Sony HDR-FX1 vs. PD 170 at DVinfo.net

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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 September 5th, 2005, 06:37 PM   #1
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Sony HDR-FX1 vs. PD 170

I have been working on a patchwork documentary for a while, using a variety of cameras (whatever was available). Most recently, the bulk of the footage has been done with a Sony PD 150, which I do not have current access to. Thus, I am looking for another camera to finish the job, as well as have for future projects. Since both the HDR-FX1 and the PD 170 can now be purchased for nearly the same price, are there benefits to going with the HD model? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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Old September 5th, 2005, 06:47 PM   #2
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Hi Ramdas, this has been asked so many times here on DV Info that it qualifies as a Frequently Asked Question. Please see this list of various discussion threads which already exist, located at:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=50112
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Old September 6th, 2005, 12:23 AM   #3
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Thanx for the links

Chris,

Thanx for sending the link. I have not spent enough time searching thru all the DVinfo.net threads to find the wealth of info that is obviously here. I will definitely do my homework...:)

Thanx again,
Ramdas
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Old September 6th, 2005, 11:19 AM   #4
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I noticed yesterday that the PD170 is "out of stock" at B&H. Is it possible Sony is going to quit making it? Or, it could be that B&H has simply sold out. So, the question could become moot if the PD170 is not long for this world.
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Old September 6th, 2005, 02:42 PM   #5
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expiring PD 170?

Bill, this is a goodpoint. Moreover, I think Sony is giving a rebate for it at present. I have been reading all the links that I found thru Chris's last post, and there are those who see the end sooner than others. However, I think the camera will be around for at least several more years. I still have not yet been able to decide.

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Old September 6th, 2005, 06:12 PM   #6
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It's not dead yet!

I think B&H is getting more in sometime or another...last time I talked to someone there about it they said it wasn't gone yet. I didn't want the rebate to expire though, so I looked for a couple other dealers....Zotz and EVS were out but zotz told me that sony was filling their back orders about the 29. Then after find a store called Armatos they told me they are getting some wednesday...I should be getting mine that I just ordered this week. I was at this same question and made many similar posts and I went with the PD because of its proven quality, and I'm not ready to jump on the HD or widescreen bandwagon just yet. Plus I really wanted the XLR inputs that were only available on the Z1, about 2000 bucks more. I'm waiting till an HD delievery format is established (blu-ray, or HD-DVD). Plus the HD cams are about a pound hevier. People are still buying the PD170, its still the lowlight king.....and people are also very satisfied with their FX1s and Z1s.
If your future proofing yourself, go for the FX1
If your like me and can't use the features to the fullest extent, wait till it becomes more usable (90% of TV's in america are 4:3).
Hope this helps
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Old September 6th, 2005, 11:09 PM   #7
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I suspect that Sony will be retiring the PD170 very soon. The Sony name as far as 3 CCD camcorders go will be synonomous with high definition. This will be Sony's new commitment to quality and its reputation for complete customer satisfaction that will set itself apart from other companies as the leader in advanced television. Sony will gladly give its standard definition market share to other companies. The principle is the same when you buy a Cadillac do you ask for one with a four cylinder engine ? Of course not you get the V8 and if you want the 4 banger you go to Volkswagen. Just as Caddilac won't sell a car with only half the cylinders Sony won't sell a camera with only half the pixel count. The same thing goes with televisions. Soon all Sony televisions will be High Definition televisions. If you want standard definition you go with another brand.
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Old September 7th, 2005, 04:35 AM   #8
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not dead yet?

Matt, I appreciate the input. I look forward to any further thoughts once you get your camera. I definitely do not want to lose out on the rebate if that is the way to go, but I feel drawn to the FX1 precisely because whatever I get will probably be the one I use for at least the next 3-4 years. I am doing documentary and archiving work, and there are no instant monetary returns for use in upgrading. Still a hard decision...
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Old September 7th, 2005, 12:13 PM   #9
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[QUOTE=The same thing goes with televisions. Soon all Sony televisions will be High Definition televisions. If you want standard definition you go with another brand.[/QUOTE]

Maybe all the ones sony sells will be HD, but the majority of people still have and use their SD 4:3 TVs. There isn't even a "usable" HD delievery source yet. I'd say if you want SD, the PD170 is still an option because of it's low light. I know some people don't like them, but I'm a sony fan. I don't need HD, or 16:9 in the next year, and I need the XLRs built in w/out having to spend 1800 bucks more. Plus, the Panny HD cam may top the sony one when it's available...Canon hasn't even really come out with one yet. They are probably holding back in that market because they know that it will be a while till enough things are HD. People still use their VHS players....It will be a while before HD-DVD, or Blu-Ray becomes the next DVD.

Last edited by Matt Ludwig; September 7th, 2005 at 12:16 PM. Reason: typo
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Old September 7th, 2005, 01:06 PM   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Ludwig
Canon hasn't even really come out with one yet. They are probably holding back in that market because they know that it will be a while till enough things are HD. People still use their VHS players....It will be a while before HD-DVD, or Blu-Ray becomes the next DVD.
Two comments;
1. DVD permeated the market far, far faster than the pundits thought it would. Caught EVERYONE off guard. I predict BD will do the same.

2. Don't believe for one second that Canon is sitting this out, or holding anything back. Canon just does things a little differently, and to their credit, it usually works.
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