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Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
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Old October 28th, 2004, 07:10 AM   #31
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Just to be clear, the FX1 and the pro camera to follow (likely) ARE ALSO miniDV cameras. They can record BOTH HD (HDV acutally) and miniDV. The FX1 has a kind of 24p on Playback but not sure how they do it.

Don't forget even the Panny 100 is actually recording to tape at 29.97 (NTSC) and ADDING the 3:2 pulldown to tape to make it 29.97fps.
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Old October 28th, 2004, 11:23 AM   #32
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So if I want a good event camera and for weddings the PD-170 is going to be a good choice? $2,800 is a pretty good price.

a side question: does the mic come off the PD-170? Can you put a different one on if you want? Thanks.
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Old October 28th, 2004, 12:28 PM   #33
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<<<-- Originally posted by Bob Zimmerman : So if I want a good event camera and for weddings the PD-170 is going to be a good choice? $2,800 is a pretty good price.

a side question: does the mic come off the PD-170? Can you put a different one on if you want? Thanks. -->>>

PD-170 is best event camera around and will be for some time my hunch.

PD-170 has TWO XLR ins. Sony mic that comes with it doesn't have to be attached. When I shoot events I use the Sony shotgun mic to one input and a wireless lav on the groom to the other. Catch the vows on one mic and the room reaction on the other. Each mic can have separate levels.

When shooting corporate or clubs, shotgun in one XLR for room ambiance and mixing board feed into the other for clean sound. Each XLR input can be switched to Line input for a mixing board feed for example. This is an example of what can't be done with FX1 without adding a box with two xlrs to stereo mini (or VX2100). That's ONE difference between "consumer" and (semi) pro cameras.

Other folks I'm sure can list many good uses to having two separate XLR ins.
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Old October 28th, 2004, 05:58 PM   #34
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If you aren't going to take the Sony HD plunge, YES, absolutely, the PD170 is a very fine event acquisition tool, probably the best in it's class.
Is the Sony HD cam better? I have no idea. No one does. If you need/want to buy right now, go for the 170.
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Old October 29th, 2004, 09:39 AM   #35
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I don't see HD as that big right now. It probably will be in a few years but not enough for me to spend $7,000 grand or $3,600 for a consumer camera. That $7,000 grand pro HD will be in the $3,000 range in a couple of years anyway!!
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Old October 29th, 2004, 02:22 PM   #36
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A couple of things to think about. If a client is willing to pay me enough money for an HD project, I'd consider buying one. I'd have to know I can make back the cost of the camera and then some on a couple of HD projects. It would be an alternative to clients who wouldn't be able to touch HD otherwise.

Another thing to think about. They have improved things on the DV end also. The consumer camera is actually a close match to the Panny 100A. One issue is the lack of XLRs on the Sony consumer HDV camera. From a price competitive standpoint I'd wish they'd add the XLRs and maybe hike the price another grand (similar price difference between VX2100 and PD170) so they'd have something similar to the Panny 100A with HDV added. It would probably be at a price point similar (a little less even) to Cannon's new XL2

The Pro camera will have XLRs but that'll cost nearly twice as much. I'd expect they'll be more than just XLRs added to the "pro" version to justify that cost increase.
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Old October 29th, 2004, 02:57 PM   #37
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This first post has caused a bit of a debate and we are all wondering what this hi def format will offer, I for one after parting with 2440 for the pd170 thinking that this was top notch video came to earth with a bump as Sony promoted the new camcorder.

But after reading some other forums which say that the new cam produces paler pics in dv form than the pd 170, and about some sort of freezeing or delay in the new format makes me happy that i have invested in the robust format of the pd170.


Lets give HD a few years to sort it's self out and meanwhile enjoy the fantastic quality that the pd170 and like give us.


regards Ian
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Old October 30th, 2004, 06:39 PM   #38
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For some reason a lot of people view video equipment purchases the same way that they do computer equipment. It's not like your camera won't be worth a damn in six months or a year. NTSC has been around for a long, long time and it is a VERY entrenced standard. That's not to say that a better camera won't come along in the next few months or years, but "upgrading" with video equipment generally isn't anywhere near as compelling as it is with computer equipment.

Also keep in mind that your camera is only one piece in your array of equipment. Good lighting, good audio and other items are just as important if not more so.
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 02:58 PM   #39
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Just when I get my mind made up I read something else!!!

So the PD-170 looks like the event camera I want. But I would like something it play around with filmmaking. I've read this camera is a good choice. How much of a drawback is not having 16:9? I'm sure that there are ways to make it work.
Will it look good on a wide screen TV or even a High Def set?

Any thoughts to even more confuse me!!
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 03:33 PM   #40
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No one camera does it all. The PD-170 has a built in anamorphic 16x9 mode with some loss of resolution. You can get an anamorphic lense for it which will give you better resolution. Neither is HiDef. 16x9 is not HiDef.

You can get a Sony PDX-10 which has true 16x9 chips BUT doesn't have very good low light characteristics OR you can simpy get the new FX1 knowing that you'll have to hook it up to your HiDef TV to see HiDef.

Don't forget the FX1 can do both DV and HDV BUT it doesn't have great low light characteristics.

If you're doing events to make money get the 170. There certainly have been docs and some "indy" films done with it.

Any camera you buy will be better at some things than others. You need to prioritize.
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 04:59 PM   #41
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That's my problem I want it all!!!

My first use is events and weddings. So the Pd-170 is really good for that. I didn't know it had the anamorphic 16x9 mode. It's kind of a tough choice but the price is real good right now. The XL2 is nice but $5,000 is out of my budget.
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 05:57 PM   #42
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The 170 does not have anamorphic mode. It masks pixels out of the 4:3 aspect ratio to approximate the 16:9 aspect ratio. This means you get a lower resolution image.

I'd get the 170 and an anamorphic adapter or the 170 and a PD-10 if money were no issue.

Still 16:9 is not an universal aspect ratio for movies. They are all over the place with their aspect ratios.
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 06:35 PM   #43
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Still, 16:9 sure is pirty.

Why don't you get the 170, make the money, pay the camera off, make the money, all the while suffering through all of those lowly 4:3 images, and if you find that you really can't shoot a movie with it, get a second camera that possess more of the movie making characteristics you want. How 'bout that?
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 07:15 PM   #44
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Mike,
To me it seems the 170 squishes rather than simply crops pixels. Ends up with the same loss of resolution but technically for a slightly different reason.
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 07:28 PM   #45
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I don't think so, Craig. I'm going on reports from a lot of other people who have played around with it. Why don't you capture a still from a 170 16:9 and measure it in a image editing program like Photoshop? Might be interesting to know exactly what it does do. Don't include the black bands but just the image area.
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