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Sony HXR-NX100, HXR-NX70, NX30, NX5, NX3/1, HXR-MC2500, HDR-AX2000, etc.


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Old August 11th, 2016, 10:43 AM   #1
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Back in the game...but starting slowly!

Hi Folks--

Been away from video since having sold our Canon XF300 quite a few years ago, and been itching to get back in again. (After working in the restaurant/motel industry for a few years, my creative juices need a little spark!).

My wife has started a photography business in town, and surprisingly, we get asked about video services as well. (Not many clients yet, but looks like we're the only game in town.) I've used our Nikon D610 for video a few times, but having come from ENG and prosumer camcorders (XL2, Panny DVX100, XF300, etc) in the past, I feel more comfy with those than a DSLR.

Having said that, I'm currently looking at these 3 cams (But man! There alot of choices now since I've been gone!) :

1. Sony NX100
2. Sony NX3
3. Sony PXW150

My needs would be shooting events, interviews (OTFs and sit downs), and documentaries.

Why just Sonys? I don't know really. Budget mostly, specs and design partly. The PXW150 would be the high end of my budget. And I don't need 4k now. Will deliver online (YouTube, Vimeo, etc), and DVD/BluRays.

Glad to be back on the forums!
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Old August 18th, 2016, 05:01 AM   #2
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

If you're the only game in town, it's probably a small market... you may not need much camera to deliver good results!

I like Sonys myself, particularly fond of the cameras they have released with the "1 inch class" sensor - the AX100 is getting a little long in the tooth, but is a good basic camera. I've paired mine up with the RX10M2 and will be adding a RX10M3 one of these days. With a little creativity, a couple of 4K cameras can cover a lot of ground that you might have used multiple cameras for in the past. The RX's might be worth a look, as you could do "double duty" as a photographer part of the time. There's an app that hacks the time limit on the clips in the "still" cameras so you can free run just like a regular video camera.

Just spitballin' a couple ideas you might not think of at first glance!
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Old August 19th, 2016, 08:15 AM   #3
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

My second shooter has a NX100 and it's a very capable camera. He also picked up a CX900, as did I. So now we have 3 cameras with the same sensor tech and makes for easy matching in post.

I'm really impressed with the CX900.

Here's a trick to try. He got his at Best Buy in Nashville for around $800 because it was open box. I checked my Best Buy here and said, "Hey my buddy in Nashville got one for $800, open box". They had their open box at like $950. The manager went in and changed the condition code to "Fair" from "good" and it brought it down to $725!

So if you've got a Best Buy, see if they have open box and go talk to the sales guy about it. You can get a deal!
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Old August 27th, 2016, 08:41 AM   #4
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Blackhurst View Post
If you're the only game in town, it's probably a small market... you may not need much camera to deliver good results!

I like Sonys myself, particularly fond of the cameras they have released with the "1 inch class" sensor - the AX100 is getting a little long in the tooth, but is a good basic camera. I've paired mine up with the RX10M2 and will be adding a RX10M3 one of these days. With a little creativity, a couple of 4K cameras can cover a lot of ground that you might have used multiple cameras for in the past. The RX's might be worth a look, as you could do "double duty" as a photographer part of the time. There's an app that hacks the time limit on the clips in the "still" cameras so you can free run just like a regular video camera.

Just spitballin' a couple ideas you might not think of at first glance!
Hi Dave--

My wife has actually started a photography business, and invariably been asked about video as well. We're starting slowly, building clientele thru word of mouth (though we do have a website). Our budget is tight, but also realize that we need additional equipment to supplement the photography business.

As I mentioned before, I don't need 4K now, as I will be delivering on the web and DVD/BluRays. But I do understand the future proofing perspective.

How is the RX10M3 for run and gun situations? How are the auto focus and low light capabilities?
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Old August 27th, 2016, 08:57 AM   #5
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

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Originally Posted by Kyle Root View Post
My second shooter has a NX100 and it's a very capable camera. He also picked up a CX900, as did I. So now we have 3 cameras with the same sensor tech and makes for easy matching in post.

I'm really impressed with the CX900.
Hi Kyle--

Good to hear about the NX100.

I wouldn't mind using a small prosumer cam like the CX900; and from the little bit of research it looks like a very capable camera.

How is the CX900 with run and gun, auto focus, and low light?
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Old August 27th, 2016, 04:21 PM   #6
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

I have the FDR-AX100, the 4K version of the CX900. I shoot primarily with the AX100, FS7, XF305 and GoPros. If I could only take one camera, it would be the AX100. Low light is very good. Picture quality is very good. It's rated by the manufacturer as "consumer" class because of its codec. But it has mic in, headphone out, remote, HDMI output (clean HD out during record), manual iris, shutter and gain, slow-mo (120fps in 1280x720), ND filters, infrared and the ability to off-load footage directly to a HDD without a computer. The image stabilizing is mediocre and the lens closes down rapidly as you zoom in. There're no "paint" picture profiles available, no raw, etc. Very easy to learn and use. Low light is better than the XF305. This CX900 camera would be very good bang for the buck in my opinion. I operate in AF most of the time and it hasn't caused me any grief. Touch AF is handy.

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ..._handycam.html


Mark

Last edited by Mark Watson; August 27th, 2016 at 05:08 PM.
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Old August 27th, 2016, 05:24 PM   #7
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

Growing a business on a minimalist budget is a tough one and there is a lot of gear and stuff that can be needed for video. While you’re talking cam, there is also audio, lighting, perhaps backdrops and stands for interviews, cam support gear like tripod, monopod, glide cam, etc., and the list goes on. Not mentioning computer stuff because you already have that.

On the cam side, the AX100 was mentioned a lot and like it was also mentioned, it is getting a bit long in the tooth, almost three years old now. Got mine about a year and a half ago for use as a B-cam and because the A-cam of choice still hasn’t showed up yet it’s doing that duty. If one could be picked up used for a good price I think it’d be a good one especially with the shorter days ahead. This is a good cam and even when the newer models roll out it won’t go away easily. One of my reasons for choosing it was there weren’t any real ‘gotchas’ about it.

For a pro effect in the deliverables, doing B-cam work would add to the look and for that the AX53 would be nice. Got one of those too and that’s one of the things it is used for because of it’s BOSS stabilization system. Chose it specifically for use from the rolling deck of a boat where using my Glidecam was to difficult to use. This is a fairly new model so one would think it’d be around for some time before being replaced. Can work handheld or on a monopod well. Just shot an hour-long recital video using just it as both a handheld and on a monopod while sitting in the audience as there was no room to set up a tripod.

A still smaller investment route, perhaps one of your still cameras could be used as a tripod cam and the AX53 as a B-cam. Don’t know how well the bokeh would match up though.

Quality audio is important so one certainly want’s to save a lot for that department.

Edit:
One more thought, since you mentioned you have a Nikon, if it is within your budget, check out the JVC LS300 because it can use Nikon lenses with an adapter and the adapter isn’t expensive. The good part there is one can use prime lenses. No need to pay for new glass!

Last edited by John Nantz; August 27th, 2016 at 05:33 PM. Reason: added an edit
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Old August 28th, 2016, 05:38 PM   #8
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Watson View Post
I have the FDR-AX100, the 4K version of the CX900. I shoot primarily with the AX100, FS7, XF305 and GoPros. If I could only take one camera, it would be the AX100. Low light is very good. Picture quality is very good. It's rated by the manufacturer as "consumer" class because of its codec. But it has mic in, headphone out, remote, HDMI output (clean HD out during record), manual iris, shutter and gain, slow-mo (120fps in 1280x720), ND filters, infrared and the ability to off-load footage directly to a HDD without a computer. The image stabilizing is mediocre and the lens closes down rapidly as you zoom in. There're no "paint" picture profiles available, no raw, etc. Very easy to learn and use. Low light is better than the XF305. This CX900 camera would be very good bang for the buck in my opinion. I operate in AF most of the time and it hasn't caused me any grief. Touch AF is handy.

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ..._handycam.html


Mark
Hi Mark--

Thanks for the recommendation of the AX100. I have read a bit about it. Will also check out the CX900 soon.

I had an XF300 and liked it immensely, but sold it as we felt we were not getting enough jobs to warrant that camera; plus I've got a full time job in the hotel/restaurant industry. So I sold it and got the Nikon D610. But now that we're up and going with our photography business, I want to be ready for when the video clients start to trickle in.

Best,
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Old September 1st, 2016, 08:40 AM   #9
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Nantz View Post
Growing a business on a minimalist budget is a tough one and there is a lot of gear and stuff that can be needed for video. While you’re talking cam, there is also audio, lighting, perhaps backdrops and stands for interviews, cam support gear like tripod, monopod, glide cam, etc., and the list goes on. Not mentioning computer stuff because you already have that.

On the cam side, the AX100 was mentioned a lot and like it was also mentioned, it is getting a bit long in the tooth, almost three years old now. Got mine about a year and a half ago for use as a B-cam and because the A-cam of choice still hasn’t showed up yet it’s doing that duty. If one could be picked up used for a good price I think it’d be a good one especially with the shorter days ahead. This is a good cam and even when the newer models roll out it won’t go away easily. One of my reasons for choosing it was there weren’t any real ‘gotchas’ about it.

For a pro effect in the deliverables, doing B-cam work would add to the look and for that the AX53 would be nice. Got one of those too and that’s one of the things it is used for because of it’s BOSS stabilization system. Chose it specifically for use from the rolling deck of a boat where using my Glidecam was to difficult to use. This is a fairly new model so one would think it’d be around for some time before being replaced. Can work handheld or on a monopod well. Just shot an hour-long recital video using just it as both a handheld and on a monopod while sitting in the audience as there was no room to set up a tripod.

A still smaller investment route, perhaps one of your still cameras could be used as a tripod cam and the AX53 as a B-cam. Don’t know how well the bokeh would match up though.

Quality audio is important so one certainly want’s to save a lot for that department.

Edit:
One more thought, since you mentioned you have a Nikon, if it is within your budget, check out the JVC LS300 because it can use Nikon lenses with an adapter and the adapter isn’t expensive. The good part there is one can use prime lenses. No need to pay for new glass!
Hi John--

Thanks for the recommending the AX53!

When I sold my XF300, I held onto the rest of my equipment, thinking I would need it someday (though the wife disagreed at the time). So I do have audio (but I need to buy a new shotgun mic), some lighting, cases, etc. So no worries there.

Best,
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Old September 1st, 2016, 10:19 PM   #10
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

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Originally Posted by Jeff Anselmo View Post
When I sold my XF300, I held onto the rest of my equipment, thinking I would need it someday (though the wife disagreed at the time),
Yeah, I got one of those too. She keeps wanting me to get rid of my, ahem, junk.

Speaking of junk, I mean kit, and your upcoming need for cases to store it in, my wife bought a new 3-piece luggage set and was going to throw out her old set. Being the frugal one I took her smaller two bags, the carry-on with the wheels and the telescoping handle and the backpack bag, the one that supposedly goes under the seat (where the airplane puts all their stuff so the bag doesn’t fit), and re-purposed them for my cam gear. I’ve also got a Pelican case with adjustable dividers for the really sensitive stuff. Anyhow, one can put a lot of ‘stuff’ in those two bags. The backpack/under seat bag has a strap to fit over the handle of the carry-on bag so the pair make for easier transport. Being color-coordinated (women like that), and they look good too. Showing her how frugal I was made it easier to buy more gear (good deals, of course).

Development of an acquisition and upgrade path for kit is difficult because the solution(s) is/are a moving target and usually constrained by financial resources. To move slowly along the path has the advantage in that there is time to find out what the priorities are, research what would be the best compromise, and to be able to pick things up for a good price when the opportunity presents itself. Not only is there technological change but one’s shooting or gig interests and style will probably change too.

A personal opinion here is that because my wife has a different eye to shooting and storytelling than I have, she is a complement when we do something together. She notices things that I didn’t and is more sensitive to feelings so adding in her media into the timeline (I do the editing - with her approval, or even blessing) and this helps to make what would be a documentary come to life. She also does stills and I can put some life in her still pictures with the Ken Burns effect and her cam shots are a work in progress.
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Old September 1st, 2016, 11:22 PM   #11
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

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Originally Posted by John Nantz View Post
...Showing her how frugal I was made it easier to buy more gear....
Try using the word "invest" instead of "buy". "I think I need to invest in a new tripod." Doesn't that sound more financially responsible? You'll want to try to do a bundle-type purchase when you use this because you may not get away with it for very long. I refer to my cabinets full of gear as "my B&H portfolio."

There, did my good deed for the day.

Mark
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Old September 2nd, 2016, 10:07 AM   #12
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

Mark -
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Watson View Post
Try using the word "invest" instead of "buy". "I think I need to invest in a new tripod." Doesn't that sound more financially responsible? You'll want to try to do a bundle-type purchase when you use this because you may not get away with it for very long.
That is really good. Absolutely excellent. It’s the same line of thought but what a difference a little wordsmithing makes. And, to top it off, the “bundle-type purchase”, ahhh…. music to my ears!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Watson View Post
I refer to my cabinets full of gear as "my B&H portfolio."
There, did my good deed for the day.
Ha ha! On a roll!
And, yes you did.
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Old September 2nd, 2016, 05:30 PM   #13
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Nantz View Post
Speaking of junk, I mean kit, and your upcoming need for cases to store it in, my wife bought a new 3-piece luggage set and was going to throw out her old set. Being the frugal one I took her smaller two bags, the carry-on with the wheels and the telescoping handle and the backpack bag, the one that supposedly goes under the seat (where the airplane puts all their stuff so the bag doesn’t fit), and re-purposed them for my cam gear. I’ve also got a Pelican case with adjustable dividers for the really sensitive stuff. Anyhow, one can put a lot of ‘stuff’ in those two bags. The backpack/under seat bag has a strap to fit over the handle of the carry-on bag so the pair make for easier transport. Being color-coordinated (women like that), and they look good too. Showing her how frugal I was made it easier to buy more gear (good deals, of course).
Hi John--

It's funny you mentioned the luggage, as I've also used a rolling bag to haul various things in (i.e., stingers, extra bulbs, gaffers tape, etc.) But now I've got 3 "pro" bags to properly stow the equipment in; but still use the occasional Hefty bag for a quick transpo :)


Quote:
Originally Posted by John Nantz View Post
Development of an acquisition and upgrade path for kit is difficult because the solution(s) is/are a moving target and usually constrained by financial resources. To move slowly along the path has the advantage in that there is time to find out what the priorities are, research what would be the best compromise, and to be able to pick things up for a good price when the opportunity presents itself. Not only is there technological change but one’s shooting or gig interests and style will probably change too.
When me and my wife first started out in 2006, we bought an XL2, thinking we didn't need HD at the time. The XL2 was good little camera but there were quite a few HD cams out then that we could've saved up for (like the XHA1). But the XL2 more than paid for itself with various jobs and projects, so we sold it and upgraded to the XF300. Unfortunately, life happened, and the XF300 was an amazing piece of equipment that did not pay for itself. So we sold that and traded it in for a Nikon D610 instead. Slowly, but surely, the D610 is paying for itself, and when that happens, may trade it in for better equipment.


Quote:
Originally Posted by John Nantz View Post
A personal opinion here is that because my wife has a different eye to shooting and storytelling than I have, she is a complement when we do something together. She notices things that I didn’t and is more sensitive to feelings so adding in her media into the timeline (I do the editing - with her approval, or even blessing) and this helps to make what would be a documentary come to life. She also does stills and I can put some life in her still pictures with the Ken Burns effect and her cam shots are a work in progress.

I always work better with a partner, and my wife and I have collaborated on multiple projects. I'm mostly on the technical side of things, but her trade is graphic design (and a genius with Photoshop!). It's not always hunky dory, and yes we butt heads over things, but like you said, "my wife has a different eye to shooting and storytelling" and that's okay in a partnership.
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Old September 2nd, 2016, 06:32 PM   #14
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Re: Back in the game...but starting slowly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Watson View Post
Try using the word "invest" instead of "buy". "I think I need to invest in a new tripod." Doesn't that sound more financially responsible? You'll want to try to do a bundle-type purchase when you use this because you may not get away with it for very long. I refer to my cabinets full of gear as "my B&H portfolio."

There, did my good deed for the day.

Mark
Hi Mark--

How did you know I needed a new tripod?!? We bought a Libec tripod along with our XL2 years ago, and one of the plastic lock knobs has a crack on it. Granted I've put it thru its paces, even mounting a portable jib on it!

Great advice about investing! The one I've before was the "buy now and suffer the consequences later" approach. Unfortunately, the success rate for that has been minimal and it's only been limited to Legos :(
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