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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PMW-300, PXW-X200, PXW-X180 (back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.


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Old December 3rd, 2007, 05:00 PM   #1
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EX1 for weddings?

Anyone here planning on using EX1 for wedding coverage? If so, how do you plan to deal with the 1hr/16GB data-rate? Are there any products out there that will allow speedy data dumps to a portable HD?
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Old December 3rd, 2007, 05:35 PM   #2
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16X2- Remember you can run 2 cards at once and they're hot swappable.
As for dumping to a drive I read somewhere (I believe it was Spot actually that ran some tests and found) that a decent computer would dump the card at 2 to 3 times speed so an hour of footage dumped in about 20 to 30 minutes but I can't find the post he had about it. Maybe it was someone else but I could have sworn that's what I read.
As far as using it for weddings, if I was to get the camera (maybe, might, thinking about it) I would most certainly use it for weddings. 1/2,HD,great lens, why not?
Don
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Old December 3rd, 2007, 07:10 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yang Wen View Post
Anyone here planning on using EX1 for wedding coverage? If so, how do you plan to deal with the 1hr/16GB data-rate? Are there any products out there that will allow speedy data dumps to a portable HD?
Most definitely. I specialize in doing onsite edits that I show at the reception so this cam is a no brainer as half the 3 hours time I usually spend editing is spent importing.

With my Mac Book Pro's Express Card slot, this will significantly reduce "importing" time.
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Old December 3rd, 2007, 07:44 PM   #4
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The speed to a laptop with Express port can be 10x real time. I'm hearing 3x to 5x via USB port.
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Old December 3rd, 2007, 07:55 PM   #5
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Hmmm that sounds like it "might" be doable.. I work by myself and many weddings are rushed from location to location... I'm thinking 4x16GB cards would be the safest.. but that would get very expensive..

Why can't they just accept normal CF cards like the RED camera does?

Or another ques, what is so special about the SxS memory that makes them so expensive?


I'm thinking this would be a great feature: A dedicated button located close to the record button where when pressed and holded, it immediately deletes everything recorded during the current take and waits for the user to release it to start recording again. In wedding videography, too often a shot is ruined by a pan that goes jerky at the end, or a wedding guest unexpectedly walking into the shot. This feature will allow us to maximize the space on the card and have even less footage to sift-thru afterwards.

Last edited by Yang Wen; December 3rd, 2007 at 10:30 PM.
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Old December 3rd, 2007, 10:29 PM   #6
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Sick, that boton would help for every filming situation, is a wicked idea, call the guys you have to call.
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Old December 3rd, 2007, 10:39 PM   #7
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deleting clips

I have read here that there is an easy way to delete clips in the menu area of the cam. Personally I got a bad feeling in my stomach just thinking of deleting the wrong clip and think that will take some getting accustomed to.

I (God willing) will buy two EX for my jobs. We shoot from basic 1 hour jobs to multiple day events. I feel this cam will save us quite a bit of time in post in a few areas.

I was leaning towards the 8 gig cards and get a label system down. That way if you lose one it won't hurt quite so bad and then wait for the 16-32 gigi cards to come down some.

I think they are expensive because they are so new. When more and more of these cams go out critical mass will be met and the price should come down.

Have fun I really like Chicago.

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Old December 4th, 2007, 12:42 AM   #8
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I definitely plan on purchasing this camera for event type work. Low light is one of the key points of this camera (and is a big thing with clients) and it's what I've been waiting for in the prosumer HD models. That coupled with its unbeatable image quality and you're gold. I'll do what I do with digital SLR memory cards sometimes...offload onsite to a laptop or probably sometime next year a hard drive of sorts (ala Firestore) may be released for under $1,000 or maybe less.

I just read an interesting bit of trivia: SxS is pronounced "S by S", not "ess ex ess".
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Old December 4th, 2007, 12:52 AM   #9
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I am looking at getting two of these babies for wedding work primarily in Feb 2008. Ideally I'm thinking I will buy an extra 2 * 16gb cards per camera, plus the bonus 2 * 8b cards. I really only want to have to download once, one the way to the reception.

Ideal situation would be to then get a one or two 32gbs when they come down. After a few months of jobs I would like to be able to download the entire day at the end of the day (unless I'm doing an SDE).

Its a sick camera though. If I dont' get this I will get the V7.
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Old December 4th, 2007, 12:55 AM   #10
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I found a nice review of the EX1 by a wedding videographer..

Looks like this is not the holy grail..

http://www.videouniversity.com/forum...llapsed;guest=
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Old December 4th, 2007, 04:20 AM   #11
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I wouldn't think it ideal for weddings because you need another complicated finicky piece of gear to make it work: a laptop. Right now, my 6 month old Dell randomly shuts down every 10 minutes for no reason whatsoever. Before that I had some spyware problems. Wedding you usually get on shot, they won't do take two. Maybe with a firestore? Dunno.
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Old December 4th, 2007, 05:55 AM   #12
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Initially I thought the EX1 would be the holy grail for weddings, but concerns about security of data once moved to a laptop at the venue and time/cost of archiving is pushing me towards the Z7. Yes, the shallower DOF would have been nice but how well will it match my Z1 2nd camera in low light?

Simultaneous recording to tape, cheaper CF, improved LCD resolution for focussing cf the Z1 and similar low light footage means I hope there are no real flaws exposed when the Z7 is tested in the field. Oh, and a LANC input...
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Old December 4th, 2007, 08:29 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Luce View Post
I wouldn't think it ideal for weddings because you need another complicated finicky piece of gear to make it work: a laptop.
Not trying to sound like a Mac snob but I never have any of those problems with my Mac Book Pro. I have no qualms whatsoever taking that to dump footage onto.
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Old December 4th, 2007, 08:33 AM   #14
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My field is practically weddings and event videos. I have always used shoulder mounted cameras up till now - for these last 10 years I've been shooting weddings with a Sony DSR-300 DVCAM. I love this camera as it is extremely low light (f11@2000 lux) with a very good picture. Last Friday I was given an EX1 to try out with the possibility of buying it out. I've tried it out in 2 seperate weddings - an evening one and a morning one. These are the comments so far (keeping in mind that I had to "steal" time to be able to shoot with the EX1 and I could only see the output on a 21 inch TFT PC monitor)

For:

1)Low-light capability - YES this is a low light capable camera! It is the same as my DSR-300. I always film indoor shots without any on-camera light and this camera was able to do so very well. It is true that I used both 6 & 9 dB gain but even on the DSR300 I do the same. Grain level seems to be the same as the DVCAM. One has to keep in mind that in wedding and event videos practicality has an edge on quality - a bit of grain would not be noticed by the couple but a bright light will be!!

2)DOF is IMHO slightly better than my DSR-300, which also have 0.5inch CCD sensors.

3)Picture quality in general: I've used the 1080/50i setting and the picture quality (with all the camera settings at default) is awesome. I know that this is subjective but believe me the general look is more film like than video

4)Recording is instant. In DVCAM or DV when one records then pauses and then press the rec button immediately again there is a short delay due to tape mechanism. Not anymore on card recording! Hence no lost shots.

5)LCD monitor - just awesome. Extremely reliable for manual focusing. Also performs very well in bright sunlight.

6)Manual WB - setting of WB is very quick. The DSR300 used to take maybe 2-3 seconds - the EX much much less.


Against:

1)The camera body - after filming many years with shoulder mounted cameras I was in for a shock. I guess I'll get used to it but it is slightly heavy for hand held filming. An accessory such as the Sony shoulder brace for the Z1 would help tremendously.

2)ATW - I rarely use it but if you do and if you do like I did - assigning it to an assignable button, pls note that when you switch off and on the camera it will not return to ATW but to whatever position the WB switch is - whether A or B or Preset. OK you will see the result in the monitor but pls beware.

3)Zoom lever a bit loose - in fact if it is in the manual zoom mode and you point the camera to the ceiling on wide setting you will see that the zoom starts to drift slightly backwards - just lock it with your thumb or put it on servo

4)The postion of the connectors (below the hand grip) is a joke! ...and the flap covering them!! I've also misplaced the SDI cap 3 times up till now - won't be long before it's gone forever.

5)Auto-focus (I've never used one but was tempted with the EX) seems to be slow and would definetely not be good for wedding and event videos

Other comments:

1)I've read in other threads some concern on audio. I didn't test the audio specifically - but I did shove the camera in between 2 drums of the band that was playing during the wedding. The setting was on AGC and the sound was acceptable - with no distortion. However I have yet to test the audio out properly.

2)The flash syndrome - since I saw the output on a 21 inch I cannot really comment. But from what I saw there is nothing worse than my CCD DSR 300. In the 300 I used to get a full frame heavily overexposed whilst in the EX I got a full frame overexposed (but less than the 300) with alternating horizontal black lines. During playback the end result is just the same as the DSR300 CCD camera. However maybe it is still too early to comment - I need to examine more footage in different scenarios.

3)I've still no idea as to what shall I buy as an edit suite. I went to my SONY dealer and tried to edit the captured clips on Premiere CS3 together with Matrox RT2. Clips were imported but had to be rendered - a definitely no go! Will try this week to edit on PP CS3 together with Prospect HD trial demo and see if I'm in luck. I need a system like I'm used to - Premiere 1.5 - just capture the footage and edit like a breeze for a fast turnover (before the couple decides to divorce each other!!)

The above are just my observations which might be disputed by others. However if there are others like me in need of a camera change for weddings that needs to be filmed on the fly without any hassles - I think this is the camera.
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Old December 4th, 2007, 08:42 AM   #15
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Thanks for that Brian. I'm glad you mentioned the zoom being loose, that was one of my first comments too but as everyone has been talking about the lens feeling like a pro lens I assumed it must have just been me.

Same goes for the connectors and cover - I think Sony would struggle to find a worse place for them :)

It's great to see the ex1 is faring so well in light gathering against such a high end DVCAM too, that's certainly ground breaking for a handheld HD camera.

regards

Paul.
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