Z190 versus Z90 at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Sony XAVC / XDCAM / NXCAM / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds

Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PXW-Z280, Z190, X180 etc. (going back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old November 6th, 2018, 01:44 PM   #1
New Boot
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Branford, CT
Posts: 12
Z190 versus Z90

Hello Everyone,
I'm still trying to decide which camera to buy. I know that the Z280 is out for me - just too expensive for me. I was locked on to the Z190 but then caught info about the Z90. Seems like the Z90 is a nice little camera, but for only 1k more you get three rings, three sensors and better codec choices. Can anyone weigh in on this one? I shoot docs and some news type stories. I don't shoot much high action.
Thanks
-Rich
Rich Pfeifer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 6th, 2018, 03:31 PM   #2
Vortex Media
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 2,696
Re: Z190 versus Z90

The Z190 is a superior camera to the Z90 in almost every way that you want to compare them with just a few exceptions: The Z90 is smaller, it costs a little bit less, it has better auto-focus and it's better in low-light by about a 1.5 stops than the Z190. But other than that, the Z190 is by far the superior camera in dozens of different ways with many professional features and functions the Z90 never even dreamed of. I just completed producing a 7-hour master class for the Z190/Z280 and in the first 10-15 minutes I compare those two cameras to the Z150. And almost everything I say during that comparison also applies to the Z90 because the Z90 and Z150 are almost the same camera. If you're interested in finding out what you give up with the Z90/Z150 please watch the video.

My advice is to spend the money for the Z280. Yeah, it might cost more out of the gate, but it's a much better camera than any of those others and will retain it's value better as well. Look down the road a couple of years and the Z280 is absolutely going to be a better choice for a working professional. The Z90, Z150, and Z190 are prosumer cameras -- while the Z280 is a full-fledged professional camera that has more in common with the Z450 or FS7. Not to mention the fact the that Z280 is 4x better in lowlight than the Z190 and about 3x better than the Z90/Z150, which ought to be a huge consideration for documentaries. If you are a professional, get the Z280.
__________________
Vortex Media http://www.vortexmedia.com/
Sony FS7, F55, and XDCAM training videos, field guides, and other production tools
Doug Jensen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 6th, 2018, 11:11 PM   #3
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Singapore
Posts: 160
Re: Z190 versus Z90

I beg to differ that z190 is prosumer when compared to z280. Both are pro cam and they serve different markets. I go for z190 due to the 25x optical zoom for multi-cam live events, not due to price. No matter if you are a hobbyist or professional, prices do matter in the end. Z280 is more suitable for documentary work but that does not mean folks who do multi-cam live production with Z190 are not professional and only those who do documentary are.
Kenny Shem is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7th, 2018, 12:26 AM   #4
Trustee
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: upper hunter, australia
Posts: 1,393
Re: Z190 versus Z90

i'm not sure trying to delineate these cameras into consumer, prosumer, professional, etc., makes any difference at all to their abilities to get the job done.

from my pov they all fit comfortably into the 'prosumer' area, ie. below $10k. i would never have considered my ex1 a 'professional' camera in as much as it was no match against any 2/3" 3 chipper carrying a serious piece of glass, or any arri, etc.,

afaic, if the camera meets FULL broadcast specs of, say, national geo, discovery, or the bbc, then the appellation 'professional' is fully justified, but if it can only be used as 'secondary' acquisition, then semipro would seem appropriate.

of course, for eng, even mobile phone footage is 'broadcast' quality ;-)

btw - if you make money creating video then YOU are a professional no matter what equipment you do it with ;-)
__________________
www.lesliewand.com.au
Leslie Wand is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7th, 2018, 07:18 AM   #5
Trustee
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Florida
Posts: 1,194
Re: Z190 versus Z90

Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Jensen View Post
The Z190 is a superior camera to the Z90 in almost every way that you want to compare them with just a few exceptions: The Z90 is smaller, it costs a little bit less, it has better auto-focus and it's better in low-light by about a 1.5 stops than the Z190. But other than that, the Z190 is by far the superior camera in dozens of different ways with many professional features and functions the Z90 never even dreamed of. I just completed producing a 7-hour master class for the Z190/Z280 and in the first 10-15 minutes I compare those two cameras to the Z150. And almost everything I say during that comparison also applies to the Z90 because the Z90 and Z150 are almost the same camera. If you're interested in finding out what you give up with the Z90/Z150 please watch the video. Doug Jensen's Sony PXW-Z280 and PXW-Z190 Master Class - CHAPTER 1 FREE on Vimeo

My advice is to spend the money for the Z280. Yeah, it might cost more out of the gate, but it's a much better camera than any of those others and will retain it's value better as well. Look down the road a couple of years and the Z280 is absolutely going to be a better choice for a working professional. The Z90, Z150, and Z190 are prosumer cameras -- while the Z280 is a full-fledged professional camera that has more in common with the Z450 or FS7. Not to mention the fact the that Z280 is 4x better in lowlight than the Z190 and about 3x better than the Z90/Z150, which ought to be a huge consideration for documentaries. If you are a professional, get the Z280.
I agree with Doug. The Z190 is certainly a far more professional camera than the Z90 in almost every way. I think the Z190 gives you a TON of options for the money and is a beautiful camera for its cost. It sounds silly but your clients will be more impressed with seeing a Z190 in your hand than a small Z90 too. I was really happy shooting with mine for a while. I loved just about everything about it's design and software.

Whatever you do though, dont make the mistake that I did and do a side by side image comparison between the Z190 and NX80 (same 1inch-type sensor/optics as/Z90/Z150). I wish I had never got that idea in my head because it complety killed all that early Z190 happyness I had.

CT

Last edited by Cliff Totten; November 7th, 2018 at 10:05 AM.
Cliff Totten is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7th, 2018, 07:30 AM   #6
Vortex Media
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 2,696
Re: Z190 versus Z90

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenny Shem View Post
. . . does not mean folks who do multi-cam live production with Z190 are not professional and only those who do documentary are.
Please don't put words in my mouth. I never said anything about the people who choose to use one camera or another. But I do stand by my previous post that the Z190 is prosumer camera and lacks many of the high-end capabilities of the Z280. Not having 10-bit 4K is number one, but there are many others. For a working professional, a $3K difference in price ought to be a drop in the bucket when you amortize that over 2-3 years and factor in the greater resale value of the camera when you are done with it someday in the future. You get a LOT more camera with the Z280 and it is worth every penny. In my opinion.
__________________
Vortex Media http://www.vortexmedia.com/
Sony FS7, F55, and XDCAM training videos, field guides, and other production tools
Doug Jensen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7th, 2018, 08:41 AM   #7
New Boot
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Branford, CT
Posts: 12
Re: Z190 versus Z90

Thanks everyone for the info. Doug - I've watched your intro video to the Z190/Z280 and it's really great.

Just as a side question - Doug, any weigh in on the issue of barrel distortion when shooting zoomed wide on the Z280? I'm seeing a lot of people posting on facebook that they are seeing this issue. Sony says it's within spec. Tough to swallow on a $7k camera. Doesn't seem to be an issue on the Z150.

Thanks
-Rich
Rich Pfeifer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7th, 2018, 09:09 AM   #8
Vortex Media
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 2,696
Re: Z190 versus Z90

Yes, there is some barrel distortion. But I never noticed it until other people brought it to my attention after I'd already had the camera for more than 6 weeks. Not an issue or me and does not change my opinion of the camera at all, but other people will have to decide for themselves. Every camera has compromises of one kind or another and this particular issue is easy for me to accept in exchange for everything else that the camera offers over and above the Z150 and every other "handycam" style camera.
__________________
Vortex Media http://www.vortexmedia.com/
Sony FS7, F55, and XDCAM training videos, field guides, and other production tools
Doug Jensen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7th, 2018, 10:25 AM   #9
Trustee
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Florida
Posts: 1,194
Re: Z190 versus Z90

We each have different expectations for what we expect in a camera. Some of us imediately gravitate to pro fearures, ergonomic, convenience and usability features first and fill in those check boxes as they work their way down the list. I absolutely understand and appreciate this perspective in every way. However, I tend to (no, not always) look at it "backwards". I sometimes start by asking "what is the camera image quality" first! I look at the camera's end-result final output "first" and then work my way backwards up the list and review its pro feature set later. My thinking is that if I dont like its final output, I generally am NOT attracted by its other amazing features and I then move on.

If people have the reverse opinion, I completely respect that as we truely do have different things that we expect our cameras to do. I will trade "some" image quality to gain pro features...but not much.

I have to believe my Z190 had a bad lens and that its almost impossible that they could all be as bad as the one I returned. In the end, I went back to buy another Z150 as the Z280 was too much for my budget with all of the other things I'm buying next month. (I'm about to blow $12k on an Inspire 2 and X7 camera. I'm now FAA liscensed commercial UAS pilot)

To me, the Z150 pairs well with the NX80 and X70 for the live streaming corperate events I need them for. And,..that Z190 image quality (massive noise reductuin artifacts too ) just killed it for me.

CT
Cliff Totten is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7th, 2018, 11:46 AM   #10
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: BELGIUM
Posts: 312
Re: Z190 versus Z90

the PXW-Z280 replaces the PXW-X200 (not 4K) but I read this (a user review on B&H) about the PXW-X200.

In low light, 18db can be very noisy at the point where the producer ask me, during a live weather broadcast , in a park, on the evening if I had switched the camera to SD. Personnaly, I own a Sony HDR-CX900 wich is much better, even at 33db. I'm plannig to get the pro version, the PXW-X70 wich has the same R-CMOS sensor, basically the same electronics inside, more or less for a fraction of the price. From my humble point of view, the X200 is outdated

So I suppose the Z280 is about equal in low light as the X200? (both have Three 1/2" Exmor CMOS Sensors) but the CX900 with a 1inch sensor is better?

because Doug said:

Not to mention the fact the that Z280 is 4x better in lowlight than the Z190 and about 3x better than the Z90/Z150

so this is confusing for me. One says a 1inch sensor is better in low light and Doug says it is not.
Tom Van den Berghe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7th, 2018, 12:45 PM   #11
Trustee
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Florida
Posts: 1,194
Re: Z190 versus Z90

I have never touched a Z280 so I cant say anything about it. I can only say that my NX80 smashed the Z190 at every db point starting a 0db and up. The Sony 1inch-type sensor smoked the three 1/3rds by a mile.

The Z190 relies heavily...and I mean HEAVILY on large amounts of noise reduction. Even at 0db.

The Z280? I have no clue.

CT
Cliff Totten is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7th, 2018, 07:46 PM   #12
Vortex Media
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 2,696
Re: Z190 versus Z90

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Van den Berghe View Post
because Doug said:

Not to mention the fact the that Z280 is 4x better in lowlight than the Z190 and about 3x better than the Z90/Z150
so this is confusing for me. One says a 1inch sensor is better in low light and Doug says it is not.
My statement is completely true and I stand by it 100%. Keep in mind that sensor size is only one factor, of many, that determine's a camera's sensitivity to light. You realize that the Z90/Z150 only have an f/4 lens, right?

And please don't let Cliff's disappointment with his Z190 reflect poorly the Z280. First of all, I don't share his low opinion of my Z190, but even if I did, the Z280 and Z190 have different sensors, different lenses, different paint menus, different codecs, and different image processing. You can't assume anything about one camera by looking at the image from the other. Each camera needs to be judged on its own performance. In my opinion, the only sub-$10K camera that beats the Z280 for performance, features, and versatility is the FS7.
__________________
Vortex Media http://www.vortexmedia.com/
Sony FS7, F55, and XDCAM training videos, field guides, and other production tools
Doug Jensen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7th, 2018, 08:23 PM   #13
Trustee
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Florida
Posts: 1,194
Re: Z190 versus Z90

Tom, I agree with Doug that you need to see the Z190 for yourself. In the US, B&H has a very customer friendly 30 day return policy. If you don't like it, you can return it as long as it's in perfect condition and has less than 10 hours on the clock.

Hopefully you have a store in your area that will take returns if you don't like it. I'm just an admitted pixel peeping weirdo nerd!!...so the Z190 might be perfectly fine for you. Yes, the 1inch-type Sony models have a larger sensor but as Doug said they start at f2.8 on the wide ramp to f.4 about halfway down the lens and hold it to the end. They do have a 5k, full pixel readout image sensor collection and they do produce an EXTREMELY detailed image. You can see Doug's Z150 demo video as it's really a nice showcase of that camera's image.

I would love to see Sony build a future "Z170" that uses this body and pro features using a 1inch-type Exmor RS sensor and new lens. (maybe a constant f2.8?)

You might buy the Z190 and come back to tell me you love it. I certainty wont blame you for it. It's got a lot of great features for a really low price! It's got a very high feature to cost ratio!

CT
Cliff Totten is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 8th, 2018, 08:47 AM   #14
New Boot
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Branford, CT
Posts: 12
Re: Z190 versus Z90

Great information from everyone - thanks for sharing! I guess I should have mentioned that I am more of a "weekend warrior" shooter than a full time shooter. Maybe someday I'll make the switch but for now I do a few personal projects and a few low paying gigs here and there. I'm thinking Z190 unless I hit it at the casino - then it's definitely the Z280 :)
Rich Pfeifer is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Adorama
(800) 223-2500
New York, NY

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Texas Media Systems
(512) 440-1400
Austin, TX

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

VideoGuys
(800) 323-2325
Mineola, NY

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Sony XAVC / XDCAM / NXCAM / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:45 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2018 The Digital Video Information Network