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


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Old May 14th, 2003, 08:29 AM   #1
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Vx2000 or TRV950?

(I asked the same question in the TRV950 forum)
I need your advice guys... Im strictly recreational, travel etc, I am limited by budget (my wife) and I cant decide if I should go for the newer technology TRV950 with the smaller ccds, not so hot low light performance but larger LCD screen with touch focus and usb streaming, light weight etc... or should I go with the older, heavier Vx2000 with less features but better quality video?
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Old May 14th, 2003, 09:05 AM   #2
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I think the 950 should be significantly cheaper than the VX-2000, isn't it? I have a VX-2000 and it's quite nice. I also have a PDX-10, which is the "pro" version of the 950 (like the PD-150 is to the VX-2000). Last I checked, the PDX-10 was similar in price to the VX-2000 (around $2,000USD).

Unless you want a little camera I doubt there's much reason to get a TRV-950 over a VX-2000, other than price. However there might be a number of reasons to get a PDX-10. I got it for the "real" 16:9 (which the 950 does not have). The PDX-10 also records DVCAM, has XLR inputs with phantom power and a high res BW viewfinder.

Actually there were recently several extended discussions of the merits of the PDX-10 vs VX-2000, browse around the forums here a bit and you should find them.
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Old May 14th, 2003, 09:06 AM   #3
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Personally, I'd go for the better video quality, I find alot of these features are really just gimmicks. For me Video quality wins out.

John.
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Old May 14th, 2003, 10:20 AM   #4
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I went through the same decision-making process last fall. I agreed with John -- I got a VX2000 because of its superior imaging and, particularly, low-light capability.

The only positive about the 950 was the form-factor; all the other "features," e.g. Blue Tooth, still-imaging, etc., struck me as fairly useless gimmicks. The only negative about the VX2000 was the form-factor. Ultimately, I found the size and weight of the VX2000 to be quite manageable (and I do travel videography).
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Old May 14th, 2003, 11:45 AM   #5
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I thought long and hard about taking my PD150 on vacation later this month and then thought, "Nuts, I've been humping that thing along on the job and it isn't that great for video from a moving vehicle because of its form-factor.

In decent light, my PC110 does a much better job where I'm moving around. Its footage intercuts quite nicely with my other Sony cameras. I regularly use it as a hidden camera behind the altar for wedding videos. The footage is clear, good color and otherwise unobtainable in that context.

And it fits in a large pocket. Plus I get snapshot-sized digital stills too. The PC120 (its replacement), with 1.5 megapixel capability is around $1200. Did I mention it has nightshot? Fun stuff, that. Decent sound for vacation video too. Even from the built-in microphone. I have the mini-shotgun for it and that works reasonably well for vacation work. I'm NOT going to carry a separate microphone around with me.

Even the tripod requirements are lower than for the 150.

If the weather turns bad, a frequent vacation issue, I can hide the PC110 under anything. With the 150, I need a separate cover for it.

If I were buying a travel camera again, I'd probably go for one of the microminiature Sony cameras that will fit in a shirt pocket. The video quality from one of those is still better than the Hi-8 I used to take and with which I could always wow the folks back home.

For me, it's a vacation, not a job. Your mileage may vary.
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Old May 22nd, 2003, 07:14 PM   #6
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Thank you all

Thank you all for your excellent advice, quality issues aside I am leaning away from the Vx2000 for one reason, its size... I have a medium format still film camera that now stays at home in its case when I go travelling just because it is too big to comfotrably fit a day pack and I dont want to lug a hard case everywhere with me.

So now Im going to have a look at the PDX-10 as an option.

Let me know if you seriously think the size of the Vx2000 is not a problem when you are travelling, going fishing etc.

Also I dont want to sound ignorant but what is "form factor" a couple of you have mentioned...
Cheers
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Old May 22nd, 2003, 08:26 PM   #7
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Re: Thank you all

<<<-- Originally posted by David Rook : Also I dont want to sound ignorant but what is "form factor" a couple of you have mentioned...-->>>

The overall size, weight and shape of a camera allow it to be grouped with other cameras of similar design.
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Old May 26th, 2003, 06:42 PM   #8
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I don't know. I have a PD-150 and just sold a VX-2000. I personally would NEVER take the 150/2000 with me on vaction. Just way too big. I'd take just standard consumer camcorder, a PDX-10 would be the limit to the size I would carry.

Just my .02 worth. I bought the PD150 for "pro" shooting. I don't need pro home movies. :)
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Old May 26th, 2003, 06:54 PM   #9
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I have a VX2000 which I take with me for travel. It replaced a TRV20 which, while a better form factor, didn't produce video of high-enough quality. There is, of course, no question about the quality of video produced by the VX2000, so I'll limit myself to talking about it's practicality for travel video.

I took the camera through a 2-1/2 week trip through India. It accompanied me on trains, planes, boats, in cars, in tuk-tuks, on elephants, on camels and, mostly, on foot. Yes, it was definitely bigger and heavier than the handicam it replaced. However, neither the weight nor the size bothered me. I replaced the Sony strap with a longer one, which made it easier to carry, bandolier-style under one arm. I used it with an Optex wide-angle adapter, which added (considerably) to the weight of the camera, but still was not uncomfortable to carry.

When we travel, I always carry a day-pack for cameras, a small umbrella, a sweater, and the occassional purchase we make along the way. I bought a Lowepro Minitrekker for this purpose, which fit the VX2000 perfectly, and also carried a Sharp MT-15 minidisk, a Sony stereo mike, filter, extra batteries, tapes, film, a Canon SLR and an Adorama monopod.

I'm used to always carrying a video camera with me when I travel, so it is second nature for me to carry one. In fact, on this trip, I took the VX2000 to places I normally wouldn't take the TRV20, specifically inside temples, restaurants, and out at night -- all places where I wouldn't normally be able to get acceptable video because of the low light.

I guess it all depends on what you want out of your travel videos. For me, they're the best souvenir of any trip -- they let me and my wife relive our adventures. In a way, I am aiming for "pro home movies." The better the video I bring home, the better they serve their purpose.
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