionic 90's for my second XL2 and have even longer run times.

I shot a short musical this past May. Our Editor works at a boutique post house in NYC and the other Editors, who have seen it all, were surprised that our ten minute short looked so beautiful and was shot on MiniDV. A vote of confidence for the XL2.

I don't really see the PD-170 as an option, except for documentaries.
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Old June 30th, 2006, 08:35 PM   #42
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Can you read focus distance on the XL2 with the manual lens, or stock lens only?
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Old June 30th, 2006, 08:43 PM   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Bass
Can you read focus distance on the XL2 with the manual lens, or stock lens only?
You don't get a vf readout if that's what you mean. Of course with the manual lens, you get a marked lens barrel. And, if you spring for the b/w vf you'll get a nice little light on bottom to light up the lens barrel markings in low light.

With the 20x auto, it's up to your eyes. Although you can use the focus position preset to do a return to from where you are type effect but as others have noted, it's too fast to be usable as a slow rack focus effect.

On the new XLH1, you do get a focus distance readout in the vf with the stock 20x HD lens.

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Old July 1st, 2006, 02:05 AM   #44
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I'm not sure I understand what you meant about distance/focal length being readable while shooting/from the AC's position.
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Old July 1st, 2006, 09:04 AM   #45
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From the side of the camera.

I can read the scales while my eye is at the finder and if I have an AC with me, they can see the scales as well. With the FU-1000, there is a little light that lights up the lens, which is handy.
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