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Sony HVR-Z7 / HVR-S270
Handheld and shoulder mount versions of this Sony 3-CMOS HDV camcorder.


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Old May 12th, 2009, 02:58 PM   #1
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Say it ain't so! (Battery Sled?!?)

Somehow, in my months and months of considering and researching this camera, even getting to play with one at one point, I totally missed the fact that the Z7U uses a battery sled for AC power!

This makes me sad.

We've got a Canon XH-A1 and I hate, hate, hate the battery sled. Just this last weekend I was doing a shoot and my battery was running out, with my FX1 I was able to just plug into the AC jack and keep rolling. With a sled I'd have to stop the tape.

I know it can be worked around, and it's not a deal breaker, but it sure was a kick in the gut to discover this.

How difficult is the sled to work with? Particularly with the CF deck?
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Old May 12th, 2009, 03:44 PM   #2
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The Z5 and Z7 have the capability to continue recording to compact flash card while you change the tape. But when you change the battery it is impossible to record to either tape or card.

I haven't tried inserting the sled in my Z7 but the pocket it goes into is much more deeply recessed than the pocket of the Z1. This will make it harder to slip in and latch.

One shortcoming of a plug arrangement is that you can momentarily lose power if the plug is sufficiently jiggled. I have a Sony HVR-A1U that has a plug for AC. I use it often for downloading HDV footage with the AC powering it and have to be careful while handling the camera because the AC can be momentarily lost.
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Old May 12th, 2009, 05:50 PM   #3
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That was a big complaint of mine when I found out. If you're using the MRC-1 you have to take it off first. You also can't run on AC and have the battery as a backup power source.
It may seem like a small thing but I think it's a big oversight by Sony. Especially cameras using the MRC-1
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Old May 13th, 2009, 02:14 AM   #4
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Well considering that you're tape will probably run out before your battery, I don't see this as being that big of a deal for me.

Purchase 4 Sony batteries at full price, and you're still paying less than an Anton, and you'll have enough power to last all day.

I can see how the sled vs AC jack could be a problem, but honestly, the smallest amount of planning & thinking ahead and you won't have an issue.

I do agree that the MRC-1 placement can get in the way, but look at a Z7 w/o a lens... it is one TINY camera for all that it can do. If you want better placement, you'll have a much larger foot print.

If you run into lots of problems w/ the placement of the MRC-1, then just purchase a bracket & mount it on top of the camera w/ the battery & FW attachment that comes w/ the Z7.
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Old May 13th, 2009, 04:13 PM   #5
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the smallest amount of planning & thinking ahead and you won't have an issue.
Well sure, but some of us aren't good at that. :p
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Old May 13th, 2009, 05:47 PM   #6
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Well considering that you're tape will probably run out before your battery, I don't see this as being that big of a deal for me.

Purchase 4 Sony batteries at full price, and you're still paying less than an Anton, and you'll have enough power to last all day.

I can see how the sled vs AC jack could be a problem, but honestly, the smallest amount of planning & thinking ahead and you won't have an issue.
It has nothing to do with anything you've mentioned, it has to do with simplicity and efficiency. As I've pointed out in a previous post, I've had an AC slot on my last 10 Sony cameras and while I don't use it very often, there are times I have. A place I shoot at all the time has an outlet right next to me. It's nice to use the AC power, keep your battery charged and also have the battery in there as a backup. Great camera but that and the menu wheel gets under my skin
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Old May 13th, 2009, 10:40 PM   #7
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Great camera but that and the menu wheel gets under my skin
Adapt or die. :)
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Old May 14th, 2009, 01:13 AM   #8
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It's nice to use the AC power, keep your battery charged and also have the battery in there as a backup. Great camera but that and the menu wheel gets under my skin
An AC jack would have been nicer, but w/ how long these cameras last on a battery these days, less & less of an issue. Hopefully on the Z9 or Z11, they'll change it. Until then, I see it as one of the smallest negatives of this camera.

As for the menu wheel, I like it better than the menu UI on the Z1 & most of the Betacams I've used. Once again, more buttons make for a bigger camera, and I'll take the smaller camera, while hoping for more improvements on the next round of cameras.
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Old May 14th, 2009, 01:27 AM   #9
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... hoping for more improvements on the next round of cameras.
Perhaps we can make this item 'improvements we hope for' a sticky? You never know if Sony's reading... This is my wish list:

- coloured peaking, such as on the Z5 and the EX3
- a folding loupe (such as on older 6x6 cameras) on the LCD-monitor
- an small adjustable shoulder pad at the back of the camera
- the LANC-plug on the same place as on the Z5

Luc

I'll make it a separate thread, anyway.
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Old May 15th, 2009, 10:04 PM   #10
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I have 3 of the 970 batteries and I probably will never use the AC power supply. Much of my shooting is done where electrical outlets are readily available but I don't want another cord going to the camera if I don't need it. I would rather use batteries. Just my style, I guess.
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Old May 16th, 2009, 04:45 PM   #11
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I have 3 of the 970 batteries and I probably will never use the AC power supply. Much of my shooting is done where electrical outlets are readily available but I don't want another cord going to the camera if I don't need it. I would rather use batteries. Just my style, I guess.
My style too, I always shoot with batteries. But there have been a couple of times when I forgot to swap a battery out or shot longer than I expected and had a battery die on me. With my FX1 I can just plug in and keep rolling uninterrupted.
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