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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 June 16th, 2008, 05:51 PM   #1
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any dsr300 users gone ex1

am using a 300 for some time now, very crisp picture.does the ex1 match this?if youve shot with a dsr300 /370 youll know right off the bat
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Old June 16th, 2008, 09:15 PM   #2
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Jim, I used to own a DSR300 a few years back. I sold it in 2006 and moved to a Z1U

Nutshell: Dude - the EX1 is 'DEFINATELY' better than a DSR300.
Cleaner crispier, then the DSR300 ?... damn right - :P

Obviously you're not comparing like cameras - SD vs. HD cam
At the end of the day it depends on your criteria, shooting requirments etc.

Basically though ...

Same?
Low light is as good as the DSR300 if not better
Depth of field is similar given the 1/2 inch chips

Different?
It's HD !! Even when downcovered to SD it looks better !! Your workflow will change, software will change - etc.

Form factor is different, but its lighter - you'll get used to it

DSR300 viewfinder is better

EX1 battery life is wayy better. I hate those clumsy Anton Bauer bricks. One large battery will last 4 hours. No more power supplies

No tape in case you didn't notice - less chances of failure IMHO - I had a few minor ones with the DSR300

Just buy it :)

Thanks!
Paul
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Old June 16th, 2008, 09:50 PM   #3
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300vs ex1

thanks paul,
i guess my only reservation is that i love shooting handheld, and the ex1 is so back left heavy other than that i would buy it now,
dont care for the ex3
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Old June 17th, 2008, 05:08 AM   #4
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Jim,

Last December I was loaned an EX1 by my agent with a view to give my ageing DSR300 a good rest and start filming with the EX1. By April I had the EX1 returned back to the agent, primarily becasue the EX3 was announced and because of other small problems discussed here in this forum. My views are as follows:

1) If you do loads of ENG stuff (i.e handheld) you will definetely miss the ergonomics of the DSR 300. Hope that the EX3 reverts this issue.

2) Again if ENG is your main filming, you will miss the 12Volt D-tap output together with the ability to switch on the on board camera light with the trigger. I'm sure there will be many companies offering some accessory with a D-tap outlet but none will be able to mimic the DSR-300 auto switchability. A big loss.....

3)Agree with Paul - low light and depth of field similar. EX1 viewfinder is disastrous but EX3 seem to be changing this issue - the EX3 would then have an advantage over the DSR300 since it has a colour monitor. Another issue to consider with the EX1 - if you film in extreme sunlight, and you do not attach any monitor hood - you'll find yourself crying for the DSR300...

4)Like Paul I had one issue with tape transport and some very rare glitches in tape. We have yet to see (after many years) any potential card problems. But I prefer card than tape anytime.

4)Disagree with Paul - EX1 battery life way better - if you invest in decent V-lock batteries (such as a 175 watt/hour) you can power the camera and a 20 watt light for hours. You cannot do this with a 56 watt hour battery which is still surprisingly heavy and bulky.

5)Strongly disagree with Paul that downconverted SD is better than SD straight out from DSR300. With all due respect, since Paul has already sold his 300, I cannot see how he can make an accurate comparision between the two. I did - I filmed side by side and did a split screen with the 300 on one side and the downconverted EX1 on the other side. When I showed the resultant clips to the man in the street and asked to identify the HD camera, they all pointed to.....the DSR300!!!!! The image from the DSR 300 blew off the downconverted EX1. I was using Premiere CS3 with Axio LE and I've tried 1001 workflows with no success. I even used hardware downconverting from the Axio itself, to no avail. Maybe something is wrong from my side.

Having said this, the HD footage of the EX1 obviously blow away the SD picture of the DSR300. However the issue is still haunting me (and I need to tackle it before I buy the EX3) as to what to do when in the case of wedding videography, the client would want a SD version of the HD edited wedding. Or when confronted by clients (which will be in their majority for now) who will not want to fork out extra money for the HD option and thus have to give them a SD version. I do not intend to continue to use the DSR300 anymore once I buy the EX3 - so filming with the 300 for these clients is not an option.

I'm resting my hope on the SxS deck due to be launched with the EX3 - I'm hoping that it does a better hardware converting job than all the rest. I've read on Sony's site that the behind the scenes of James Bond new film, Quatum of Solace, is being filmed with the EX1. Now I'm sure that the SD DVD of this film will contain stunning images of these behind the scenes. So how is Hollywood doing it?
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Old June 17th, 2008, 01:01 PM   #5
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on ex1/reply to brian

brian,
did you ever consider the z7?
ergonomic wise,its better, but i have to think it falls way short of what i would want.
have you seen it ,used it???
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Old June 17th, 2008, 02:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Stamos View Post
brian,
did you ever consider the z7?
ergonomic wise,its better, but i have to think it falls way short of what i would want.
have you seen it ,used it???
Unfortunately the sensor size and the minimum illumination stated in the specs do not impress me. The Z7 is definetely not a replacement to the DSR 3xx range of cameras.
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Old June 17th, 2008, 03:27 PM   #7
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")Strongly disagree with Paul that downconverted SD is better than SD straight out from DSR300. With all due respect, since Paul has already sold his 300, I cannot see how he can make an accurate comparision between the two. I did - I filmed side by side and did a split screen with the 300 on one side and the downconverted EX1 on the other side. When I showed the resultant clips to the man in the street and asked to identify the HD camera, they all pointed to.....the DSR300!!!!! The image from the DSR 300 blew off the downconverted EX1. I was using Premiere CS3 with Axio LE and I've tried 1001 workflows with no success. I even used hardware downconverting from the Axio itself, to no avail. Maybe something is wrong from my side."

Yep, something is wrong on your downscale conversion, even the Z1, A1 downconversion final MPEG DVD blew away the DSR 300, there is no way the EX1 could be worse, I had DSR300 and Z1 at the same time, spend the whole week comparing and no way I could not make my beloved DSR300 looks as good as Z1 on the final MPEG DVD, sold all 3 of my DSR 300 and got 2 FX1 and 1 Z1, now have all A1, looking back at some of the older dvd that was made with DSR300, they look like crap, so funny before I thought they looks so clean and so good, now that I got use to HDV footage original DVD, there is no freaking way I'm going back to DSR300, the only advantage off the DSR300 is the egornomic.
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Old June 17th, 2008, 04:19 PM   #8
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Hi Brian, regarding the downconversion. I'm getting similar results as Khoi.

Actually most SD DVD's i've been pushing out the last year are Z1 based disks and they look really nice. My DSR300 disk has many more artifacts, less detail and less overall dynamic range. It may be that your EX1 footage was overprocessed/oversharpened or something in your downconversioon work flow is different from what I'm doing.

I'm not saying the DSR300 SD DVD sucks - its clean too but I can't get it to look better than HD downconverted material. BTW i do my downconversion in software, not out of the camera.

Again, likely workflow differences.

The ergonomics of a shoulder mount camera is definately the main diff.
The HVR-S270 may be another option for Jim.

I forgot to mention- the autofocus, although not as good as the Z1 is better than the DSR300 (ok lame joke) :)


Thanks
Paul
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Old June 17th, 2008, 04:27 PM   #9
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"I forgot to mention- the autofocus, although not as good as the Z1 is better than the DSR300 (ok lame joke) :)"

Hah hah I thought the DSR300 autofocus was better, I don't have as much out of focus shot when I was using DSR300 than now, just kidding but I think HD focus is so critical, if you are just barely out of focus you can see that right away on a HD screen, but SD is more forgiven.
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Old June 17th, 2008, 05:31 PM   #10
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Khoi & Paul,

Do you have an EX-1 to compare to the DSR-300?

It seems that footage from the EX-1 does not seem to downconvert as well as other HD cameras.

As mentioned here and on the Edius forums.

I have not seen any footage, but have been keeping up with the EX and downconversion seems to be quite a struggle for some folks.

This is giving me pause to consider the EX as I hear about it often.
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Old June 17th, 2008, 05:37 PM   #11
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EX1 is too sharp, most program will have problem downconvert, but you have to use the "free virtual dub" to do realtime resize it between it and ProCoder and it will be excellent.
BTW I don't have EX1 but A1, I did have EX1 footage to play with, since you are not that far from me, if you want, you could mail me a disc with EX1 footage and let me put it back on SD DVD for you, it will be very good.
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Old June 17th, 2008, 09:40 PM   #12
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Hey Khoi,

I think we have met before.

I played bass with Hunter Sullivan for a long time and I remember speaking with a wedding videographer using a DSR-300 a few times.

That must have been you.

I have made the transition to HD yet, but I am planning and researching a lot for when the time is right.

I am still using 1/2" chip DV cameras, and Edius as well.

The EX is on my short list if I can get comfortable with how it handles flashes and SD DVDs.
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Old June 17th, 2008, 10:01 PM   #13
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Hi Tim, yes sir. I own an EX1 - have had it for about 5 months now. I also have a Z1U (sold another one Z1U last year - sold the DSR300 many years ago)

As far as the final output quality it largely depends on your client. Personally I'm strict about delivering the best possible but after seeing customer accept videos which would take deliberate sabotage on my part to create - I've backed off a bit and become more focused on content. Even if you shoot, compress and burn with the basics in mind - with these HD cameras the results do look pretty nice.

At the end of the day I know there are certain things that the camera, downconverstion and output will not be able to accomplish to your exact liking. No matter which way you twist it. Blame the engineers, programmers and physics for that. There are too many variables and too little time. If you are getting good results from the 1/2 inch DV cams I would continue to use them until the demand for HD affects your business negatively - or when having it gives you an edge. Better to think in terms of business value first before getting too hung up on technology. End of the day content rules.

Cheers
Paul
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Old June 17th, 2008, 10:16 PM   #14
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Paul,

Thanks for your follow-up.

I must admit, I am a bit frozen right now on a camera choice.

What I want seems to be too expensive.

I prefer large format cameras, and they are pricey right now when a lens is factored in.

My work requirements are not demanding HD, but I can see the writing on the wall.

So I am learning as much as I can and saving!
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Old June 17th, 2008, 11:41 PM   #15
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Hey Tim, small world, I remember you now, yep that was me that was using DSR300 years ago, there is no looking back for me now, delivering Blu-ray disc to clients is such a good feeling, they see what I see, even for clients that only get SD DVD, I still feel good, it is much better than stuff produced on my DSR 300, the only thing that I missed is putting a camera on my shoulder, I shot ENG camera for so long it was hard at first going to these little camera but now it is ok. Like you I'm have some concerned about CMOS rolling shutter since I shoot next to photographer all the time, and I do use alot of slow slow motion for highlights and special moments, and that is also the photog going nuts with their camera, I'm going to wait a little more and see if anything else comes out, but once you go HD, even HDV, you will never go back.
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