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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
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Old April 25th, 2008, 07:38 PM   #1
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Mixing the HPX-500 & EX-1?

Hello,

I am split between cameras so I have decided to research having some of both.

Does anybody have any experience with trying to match these two cameras (or a HVX-200) for a shoot?

I have heard it can be done, but wanted to check some other experiences.

They both offer so much, it would be the best of both worlds if I could use them together.

Thanks
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Old April 26th, 2008, 12:53 AM   #2
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I've tested HPX500 and HVX200, also F27 [varicam]

their resolution is nowhere near EX1 and F350.
Spec-wise and visual-wise.

i can guarantee u this.

More of my subjective findings:
F27 has very good latitude.
HVX200 has very bad latitude, very noisy in darks, HVX500 is in the middle.

I can roughly say F27 resolution quality is comparable to Sony V1.
Visual-resolution wise, HPX500 comparable to Z1.
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Old April 26th, 2008, 08:19 AM   #3
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I am really not asking on which is the better camera, I am more interested in finding out if people have used them together on a shoot and had to make them look similar.

Mainly in color area.

Thanks
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Old April 28th, 2008, 11:16 AM   #4
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You can make anything "match" if you have enough time, either in the camera set up or in post.

The question is , why would you want to? Unless you have no choice but to shoot something with those two cameras I wouldn't do it. Neither the 200 or 500 or in the same class picture wise as an EX. Not only are you looking at a possible color difference, but the pictures from the EX will be much sharper without a lot of the noise that both the 200 and 500 are known for. (There is a reason why Panny has pushed the less noise in the specs for the updates).

If you have a 500 and need another camera to shoot with it find a 200. You'll be a lot happier in the end.

K
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Old April 29th, 2008, 01:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kyle Self View Post
You can make anything "match" if you have enough time, either in the camera set up or in post.
I just want to second that.

Quote:
If you have a 500 and need another camera to shoot with it find a 200. You'll be a lot happier in the end.
I want to both second and expand on that.

First a bit of explanation: The EX1 is a marvel at its price point. If you can work within the limits of CMOS sensors then it can't be matched until you buy a RED at least. (Least financial expenditure for equal or better quality.) The resolution, low light capability and the noise characteristics really set it apart. It is very difficult to match those features of the camera- and if your production tests those features it is even harder, if not impossible.

While you can match color between the HPX500 and the EX1, if your production is HD there is a visible difference in detail. The clients I worked with thought the HPX500 footage was out of focus. (It wasn't of course.) Noise is also an issue. You can always add noise to the EX1 if you need it to match I suppose.

(This isn't the place for a CMOS vs. CCD discussion, but FWIW I think its a toss up in the sub $20k market. In the high end CCD seems to be king.)

If you have, or really need, an HPX500 then I recommend an HPX-170 as your "B" camera. If, and only if, you really need DV tape in your B camera then I recommend the HVX-200A If you don't need tape then without question the HPX-170 is a far better value. (Waveform, vectorscope, HD-SDI ... 'nuff said.)

If you pick the HVX200A or the HPX170 as your B camera, then there is almost no need to color correct to achieve a match with an HPX500 if you set them up the same. The menus and options are virtually identical so it shouldn't be hard to match set ups. (I don't recall if you can move SD cards around between the HVX200 and the HPX500, if so, then I'd expect that to remain an option going forward.)

If you don't have cameras, then if you are buying TODAY then just get two EX-1's and invest in a Letus. When its available upgrade one of the units to an EX-3, and use that with the Letus. I am not a fan of the "semi-shoulder" mount, but its much better than handheld, and with a battery and brace they feel a lot like a real shoulder mount unit. (A lot Canon XL accessories for this purpose should work well with the EX3.)

If you really need data centric workflow and/or 2/3" lenses and you want to match the EX1, then I'd suggest getting either the Sony PDW-700 (XDCAM 4:2:2 disc) or stepping up in the Panasonic line to the HPX-3000 or HPX-3700. All of those cameras far exceed the EX1 and the HPX500 in both cost and capability... and the EX1 is an excellent B cam for any of them.

I guess the big thing is that Panasonic has created a wide gap between their "professional" camera systems and their "prosumer/industrial" products. Sony has very effectively blurred any line with the EX1 and EX3. By this time next year RED will have made the concept of such a line history with Scarlet- especially if Scarlet is widely available with ready inventories.
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Old April 29th, 2008, 01:49 PM   #6
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Agreed.
When Scarlet hits I can see everyone buying one at the feature per cost alone.
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Old April 29th, 2008, 04:57 PM   #7
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Scarlet ...

This camera will have a great impact on other offerings by other makers but it won't be out until sometime in 2009. I'm inclined to pick-up the EX3 (saddened about Panasonic offerings at this time) because I'll be able to work with it over the next year and most likely beyond.
I worked with Phil Bloom in Tokyo yesterday and had a good look at the EX1 and the Letus Ultimate and can say this is an excellent combination! I can see that this system combination and the future Scarlet combined with the Ultimate is going to be a bad ass combination in anyone's kit.
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Old April 29th, 2008, 06:48 PM   #8
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I hear you.
I was very surprised with Panasonic's NAB offerings. I thought they would step up a bit more in the sub $10K camera department.
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Old April 29th, 2008, 07:02 PM   #9
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I remember ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Thomas View Post
I hear you.
I was very surprised with Panasonic's NAB offerings. I thought they would step up a bit more in the sub $10K camera department.
When the HVX 200 first came out, I recall folks asking about what Sony was up to! I keep that in mind as I ponder what Panasonic is up to! The HPX 170 is a step in the right direction but ... it does not compare with the EX1 and certainly will not come near the EX3. Full rasta 2 k, 1/2 censors ought to be a baseline not the exception!
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Old April 29th, 2008, 08:07 PM   #10
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Thanks for your input.

Here is the situation I am in:

Over the years, I have aquired three matching 1/2" chip DV cameras and I often use all three on jobs.

These cameras are great, but 4:3 is on its way out and I am looking for an upgrade path, with three cameras.

Here is the rub... I prefer shoulder mount cameras and I need at least one long lens (120mm+).

If I buy three EX-1 cameras, I don't have a long lens and I only have "little" cameras. They would be nice for the budget, but would not fit the bill.

But I do want to buy at least one, probably two EX-1's.


So what to do about a long lens shoulder mount camera?


The XDCAM HD 335 does not drive me wild due to the lack of 720p60.

The HPX-500 with the rebate now is $8,000 for the body. It seemed like the answer, but I do not want my other two cameras to have 1/3" chips, so that rules out the other Panasonic offerings.

I was quite bummed when I learned Panasonic did not answer the EX-1 per say.

So I am kind of stuck at considering this hybrid Sony/Panasonic setup which I am unsure about as you all are.

But everything else is too expensive!
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Old April 29th, 2008, 09:17 PM   #11
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2 EX-1s and an EX-3 with a longer lens would probably be the best option, although requires waiting a bit.
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Old April 29th, 2008, 09:44 PM   #12
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I think that makes the most sense practically, but I really don't care for the body style of the EX-3.

I wish they had made the EX-3 in the image of the JVC 100/200 series.

Compact, but still sort of full size.

I have a few concerns about having an all CMOS lineup in case I have to film in a non-CMOS friendly environment as well.

I can't believe how complicated the upgrade to HD can be.
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