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AVCHD for pro applications: AG-AC160, AC130 and other AVCCAM gear.


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Old November 14th, 2011, 12:32 PM   #1
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HMC40 vs. HMC150

I'm on a tight budget and need to finally upgrade to an HD camera. I currently have a Panasonic DVC80 and will be retiring it to only shoot legal depositions now.

I'm constantly going round and round and back and forth trying to decide which model to purchase!

I'll be editing the footage on my MacBook Pro using Final Cut Studio.

I know if i purchase the HMC40, that I'll need to buy an XRL adapter and camera mic.

Please let me know what your experiences are and what you would recommend.
Thanks!
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Old November 14th, 2011, 02:16 PM   #2
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Re: HMC40 vs. HMC150

I've owned all the models you mention - including the DVC80 (which I still miss from time to time).

The HMC40 is a great value for the money. It can produce a beautiful image when used under the right conditions. It's light, easily configurable to the shooting situation, and fits easily in a medium shoulder bag when packing light is key. That said, the sensor does need a fair amount of light - especially if you're coming from the DVC80, which is a decent low light performer.

For depos I found the HMC40 often needed too much gain for proper exposure, where the HMC150 can pull a decent image with less. The CMOS of the 40 also has skew and flash banding issues under certain conditions (which can often be a pain if you're documenting expert inspections or testing); the CCD of the HMC150 doesn't exhibit these characteristics.

As for sound, the optional XLR adapter easily allows the HMC40 to connect to outboard mixers, but I found more hiss with my camera than with the HMC150. Because of all the above, you may want to look for a good used HMC150. Just my .02.
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Old November 14th, 2011, 11:07 PM   #3
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Re: HMC40 vs. HMC150

Thanks for information. I still love my DVC 80 too:) HD is such a pain.

You're right, I should pony up the extra cash and get the HMC 150. By the time I'm done buying all the accessories, it will only be a little cheaper. Bigger is better when it comes to chips. Plus I shoot all sorts of content. I would hate to get any artifacts or hiss in the audio.

My wife will not like the decision though:)

Thanks again.
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Old November 15th, 2011, 05:15 AM   #4
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Re: HMC40 vs. HMC150

Hi Mike

You might as well go for the AC130 instead of the HMC150 ...the new CMOS chips will give a sharper image than the 150 and they are still 1/3" ...also comforting is the fact you have two card slots so on really critcal stuff you can record to two cards or with really long shoots you have the option of seamlessly switching to a second card when the first is full much like the Sony EX series!!

For budget reasons you could, of course, settle for a used 150!! I have HMC 80's which have the same chip as the 40 but with XLR channels for audio and great external controls ..I do suffer in very low light with the 1/4" chips though!!

BTW : the AC130 also shoots SD as well (the same as the HMC80) so you CAN still stay in Standard Def if you want to!!!

Chris
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Old December 7th, 2011, 03:59 PM   #5
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Re: HMC40 vs. HMC150

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Cornett View Post
I'm on a tight budget and need to finally upgrade to an HD camera. I currently have a Panasonic DVC80 and will be retiring it to only shoot legal depositions now.

I'm constantly going round and round and back and forth trying to decide which model to purchase!

I'll be editing the footage on my MacBook Pro using Final Cut Studio.

I know if i purchase the HMC40, that I'll need to buy an XRL adapter and camera mic.

Please let me know what your experiences are and what you would recommend.
Thanks!
I shoot primarily with an HMC40. I don't have the XLR adapter, never found a reason for it yet. For sound I use a Rode SVM, and a Rode Video Mic. For interviews etc, I have a Zoom H1 that I use with a wired lapel mic.
The HMC shoots great stuff outdoors, and with my studio lighting on.
Now, if I don't feel like setting up the lights and I have time to stage the shots a bit more, my 550d is my choice, for the artistic angle.
most of that video was shot was the HMC40, minus the graveyard scene, that was the Canon.

*Possibly NSFW* It's a modeling/acting reel. There is some skin. No nudity, but skin.
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Old December 21st, 2011, 03:54 PM   #6
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Re: HMC40 vs. HMC150

I like my HMC40 but since we shoot mostly weddings I'm starting to really see the short comings of this camera. It does have great manual features and with the XLR adapter audio is great too.

If you want to work out a trade for your 80 let me know :)
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Old January 14th, 2012, 11:47 PM   #7
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Re: HMC40 vs. HMC150

Thanks for the additional input. For some reason, I wasn't getting updated when a new post was added?

The footage looks great! I'm still undecided...I'm even considering the Panasonic AG-AC7 now. I guess my budget will have the final say.

Thanks again for the help.

P.S. I'm going to hold on to my DVC 80, but if I do I'll let you know.
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