Will the FX7 do the job for me? at DVinfo.net

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Sony HVR-V1 / HDR-FX7
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CMOS HDV camcorder.


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Old February 25th, 2007, 10:35 AM   #1
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Will the FX7 do the job for me?

Hello.

I am a budding videographer whose subject is trains. I currently have an old Sony DV camcorder that does OK, but with the advent of large flat panel HD televisions, this camcorder just doesn't get the job done up to what I want to produce that represents me. Getting into HD seems to be the answer for me. I want to start accumulating footage in HD for eventual editing and production into a product.

I have looked into the specs of the FX7, and those of other "prosumer" camcorders. I already know that the FX7 does not offer some features that the others do, but my budget is limited, so many of those other cams are beyond consideration. $2000.00 is pretty much my limit, with $2500.00 really stretching things, but possible.

Most all of my shooting takes place outside, from snowstorms, to rain, to hot sunny days, to cool evenings just at sunset. The locations will be in hot dusty deserts, high altitude mountain passes, sweltering city industrial sites, and cold, windy fields. Only a small part of my time will I need to shoot inside of a building. I need a camera that shoots good accurate colors, produces decent sound (eventual stereo?), that is sturdy, easy to use and portable. I use a good tripod 85% of the time, the rest being hand held. Currently, I have Studio v.10, and a good computer for editing.

I am only moderately technical (or whatever). I was a junior high teacher for thirty years, so my brain may be slightly fried, but I think I can still learn a few things and handle a somewhat more sophisticated camera than I currently have. I think I know what manuel functions I want, but additional advice would be appreciated.

So, will the FX7 do the job? Will I be able to find one within my budget? And finally, where can I find one from a reputable dealor? Or is there another camcorder out there that would do a better job for the money I have?

Thanks.
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Old February 25th, 2007, 10:56 AM   #2
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Yes the fx7 will do the job for outside lighting , you will be happy
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Old February 25th, 2007, 03:17 PM   #3
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If you want to stay under $2000 you may have to give up some manual control. The Sony HC7 and the Canon HV20 (not out yet) are both supposed to be very good point and shoot cams with limited manual control, each for well under $1500.

The FX7 would be a great choice but a little pricey for your budget, and as they're pretty new I wouldn't think there are used ones available yet. And I wouldn't trust anyone who offers a new one for under $2700. You might be able to pick up a used FX1 for somewhere in your price range, though. Both would give you a stunning picture and many manual controls.

If you have a Sony Outlet in your area (check their website) then you could pick up a refurbished FX1 for $2500. My local outlet had two last week.

Edit: Apperently there are three outlets within a day's drive, but none closer than about 5 1/2 hours away (Aurora, IL). I suppose you could give them a call to see if they have one.

Any of the sponsors of this site would be good buying choices, and I've also had very good luck at B&H.
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Old February 25th, 2007, 03:55 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Mike Burgess
I think I know what manuel functions I want, but additional advice would be appreciated.
What manual functions do you want?
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Old February 25th, 2007, 05:41 PM   #5
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The manual controls I would be interested in would be those such as: focus, white balance, iris, filters?, etc. By filters, I think I mean color temperatures? And any others that might help me get a truer picture.

As for the prices of the FX7, I have time. I would like to get this camcorder sometime this coming summer; preferrably June. I am hoping that between me saving my pennies and hopefully some degree of price dropping, I will be able to afford an FX7, or something of like performance. Aurora Illinois would be a trip, but once the snow clears, one that could be possible, but would rather spend the money on the camcorder than on gas.

Love the "tourist" label just below my name. From where I live, a tourist is sometimes called a "fudgie" (since we sell a lot of fudge up here to tourists), or a "conelicker" (referring to the amount of ice cream cones one sees tourists carrying around).

Mike
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Old February 25th, 2007, 05:54 PM   #6
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You might want to take a close look at Canon's new HV20. They have the manual available for download on their site.
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Old February 25th, 2007, 07:43 PM   #7
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Thanks to all who have offered their insights. It is very much appreciated.

I just have one more concern. Actually, it is the one major scare that I have about the FX7, and that is the CMOS sensor. I have read that a CMOS sensor has a problem with motion...that it cannot cleanly record a moving object as well as CCDs. Is there really anything to this?

Mike
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Old February 25th, 2007, 08:35 PM   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Burgess
Thanks to all who have offered their insights. It is very much appreciated.

I just have one more concern. Actually, it is the one major scare that I have about the FX7, and that is the CMOS sensor. I have read that a CMOS sensor has a problem with motion...that it cannot cleanly record a moving object as well as CCDs. Is there really anything to this?

Mike
Well...when you consider the newest rage camera uses CMOS (Red), and that all future cameras will use CMOS...I think that alone speaks for itself.
CMOS, like anything else, has grades of quality. The V1 has a very good CMOS, but it's not the best that the world has to offer, by the same token, my cell phone has a good CMOS sensor in it, but it too, isn't the best there is.
The RED arguably has the best there is, but at nearly 20K, it better.
CMOS vs CCD is the least of your concerns. The FX7 uses 3 1/4 CMOS chips, and will do a good job, except in the lowest of light. This is where CMOS fails by direct comparison to CCD, CCD can usually manage low light better.
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Old February 25th, 2007, 09:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Burgess
I have read that a CMOS sensor has a problem with motion...that it cannot cleanly record a moving object as well as CCDs. Is there really anything to this?
Mike, if there were anything to that, then they never would have put CMOS sensors in video camcorders... but it's quickly becoming the image sensor technology of choice these days.
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Old February 26th, 2007, 02:04 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Burgess
I just have one more concern. Actually, it is the one major scare that I have about the FX7, and that is the CMOS sensor. I have read that a CMOS sensor has a problem with motion...that it cannot cleanly record a moving object as well as CCDs. Is there really anything to this?

Mike
In all fairness that USED to be a big problem with CMOS sensors. Recently that problem has been solved. So it's not an invalid concern, just one that needs updating. There's still a lot of security style CMOS cameras on the market with bad smear porblems. You just need to undertand that the sensors used in todays CMOS camcorders are totally different beasts.
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Old February 26th, 2007, 03:25 AM   #11
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I pointed my V1 up at my ceiling fan on it's highest speed. I can pretty much freeze it's motion cleanly at 1/250th shutter without noticeable rolling shutter effect. Above that shutter speed, the blades start to look curved. It really isn't noticeable and I really don't see any reason someone would want to shoot at faster than 1/250th shutter. It would simply be a waste of light in anything but a photo-finish camera at an Indy car race. CMOS is just fine.
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Old February 26th, 2007, 04:13 AM   #12
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Thanks for the info on the CMOS chip. It does put mind more at ease. Of course the low light is of some concern, but not tremendously so. I think for 90% of my shooting, low light will not be a problem. Accurate colors and clarity of moving objects is more important. I want the best possible picture on my 42 inch HD plasma that I can afford to produce.

Now it will be a matter of saving money, reading reviews, and waiting. When I have more questions, I will be sure to ask. There is the possibility that by June, more products will be available and I might stray from the FX7, but right now, that is the camcorder I am aiming at.

Mike
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Old February 28th, 2007, 04:13 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Burgess View Post
Hello.

I am a budding videographer whose subject is trains. I currently have an old Sony DV camcorder that does OK, but with the advent of large flat panel HD televisions, this camcorder just doesn't get the job done up to what I want to produce that represents me. Getting into HD seems to be the answer for me. I want to start accumulating footage in HD for eventual editing and production into a product.

I have looked into the specs of the FX7, and those of other "prosumer" camcorders. I already know that the FX7 does not offer some features that the others do, but my budget is limited, so many of those other cams are beyond consideration. $2000.00 is pretty much my limit, with $2500.00 really stretching things, but possible.

Most all of my shooting takes place outside, from snowstorms, to rain, to hot sunny days, to cool evenings just at sunset. The locations will be in hot dusty deserts, high altitude mountain passes, sweltering city industrial sites, and cold, windy fields. Only a small part of my time will I need to shoot inside of a building. I need a camera that shoots good accurate colors, produces decent sound (eventual stereo?), that is sturdy, easy to use and portable. I use a good tripod 85% of the time, the rest being hand held. Currently, I have Studio v.10, and a good computer for editing.

I am only moderately technical (or whatever). I was a junior high teacher for thirty years, so my brain may be slightly fried, but I think I can still learn a few things and handle a somewhat more sophisticated camera than I currently have. I think I know what manuel functions I want, but additional advice would be appreciated.

So, will the FX7 do the job? Will I be able to find one within my budget? And finally, where can I find one from a reputable dealor? Or is there another camcorder out there that would do a better job for the money I have?

Thanks.
well i put some film in for a look but nobody wanted to know.
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Old March 1st, 2007, 11:27 AM   #14
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Chris. Could you leave me a link or something that I might access your information?

Thanks.
Mike
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Old March 1st, 2007, 09:38 PM   #15
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well i put some film in for a look but nobody wanted to know.

I don't understand that sentence. What film? Where?
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