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Old December 10th, 2006, 04:02 PM   #1
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How do cameras hold their value?

Hey, I was just thinking about it but how do cameras hold their value so well even when they're discontinued?

For instance, the Canon XL1S and JVC HD10U cameras are STILL in the $1,200-$1,500 range used. How does that happen? Looking at newer similarly priced cameras such as the Canon HV10, Sanyo HD1a, Sony HC3, and at the top in the $2,000 range you've got the Sony A1U. Not only do you get HD(v) quality with all of these cameras but you get just about the same functionality if not more. Plus, they're still being made and under warranty and support by the manufacturer.

My biggest gripe is particularly with the Canon XL1S, which can go up to about $3,000+ for a "kit", how do people get away with that? A well kept GL1 by itself can be had on eBay for around $800 at the least, well, most of the time, I've seen lower and with that you get the same image quality and functions but minus the interchangeable lenses. That feature though isn't worth an extra $400-$700. Yet, even the GL1 seems out of place since there's most certainly cameras that outdo it for just a little more.

I would think that an XL1S would be down around the $500-$700 range by now and the GL1 in the $200-$300 range. The same would go for the GL2 since it isn't a big update to the GL1. There's just much better stuff out there.

The JVC HD10U I would think would be in the $700-$800 range itself since it's been so outclassed by now. The only good thing I see about it is the truly HD progessive image, but even then it's 30P.

A DVX I could imagine would retain its value for quite a while since it really is a top of the line SD camera and is basically an industry standard. But look at what's going on now, people are having a hard time justifying the purchase of a DVX when they could just as easily spend a little more for a Canon XHA1 which not only has native 16:9 and 24p, but is HD(v) as well. So how come the price is still at $2,800 new?

It's just very strange to me. Any thoughts on why this is?
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Old December 16th, 2006, 03:59 AM   #2
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I've been wondering how these highend cameras maintain their value too. It's insane how expensive the DVX100A still is after all of these years.

I'm also a big home theater nut and if you compare the two markets it's amazing. A high quality high definition/high contrast DLP projector can now be bought as low as $900 from major online retailers (Mitsubishi HD1000U). A projector like this would've cost over $5,000 a few years ago. A 1080p LCOS projector that cost $25,000+ a couple years ago can now be had for as low as $4,000 now.

I bought an Infocus X1 3 or 4 years ago (I sold it after 2 years) that cost me $1,000 and then I replaced it with a far superior EDTV Infocus 4805 2.5 years later that had more than twice the contrast, about twice the brightness and far better color saturation and accuracy for only $500. It looks like a 110" plasma tv and costs only $500. As great as it looks my CRT projector blows it away though.

I own two much older (but far superior) CRT projectors capable of on/off contrast ratios and black levels that not even film can come close to matching, but they are dying due to their size and complicated setup. I paid $700 for the first one and got lucky by getting a better one for only $200. These projectors are much larger (about 120lbs each compared to a 7lbs digital), but their picture quality is what all technologies hope to achieve. The original retail for these units were about $15,000-$20,000 each.

The home theater projection market competition is so fierce now that it's unbelievable. Last year it was unthinkable that a high quality 720p HD DLP projector capable of 10+ wide screen could be had for under a grand and part of that was because they only finally hit $2,000 mark maybe a year or less before that and they had usually been $3,000-$5,000+. The newer much lower priced 1080p units are pushing them down and that's great.

It's really unbelievable that a DVX100A can retain so much of its value after all of this time. If the market was as fierce as home theater projection there would be a superior HD version of the DVX100A for under a grand right now.
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Old December 16th, 2006, 05:27 AM   #3
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My guess and the reason i would be pricing my old xl1s at around £900 is because it has to be worth your while selling it. If i thought i was only gonna get £150 to £200 pounds for it i wouldn't sell it cause it's worth more than that to me as a backup camera or a vtr deck (the extra batts i bought for it cost that ). Apart from the fact the xl1s is still a damn good camera.

Maybe if you wait another 3 years they might be giving them away ;)

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Old December 16th, 2006, 06:25 AM   #4
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"How can people sell paintings of Elvis done on black velvet??? It's CRAZY?"

Because someone BUYS them.

Such are the forces of market demands. My guess on the good resale value for the Xl series and the DVX is that they are both highly regarded 'industry standard' cameras. They STILL shoot good pictures. MINI DV is STILL a strong commercially viable format. People STILL want to own them at a 'reduced' price from a new kit.
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Old December 16th, 2006, 02:53 PM   #5
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HUGE difference in the markets. Many, if not most, people buying pro-sumer cameras are using them to make money, the same is not true of other sectors of the electronics market.

The XL1 series offer lens options, true manual control, shoulder mount, EF Adapter, etc. etc. etc. The DVX offers true progressive 24P.

You wont see the price fall much more until the format they use is no longer standard.



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Old December 18th, 2006, 07:21 PM   #6
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By the same logic, a Ferrari F360 should now drop down to about $50,000, RIGHT?
Oh wait, it doesn't stop being a Ferrari just cause it's old...
And a broadcast camera doesn't stop being one just cause it's old.

I've been working on a boxing documentary, and when I signed up the producer asked me what cameras I had, I told him the HVX200 and the XL1's. The producer decided to go with the XL1's for a variety of reasons. If I can make a $100+ a day rental off my XL1, why the hell would I sell it for $800? No thanks, I'll keep 'em!
You aren't going to see them that cheap until the format is completely dead, like Hi-8.
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Old December 18th, 2006, 07:38 PM   #7
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We spend a lot of time on this forum promoting and bashing cameras for one reason or another. I'm sure that having Dylan on the recording end of any camera makes it ten steps better than the competition. I just hope that one day I can come even close, but I doubt it.

I just got an XLH1, not because it know what I am doing, but basically because I think it will be my last big camera. Sold my XL1s and next will be my XL2 and I'll get rid of my one other camera soon., and I'll be down to one! I'll never be at the level of Dylan or most others for that matter, but I'll never need any better camera to tell a story.

We spend way too much time debating cameras and way too little debating our stories.

I love this forum and all I learn from it, and the great people I meet! The guy I bought my first cmarea from was an a**hole, but he turned me on this forum, so it was worth it!


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Old December 19th, 2006, 10:55 AM   #8
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I realize that many people aren't as camera savvy as many of us on this board and that they would pay top dollar for an older camera like the XL1S simply because they don't know any better. It's just that there are so many better options available now, even in the consumer range, that it's just strange to me how old cameras like that hold their value, I'd understand big ENG cameras holding their value (assuming that they're using a currently available format) or even film cameras.

Also, please keep car analogies out of this, a car is a car and I know there are hundreds of reasons why cars keep their value.

But this is just my opinion, I'm not making an argument or anything, I just want to discuss the subject because it's interesting to me. =)
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Old December 19th, 2006, 11:05 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Felis

pay top dollar for an older camera like the XL1S simply because they don't know any better. It's just that there are so many better options available now, even in the consumer range, that it's just strange to me how old cameras like that hold their value
Just curious, what consumer camera is available for less than a good used XL1s that performs as well and has all of the features and adjustability? Not to mention all of the available accessories, etc...

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Old December 19th, 2006, 11:33 AM   #10
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Good point Mike.
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Old December 19th, 2006, 11:49 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Teutsch
We spend a lot of time on this forum promoting and bashing cameras for one reason or another.
If there's any bashing going on, then we're not doing our job. Bashing of format / camcorder / whatever has never been condoned here, and never will be.

Richard Alvarez said it best... pricing for used gear depends entirely upon what the market will bear; that is, what people are willing to pay.
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Old December 19th, 2006, 12:05 PM   #12
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Well, now, I never said that there are cameras with as much accessories and features, perhaps what I should have said is better resolution and newer features (ie. Native 16:9), forgive me for not being clearer.^_^

Though you're right, there aren't any other cameras that have interchangeable lenses, EF adapters, or smooth full manual focusing (though I didn't think the XL1S had that on its own, I thought you'd need the manual lense?) for the $1,200-$1,500 range.

Before I go any further, do keep in mind that I'm looking at this from a filmmaking standpoint, not necessarily a wedding videographer's or an event videographers, to which an XL1S or some camera like that would make more sense.

Continuing,

There are still many "viable" options available. For instance, the Canon HV10.

The Canon HV10 is a consumer grade camera, true, but it still has most of the relevant manual controls, such as exposure and focus (although, I can't remember if it did in fact have shutter speed control or not, I don't think it does though). At B&H Photo, a Canon HV10 can be had for currently $950. No professional audio? No problem. Throw in a Zoom H4 XLR stereo field recorder for $300 and a 2gb SD card for about $100 and there you go. Just about $1,350 for a convenient and capable HD(v) camera with professional audio options. Granted there are still some inconveniences to work around, particularly the camera's consumer grade nature. Yet it can all be had for just about the same price as a used XL1S.

Then, there's the Sony HC1. Also used like the XL1S since Sony doesn't make them anymore, but still a good camera. It can be had, at most, for around $1,300. It too offers HD(v) and native 16:9 and a small formfactor, yet it doesn't have exposure control, add on the $300 Zoom H4 and a $100 2gb SD Card and you've got a capable $1,700 package.

To top that, there is the current little workhorse, the Sony A1U, same camera, a little pricier, but has some pro features added to it. It's in the professional category, not the consumer category, but it's closely priced at $2000 from B&H Photo (this is including the $300 rebate).

Also, the HC1 and A1U feature the manual zoom/focus ring on the front, a little flimsy for my tastes, but it works.

The Sony HC3, though not as capable as the HC1 it replaced or it's bigger brother, the A1U, it can still do a lot when used properly. It's priced at $1,200, with the Zoom H4 I keep referring to :rolls eyes at self:, it comes out at $1,600 for the full package.

I would say the Sanyo HD1A would be a contender, but from what I've seen and heard, it's a pretty flimsy little camera, yet it still gets kudos since it does HD and it's so tiny. Also, there's been some pretty good videos posted from it, though I still wouldn't have it compete. Yet it is $600 and add on the Zoom H4, it's a $1,000 package. But I'm just mentioning this as an example since it does offer HD quality for so little.

Then there's the JVC HD10U itself, which I also complain about. Though people didn't like it very much for the lack of full manual controls and bad low light performance, there did seem to be quite a few workarounds. For those reasons alone, I don't understand why that camera keeps its value, but since we've somehow traveled into this XL1S comparison discussion, it makes sense to mention it. Like I said before, it goes around for $1,200-$1,500, and it does offer native 16:9 and HD(v), though at 30P only.

Though these aren't viable options for weddings or event work, for documentary work, filmmaking, and commercial, plus in the right hands, there could be some great stuff done with them. But that's all I'm saying, there's just better options, many more that I haven't listed (forgive me, I've been caught up in the HD craze =) , so I haven't been keeping an eye on the SD area for a while, there may be even consumer SD cameras with better picture quality available).

Also, let's not forget, that any of these cameras, with the exception of the non-competitor Sanyo HD1A, can be outfitted with a Redrock Micro 35mm adapter or any other 35mm adapter commercially available for the added cinematic effect and "manual" focusing. Add in Magic Bullet Suite or the more cost effective DV Film Maker software for 24p and you're good to go.
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Old December 19th, 2006, 12:37 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Hurd

If there's any bashing going on, then we're not doing our job. Bashing of format / camcorder / whatever has never been condoned here, and never will be.
Never said it was condoned, and it is not. Thank you for that! You and others invariably step in and put people straight. The one that comes to mind is the often stated comment that "HDV is not true HD." You recently stepped in on that issue for maybe the ten time or more.

Thank you Chris.

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Old December 19th, 2006, 12:50 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Felis

Before I go any further, do keep in mind that I'm looking at this from a filmmaking standpoint, not necessarily a wedding videographer's or an event videographers, to which an XL1S or some camera like that would make more sense.
If we were to any almost any filmmaker out there whether they would choose an XL1's or a HV-10 to make a film, I would almost guarantee they would all choose the XL1's. Almost without exception. The HV-10 may be better for weddings, as it is small light weight and portable, but it is just not the tool an XL1's is.

I think you are not only getting caught up in the HD craze, but also in the resolution and pixel craze.

Example: There are many new small handheld digital cameras out there from many manufacturers that have exceptionally high mega pixels! But, I guarantee you, I would not dump my Nikon D70 with only 6.1 mega Pixels, for any of the small higher pixel little cameras. There is a world of difference in their capabilities, adjustability and accessories.

The reason why the prices remain high is just what Richard said, the market determines their value. And for these cameras, the market is people who know what can be accomplished with these wonderful "tools."

Let
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Old December 19th, 2006, 11:49 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Felis

Also, please keep car analogies out of this, a car is a car and I know there are hundreds of reasons why cars keep their value.
Nah. I like car analogies. I'm working a theory where all things in life from relationships to death to cameras can be explained using a car analogies.

Anyway, have you heard the saying "bigger chips always win"? Resolution isn't everything, the XL1 still puts out a more pleasing picture than a whole lot of new HDV cameras, which is why it is still in service, and retains it's value. I think part of the confusion is that you are only comparing the specs of these cameras and forgetting one thing, picture is everything.
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