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Old March 2nd, 2013, 08:37 AM   #1
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Expected Lifespan of NX5U

Our company has two Sony NX-5U cameras and we love them. We have been using them for over a year and recommend them highly for professional work. But in costing projects I need a rough idea as to how many hours we can expect from these cameras. Has any one used one to death? I need an idea of what the life span (in recording hours) to expect so that I can take that into consideration when pricing projects.

Thanks.
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Old March 2nd, 2013, 10:11 AM   #2
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Re: Expected Lifespan of NX5U

I don't use the camera but I do have and still use a PD150 and a PD170 and both have literally thousands of hours. Granted they are tape and granted every year they go in to bechecked out by an authorized Sony repair guy who has been my cameras doctor for a long time. the point is is that they ARE tape with far more mechanism than the NX5 so unless you mistreat the camera which I doubt you do, there is no reason that mechanically it shouldn't last for many many years to come. I think with the newer solid state cameras it comes down to how it's treated and do you want/need the newest latest, greatest thing to come out. My HM700 has a bit over 300 hours on it and I will say that it is the last camera I will buy since I don't need anything more than it, I take care of my gear and I'll be getting out (retirering) with in the next couple of years. Solid state has it advantages besides load in time! ;-)
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Old March 2nd, 2013, 11:58 AM   #3
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Re: Expected Lifespan of NX5U

It's difficult to 'use an NX5 to death', David. The electronics of the camera should last for years and years if they last the first three months. But there's a lot of mechanical moving parts in an NX5, and generally it's these that give trouble.

The three rings around the lens and all the moving zoom and focus elements, the lens cap mechanism, the v'finder and side-screen ribbon feeds, the drive motors for the zoom, focus and iris, the mechanical on/off switch and gain/w.bal switches, ND switching, zoom rockers and so on. All these mechanical parts are the bits that tend to fail.

Generally these don't make the NX5 terminal, but if you write down the cameras for accountancy purposes as having a 4 to 5 year life span, you shouldn't be far off.

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Old March 2nd, 2013, 12:36 PM   #4
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Re: Expected Lifespan of NX5U

If you ever go to the Bering Sea with one, I guarantee it'll die by the time the shoot is over (Salt water corroding the electronics, or operator accidentally stepping one leg into a hole and smashing the camera)

Z1Us didn't fare well with the Bering Sea: Deadliest Catch: How many Z1Us sacrificed?

Of course, referring to the Discovery Channel show Deadliest Catch.
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Old March 2nd, 2013, 01:18 PM   #5
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Re: Expected Lifespan of NX5U

Don, Tom and Jack,

Thanks for replying.

I tried doing research, reviews, etc on the Internet first before coming here to bother anyone. So I really do appreciate you taking the time to reply.

We go to extremes to take care of our equipment. After all they are our lifeblood.

I just need a number even if it is a shot in the dark to estimate cost. So based on what you said and what little I found on the Internet, unless someone else has something else to offer I am going to use the number 400 hours.

We purchased both of them for around $4,700 with the external flash memory unit and another $200 for memory sticks. Figure another $200 in batteries. So we have a little over $5,000 in each. That works out to be about $12.50 per hour for our cost of using each camera (of course not considering labor and overhead) using 400 hours as our life expectancy.

Again thanks for responding. At least I have a starting point.
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Old March 2nd, 2013, 02:18 PM   #6
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Re: Expected Lifespan of NX5U

At 400 hours this camera like most prosumer types aren't even broken in yet. Hell, I can put more than that on a camera in less than a year.
If you're trying to amortize the cost for tax purposes ask your account how long he/she is depreciating it for. Many will use 4, 5 or 7 years. With solid state cameras the intrnals could concievably live forever (at least in theory)
What I'm trying to say is I think that 400 hours is far too little time to make a camera cost effective. If I ever had a camera that I felt the expected life was only 400 hours I wouldn't buy it.
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Old May 24th, 2013, 01:03 PM   #7
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Re: Expected Lifespan of NX5U

Wow that's a difficult question to answer but ill give it a shot. As a repair tech what I've found is that it is really dependent on how and where you use it, how you store it, and how you transport it. Also do you hand hold it or use a tripod? If you respond with some more specifics I may be able to give you a better idea.
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