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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 12th, 2009, 03:35 PM   #16
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I just received my EX1r and got to play with it today. There are a lots of subtle but useful design improvements and all the new added features are fantastic. My favorites in order of importance:

- The new color viewfinder
- The redesigned hand grip
- button and switches redisign

These make the EX1r a heck of a compact HD camera and certainly the reference for this market segment.

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Old December 24th, 2009, 02:44 PM   #17
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my two cents-

The viewfinder is much better, and the larger eye cup is nice.

The card slot door feels very flimsy.

The hand grip is missing the thumb support found on the original model, don't know why removed that.

S&Q record button will be very useful, as will cache record.

Power switch is indeed better.

Don't know really why they don't attach the second shoe. I'm gonna have to go buy a jewelers screwdriver to put the thing on.
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Old December 24th, 2009, 07:43 PM   #18
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The card slot door feels very flimsy.
I totally agree - and your point about the handgrip.

But a little anecdote about that new door. A friend has recently broken the door on his EX1. Apparently the repair is about £500 because the camera has to be pretty much stripped to get access.

I guess the new Flimsy Door is designed to fail in a much cheaper way.
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Old December 24th, 2009, 10:48 PM   #19
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"I guess the new Flimsy Door is designed to fail in a much cheaper way."

Here's hoping you're right. Hopefully the first person to break the thing off will report the cost. Also, in addition to my original stuff; it's really too bad that the cache record feature won't work in S&Q mode (unless I misread something), as that's where I could really use it.

Merry Christmas and all the rest.... back to the Scotch for me, hey, it's a holiday...
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Old December 25th, 2009, 02:24 PM   #20
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ex1r ergonomics, is it that improved over ex1

ive noticed that noone that has the r version has commented on whether its better designed ergonomically. the ex1 is useless for handholding on shoots. has sony indeed improved this on the r or is it just slightly better, thus, its still not beneficial handholding for long periods. it still requires one of the shoulder adaptors or tripod/monopod.
input appreciated.
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Old December 25th, 2009, 02:41 PM   #21
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Even with an improved hand grip any camera of that approximate design would benefit greatly with a shoulder brace. The second point of support, along with the increased length, would reduce the amount of "pitch" and "roll", and that would make for a much more stable image.

I use a CAVision shoulder brace and many have commented the shots look like there's some sort of stabilizer in use.
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Old December 25th, 2009, 03:49 PM   #22
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First impressions? Remember i have never been at this level before, nor dealt with any of this line.
Ergonomics sucks horrible, i knew it would, i have a chest stick now, and plan on getting shoulder brace, and putting battery/wireless/ext recorder on other side of shoulder to both create shoulder brace, and to balance better on shoulder.

It is a lot heavier than i thought it was based on user input, mostly because of the consumerish way it is held, and the nice lens and all, not knocking it, it isnt toy weight.

It has a lot harder time in low light than it Sounded when talked about and shown, i guess the pics and vids were with Gains and shutter and in the big city with lotsa light still.

Dudddeee the machine focusing for me aint never gonna happen
the One shot focus does ONE SHOT, and stops even if you have it held down
the one shot focus is way the freak down the lens
the macro should be out of that area , so it doesnt get accidentally switched. If your doing macro shots, you usually have Time, so put the live stuff in accessable locations,ad put the shot blowers out of the way.

The zoom is noisey but again i knew it would be like a broadcast lens

The Strap for the grip, is going into, to thin of plastic , which would be fine for holding just the camera, but add the shoulder stuff i will be putting on and the fact that that strap ends up being used extensivly when One Hand swinging the camera down and up for a handheld break, there is going to be a lot of pressure on it.

I dont like the back viewer, the diopter lens and viewer combo doesnt feel as clean as it could.

The safe area line around the View, would be nice to HAVE there, but all the overlay display items are the same color stark white, and so the 90% safe area crashes right into most of the rest of the display. a different color would be helpfull.
The guide frame, which on the last camera was only one box, is a Grid that is to buzy for continual live shooting, and in low light it bascially ruined my ability to see what was going on with the rest of the screen. they could have provided at least a way to tone down the overlay display, so i can still see it but it doesnt get in my face.

The thing is pumping out a lot of heat, out the processing section on the back, beings i am in california , reliable use in 105*f i would fear. Now it is Great to have great cooling (dont get me wrong) i would want the heat to Leave, it just seems like a lot of it, and so i worry about it handling a excess to begin with.

they did the stupid heat the battery trick that is being done in CellPhones and PDAs, where the processors and stuff end up adding additional heat to the battery pack, that is el-stupedo for Li-Ion battteries which it will reduce thier life, no to mention raise the possiblity for thermal cutoff. The battery is recieving to much heat from the processing section. I am certannly going to use an external on the back of the shoulderpad.

I read the power consumption specs, but it ripps through a battery the Weight of say a 960 in 1/4th the time as a old DV cam would. so i think the power specs are a bit underrated for having things on and recording and all, small camera not small power at all.

Menu Redesign for sony is Still in order, the layout is terrible, they need more top menu items, so less items are in the sub menues, and the things need to be organised into sub menues. and profiles should be ALSO accessable in the normal menu even if its stuffed in sub-menu, there is a seperate button for it.

Thankfully you can hop in and out of menu easily and dont have to crawl back down to find where you were, thankfully they added a cancel button, so when your 6 feet down in the sub menu you can jump back up without rolling back to return.

Menu roller and joystick buttons are an improvement, but not improved enough, i didnt need the plaback controls at all, if they had tossed a D-Pad in there would be fine with me. if direct menu is how i will now control items live, then remove the HDCAM LOGO and put a descent control there instead. Playback controls potentially could be on the other side, after all you CANT shoot and play back at the same time.

Direct menu stuff is awesome, and does address some of the issues of thier nasty menus that keep getting more and more stuff in them, many items can be directally controlled on the Viewer (so to speak) without having to go into them menu. still prefer solid buttons and dials for that stuff, but it works.

Camera stabeliser is not large range like consumer cameras, i would have liked the 3 settings for it in the 270 better. it doesnt do a lot, just right for pros, but wouldnt be so good for normal humans trying. AUto focus has a even worse time when stabeliser is also on.

Buttons that I (me) dont use, it is great that they are hard to operate, but buttons that i do use often, shouldnt be so difficult to find and guess which they are without looking, an obvious familiarity problem. sure the 3 rings are in the same place, but nothing else is :-)

AE exposure adjustment , on the 270 i had read it would go 7 steps in either direction, my old 250 4 steps in either direction, this thing is back to 2 each direction? i would have preferred more Auto Iris adjustment control like a broadcast camera, without the stupid backlight spotlight junk, which does extend the range of AE exposure adjustement. The 250 allowed for continual altering of the auto iris without going manual and adjusting for everything.
so just like focus i bet i am going to have to control the Iris manual too, a virtual continual operation for stuff i do.

White balance, same thing, sure switch between the 3 , but why couldnt i have rolled a temperature in on any one of them, without going into the menu. take the preset item, select push jog button to left or right, and have instant temperature correction, leave the other 2 A&B locked where they were.

nothing about the files is normal for computers, every AVi ever made has had a simple header structure on the front of it that sort of makes them compatable with everything, they will write all the stuff out for everything about the camera and all, but 5 files and no descent header on the main video file, isnt very smart, this is just like everything, programming in html :-) the file structure should have been kept simple, all that stuff still has to be written out anyways, less is more, simple is less likly to corrupt.

handgrip rotation is awesome.
extended focus position on hand grip looks hard to reach, but it is in a perfect place.
Manuel controls of lens is awesome.
shutter control Can be done with the direct menu
Perfectally balances on the tripod, untill i add all the stuff it will need :-)
and many other wonderfull features you can read in sales brochures

I will be trying to use the camera 100% non-stop LIVE, no looking glancing seeking or playing around trying to locate or fight things, adjustments for me have to be done while still tracking subjects non-stop.
These are the first things that Hit me, before I can control the item properly, and doesnt have anything to do with how i will feel a week from now, or with a different as bad or worse unit.
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Old December 25th, 2009, 05:18 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Stamos View Post
ive noticed that noone that has the r version has commented on whether its better designed ergonomically. the ex1 is useless for handholding on shoots. has sony indeed improved this on the r or is it just slightly better, thus, its still not beneficial handholding for long periods. it still requires one of the shoulder adaptors or tripod/monopod.
input appreciated.
The redesigned grip of the EX1r is definetely an improvement. I would not describe the EX1 handholding abilities as "useless". It actually works quite well in many situations and over the time, I have learn how to best handhold it. The key is to really play with the grip rotation adjustment. You should also try to use your left arm with its elbow against your chest to support the front of the lens "a la still photographer".

If you are looking for something that feel more balance and confortable on the shoulder, you should be looking at the EX3 (although, I am not certain the EX3 is that well balanced...) or the new PMW-350.

Thierry.
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Old December 25th, 2009, 09:58 PM   #24
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the ex1 is useless for handholding on shoots.

Tiring, but not remotely useless. It's easy to get good shots handheld with the EX1
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Old December 26th, 2009, 09:01 AM   #25
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I concur.

This will not be a common viewpoint, but right now, I prefer the handgrip and hand holding position of my original EX1 to the EX1-R.

Due to the size and shape of my lower arm, wrist and paw, I could rest the HD-SDI bump on the wrist/upper arm, and the raised hump on the grip gave me some leverage to offset the desire for it to droop to the left. There was a way of holding the camera jammed into the space above the collarbone and supporting the camera underneath with the left hand that just worked for me. And the EX1-R isn't quite there. At the moment, that is.

But muscle memory can be like that.

And don't get me started about the record button.

There is so much to like about the camera that I feel really silly griping on about these micro-differences. But it probably means that I will have to sell my EX1 and some other gear to fund a new EX1-R (gotta have two).
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Old December 26th, 2009, 11:12 AM   #26
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There are certain factors with larger sensors such as heat dissipation and optical elements size that define the camera's weight and form factor. The EX1 is currently the lightest and most compact HD 1/2" camera in the market. I chose the EX1 because I use the format mainly for secondary filming and for this, I need a smaller camera but still need footage that is a good match to my F800 and XDCAM HD 422. Rigging the EX1 with a cumbersome shoulder mount system was never an option as I want to keep the EX1 sort of lean and mean. For cameramen wishing to use the EX1 in "run and gun" environments I would advise to keep it light, practice and do a bit of specific weight training. Back in September, prior to go on a long assignment in Afghanistan for Nat Geo, I just did that and it made a big difference. That is a small price to pay for the sizeable gain in image quality of 1/2" cameras over smaller sensors.

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Old December 26th, 2009, 03:17 PM   #27
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I have found this useful for taking some of the strain out of handheld shots - have used it with the Nano mount from Olof Ekbergh and it is workable. http://www.hoodmanusa.com/prodinfo.asp?number=H%2DWS1
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Old December 27th, 2009, 02:59 PM   #28
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Argggg, Does anybody have any tips on feeding 2 signals out ?
HDMI and HD/SDI but aparentally not at the same Time?
SD down convert but without HD monitoring?

in the menu system i am seeing , you get this OR this , OR this, not any of them at the same time. (gotta love the Notes: sections of sony manuels as its the only thing you needed to know to begin with)

ComPonent monitoring, with HD/SDI switcher output, is the only configuartion i can think of for 2 HD at one time?
I dont see any possibility for HD monitoring and shooting, with SD display devices comming off of it.
When HDMI is on, there isnt other outputs, HDMI undoubtedly has to conform to specific output it is allowed. I assume is 60i. (when NTSC)
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Old December 27th, 2009, 03:19 PM   #29
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Composite monitoring, with HD/SDI siwtcher output, is the only configuartion i can think of for 2 HD at one time?
There comes a point where one needs to choose between post-rigor mortis equine flagellation and a Distribution Amplifier (DA).
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Old December 27th, 2009, 03:50 PM   #30
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i screwed that up and corrected it. i meant component.

does the EX-3 have the capability for monitor outputs out of say the S, or composite while still doing a HD/SDI out ?

Yes there comes a point where i have to replace Everything :-) adapt to stuff with crasy $500 boxes, and figure out how to interface to other systems that are built INTO buildings sometimes. I dont mind the boxes and thier prices (after all they can be repeaters of sorts) but that just adds in powering them too, or AC crud flying around.

Distribution with Digital signals ought to be nice, but getting a simple Monitor output to anything , would have been nicer, and portable. like if they had a HDMI that would operate at the same time as the SDI/HD , even if it was FORCED to be stuck at one res/rate like 60i

other stuff were seeing with digital, and digital conversions is frame delay, at each processing/converions oh just 50-100ms , just enough that the audio (say house or original) and the video dont match. a few frames here and there :-) no problem right.

its the 'ol well you can do this and this and this and that, just dont try to do any of it at the same time :-)
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