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Sony HVR-HD1000
Sony's single-CMOS shoulder mount HDV camcorder.


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Old March 19th, 2008, 02:12 AM   #1
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Performance in Low Light

I record high school basketball games in the bay area, and just got a PD-170 for my shots off a tripod in the stands, and it works great in almost all the situations its been in, but I want a second angle from the the floor, and I spent most my money on the 170, so I thought the sony HD-1000U would be a good for those floor shots. I understand it wont be as good in low light or in general compared to the 170, since its a single chip, but im wondering if it would be good enough to edit in with the 170 and look good, or sort of close to each other. The other problem i have is my friend who would shoot on the floor, only has his right arm because of cancer, but is actually good with the 170 hand held, so i was wondering if the 1000U would be easier, or more challenging to shoot with for him? If anyone has one and could give me some advice about if it would be good for my situation, I would really appreciate it. Thank You
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Old March 19th, 2008, 03:06 AM   #2
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If you shop around, you can get a used PD170 for around what you would pay for a new HD1000, or get a VX2100 for even less. For your friend, he might try a Tiffen Steady Stick.
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Old March 19th, 2008, 12:25 PM   #3
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A new HD1000U is about $1600 at B&H. A refurbed VX2100 is about $1750 at the Sony Online Outlet, so it's a pretty close decision. If you shoot 4:3 DV with the HD1000, it should match pretty closely. Don't even think about trying to shoot widescreen with the PD170 or VX2100.

Note that the HD1000 struggles mightily in low light, as you've surmised; it always want to add 18dB of gain, which looks pretty bad. There's no way to limit the gain unless you're willing to ride the exposure dial the whole time.

I find the shoulder mount form of the HD1000 is much easier to hold and balance than the smaller form, and is much more stable, but you do need the other hand to work the ring on the lens and help point.
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Old March 19th, 2008, 01:13 PM   #4
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I recently saw a good used pd170 sell here in the classifieds for $1250.
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Old March 19th, 2008, 02:32 PM   #5
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Is there anywhere you can find used 1000U's? I know its new, but if I could get a used one I think that might be best. I think it would be easier than a steady cam stick or other steady cam for my friend if I just let it go on full auto since it isnt too good for manual anyway, and he wouldnt need to use the ring. We messed around with an old shoulder mount VCR and he could operate it smoother than any of the steady cams we tried, because over time the steady cam was tiring.
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Old March 19th, 2008, 03:00 PM   #6
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The HD1000 is too new to save much on a used one (if you could even find one). The real deals nowadays on used cameras are the SD cameras. A lot of people are selling them to go to HD. Arguably, the best deals in used SD cameras are JVC GY-DV300Us. It's a little know camera, but is a real good performing 3-1/3" camera with all the pro features. They are selling for well under $1000 and would match up very nicely with your PD170 in any decent lighting situation (like those basketball games). Of course, the PD170 is the king of 3-1/3" chippers in really dim lighting.
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Old March 19th, 2008, 03:29 PM   #7
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I just found a JVC GY-DV5000U for 2500 on craigslist. I saw that it was 3 1/2 chips so would this be my best option since I want to stay in SD for now?
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Old March 19th, 2008, 03:48 PM   #8
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Those DV500U and DV5000U cameras are a step up in camera class. You can get some gorgeous images with them. It might be overkill for shooting high school basketball though. Those are two hand cameras also. No auto focus (no OIS either). Very manual cameras.
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Old March 19th, 2008, 08:04 PM   #9
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what does OIS mean?
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Old March 19th, 2008, 08:24 PM   #10
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Optical Image Stabilization.
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Old March 19th, 2008, 08:40 PM   #11
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Ok, so it would be hard for me on the floor to be smooth, and probably impossible for my friend to operate at all. So im almost leaning towards the 1000U again. Do you know how much it weighs, it doesn't say on B&H? And how does the HD to SD down converter work on it? Would i just use regular miniDV tapes and it would record really good SD on them?
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Old March 19th, 2008, 09:32 PM   #12
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Shoulder mount helps, but you do need to be steady, shooting handheld with a DV500U or DV5000U. A monopod might work well if you were the one shooting from the floor. It would probably be almost impossible to shoot well with one of those cameras using only one hand.

I don't have an HD1000. I seriously doubt I will ever get one. I would assume it can downconvert HDV to SD out the firewire, but you will wind up with 16:9 SD (I assume). Cropping that for 4:3 will yield a a 540x480 image to cut in with the footage from your PD170. You would get a better 4:3 image by cropping the HDV, then downsampling, in post, or you could just shoot 4:3 DV with the HD1000 in the first place.

HDV cameras use MiniDV tapes. The specs are the same, even if the tape is branded as an "HDV" tape. So long as there are no dropouts, the images are absolutely identical on any MiniDV tape. It's digital, not analog.

Personally, I wouldn't think an HD1000 is a very good choice, for your purposes. I think you would get much better results from another PD170, a VX2100 or a DV300U (the DV300U being the most cost effective, by far).
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Old March 19th, 2008, 10:42 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joshua Alden-Hugli View Post
Ok, so it would be hard for me on the floor to be smooth, and probably impossible for my friend to operate at all. So im almost leaning towards the 1000U again. Do you know how much it weighs, it doesn't say on B&H? And how does the HD to SD down converter work on it? Would i just use regular miniDV tapes and it would record really good SD on them?
It weighs about 6 to 7 lbs, depending on the battery.

You can shoot in DV, either 4:3 or 16:9, or you can downconvert on capture in any of three formats: squeeze, letterbox, or edge crop.

As Robert said, regular MiniDV tapes are fine.

As much as I like mine -- and I like it a lot, for the right uses -- I'd agree with Robert and say pick up another 170 or 2100 to get a better match.
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Old March 19th, 2008, 10:43 PM   #14
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thanks, ill keep checking craigslist and see if one of those comes up for a good deal.
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Old March 19th, 2008, 10:46 PM   #15
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To Adam, since you have a HD1000u, do you think it can be operated smoothly with only your right arm?
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