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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old October 20th, 2006, 08:38 AM   #1
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One common question?

I know I know, this question has probably been asked a hundred if not a thousand times here, I want to get a fresh perspective from all the veterans of the board and even the newcomers. For weddings and events ie. birthdays and such, should I go with a Sony 2100, Canon GL2 or go all out with an XL2? I plan on getting my business full swing at the beginning of the year to mid spring and will be wanting to shoot 2 camcorders at weddings. Price will be weighed pretty heavily. I know there's not much price difference between 2100 and gl2, so what do you all think?
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Old October 20th, 2006, 08:48 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig Sharp
I know I know, this question has probably been asked a hundred if not a thousand times here, I want to get a fresh perspective from all the veterans of the board and even the newcomers. For weddings and events ie. birthdays and such, should I go with a Sony 2100, Canon GL2 or go all out with an XL2? I plan on getting my business full swing at the beginning of the year to mid spring and will be wanting to shoot 2 camcorders at weddings. Price will be weighed pretty heavily. I know there's not much price difference between 2100 and gl2, so what do you all think?
My first question is, why are you choosing SD video cameras when HD is soon to be the standard looming on the horizon? I don't have an answer for you. It is very much an academic quesiton, in my opinion.

Regarding the camera choices you offer, there are some additional questions in my mind.
1st, a SONY 2100 will beat a Canon GL2 by a slight margin in terms of light sensitivity. The SONY 2000/2100 cameras beat any camera in low light sensitivity, period. Audio, however, is tinny, in my oninion.
2nd, in the GL series, Canon, in my personal opinion, put all control buttons in all of the wrong places. A SONY 2100 is muchmore user friendly in this regard (and this comment comes from one who exclusively uses Canon cameras).
3d, Canon, whenever it releases a new camera, does a number of things:
a) The camera is reworked from top to bottom. Nothing is brought forward from a previous version unless is truly has merit.
b) it includes new features that are not (in my opinion) very well thought out (like deleting the 3.5mm mic input in favor of the MA-200 as the only way to introduce external audio inputs. This demands the use of the hot shoe, thereby rendering any other use of the hotshoe for any other purpose. That is my definition of stupid engineering. Karma will return this lack of wisdom in fair measure. Other new features, are well condiered.
If you choose in favor of a XL2 (my choice for a number of reasons), recogize that you have not only chosen a heavier camera, but one that produces true 4:3 or true 16:9. It may not be very compatible with the artificially stretched 16:9 imagery that is common with the SONY2000/2100 series and Canon GL1/Gl2 series cameras. Someone else will have to comment in this regard, as my expereience is very limited.

To answer your last question, the biggest operational difference between the 2100 and the GL2 is size, weight, and focal length. The GL2 is smaller, lighter, and has a longer optical focal length. The 2100 has all controls in the more logical locations.

In the end, it all will boil down to this:
If you can master the tool, you can master the craft. Choice of tool really is one of preference.
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Old October 20th, 2006, 09:06 PM   #3
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One additional feature I like about the Sony VX series is the manual zoom control. The Canon GL series doesn't have this feature and boy I sure wish it did. The zoom on the GL series is not very responsive compared to the manual one on the Sony.
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Old October 20th, 2006, 09:53 PM   #4
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I'm new to HD Cameras, for a reasonable price range for 2 cameras, preferably no more than 4k each, what would be a good solution. I've seen some sony's but i dont know much about them.
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Old October 21st, 2006, 04:10 AM   #5
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Why don't you wait for the Sony V1, it's body is alot like the Sony VX2100. It's a 4 Lux compared to the Sony VX2100 (1 Lux). But it's HDV. Wait for the reviews and it might turn out to be what you are looking for.

The V1 doesn't have an internal stereo mic, only a shotgun mic. One thing to think about. Just a thought.

P.S. The VX2100 is great for lowlight, which comes in very handy for weddings and other events.

Regards.
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Old October 21st, 2006, 06:27 AM   #6
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Thanks Marco,
I did some research and yes, you are right, that is what i am looking for. Is there a way to compensate for the 4 lux though? Also, i didn't read anywhere that it has a 3.5mm mic input? i know it has 2 xlr's but i would need the mic input for a wireless system i have my eyes set on getting.
once again,
Thanks
Craig Sharp
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Old October 21st, 2006, 06:55 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig Sharp
Also, i didn't read anywhere that it has a 3.5mm mic input? i know it has 2 xlr's but i would need the mic input for a wireless system i have my eyes set on getting
I don't think that the V1 has a 3.5mm mic input, but I am sure there's an accessory that inputs 3.5mm to XLR cable out there. Check out www.bhphotovideo.com

Here's 2 reviews on the Sony V1 that you might want to take a look at:

http://www.dvuser.co.uk/content.php?CID=141

http://www.showreel.org/memberarea/article.php?218

Regards.
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Old October 21st, 2006, 07:55 AM   #8
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Is there a way to compensate for the 4 lux?

Yes.

On-camera lighting and knowing how to use it. Works every time.

No matter the camera you'll need an on-camera light but the higher lux rating means you'll have to be more alert to your distance from the subject and the wattage you're using. 4 lux would probably work well most of the time with a 35 watt diffused light.

Ben
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Old October 21st, 2006, 08:31 AM   #9
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I'll side with the others Craig, and tell you that however fine the VX2100 is (was) and by however much it trounces the other two cameras as a wedding and events tool, it's had its day.

Why? Because it's 4:3.

You've got to look seriously at the Z1. In the world of HDV it's some sort of bargain in my view, and yet I loved my two VX2000s before it and the two TRV900s before them.

tom.
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Old October 22nd, 2006, 06:30 AM   #10
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Tom,
you have a Z1 I take it? Do any of you know the main differences between the Z1, FX1, A1U and the V1, All are HD obviously, I know the z1 has 24p, but not sure if that would be beneficial to me or not.
once again, as always,
Thanks
Craig
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Old October 22nd, 2006, 06:34 AM   #11
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No matter the camera you'll need an on-camera light but the higher lux rating means you'll have to be more alert to your distance from the subject and the wattage you're using. 4 lux would probably work well most of the time with a 35 watt diffused light.

Ben


Hi I'm new to this site, I just wanted to say thanks for all the informative info
I've read in this forum for the last month...I'm just starting out and the info on here is priceless..

I too am looking at buying a cam, tossing up between pd's, vx's (great for low light, but only 4:3) and fx1/z1 (for the true 16:9 mainly, but poor in low light) ....
Is a diffused 35 watt light good enough for the fx/z1 cams? I've read on here some people use a diffused 35 watt light with the pd's (for receptions)..

who on here uses an fx1/z1 and what lighting do they use for receptions?
how much difference is there really?

thanks in advance

Manny.
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Old October 22nd, 2006, 08:55 AM   #12
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Yes, I have a Z1 and FX1 Craig, and there's not a single time I'd reach for the FX1 over the Z1. The Z1's 'focus assist' and white balance fine tuning on the assign buttons is almost worth the price of admission on its own.

In terms of low light performance the list goes like this: FX/Z1; V1; A1.

The Z1 doesn't have 24p, the V1 does. The V1's the only one with 1"/4 chips, but it has a 20x zoom (others: 12x and 10x).

Manny - without light each and every one of us on this MB is a stuffed goat. Get a light as there will be times when you'll need it - even with the Crown Prince PD170. And yes, I often find I have to use my (diffused) light at receptions.

tom.
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 06:44 AM   #13
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Ok, I have my mind set on the new V1 when it comes out, well, maybe after a few months or so, to get reviews and such, but, my main concern though is, HD is the next "in" thing and all, but... not everyone has an HDTV capable tv, let alone those who do have one, do not have an HD dvd player, anyways to the point, I want to go with a two camera setup, would i be wasting my money by going with a 2100 as well? or should I go with an FX1 or A1? Eventually I would want to have two of the same cams so there wouldnt be any quality difference.
Once again and always,
Thanks
Craig Sharp
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 08:16 AM   #14
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I certainly wouldn't mix 4:3 cams with 16:9 cams Craig. You're doing weddings and events so the FX1 and A1 looks to be a bit lop-sided. A Z1 and an HC1 would probably be more useful.
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 08:20 AM   #15
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HC1? I didn't see it on bhphoto.com. Which is it?
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