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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 March 10th, 2009, 10:54 AM   #1
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Stepping up from the EX cameras

Ok, i might be a little lazy here, but i just need to know at what point does one stop shooting with the EX cameras with all of the 10/8 bit 4:2:2 toys out there and just buy a camera that records 10 bit(or 8 bit) 4:2:2 ?mbps natively. I mean the Flash XDR is roughly $4800, NanoFlash will be $3500, i think, the MX02 is $1500, the AJA I/O HD $2800. is there anything out there that records 10/8 bit 4:2:2 under $10,000? does the HPX300? what would i get for $11/12 grand?


thanks guys/gals.
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Old March 10th, 2009, 12:09 PM   #2
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the new panasonic 170/171 records onto P2 10 bit 4:2:2
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Old March 10th, 2009, 12:15 PM   #3
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Yes you are being lazy and your post sounds a bit troll-ish. A simple trip to a major camera dealer page or Panasonic's website could have answered your question about the HPX300.

At what point would I upgrade? I'm not sure I have to for a long time because making compelling content with resolution that looks great on a BIG big screen HDTV (as well as a 40 foot movie screen for that matter) and audio circuitry that equals standalone DAT recorders is enough for me. 10-bit 4:2:2...does your average viewer really care?

One buys a 10-bit camera when one's client or own needs demands it and can afford to demand it.
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Old March 10th, 2009, 02:44 PM   #4
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"the new panasonic 170/171 records onto P2 10 bit 4:2:2 "

DVCPRO HD is a 8 bits codec unless I am mistaken.

Phil
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Old March 10th, 2009, 02:55 PM   #5
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Maybe Michael is thinking of the HPX-300 that is 10bit 4:2:2 but only a 1/3" CMOS. Not sure why they did not make this camera 1/2"?

I own a EX1 and have used the XDR Flash which is a great unit and the Nano will be very nice small version. Months ago I felt I needed better quality then the EX1 so the hunt started. 2/3" cameras, Red, Varicam, etc.... Well I still have the EX1 and it shoots great pictures and makes great money.

I also purchased a Red One with a Birger Canon mount to use Canon EF-L lens. The picture on the LCD is great but the editing is a nightmare. Long rendering on a Mac Pro 3.0 Quad with 16GB Ram and very fast RAID. I do not want to spend my time editing that could be out shooting or having fun. I have now burned 3 BluRay and had pro still and video people plus clients over and they do not know which is which in the footage. Sure if I set up for shallow DOF they would know but I did not to keep it even.

The Red does have nice slow mo at 120fps at 2K but is that worth $40,000?

My suggestion is buy a EX3 and the new wide angle and maybe a Canon or Fujinon lens if the stock is not up to par for you and go shoot. Add a XDR Flash or Nano if you need better quality. We all can get stuck in looking for better gear but "Content is King".

Might be a very lightly used Red One for sale soon.
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Last edited by Paul Cronin; March 10th, 2009 at 03:22 PM. Reason: XDR and Nano addition
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Old March 10th, 2009, 02:56 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Philippe Messier View Post
"the new panasonic 170/171 records onto P2 10 bit 4:2:2 "

DVCPRO HD is a 8 bits codec unless I am mistaken.

Phil
Not only is it 8-bit, it's 1280x1080, so not even full raster. Honestly, a step down from an EXx with a Nanoflash or XDR.
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Old March 10th, 2009, 03:38 PM   #7
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Michael...

Bit depth and color sampling is just a small part of camera specs to consider.

You need to take into consideration imager size, pixel count, dynamic range, lens specifications, frame rates, audio channels and performance, user-defined characteristics, ergonomics, and price points.

Also, the EX1 can hardly be classified as a "toy". Entry level is more than $8,000 when you include recording media and batteries. And the performance exceeds many other cameras at its price level and higher.

For a camera to exceed the EX1's performance, you need at least a full 1920 x 1080 pixel raster. Greater dynamic range. Frame rates higher than 60 FPS at 720p. More than 2 channels of audio at 48 kHz at 16 bit depth. Multiple user-defined profiles. An imager larger than 1/2". Zoom lens exceeding 14:1 with a wider perspective and no breathing effects when focusing. Pre-record cache.

And you're willing to spend how much?

And, in the end, how does it all fit in with the kind of work that's being done?
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Old March 10th, 2009, 04:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Sensui View Post
Michael...

Bit depth and color sampling is just a small part of camera specs to consider.

You need to take into consideration imager size, pixel count, dynamic range, lens specifications, frame rates, audio channels and performance, user-defined characteristics, ergonomics, and price points.

Also, the EX1 can hardly be classified as a "toy". Entry level is more than $8,000 when you include recording media and batteries. And the performance exceeds many other cameras at its price level and higher.

For a camera to exceed the EX1's performance, you need at least a full 1920 x 1080 pixel raster. Greater dynamic range. Frame rates higher than 60 FPS at 720p. More than 2 channels of audio at 48 kHz at 16 bit depth. Multiple user-defined profiles. An imager larger than 1/2". Zoom lens exceeding 14:1 with a wider perspective and no breathing effects when focusing. Pre-record cache.

And you're willing to spend how much?

And, in the end, how does it all fit in with the kind of work that's being done?
Dean. I own a EX1. "Toys" are the objects/devices that you hook up to the camera to get prettier pictures.




Thanks to all who have chimed in.
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Old March 10th, 2009, 04:23 PM   #9
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(Paul Cronin) 'We all can get stuck in looking for better gear but "Content is King".'
Well said, Paul.

If you have clients that need bigger, better, faster and are willing to pay for it...then by all means go all out. The EX series cameras allow video professionals to capture outstanding visuals without breaking the bank.

I never cease to be amazed at how clean my EX1 video is. That, in turn, has inspired me to be more creative in my storytelling.

Forrest
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Old March 10th, 2009, 04:53 PM   #10
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Forrest thank you we all need to think that more often.

My EX1 is a great camera and you are correct in the right hands it can surprise most people. I do have clients that always want more and will pay. Two of them could not tell the difference between the Red and EX1 on a very high end 40" HDTV playing bluray as their footage would be delivered. Both cameras were rendered three different ways on the same timeline. So they are willing to pay a little bit more for the EX3. But not the extra for the Red.

Now if you are showing 2K, 3K, or 4K the Red wins hands down every time. Also the slow motion is amazing. But at 1080p I am not convinced at all.

The reason I suggested the EX3 is the new wide angle since the wide angle for the EX1 has way to much distortion. The new EX3 looks very nice all the way to edge.
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Old March 10th, 2009, 05:58 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Michael B. McGee View Post
Dean. I own a EX1. "Toys" are the objects/devices that you hook up to the camera to get prettier pictures.
Your question sounds like you're asking about a complete camera system and not addressing just accessories.

But even with that you still need to consider the entire system and not just components.

BTW, technicians working with IMax did a test where they used a 4k projector and looked at a series of increasingly finer vertical bars to determine at what point the lines were no longer discernable as discrete black-and-white elements.

At a normal theatre viewing distances, the screen looked grey by the time they got to 4k. Which means that the human eye cannot distinguish 2k from 4k unless the viewer is unusually (and probably uncomfortably) close to the screen. And it was noted that 1080p isn't all that much different from 2k.

So in terms of resolution, HDTV is probably the practical limit for most producers. It's the apex of the curve when it comes to the laws of diminishing returns. You can spend a whole lot more to get more resolution, but it's questionable if it makes a worthwhile difference in the end product.
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Old March 10th, 2009, 06:04 PM   #12
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Dean very well stated I just learn that the hard way.
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Old March 10th, 2009, 11:08 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Adam Reuter View Post
Yes you are being lazy and your post sounds a bit troll-ish.
I agree, it does sound a bit like both.

Why not just shoot for the moon and go for native 4:4:4 and leave those 4:2:2 toys to the amateurs. ;-p
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Old March 11th, 2009, 08:25 AM   #14
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It's funny, ever since I started shooting with the EX, I don't "notice" my video as much when editing. What I mean by that is, I don't focus on the shortcomings of the image because there aren't many. The EX delivers the kind of professional image I have been looking for for a while, I have no need for anything else. I am at peace.

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Old March 11th, 2009, 08:44 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam Reuter View Post
Yes you are being lazy and your post sounds a bit troll-ish.
One buys a 10-bit camera when one's client or own needs demands it and can afford to demand it.
It's called "sloth" and "avarice." Both are deadly - either to one's person and/or to one's wallet. Beware ;-) Cheers!
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