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Old November 9th, 2008, 01:30 PM   #1
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How Many Hours are Too Many Hours??

I'm looking to buy a Used Panasonic AG-DVX100B, As we all know... Beautiful SD Camera. As I'm looking.. I've been taking a couple things into consideration - Price (Of Course) and Hours on the Camera

I've seen some people say "Low Hours!!! Only 112 Hours!!" - I'm thinking to myself "Dude.. Thats like recording non-stop for almost 5 Days straight! Thats not low!"

But maybe I'm being too... Something.

How many hours are too many hours for you?

G. Hayes

BTW... My XL1 is for sale.. Check out the classifieds...
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Old November 9th, 2008, 01:48 PM   #2
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You're going from an XL1 to a DVX? Sideways move - time you went 16:9, lad.

Anyway, hours run is no indication of life remaining. A few hours run on a wind-swept beach with sand and salt in the air is worth 100s of hours run in the pure air of a Swiss mountain. Hours run by a fastidious amateur is worth a tiny amount if it's a pro hire camera.

Ignore the hours. Camcorders are like candles - they burn just as bright all their (long) lives then poop - they're gone. Take a good look at the camera you plan to buy. Take your time, take a powerful torch, ask a lot of questions and look the feller in the eye.

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Old November 9th, 2008, 01:54 PM   #3
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You're going from an XL1 to a DVX? Sideways move - time you went 16:9, lad.

Anyway, hours run is no indication of life remaining. A few hours run on a wind-swept beach with sand and salt in the air is worth 100s of hours run in the pure air of a Swiss mountain. Hours run by a fastidious amateur is worth a tiny amount if it's a pro hire camera.

Ignore the hours. Camcorders are like candles - they burn just as bright all their (long) lives then poop - they're gone. Take a good look at the camera you plan to buy. Take your time, take a powerful torch, ask a lot of questions and look the feller in the eye.

tom.
Sideways, eh? What would suggest my good sir?
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Old November 9th, 2008, 02:09 PM   #4
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Where to start? You want HDV I'd say - as you're looking second hand. I'd point fairly and squarly at a Z1 or an XH-A1, maybe a V1, but only a maybe with those tiny chips. You'd get XLRs, 16:9 in SD or HD, more zoom than the DVX and most importantly you'll be able to sell it in a couple of years. Try selling a DVX in 2011.
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Old November 9th, 2008, 02:16 PM   #5
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I have read in several manuals that the life expectancy of record heads is over 2,000 hours. With that in mind, a well cared for camera with 100 hour would have only reached 5% of its life expectancy.
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Old November 9th, 2008, 05:07 PM   #6
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The head life for prosumer and pro cameras runs in the 1000-2000hr. range. This depends upon the quality of tape used and how clean the owner kept the tape path. Also, there are head hrs. (most important), running hours (total time unit has been on) and threading hours (self explanatory). Head hours are the thing to look for. A camera with 100 head hrs. has only used up 5-10% of it's useful life.
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Old November 9th, 2008, 08:19 PM   #7
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I don't completely see how an XL1 to a DVX100 is just a 'sideways' move. :) You're getting 24p which for a lot of folks is the holy grail, way above and beyond the main feature of the XL1 which is the ability to change lenses. It's a good move. Not to say they're also aren't tons of other options all the way up to full HD these days but the DVX100 is a solid camera. Anyways 112 hours is reasonably low for a used one.

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Old November 10th, 2008, 03:53 AM   #8
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It's a sideways move in that it's still SD, still 4:3. He loses some zoom but gains XLRs. Gains 24p and a sidescreen, but loses lens interchangeability. All swings and roundabouts in my view when the big swing, here and now, is 16:9.
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Old November 10th, 2008, 02:50 PM   #9
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I look at it more of a forward Diagonal move... I'm gaining, in that i can and will use the XLRs and 24p.
In a way, i suppose i lose with losing my Interchangeable Lens system, but in reality, I don't use that option anyway, so it doesn't affect me.

16:9 and HD is great, but when you're trying to buy 2 cameras on a penny-loafer (not even shoe-string...) budget, things get sticky..

Thanks for your help folks!
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Old November 10th, 2008, 10:27 PM   #10
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The DVX100b has squeeze mode 16:9 which is not native 16:9 but most folks in 480p wouldn't note the difference. Go for it- diagonal or what have you, it's a solid move on a shoestring.

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Old November 12th, 2008, 09:36 AM   #11
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Aren't number of hours deceptive?

More often than not, I record to an nNovia external hard drive, often without concurrently recording to tape, and I thought the hours number includes the time spent recording, even when the tape drive is not being used.
If that's so, then the number of hours on my HVX certainly does not reflect the number of hours the heads were in use, though the number does reflect the hours that the chips were in use.
Based on the previous posts, the hours seems to reflect how much the chips were used, not the heads.

Does anyone know for certain which it is?
Is this a question for Barry?
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Old November 25th, 2008, 08:02 PM   #12
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Well I always really liked the DVX100's, never owned one, but wish I had gotten one instead of my Sony DVCams years ago, no question. That being said, I wouldn't mind picking up one today second hand, problem is, they are still widely known to be good, so the used price isn't that cheap.

You can pick up a used JVC HD100 for around $3,000 or so, and then you have 16:9 native chips that are true 1280x720 and can shoot 4:3, 16:9 SD 24p, 24pA and 60p/60i as well as 720p 30/24p. If you can get a DVX for $1,500 or below jump on it. $2,000 and up, think about spending $3,000 for a used HD100 or HD110.

Just checked ebay, a few nearly expired DVX100's for 1,300 or so. and Since this is a Panasonic string, the HVX200's were around $3,200 or so. If you have the cash I would say get the HVX200 or JVC HD100/110 over a DVX100. Though honestly, $1,300 for a DVX100, you can NOT go wrong either.

Last edited by Alex Humphrey; November 25th, 2008 at 09:24 PM.
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Old January 4th, 2009, 12:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Hardwick View Post
Where to start? You want HDV I'd say - as you're looking second hand. I'd point fairly and squarly at a Z1 or an XH-A1, maybe a V1, but only a maybe with those tiny chips. You'd get XLRs, 16:9 in SD or HD, more zoom than the DVX and most importantly you'll be able to sell it in a couple of years. Try selling a DVX in 2011.

What does your market demand? I know several folks in other parts of the country who have the latest in high def but always deliver in standard.
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