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Sony 4K Ultra HD Handhelds
Pro and consumer versions including PXW-Z150, PXW-Z100, PXW-X70 / FDR-AX100

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Old June 6th, 2016, 07:35 AM   #1
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Location: Whidbey Island
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Z150 Purchase - What accessories are vital?

Hello. I am preparing to purchase the Sony Z150 and seek your guidance in choosing what accesories will best serve my needs. You may assume I am somewhat clueless in this game. In advance I express my appreciation for your generosity in sharing your experience and expertise in this domain. Thank you.


I live and work at a fabulous non-profit retreat center nestled in a hundred acres of forest on Whidbey Island, 30 miles and a short ferry ride north of Seattle. I will use the Z150 to create short videos for Outreach purposes and Event documentation. This will include interviews, scenes of participants engaging in their programs (Leadership Development and Ecosystem Sustainability), documenting Keynote speakers, and capturing flavors of the beauty of the land and facilities on site and around the Island. My goal is to share compelling stories of this Place and the people who come here from around the world.


In all things I am looking for ease of use and decent quality at an affordable price point.

- What microphone would you suggest for intimate interviews and Keynote speakers? Is there a single mic that would adequately meet those different needs? Our presenters speak in a fairly lively space with a decent sound system to an audience of up to 120. I can imagine needing a camera-mountable lavalier wireless set-up for them, but am not sure on that. In terms of interviews, some will be set up in a quiet space, but others will be spontaneous captures on the fly.

- Memory cards... What would be a good choice?

- I imagine using available light for the interviews, but perhaps would benefit from some fill light? I'm without experience here so any input is much appreciated.

- I have a Manfrotto 055CXPRO4 tripod so should be fine in that realm.

- What am I missing? Any other accessories I need to grab at this starting point?

Thank you for reading. I very much appreciate this community of support.

In gratitude,
Thomas Arthur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 7th, 2016, 06:46 AM   #2
Join Date: Jan 2013
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Re: Z150 Purchase - What accessories are vital?

B+W MRC 007 nano coated XS Pro 62mm clear filter.......optically transparent, doesn't have ghosting and crap, and quite cheap protection for under $100. Put it on when you take the camera out of the box for the first time, to keep the factory glass perfect forever. :-)

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Old June 7th, 2016, 03:07 PM   #3
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Re: Z150 Purchase - What accessories are vital?

How about a short shotgun mic like the AT897r? It works well on my X70 for run and gun man-on-the-street type interviews when I can get close to the subject.

Then, there's a Sennheiser or equivalent wireless lav kit. But a good option to have on such a kit is an XLR transmitter, or "butt plug," as its sometimes called. Rather than just using it on a handheld mic, you can plug that into an XLR line level or mic level output of your sound system directly or via a short cable (adjust its input sensitivity accordingly!!). Thus, you'd be harnessing the power of your already good sound system to mitigate the need to double mic your speakers.
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Old June 8th, 2016, 09:21 PM   #4
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Re: Z150 Purchase - What accessories are vital?

Vital is a tough thing to recommend...but I have found that the Sony accessories such as the UWP-D11 wireless mic system with the integrated MI shoe is a nice addition. The MI connection eliminates the need to plug/unplug your existing wiring into the XLR ports since one simply plugs the entire unit onto the MI port atop the camera and then further configures that selection with the slide switches on the left side of the camera under the plastic housing. It clearly measures up to anything that Sennheiser has in this kind of implementation, but with the added advantage of using the Sony proprietary MI port to avoid most manual wiring schemas.

Also, if your needs include run and gun or event type stuff, which is probably why you would purchase an X-70 or Z-150 anyway, the Sony LED Battery Video light (HVL-LBPC) might be on your short list. Again, the MI connectivity avoids the need for most external cabling, and the power is provided by the same kind of battery which powers the Z-150 itself (but NOT the X-70), thereby avoiding the dreaded battery diversity issue. The LED light has plenty of power (within reason, of course) and rides nicely atop the Z-150 when you need it. The MI connectivity of this light gives you several useful and unique start-stop sync options with the camera. Obviously, though, one can have only one MI device connected at one time--either the wireless mic or the LED light. So, you must plan ahead and you can still use both, but only one of them can take special advantage of the MI options.

Lastly, the Sony Wireless Mic, Shotgun Mic ECM-MS2 offers a good short shotgun solution and takes full advantage of one or both XLR ports since it is stereo---it works fine in Mono because you heretofore had to physically disconnect one xlr connection, such as if you preferred to use only one channel as the shotgun and use the MI port for wireless video on the other channel--in either case specific mic source selection is easily slide-switch changeable.

It is a shame not to avail oneself of these MI compatible accessories with either the X-70 or the Z-150. In my case I have found them all to be wonderful with the added advantage of working perfectly with both. They are not cheap, for sure, but integrating the in-house apparatus like the stereo mic and wireless LED light definitely has its advantages.

But, you can always avoid the MI stuff entirely and use any of the legacy XLR apparatus (in one or two channels) as well.

All this Sony MI compatible stuff is not cheap, but it is high quality and does connect nicely if you have bought into either the X-70 line, the Z-150 , or both like I have.

Lastly, my old eyes have appreciated the addition of a Hoodman HD350 LED hood for outside use. THAT seems to me to be an absolute required accessory.
Bob Searl is offline   Reply

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