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


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Old March 26th, 2007, 09:05 PM   #1
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still good time to buy?

I'm at a purchase point for a new camera after several years of filming weddings with two Digital-8's (TRV840). I had been looking at 1CCD HDV cameras, but will still be dealing with 1CCD. I looked at a 3CDD HDV camera, but it's out my price point, and the VX2100 side by side in low light. I was amazed at the VX2100. I guess my question is since I'm filming weddings and events, is the purcase of a VX2100 one I'll be happy with for the next few years until HD becomes more mainstream? I only film about 5-6 events/weddings a year, but am looking for improved quality over my current cameras.

Thanks,
Grant
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Old March 26th, 2007, 09:11 PM   #2
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The VX series has been highly praised for low light videography, and work well in those low lit receptions situations. I have the VX2000, and it is great in low light. This is the camera's forte. You do not get true 16X9.

Will it take you a couple of years,,,, hmmm. I bought a FX1, which I think you can still get for a similar price. I've had it about a year. As time as gone on, I go to it more and more as my primary camera.... even with SD projects. So I would consider that possibility. I understand it may be discontinued, but here are still some new ones out there. The FX7 steps in its place, for about $2,700, and I would certainly consider that one, too.
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Old March 26th, 2007, 09:22 PM   #3
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Personal opinion but here goes.
I know everyone is jumping on the HD bandwagon and I understand that but from my point of view HD right now is where Beta and VHS were 25 or so years ago. (remember this is just MY opinion) HD-DVD and Bluray seem to still be fighting it out. Most of the population of the USA still don't own an HD tv much less have a player capable of playing either of the formats-I know a lot of folks in the video business and most of them aren't ready for the change over either. It's not just the camera(s) you have to be able to produce a finished product for the CONSUMER client and frankly most vid people aren't ready to do that.
IMO, SD will be around for a while and while I love the look of HD on my HDTV with my HD cable box getting the HD programming that is offered it seems that the average person will not really see the difference because they don't have the gear or the eye to see it.
Now having said all of that please don't mistake what I'm saying. HD has a place and will be here in full force soon enough and if I was just starting out in the business I would PROBABLY go HD. If you feel comfortable with SD then the 2100 is a great camera and one that you can keep around for a long time-heck I've still got my FIRST VX1000 from 1995 or 96 and it just now broke, but I got a lot of wonderful footage from it and honestly it made me a lot of money over the years. Even my 150 is almost 6 years old and my 250 has a few on it.
The choice is really up to you but IF you decide to stay with SD then again the 2100 is a great little camera.
remember the opinion related in the above post are strictly ONE mans OPINION based on his own experience-YOUR mileage may vary ;-)
Don
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Old March 26th, 2007, 09:32 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Barcellos View Post
The VX series has been highly praised for low light videography, and work well in those low lit receptions situations. I have the VX2000, and it is great in low light. This is the camera's forte. You do not get true 16X9.

Will it take you a couple of years,,,, hmmm. I bought a FX1, which I think you can still get for a similar price. I've had it about a year. As time as gone on, I go to it more and more as my primary camera.... even with SD projects. So I would consider that possibility. I understand it may be discontinued, but here are still some new ones out there. The FX7 steps in its place, for about $2,700, and I would certainly consider that one, too.
Thanks Chris. It may have been the FX7 I was looking at with the side-by-side low light demo in the sales room. I don't recall for sure though, but it was a Sony HD 3CCD. I'm really focusing on a good low light camera for just that, receptions and the occasional low-light ceremony (like my last wedding which I'm still editing, it's very noticable with my 1CDD cameras).

Realizing I'm going to be able to make a single purchase that will have to last me several years, if I can get HD for a few hundred more now, I'd do that, but if I'm going to be sacrificing low-light as a result, I'm thinking the VX may be a better fit for my situation.

I guess that's what I'm looking for, some real-world feedback on low-light filming. Do you think the FX1 (and subsequently the FX7) is comporable to your VX2000?

Thanks,
Grant
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Old March 26th, 2007, 09:38 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Bloom View Post
The choice is really up to you but IF you decide to stay with SD then again the 2100 is a great little camera.
remember the opinion related in the above post are strictly ONE mans OPINION based on his own experience-YOUR mileage may vary ;-)
Don
Thanks Don. I'll browse the FX7 threads and reviews and decide in a day or two. I'm am looking to pick up a camera by this weekend, whichever route I go, and low-light filming is really my priority at this point.

Like I mentioned before, seeing the actual camera in low-light is what really got me interested in the VX2100.

Thanks,
Grant
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Old March 27th, 2007, 08:36 AM   #6
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I'll second what Don Bloom has said.
While some might say "everyone" is buying HDTV . . .
If ALL TV sets being sold today are HDTV but about 20% of the households buy a new TV set each year, that's still 5 years for a complete changeover to HDTV.

Now there's the playback issue with HD-DVD vs Blu-Ray. My guess is that will take about a year to finish that shake out and the winner won't move into the mainstream until the prices drops down to the $200-$400 range. It'll take a few years for that changeover to take place too.

There's some speculation in the above since I don't have exact numbers but if you look at past technology changes such as B&W TV to Color, LPs and tapes to CDs, VHS to DVD, the changeover always took many years.

Now you don't have to or shouldn't wait until numbers reach 100% but certainly 30% or more market penetration. IF you can cater to the few that have HDTV and an HD player (with appropriate higher price) as a business model it MIGHT be worth moving to HD.

Keep in mind that with HDV you now need an HD monitor for color correction and since HDV can't be monitored out of firewire natively, you have to add a card to the cost. Then there's the added render time involved with editing and confirming a GOP based file. All this is additional costs to your business beyond the camera. Can you pass those costs on to your clients? Will you increase the number of jobs you get (with no "player" penetration not likely here)?

Finally the HDV camera you buy today will be dated in the 2-3 years it'll take for significant consumer HDTV/Player market penetration. None of the HDV cameras can match the low light performance you get in the VX and PD series too. In 2-3 years they'll be many improvements in HDV cameras and maybe even an improved/different codec (AVCHD or XDCAM-HD/MXF). Try doing a swish pan, shooting action sports, doing a slo mo with HDV video and worry about the possibility of visible artifacts.

If you're shooting a movie with controlled lighting or a doc were you won't be in serious low light situations, shooting HDV can future proof your work.

If you're shooting events, corporate work, local cable spots that won't be airing in HD, SD is still quite viable.
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Old March 27th, 2007, 03:42 PM   #7
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If you're shooting events, corporate work, local cable spots that won't be airing in HD, SD is still quite viable.
Thanks Craig. I think based on "real-world" feedback, I'll go with the VX2100 and will be comfortable doing so. I have yet to get a request for HD anyways, so rather than invest in the HD hardware now, I'll get something that is a major upgrade to what I have now, and every thing I currently film is 4:3 anyways. Also, even with my 1 CCD Digital8 cameras, I've been getting very good results. It's not only the picture quality, it's what you do with the footage in post that also matters. My projects in DVDSP have major "wow" factor and I have happy customers. This purchase will just elevate the quality for me and my clients.

Thanks again for all the feedback, it's appreciated.

Grant
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Old March 27th, 2007, 04:00 PM   #8
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Currently selling my VX2100 w/low hours and accessories if interested...look in Classified section here

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=89915
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Old March 27th, 2007, 06:11 PM   #9
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Currently selling my VX2100 w/low hours and accessories if interested...look in Classified section here

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=89915
Clicking on the link requires me to log in (even though I am). I do login and it says I don't have access privlages. Ideas? Where are the classifieds located at?

Thanks,
Grant
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Old March 27th, 2007, 07:25 PM   #10
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Toward the bottom of the main Dvinfo.com/conf page.

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/forumdisplay.php?f=16
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Old March 27th, 2007, 07:32 PM   #11
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Hi Grant and welcome to DVinfo. Unfortunately you won't be able to view the classifieds yet, based on your join date of March 11. The classifieds are restricted to members in good standing who've been here at least a month.

So be patient a little longer and one day you'll suddenly be able to access the classifieds forum.
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Old March 27th, 2007, 08:05 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Boyd Ostroff View Post
Hi Grant and welcome to DVinfo. Unfortunately you won't be able to view the classifieds yet, based on your join date of March 11. The classifieds are restricted to members in good standing who've been here at least a month.

So be patient a little longer and one day you'll suddenly be able to access the classifieds forum.
Thanks. I've already found a wealth of information from this website and can wait a few weeks for more access.

Marco, I just purchased from B&H and it will be here on Thursday. I'll look later for a good deal on second cam as business picks up.

Thanks,
Grant
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Old March 27th, 2007, 08:28 PM   #13
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Doh! Lost a sale due to you being too new!

Dear Mr. Murphy (Murphy's Law)...
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