VX-2100 vs PD170 Comparison (INFORMATION, not a question) at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Sony XAVC / XDCAM / NXCAM / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Sony HDV and DV Camera Systems > Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion

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


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old February 13th, 2004, 10:40 AM   #1
John Carey
 
Posts: n/a
VX-2100 vs PD170 Comparison (INFORMATION, not a question)

Ok, I am making this post because I feel it is a very hot topic, and I for one did alot of research and got help from the guys at this forum. Hopefully the hours I put into research can save a few for everyone else interested in this topic. Basically, Here is what I concluded.

For one, the Lenses and the CCD's are the same. Very similar Cameras, here are the differences that stood out to me. (Im sure there are a few others)

1. The VX2100 has 1/8 unbalanced audio input while the PD-170 has XLR w/ phantom Power. The VX also has a Mic mounted on the camera, where the PD170, the microphone can be taken off the camera.
Keep in mind, I have read many reviews about the 1/8 socket input breaking after wear and tear. I can vouch for this being that I own a sony TRV 11 consumer model, and after using it, the socket gets very loose.
FOR MORE AUDIO INFORMATION, VIEW THE BOTTOM OF THE POST!


2. The Pd-170 offers DV & DV Cam format, while the VX2100 is Only DV.
Although Dvcam does not have noticeable video or audio differences, It is a broadcast standard and has a smpte time code while dv does not. You only really need Dvcam if your asked to use it.

3. The Pd-170 gives you few more Iris Controls. (More Fstop increments)

4. The PD-170 is handled by the Sony Professional Department, and the VX2100 is handled by the Consumer Department. The professional department has an 800 number support, faster turn-around, more competent techs.

5. The VX2100 has something called Automatic Shutdown, where the camera turns off after 5 minutes of idleness. The PD-170 stays on during Idle but just turns the drum off. (I Found the auto-shutdown to be EXTREMELY annoying)

6. The PD170 comes with Wide Angle adapter.

7. They are very similar in size, but the PD170 is slightly bigger and heavier.

Now, a reason to go with Either of these cameras is because they both have amazing low light (same) capabilities and both have the same beautiful picture. Another feature that is huge is that these cameras are built to last and work hard, I have found that the Sony's have a much more solid and tougher construction than the Pany and the Xl1.

The Meat and Potatoes of it all is basically, your comparing two amazing camcorders that are about a grand (give or take) in price difference. Its Prosumer vs Consumer. The Choice is up to you.

AUDIO CONTINUED:

The Benefit of XLR inputs is that most decent microphones (leviers, good dynamic mics) and almost ALL shotgun mics are XLR and need the 48+ (Phantom Power). If you plan on using various Mics with the VX2100, you will have to buy adapters and attenuations and your going to eventually spend 100's of dollars and have stuff hanging all over your camera.

Now, the advantage of the audio on the VX2100 is, if your just going to use the onboard Mic, than this is for you. This makes the camera a little less bulkier and lighter. If you plan on using the Mic with various different external sources, I would definitely Recommend the PD170.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"The audio channels on the PD-150 & PD-170 are completely independent, and can be set up differently. This means that you can have one channel set to one sensitivity and the other set to a different sensitivity, or one to manual level and the other to automatic. This is really handy when you are bringing in two different audio sources that are going to be at significantly different volumes (e.g., wireless on one channel, and the camera mike for the other). In the VX2100, the two channels always use the same settings. If you are in auto level mode, then both channels are in auto level mode. If you are in manual mode, then both channels are set to have the same sensitivity. This makes an external unit with adjustable attenuations (like the Beachtek) pretty important for the VX-2100. (add $200 and a clunky box that is a hassle to use" -Alan Christensen


  Reply With Quote
Old February 13th, 2004, 11:46 AM   #2
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: California
Posts: 139
You left off another comparison between the VX-2100 and the PD-150 that I think is really important.

1. The audio channels on the PD-150 are completely independent, and can be set up differently. This means that you can have one channel set to one sensitivity and the other set to a different sensitivity, or one to manual level and the other to automatic. This is really handy when you are bringing in two different audio sources that are going to be at significantly different volumes (e.g., wireless on one channel, and the camera mike for the other). In the 2100, the two channels always use the same settings. If you are in auto level mode, then both channels are in auto level mode. If you are in manual mode, then both channels are set to have the same sensitivity. This makes an external unit with adjustable attenuators (like the Beachtek) pretty important for the VX-2100. (add $200 and a clunky box that is a hassle to use)
Alan Christensen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 13th, 2004, 01:05 PM   #3
Wrangler
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Vallejo, California
Posts: 4,049
Another difference. As one member has recently found out, the 1/8" microphone socket is delicate and does not last a long time if used in pro applications (lots of use) unless precautions are taken.

While your comparison list is good, it doesn't address the functional differences between the cameras. That is, why is the XLR and all the other differences of benefit (if they are) to the camera user and in what contexts. Can you add that? If you do, I'll post it to the top of the forum.
__________________
Mike Rehmus
Hey, I can see the carrot at the end of the tunnel!
Mike Rehmus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 13th, 2004, 01:42 PM   #4
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 484
A small but very useful tip re one of your observations about the VX: you can wake it from sleep mode by tapping the photo button. You don't have to turn it off and on again. It IS a pain to have it quit on you, but a bit less painful when you can bring it back that easily.

David Hurdon
David Hurdon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 13th, 2004, 03:13 PM   #5
Trustee
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 1,483
Don't underestimate the importance of John's #5.
Also, the 1/8" miniplug on the VX is *very* fragile.
I knew it would be from having about every single
1/8" connector I've used go out on me so I babied
mine on my VX. It got very little use, and I even used
a right-angle adapter into the socket and attached
all my 1/8" plugs to the right-angle instead of the
camera and the VX socket *still* went out on me.
The right-angle was inserted a half-dozen times
and taped down with electrical tape to keep it
stationary.
Dave Largent is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 13th, 2004, 05:15 PM   #6
John Carey
 
Posts: n/a
Ok Mike, its Edited

Ok Mike, I Edited the description. I just really feel that This will kind of damper the endless homogenius questions that kill you deep inside reading post after post. I also feel this will save people hours of searching, and inform them. If we all put hours into researching this, why should others have to as well? Right? Thanks for the Great Forum Mike




John

PS Now the DVX-100A vx PD170 Tidle Wave of Questions will hit the shore. :-)
  Reply With Quote
Old February 13th, 2004, 06:38 PM   #7
Wrangler
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Vallejo, California
Posts: 4,049
Great job.

#4 is a massive difference in terms of service. 800 number support, faster turn-around, more competent techs. One just has to stay on top of them.
__________________
Mike Rehmus
Hey, I can see the carrot at the end of the tunnel!
Mike Rehmus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 13th, 2004, 06:58 PM   #8
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 484
<<<-- Originally posted by Dave Largent : Don't underestimate the importance of John's #5.
-->>>

Would you expand on that observation, Dave? The shut down annoys me, as I acknowledged, but when I subtract the cost of my Beachtek from the price difference between the VX2000 and the PD-150 when I bought 18 months ago, I get an $800 bill for curing this. For me, making a living unrelated to video, the fix isn't worth the price, but for someone living on the camera I would think it's an easier decision. And I guess I should say that I understand this isn't the only non-XLR-related way in which the PD is superior, but it's the one that bugs me.

David Hurdon
David Hurdon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 15th, 2004, 02:56 AM   #9
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Billericay, England UK
Posts: 4,711
I'd like to point at Item 3 and raise that high on the list. Who here doesn't shoot with the aperture locked down? Right, we all do, but for years we've all flinched at the knowledge that to make a small adjustment in the exposure means suffering that half-stop visible bump on screen.

At last Sony have seen the light, and now the control wheel moves in quarter stop increments. It take two 'clicks' to change the display to the next half stop, and of course the effect on screen is much less noticeable. It's still there of course, and the DVX100 is still better.

It's a great shame that Sony didn't seem able or willing to give the VX2k1 the same fine control over the aperture, and I for one won't be recommending this camera to any serious operator. This presumably is what Sony have in mind - splitting the VX and PD even further apart.

tom.
Tom Hardwick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 12th, 2004, 09:55 AM   #10
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Mays Landing, NJ
Posts: 11,543
I have a VX-2000 and there is another important difference between it and the PD-150; I'm wondering if it also applies to the newer models? On the 2000 you can take manual control of either the iris or shutter speed but there is a caveat. In manual mode, if you change the shutter speed the camera will automatically compensate by resetting the iris. You can then go back to manual iris operation and set it to anything you want while still maintaining the shutter speed. So basically, you can set any combination of shutter speed and iris desired, but you need to set the shutter speed first. Whenever you change shutter speed the camera will always cancel your iris setting. I see this same behavior on my PDX-10. From what I understand, the PD-150 does not behave this way.

A few other things missing from your list are the BW viewfinder, adjustable setup level and ability to view head usage hours.
Boyd Ostroff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 17th, 2004, 07:59 PM   #11
Go Cycle
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Huntington, NY
Posts: 795
ALSO........................gain and iris can be set seperate on the PD170
__________________
Lou Bruno
Lou Bruno is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Sony XAVC / XDCAM / NXCAM / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Sony HDV and DV Camera Systems > Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:27 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network