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Sony TRV950 / PDX10 Companion
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Old May 12th, 2005, 05:04 AM   #1
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PDX10 Setup Recommendations

I humbly request recommendations for additional equipment needed to use my PDX10 to produce professional cooking and training videos. I only have the barebones -- the PDX10 camera, but as I read the threads I see additional equipment is necessary.

I greatly appreciate anyone who can give me a list of equipment, with low-budget in mind, or suggest a good book.

Thanks
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Old May 12th, 2005, 09:15 AM   #2
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I don't think the equipment needs for the PDX-10 would be that different from any camcorder. The camera is totally functional right out of the box. Depending what you're up to you might want the basics like a good tripod, microphone(s), lights, a monitor, etc. Get the largest batteries - QM91 - they will give you about 4 hours. Rumor is that these batteries have been discontinued, so maybe a good idea to get these soon?

Browse backwards through our forum for some other ideas.
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Old May 12th, 2005, 10:29 AM   #3
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I definately agree with Boyd; a video tripod and some QM91 batteries are a MUST-HAVE. I've been having good luck with the cheapie Power-2000 brand QM91 knockoffs. Sure, they don't have the nifty LED charge indicator on them, but otherwise they work pefectly, even in SQ mode:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=303561&is=REG


I also purchased a Sony AC-SQ950D AC/DC Power Adapter / Super Quick Charger; I use it at home AND in my Jeep, and can run the cam directly off it, too:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=243839&is=REG


If you're doing a lot of work outdoors, I'd suggest getting a better wind jammer; the factory one doesn't work particularly well in anything over a light breeze. I bought a Rycote Mini Windjammer, but there are tons of different kinds available.
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=259872&is=REG


If you want to buy a wireless lav, you'll find that there are a TON of those on the market. I got a Sony UWP-C1 (62) bundled with my PDX10. It works fine, and mounts right on top of the cam's XLR box. I don't have anything to compare it to, but it sounds fine to my ears...and definately better for voice pickup than the on-camera mic.
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=274576&is=REG

Of course, since it sounds like you might be working in a studio (cooking show?) your best bet for lights and sound equipment might be to RENT. I know that I can rent much nicer equipment than I can afford to purchase, especially considering how infrequently I need nice lights and sound.


As for a tripod....I'm still looking for one myself. I've been using one from my wife's 35mm still camera stash, but it's really not worth a crap for shooting video. At this point, I'm leaning towards purchasing a tripod with the Bogen / Manfrotto 701RC2 Mini Video Fluid Head, which can come with a variety of legs. Here's a cheap set with the 3011BN tripod legs:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=342512&is=REG


Hope that helps! :-)
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Old May 12th, 2005, 11:59 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duane Smith
As for a tripod....I'm still looking for one myself. I've been using one from my wife's 35mm still camera stash, but it's really not worth a crap for shooting video. At this point, I'm leaning towards purchasing a tripod with the Bogen / Manfrotto 701RC2 Mini Video Fluid Head, which can come with a variety of legs. Here's a cheap set with the 3011BN tripod legs:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=342512&is=REG
I got the 701RC2, it's simple but I love it. It feels as if it was made for the PDX10. Much better than the 3031 I had before. I'd recommend the 3021 legs minimum. The 3011 are too flimsy, to my opinion. I have the 3221WN and I'm satisfied, although ideally i'd like to have the 755B MDeVe for head micro adjustments.
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Old May 12th, 2005, 12:31 PM   #5
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Thanks, that's good to know! I'll check out both the 3021 and the 3221. The latter is just a little more than I was planning to spend, but it's still very affordable.

:-)
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Old May 12th, 2005, 01:26 PM   #6
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Thanks for the suggestions. I'll look to grab the tripod and a lighting set. I already picked up the 4-hour batteries when I learned that they might be discontinued.
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Old May 12th, 2005, 04:41 PM   #7
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I have two tripods, a Manfrotto 3221WN with 501 head and a Miller DS-5. The Manfrotto is a good value for the money (paid ~$250 a few years ago, maybe it's more now). The only problem is that for extreme telephoto shots it's nearly impossible to get smooth movement without a jerk when you begin a pan or tilt. On wide or medium shots this isn't so noticeable, but I often film performances with a Sony 2x telephoto which is the equivalent of a 1000mm lens in 35mm terms, so this amplifies every tiny glitch.

The Miller is a huge improvement (although far from perfect) but it cost around $800. Buy the best tripod you possibly can, you won't regret it. If you get a cheap one you'll just end up replacing it quickly when you get tired of jerky camera movements...
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Old May 22nd, 2005, 08:18 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duane Smith
I also purchased a Sony AC-SQ950D AC/DC Power Adapter / Super Quick Charger; I use it at home AND in my Jeep, and can run the cam directly off it, too:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=243839&is=REG

Now that is a very hot add-on for Sony cameras!

Pity Sony or B&H do not recommend it more adamantly, like putting in their accesories suggestions list. It should be there. The standard AC supply is limited in what it can do, because you need the camera to charge the batteries and that is not good.

When I bought my PDX10 I got an external battery charger, as it's essential to get one to separate charging from the camera.

Will the SQ950D charge all Sony battery types? I mean those for other cameras, like the PD170, FX1, Z1, etc.? It seems like it does, but I am not sure. My charger works on any batteries, but they have to be M series. It will not charge PD170's series-L batteries. So an universal charger should be interesting to have.


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Old May 22nd, 2005, 09:09 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlos E. Martinez
Will the SQ950D charge all Sony battery types? I mean those for other cameras, like the PD170, FX1, Z1, etc.? It seems like it does, but I am not sure. My charger works on any batteries, but they have to be M series. It will not charge PD170's series-L batteries. So an universal charger should be interesting to have.
Yup, I just took a look at the SQ950D package, and it says "for InfoLITHIUM M SERIES". Doing a quick search at B&H shows a variety of chargers, depending on the series of battery. I'm sure there's some technical reason why Sony didn't make a universal charger; I can't imagine that they would intentionally make so many different kinds of chargers if they could just make one...the manufacturing costs must be higher than any "double-sales" they may get from people with multiple cams.
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Old May 22nd, 2005, 09:39 AM   #10
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I have a third party charger that I rarely use, but it works with a number of different types of batteries. To accomplish this it uses adaptor shoes that you snap your battery into, although it accepts the batteries from my VX-2000 directly. I suppose this works for other batteries, but it's a bit of a kludge which Sony probably wouldn't find acceptable. I think I would be disappointed to find a universal charger which required an adaptor included with a camera purchase...
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Old May 23rd, 2005, 09:05 AM   #11
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Sony external charger

Quote:
Originally Posted by Duane Smith
I just took a look at the SQ950D package, and it says "for InfoLITHIUM M SERIES".

But will it charge L-series batteries too? Those are the PD150/170 types.

The standard supply for the PD150/170 and PDX10 is the same.


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Old June 2nd, 2005, 09:29 AM   #12
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Okay, I'm down to two choices based on your feedback. Thanks for all the input.

Here are my two choices:


The "Bogen / Manfrotto 3221WN (055BWB) Tripod Legs with 701RC2 Fluid Head and MBAG80 Softcase" (B&H for $ 308)

or

Bogen / Manfrotto 3246 Tripod Legs (Black) with 3433 (501) Pro Video Fluid Head (B&H for $360)

Any recommendations?
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Old June 2nd, 2005, 09:45 AM   #13
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tripod tips

You might also look at the maximum height of the tripod. I shoot weddings (and plays) and one of my Bogen tripods will go up to about 8 feet high--a big plus if you need to shoot OVER some people at an event.

One of my tripods has the 501 head, the other has the 503 head. They both work pretty well and are capable of smooth movements. Practice for a while at high zoom to develop your skills. A jerky motion can destroy an otherwise perfect shot!

-Jeff
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Old June 2nd, 2005, 11:40 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Muhammad
The "Bogen / Manfrotto 3221WN (055BWB) Tripod Legs with 701RC2 Fluid Head and MBAG80 Softcase" (B&H for $ 308)

or

Bogen / Manfrotto 3246 Tripod Legs (Black) with 3433 (501) Pro Video Fluid Head (B&H for $360)

Any recommendations?
the last one is heavier, yet it has a smoother head.
your application suggests the weight is not a big issue,
since you're going to deal with a controlled setup.
smootheness is important.

is price an issue?
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Old June 2nd, 2005, 02:05 PM   #15
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Thanks for the information. Heavier suggest that its more sturdy. My settings are controlled. I am doing instructional videos for track events and a web-base news show that will be delivered in Flash. In both cases, having a steady filming is essential.

As for price, I can pay the few dollars more for the 3246.
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