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Sony HVR-A1 and HDR-HC Series
Sony's latest single-CMOS additions to their HDV camcorder line.


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Old January 18th, 2009, 03:20 PM   #1
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New A1 owner, couple of Q's!

Recently purchased an A1, primarily for it's potability and the option of low profile when the XLR module is removed.

The manual is far from the easiest to read, is there an option for a one-push focus at all? Also, is the on-board mic enabled or can it be enabled as a CH2 source when the XLR module is affixed?

I got the kit from B+H which came with A1, Camera bag, 10 tapes and a HG0737C WA lens which appears quite capable in my early tests.

Typical that JVC announce the GY-HM100 only a few days after I took delivery! As a Mac/FCE user that may have been an even better option but it's a lot more moolah so the A1 will have to earn its keep for a while before I can consider upgrading to one!
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Old January 18th, 2009, 07:02 PM   #2
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Darren, there is no "one-push" button as such, but momentarily sliding the focus/zoom slider switch (front left of lens barrel) from manual to auto, then back to manual, achieves essentially the same result. Just a bit clunky.

I have the HC1 so can't answer your internal mic question (but my guess is ..."no it can't").
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Old January 18th, 2009, 11:11 PM   #3
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Darren,

The "slide to focus, slide back to manual" will work but I have found - with my HC1 - that the onboard microphone will pick up the click sound of that movement. The only way to get "push auto focus" is with a LANC controller. I use the zoe dvxl shown at:
Bebob Engineering | Bebob Zoe-dvxl Universal Zoom | ZOEDVXL and mount it on a simple pistol grip I made out of a wooden dowel.
The description is incomplete, it only mentions working with Panasonic but it also woks with Sony and Canon. There is a switch to change it. Manfrotto also makes the 521Pro, but it is more expensive. Manfrotto by Bogen*Imaging | Bogen/Manfrotto 521PRO | 521PRO

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Old January 27th, 2009, 02:52 PM   #4
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A1U Mic Question

I have the HVR-A1U and to my knowledge once you plug in the XLR adapter you disable the on-board microphones so you can't use them if the XLR adapter is attached.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 02:57 PM   #5
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Thanks guys, I've finally got my head around the various options related to the XLR adapter. I was initially confused as to how to get the shotgun mic to record to both channels, the CH1 CH2 button seemed counter intuitive but Now I understand it it's all pretty obvious!

Just invested in a 2nd user Sony wireless lav kit so I'm good to go, all I need now is an on cam fill in light but I can manage without for now.
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Old January 29th, 2009, 12:53 PM   #6
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Hi Darren
Funnily enough you get the option of push autofocus if you use a lanc controller.
Generally you would use this with a tripod but it works very well with a Fig Rig too.

I like the Bebob Zoe controller. Not everyone does though, so it seems. This gives you very precise control over the zoom too. Much better than the on-camera control.
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Old January 29th, 2009, 01:25 PM   #7
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Ah that's good to know. I have a Libec LANC remote but that only offers Zoom and Rec. I hadn't realised until recently that focus was also possible with some LANC remotes.

For handheld I'll have to live with the slide to Auto then back to Man solution, when on a tripod it's not so much of an issue for me.
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