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Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
Topics also include Sony's TRV950, VX2000, PD150 & DSR250 family.


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Old November 25th, 2007, 07:54 PM   #1
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Are you still using your PD170

Are you still using your PD170?
With so many cams out at the moment who is still using their trusty PD170 and what stuff are you filming with it?
Do you use it in 4.3 mode or 16.9 mode?
How does 16.9 mode come up on wide screens?

Is this camera just good for a door stop now?

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Simon
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Old November 25th, 2007, 08:31 PM   #2
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The last camera I used for a doorstop was my last JVC2XB body which I paid thousands for and sold for...well never mind.
AFA I am concerned the 150/170 are still the king of small form factor SD 4:3 shooting. I use mine for everything from sprots and news to weddings and seminars and corporate training videos unless the client specifies and is will to pay for something else. After using a pair of PD150s for over 6 years and now a 150/170 combo (with a JVC5000 and a DRS250) thrown in for good measure I will keep on using the 150/170 until such time as HD becomes a necessity for me to stay in business or I retire which comes first. NO I hate the 16:9 from the camera - it squishes the image. When I need 16:9 I simply use a mask on the lcd and then crop it in post. It don't happen often.
So in answer to your question, no the 170 isn't a doorstop, yes I use it for just about everything I do and IF you have one that you don't want put it in front of MY door. (just kidding of course unless you're shooting NTSC)
OO
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Don
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Old November 25th, 2007, 10:22 PM   #3
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Hi Don,
It's good to see some are still using this cam. I still think it's the best 4.3 cam in this style and price range.
Could you explain you work out in obtaining 16.9 from your PD170, I would like to try it out.
I use sont Vegas as my editor.

Cheers
Simon
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Old November 26th, 2007, 06:56 AM   #4
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Simon,
Since IMO the native 16:9 in the camera pretty well sucks and look ugly what I did a long time ago with my 150s was to make a mask that I tape to the LCD-a bit of clear tape just to hold it in place and no the tape isn't on the lcd screen. I place the tape on the frame around the lcd. The mask is cut to a 16:9 ratio and I shoot in 4:3 and simply use the mask to gauge my headroom and bottom room.
In post (I also use Vegas) I can either use Pan/Crop to adjust OR simply use generated media top and bottom to simultae 16:9 framing.
Is it real widescreen, of course not but honestly most laymen don't notice the difference. So IOW, I cheat
;-)
Don
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Old November 26th, 2007, 10:36 AM   #5
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My 170 is still my main and only camera. I find the competition isn't so much from HDV but from the Panasonic 100 series. So many people request that specifically usually because they want 24p.

I do have an EX1 on order but that still won't put my 170 into retirement. Clients who want to pay for HD will get that. I will not GIVE AWAY HD like so many people seem to do.

I want an HD camera that is significantly better than SD and I don't like HDV as a codec, workflow, the low light performance of the current crop of those cameras. The difference between the EX1 and other HDV cameras and certainly SD (170) is significant enough that I can safely tier my prices. Yet the 170 will give clients a quality product even when I have to shoot SD in low light.

For those who think "low light" is for wedding videos only haven't hit the corporate marketing segment that I have. I'm often shooting marketing videos in situations where bringing in lights are impossible.
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Old November 26th, 2007, 11:18 AM   #6
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Just came back from a shoot in Grenada with my trusty 170....

The magic of its low light performance in underwater work is just fantastic...

some say its a little too good...
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Old November 26th, 2007, 03:13 PM   #7
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Thanks guys,

Don do you use the preset 16.9 frame in Pan/Crop.
What are your project settings to do this?
And one last question
what are your render settings?

I'm trying to find a way to do this myself but i'm getting all confused with aspect ratios all over the place, any help? i would welcome.
Cheers
Simon
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Old November 26th, 2007, 03:54 PM   #8
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I have a VX2100, but that must be the same.

Recording on the VX 4.3
Vegas project properties PAL/NTSC DV widescreen
indeed the 16.9 preset in pan/crop (good for the most beautiful tilts you've ever seen ;-) )
render as widescreen (have a look at the pixel aspect ratio, must be 1,4568)
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Old November 26th, 2007, 04:09 PM   #9
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Thanks Hubert,
Thats the info i like. Whats the final output like on a wide screen? is there much loss in quality? or is 4.3 stretched on wide screen better?

Regards
Simon
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Old November 27th, 2007, 06:12 AM   #10
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It looks good to me, but i haven't seen it yet on big HD screens. From what people say on this board, that must be terrible :-)
Can't see any difference on SD screens actually. I like this workflow because i can go 4.3 and/or 16.9. There's also some freedom to tilt around.
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Old December 1st, 2007, 02:27 PM   #11
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I still use my 170s for corporate work and for concert tours. Since we do a lot of work where we can't control the lighting like in clubs and auditoriums the 150/170s are the best for us.

I'v had my camera feeds outputed to large screens and the images had been great.
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Old December 1st, 2007, 06:19 PM   #12
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I own a Panasonic HVX200, but i work in a TV network and there we use a lot of PD170
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 02:53 AM   #13
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Giovanni thats very interesting, what format do they use,4.3 or 16.9?

Cheers
Simon
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 11:41 AM   #14
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2 PD 170's

If u guys could take a look at my post regarding using two camera's timecode sync I'd appreciate a response....if there is one.
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 01:11 PM   #15
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I still use my PD-150 and DSR-300 to make training videos. I think the lifetime of the training videos (which just sell and sell and sell) is quite long and the market more readily accepts SD. In fact, I couldn't sell HD to my distribution channel if I had to.

BTW, think of training videos as a retirement plan. They just keep rolling along. You might have to refresh them from time-to-time but if the content is 'evergreen,' they continue to sell.
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