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Sony ENG / EFP Shoulder Mounts
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Old October 11th, 2006, 09:59 AM   #1
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330 Viewfinder

Can anyone comment on focusing with the 330 viewfinder?
I don't need SDI output or over/under cranking so I'm going with 330 instead of 350. I would like to order the larger 350 viewfinder, but its almost $2400 and I think I might be better off sinking that $$ into a hi res LCD for montioring focus.
I found the Boland 17" W HD Analog Only Video and VGA Input with 1280 x 768 rez for about $1500. I'd be on my own for hand held
but more of our stuff is tripod and jib so this may be a good choice.
And suggustions would be great.
Thanks
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Old October 11th, 2006, 10:16 AM   #2
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Honestly, I'd get the 2" finder, and a real cheap 17" HD set from Best Buy.

The bigger finder is that much of a jump, and once you have it, you'll be glad.
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Old October 11th, 2006, 12:13 PM   #3
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I concur. I had a long struggle with Sony just to get them to send me the 330 with the 350 viewfinder. But they finally caved. I told them it was the dealbreaker. They've gotten some other big orders demanding the same.
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Old October 11th, 2006, 12:37 PM   #4
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The viewfinder is critical. Would you be sure of what was happening in the highlights and blacks with an LCD out in the sunshine? The F330 VF is no good for HD, it's barely good enough for 16:9 SD. Get the 2" VF, you can always get a decent LCD at a later date.
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Old October 11th, 2006, 10:19 PM   #5
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thanks for comments guys! I just did a side by side with both VF's.
Granted... the 350 VF is bigger but its not any sharper IMO.
I did some focus tests using both cameras and I think I can do just as well
with the 330 VF. It is the same VF as used on the sony DSR 500 which I've been using for years so I'm quite used to it and think I can get by for now.
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Old October 12th, 2006, 04:09 PM   #6
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Brian, as an F350 owner who has had to use an F330 I think you are making a big mistake, there is absolutly no way you can see that last critical bit of focus that will ruin an HD shot when seen on a half decent display with the F330 VF. To be honest the F350 VF isn't up to it either but you need all the help you can get with HD.
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Old October 12th, 2006, 09:49 PM   #7
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I second Alister's opinion.

Brian, if you've shot HDCAM before and you've still made this decision, then ignore the rest of what I say and you can dismiss me with a big "eff you, buddy"

But if you haven't shot HDCAM or much HD before, then you should know how necessary a good finder is. I have 3 hours of footage from a camera operator I hired who was using the 330, half of which is horribly OOF because he couldn't see what he was doing (but didn't know it).

The other operators I had (most of which who didn't have any/much HD experience either), had no trouble nailing critical focus all night.

Again, I apologize if you know all this and still have made this decision...I'm sure you know what you're doing in that case. But if you haven't shot much HD...then be warned.
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Old October 12th, 2006, 11:07 PM   #8
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no.... I really wanted your input, and thank you for it. I did shoot with both and IMO the 350 was bigger... but not sharper. I shot with both and did pretty well. I guess I'm just used to the 330 VF because its the same one as my DSR 500. I DID feel that I had to use my instinct and "feel" the focus in some shots with both VF's.... which is why I wanted feedback from other users.
I just don't see the HUGE difference in the 2.... which is why I'm looking for a good LCD monitor to back me up. I guess there is no other VF option than these?
Thanks again guys for your input!

Edited..... guys, I just reread this thread and maybe I need to step take a second look at the 350VF under critical terms.
hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhmmmmm. to be continued!
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Old October 13th, 2006, 05:41 AM   #9
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There isn't a huge difference in sharpness between the two, but there is more resolution displayed on the 350 viewfinder, and importantly, because it is larger, and displaying a full 16:9 image, it is much more useful than the 330 when using peaking.
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Old October 13th, 2006, 03:40 PM   #10
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I second what Simon says. I tend to use my F350 with the peaking turned way up, far higher than I would ever use on a SD cam. With the peaking cranked right up you see the image snap into and out of focus. The peaking on the F330 just dosn't do this. The only problem is that with the peaking up so high it becomes difficult to judge exposure so I find myself turning the peaking up and down depending on whether I need to judge focus or exposure.
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