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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 09:55 PM   #1
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EX1R vs Pan AF100

Of course it seems answers from an EX1R user might be a little biased but am sure you all have been at the acquisitions cross-roads of which camera to invest hard earned cash.

Much of my camera work is run and gun style sports, live events, behind scenes but would like to be able to shoot movie shorts, documentary style , music video etc. Being able to handle low light is important.

Use the Glidecam a lot and based on specs could handle the weight of either camera ok.

The AF100 looks like an amazing camera but with the larger sensor less friendly to ENG style work because of shallow DOF. Unless there is a work around with glass and camera settings to be able to set it and forget it...so to speak.

Any opinions ?
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 10:47 PM   #2
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Re: EX1R vs Pan AF100

IMO the EX is one of the most versatile cameras on the planet. It seems to accommodate a wide variety of shooting styles & demands.
I've never used an AF 100, but I do have a Sony VG10-a small camera with a large chip- approximately the size of the AF100 sensor.
I've discovered that the large chip cams do present some challenges for ENG type shooting. However, if you are going to produce projects that require shallow DOF, they are the only game in town.
But, like most things in life, there are tradeoffs...
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 11:06 PM   #3
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Re: EX1R vs Pan AF100

A couple thoughts:

For ENG work, there is a B4 adapter that fits 2/3" lenses onto the AF100 and looks great but costs quite a bit. The Abel Cine blog has a video showing this combo.

For side work that requires a 'cine' style look, you can always rent an AF100. Also, the total cost of an AF100 + lenses and mattebox and rails is quite a bit more than an EX1r.

Also, ask many seasoned DPs who shoot live events and many, if not all, will say that the shallow DOF kills the number of quality video due to focus hunting. There is only so much your hand can do with a manual zoom lens. For me, I constantly zoom in with my zoom controller while adjusting focus - something that cannot be done with a manual lens.
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Old April 4th, 2011, 02:29 AM   #4
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Re: EX1R vs Pan AF100

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Originally Posted by Steve Kalle View Post
For side work that requires a 'cine' style look, you can always rent an AF100. Also, the total cost of an AF100 + lenses and mattebox and rails is quite a bit more than an EX1r.
Or, you can put a 35mm adapter on the EX and use SLR lenses to get shallow DOF for the cine projects.
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Old April 4th, 2011, 07:58 AM   #5
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Re: EX1R vs Pan AF100

I have a set of EXcams EX1R and EX3, as well as a 5DmkII and a 7D, and and now an AF100.

I always saw the 5DmkII and 7D as SDOF adapter alternatives, and they work very well for that, except the ergonomics, lack of good audio input/monitoring, and lack of ND's makes them hard to shoot with, and they have huge moire problems. They are still very good for shooting covert video. And the 5DmkII is great at wide shot and shots in low light.

But now that I have my AF100, a real video camera with my complaints above fixed. I love the AF100 for the SDOF work. It really can produce great pictures. They are not quite as sharp as the EXcams, but still very pleasant. And I love being able to use all my Canon glass. I have dozens of lenses going back to the 70's. With the Birger mount and remote, it will be a fantastic camera for Stedicam work. And the AF100 has HDSDI out so I can use the NanoFlash, something I really miss in the Canons.

But this is not an ENG camera by any stretch of the imagination. It is really an indie film camera and if used as such it is wonderful.

I will not be selling my EXcams, and I have now set up scene files in the AF100 that matches my EXcams and I use them together.

So the AF100 is another tool in the quiver, and a very reasonable priced one at that (especially if you have a bunch of lenses already), not a replacement for an ENG cam. It would in my opinion be a mistake to try to turn it into an ENG cam.

Just my thoughts.
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Last edited by Olof Ekbergh; April 4th, 2011 at 08:29 AM.
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Old April 4th, 2011, 12:38 PM   #6
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Re: EX1R vs Pan AF100

Very much appreciate the input from everyone.

I like your suggestion Robert on using the 35mm adapter and SLR glass to achieve the SDOF when needed.

Was getting all excited about the AF100 too :o) but the reality check is in the end purpose.

and as I go it may make sense to make the AF100 another tool in the quiver as you say Olof.

sincere thanks
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Old April 7th, 2011, 09:11 AM   #7
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Re: EX1R vs Pan AF100

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Originally Posted by Olof Ekbergh View Post
But now that I have my AF100, a real video camera with my complaints above fixed. I love the AF100 for the SDOF work. It really can produce great pictures. They are not quite as sharp as the EXcams, but still very pleasant. And I love being able to use all my Canon glass. I have dozens of lenses going back to the 70's. With the Birger mount and remote, it will be a fantastic camera for Stedicam work. And the AF100 has HDSDI out so I can use the NanoFlash, something I really miss in the Canons.

But this is not an ENG camera by any stretch of the imagination. It is really an indie film camera and if used as such it is wonderful.

I will not be selling my EXcams, and I have now set up scene files in the AF100 that matches my EXcams and I use them together.


Just my thoughts.
I struggled to justify buying the Panny AF100 The conclusions I came to are the EX1 is sharper Better picture quality and a lot more professional. You can just shoot with it very easily and if you do want to make a film like movie you can use a letus with full sized frames but also more importantly for me you have 10 bit out that aids colour correction Greenscreen and all SFX.. To me the picture quality on the AF100 is not as good although its VERY nice to just be able to put your lenses on the front and my conclusion was by spending 4000 would this give me a better picture than a Sony with Letus and having seen all the info I dont believe it can. The sony letus setup maybe a little more awkward a little more work but the combination is better results in my opinion. The next step from the panny would be the Sony 100 whose drawback is 8 bit hdmi but the better sensor makes up for it but I still believe the EX1 is a better bet especially from an all round perspective.

In my opinion the next best thing from an EX1/EX3 Letus combo with 10 bit out is the Sony F3.

I think the manufacturers seem to be holding back to make sure the more expensive ranges get the professional use and the EX1 was a blip because of Sonys fear of Jim Jannard. I believe now they are all working to sew that up and make sure the two markets professional and consumer stay separate.

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