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Old May 9th, 2014, 09:38 AM   #1
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What "handycam" style cameras do people use

Hi guys,

I'm getting tired of using my Z1 for shooting live events, just because I can end up with 5 - 6 hours of work for each event just ripping tapes, which slows me down considerably.

So I was wondering what "handycam"/Small form factor camcorders people use on here, I'd mostly use it handheld so if it's got decent image stabilization that would be a plus, and also if it had some manual controls, again a huge plus. So does anyone have any recommendations?

Thanks guys,
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Old May 9th, 2014, 10:36 AM   #2
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Re: What "handycam" style cameras do people use

i have one of these
Sony HDR-PJ790 Replacement for Sony HDR-PJ790 | B&H Photo Video
and
one of these
Sony HDR-PJ760E Flash Memory HD Camcorder HDR-PJ760E B&H Photo

i find them great for hand-held, i have the biggest batteries for them too and with the big storage they can operate for hours and hours.
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Old May 9th, 2014, 10:42 AM   #3
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Re: What "handycam" style cameras do people use

2 X Sony CX730 - Now replaced I believe by Sony PJ780

Zeiss lens with great optical 'magic eyeball' steadyshot - what's not to like - I used a few Panny TM900 for a while which were great but the Sony's have the edge in low light IMO

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sony-PJ780-F...keywords=pj780
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Old May 9th, 2014, 02:19 PM   #4
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Re: What "handycam" style cameras do people use

You also got the panasonic ag ac90 which seems like a good deal considering it's features.
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Old May 9th, 2014, 02:24 PM   #5
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Re: What "handycam" style cameras do people use

Another vote for the CX/PJ7xx series cameras - they have different numbering in US and UK markets, but if you look for CX7xx or PJ7xx, those are the ones with the larger sensor, magic eyeball stabilizer, and so on. Replace the "xx" with whatever numbers apply for your locale.

I have a PJ760, and a couple PJ710's, but am upgrading to an AX100 shortly, at which time I'll probably keep at least one PJ for handheld use. I'm also rather fond of the DSC-RX10, although it's a hybrid camera, and you have to get used to shooting something in that form factor.
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Old May 10th, 2014, 02:07 AM   #6
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Re: What "handycam" style cameras do people use

We are spoiled for choice now. I have 3 x the Panny TM900's for b-cams. They have been replaced with the X920:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Panasonic-X9.../dp/B00B170BKU

Great stabilisation among other things.

Manual controls on these mini cams can be rather convoluted, you have to spend some quality time getting to know them.

I also have one of the AC90's. Its not exactly small but on the plus side it looks the part if thats important :- )

Recently I did some battery tests. On the AC90 the Panny battery lasted 360 minutes. An aftermarket battery lasted 266 minutes. One large TM900 battery lasted 215 minutes and an aftermarket version 147 minutes. That was just shooting a 24-hour news channel on a TV for test purposes. Obviously more use of the functions mid-shoot would shorten the battery duration. A 32gb card in the AC90 at top quality AVCHD 1920x1080 50p got me 178 minutes, and on the TM900 163 minutes.

If you shoot to cards instead of tape and you use a USB-3 reader you'll be well sorted :- ) Downloaded in minutes.

I think with any cam shooting with a monopod rather than 100% handheld is the best bet regardless of its stabilisation credentials, even if you collapse the monopod to hold to your waist. If you have a hard time Mercalli standalone or plugin software works well.

Pete
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Old May 10th, 2014, 09:58 AM   #7
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Re: What "handycam" style cameras do people use

Thanks guys, a lot for me to think over.

Appreciate the help.
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