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Sony HVR-Z1 / HDR-FX1
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CCD HDV camcorder.

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Old January 12th, 2009, 02:10 PM   #31
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I used to do weddings and fortunately my cameras were pretty good at low light. I do not really care for the paparazzi highlight/lighting style of wedding videography, so I tried to get away without using any camera lights if I could. I still shoot an occasional wedding, but now I am doing it to help a friend who shoots weddings on a regular basis. While I preferred not to use any extra lights, he wants to use camera lights on almost everything. Two differing philosophies. I have had brides that insisted on very low lighting that they felt was more romantic. That makes it tough unless your cameras can handle that. You just have to explain the camera limitations to them so they are not too disappointed later. But adding light in that situation always seemed to be contrary to the bride's wishes. Back in the day, when I was shooting weddings and needed added lighting, I used an NRG Varilight. Really a great piece. Much better than my old Anton-Bauer frezzi. It could be adjusted from really dim to pretty darn bright. It was well built and is still going strong today. The batteries were a pain in the backside, however. If I were to go back to using it, I would like to be able to attach one of the softboxes Dana mentioned to give a wider, softer fill that would more suited to widescreen shooting, and a lot less glaring.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 01:32 PM   #32
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I also try to get involved in the lighting of the room itself. Often the dimness is set by the facility without consulting the bride, so it's more of a question of being the squeeky wheel. This helps the photographer too. I believe those awful pre-flash red grids are for low light situations (is this true). At one wedding the photog was happy for my camera light because he said it helped his focus.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 01:42 PM   #33
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Good point Dana. Yes, many DSLRs beam out a very unattractive red bar graph to aid their auto-focus mechanisms in low light. Of course our video cameras record this nasty red splurge across the bride's face whereas the still frame doesn't.

I much prefer the pre-flash method used by some DSLRs as it just looks like another still photo's been taken. But then again I'm using CCDs and don't have to put up with the CMOS partial frame flash exposures.

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