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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 07:48 AM   #16
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I would suggest you consider the differences between the EX1 and the EX3. Unless you plan to carry a monitor with you, obtaining good focus is harder with the EX1. That swayed me toward the EX3, all the other features were just icing on the cake. You might be able to mod the EX1 LCD with a sock loupe but it seems some people find them bothersome.

Also if you have a good selection of pro nikon lenses you may want to consider how they would add to the use of the EX3...

That's my 2 cents, but anything to improve the ability to focus in the field is important to me because I don't want to carry an external monitor on every shoot. Oh, and forget about autofocus with this camera. Even the focus assist feature is too slow in my opinion.

I think you will be very happy with the output of the EX camera - I am!
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 08:05 AM   #17
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I will throw this one at you, if you are a Canon shooter, why not go with the 5D MK II over the EX1? then add on the appropriate accessories from there. I bet you could save a ton of money, and have a rig that kicks serious ass.
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 08:06 AM   #18
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Steve, a couple more thoughts.

1. A shotgun mic used at a distance from the talent will get the talent's voice more clealy, as well as any ambient noise more clearly. Get a mic no further than a foot or two from the client or your videos will be relegated to the dustbin. This isn't a kids soccer game you're talking about. There is a reason you see the pro guys sticking mics in peoples faces. Good audio = close audio.

2. If you have a bad back, toss out the idea of a stabilizer or a shoulder mount. They'll kill you. Put that camera on something connected to the ground. Tripod, monopod, cinesaddle, something.

3. I've heard a number of people say the EX3 is easier to focus. I've not shot with one so I don't know. But I find the EX1 ridiculously easy. AND I'd MUCH rather have the option to self monitor with the LCD forward. I wouldn't trade my EX1 for an EX3 for the work I do even if the trade up was free. If I was running and gunning in the field and I was shoulder mount, then yea, maybe. For shooting talking heads, conferences, etc., no way.

4. Lighting and interviews. If you can't light them, don't shoot them. An on camera light (only) is going to look like the 6 o' clock news. You say you are a stills photog. Ok, imagine shooting portraits with a non-bounceabe, on-camera flash. That is exactly what you are about to do in video.

5. Bag. I bought a softbag for my last cam. It was ALL hardcase this time. Portabrace. Every time I had to step away from my old cam in a bag I was nervous. Any time someone else had to handle it, I was nervous. I swore never again. My hard case is heavier, but rolls. I can't begin to say how nice that is.
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 08:46 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perrone Ford View Post
I've heard a number of people say the EX3 is easier to focus. I've not shot with one so I don't know. But I find the EX1 ridiculously easy. AND I'd MUCH rather have the option to self monitor with the LCD forward. I wouldn't trade my EX1 for an EX3 for the work I do even if the trade up was free.
I agree completely Perrone. The LCD screen on the EX1 is the exact same panel as the EX3 viewfinder. They have just added an eyepiece and made the whole thing really cumbersome; why couldn't they make it removable? The analog brightness and peaking controls on the EX3 are nice and the image looks great through the eyepiece. But for me, it's a joy focusing with the high res LCD on the EX1, especially after struggling with a Z1 for the last four years. And expanded focus is available full time on the EX1 which is also a big help.

I looked and played with the EX3 on a visit to B&H and it was exactly what I expected, heavy and awkward, but still without the advantage of balancing on your shoulder. Of course if you need interchangeable lenses, it's great. And it has some other very nice features in terms of manual controls vs menus and audio. It's great for some people I'm sure, but not what I wanted, and I get the same image quality with the EX1.
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 10:04 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Boyd Ostroff View Post
I looked and played with the EX3 on a visit to B&H and it was exactly what I expected, heavy and awkward, but still without the advantage of balancing on your shoulder. Of course if you need interchangeable lenses, it's great. And it has some other very nice features in terms of manual controls vs menus and audio. It's great for some people I'm sure, but not what I wanted, and I get the same image quality with the EX1.
To me, the REAL advantage of the EX3 is the multi-cam features. I'd LOVE to be able to sync my camera to another or sync up with audio since I shoot double system most of the time. But, I still wouldn't trade it for the EX1 for the work that I shoot most often.

This is certainly not to say that the EX3 isn't great for some kinds of work. It is. Or even for some people as people tend to work differently. But each shooter needs to evaluate their needs and uses and buy the one that works best.
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 05:05 PM   #21
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Probably mentioned before but for an extra focus assist with my EX-1 I buy the highest magnification reading glasses I can find and use them up close to the lcd screen (always with a Hoodman for outdoor shots). Works great for me (although it occurs to me that I use lighter magnification reading glasses anyway so this may not work for everyone).
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 06:48 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Arthur Hancock View Post
Probably mentioned before but for an extra focus assist with my EX-1 I buy the highest magnification reading glasses I can find and use them up close to the lcd screen (always with a Hoodman for outdoor shots). Works great for me (although it occurs to me that I use lighter magnification reading glasses anyway so this may not work for everyone).
Doesn't the Hoodman HoodLoupe diopter correction correct enough that you don't have to use the reading glasses with it? Seems to do that for me. BTW- finally got word after long delays that the HoodRiser attachment (now fits 3.5" LCD screens) and longer straps should be in sometime in the next two weeks. This is such a nice attachment I even use it for indoor shooting as the eyepiece allows me to focus and bring my eyes up close to the LCD screen.
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 09:47 PM   #23
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Perrone and everyone else:

1) I understand the need for getting the mic close. What do you recommend for a person giving a speech at an event for A)no audio output for media and B)what would I need when there is a multbox(ie 100' cable-XLR?).

2) A monopod looks like the way to go.

3) My thinking behind an on-camera light was to be able to increase the light on interview subjects a couple stops above ambient or use as fill light. This type of interview would be like the news where we would walk around to interview some people at events(do you call it run and gun style?). I agree about the harsh contrast look from direct flash/light but I was thinking a diffuser would help. Eventually, we will get a full light rig but our budget doesn't include it just yet.

Thanks again!
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 10:01 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Barry J. Weckesser View Post
Doesn't the Hoodman HoodLoupe diopter correction correct enough that you don't have to use the reading glasses with it? Seems to do that for me. BTW- finally got word after long delays that the HoodRiser attachment (now fits 3.5" LCD screens) and longer straps should be in sometime in the next two weeks. This is such a nice attachment I even use it for indoor shooting as the eyepiece allows me to focus and bring my eyes up close to the LCD screen.
I meant the Hoodman sun shade, not the Hoodloupe. I'll check it out.
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 10:10 PM   #25
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Arthur, is that the H-400 lcd hood you are using on your EX1 and what are your thoughts on it?

Anyone use Hoodman's "WristShot" or other similar device to reduce wrist strain while hand holding? I have carpel tunnel flare up on occasion in my right wrist so this could possibly help?

Thanks
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Old August 24th, 2009, 12:36 AM   #26
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Hi Steve

For speeches ie. press conference type stuff, I usually run a cable to the speaker and have a mic on a mini tripod....

However if the run is too long, I just put a G2 wireless unit on the desk, lectern or whatever...A bit of gaffer will ensure it stays in place... Even if the mic is not on the subject I've found it works fine...

On camera lights while better than nothing do give you the 'Deer in the headlights' look. I find for fill they do very little only really being useful in very low light....certainly not like fill flash in stills.

The mini LED version look the way to go, I was pretty impressed by the mini Litepanel type lamp...To me daylight balance would be far more useful than tungsten...

Regards
Gareth
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Old August 24th, 2009, 01:20 AM   #27
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Gareth, for fill lighting, I was thinking mainly about outdoors and in being in the shadow. The dynamic range isn't close to still cameras so I was thinking that an on-camera light for interviews should help. I think part of it is my still photography experience that makes me hate seeing blown highlights and trying to avoid them.

I was looking at the Litepanels MicroPro LED as its light, uses little power and priced well.

Back to audio: do I need a field recorder for events & interviews or can I get by without one? When we start producing commercials, I am thinking we should have one but that won't be for 3+ months.

Glidecam or Steadicam WITH vest(Glidecam Body Pod vest) - any thoughts?

Thanks
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Old August 24th, 2009, 05:36 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by Steve Kalle View Post
Glidecam or Steadicam WITH vest(Glidecam Body Pod vest) - any thoughts?
If you already have a bad back, trying to operate a steadicam or glidecam with a fully loaded EX1 (wireless receiver, mattebox, micropanel light, etc) will disable you....I'm serious. The same goes with trying to handhold a fully loaded camera. An EX1 fully loaded is much heavier than you think!

Do your back a huge favor and keep the camera firmly planted on the ground with a professional tripod if your shooting will be documentary interviews.

BTW the EX1 is a professional camera, requiring a professional tripod. In my humble opinion, Bogen is not a professional tripod.
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Old August 24th, 2009, 05:46 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by Steve Kalle View Post
Arthur, is that the H-400 lcd hood you are using on your EX1 and what are your thoughts on it?

Anyone use Hoodman's "WristShot" or other similar device to reduce wrist strain while hand holding? I have carpel tunnel flare up on occasion in my right wrist so this could possibly help?

Thanks
I have found the Hoodman WristShot to be very helpful - would be especially useful if you have any wrist problem - it frees up your left hand for manual adjustments on the camera. There is a rather powerful on-camera LED light - Comer 1800 - 4500K - same as Sony HVL-LBP but three times as much light - has a diffuser for 3200K. For daylight fill you could adjust the white balance on the camera. - look at Photon Management on this forum - lot's of threads about it.
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Old August 24th, 2009, 07:57 AM   #30
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Wireless Mic: Sony's new UWP series wireless mic system. It's high quality and affordable. You can buy the UWP-V6 system that comes with both a lavalier microphone and belt pack AND a plug-on transmitter that can be used with a stick mic or plugged into an audio board. This system is made by Sony for the EX1/EX3 cameras.

Perrone: If you're shooting a lot of two-camera stuff, forget the EX3, you should look at the PluralEyes application from Sigular Software. ($149) I saw their booth at NAB this year and it's really amazing! You can literally have multiple camera start/stop recording a scene, drop them into your time line, run PluralEyes (a plug-in) and zap, in about 5 seconds everything is synced up. The only catch is that every camera needs to be recording audio. But it doesn't have to be great quality audio. Singular Software This application saves me a TON of time editing multi-camera projects.
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