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Old March 7th, 2014, 05:39 AM   #1
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I'm weighing up two new camera options here and would love to gauge some real experiences of using their material in Vegas.

I've been with Vegas from 7 now to 12 and have loved it - editing mainly HDV and recently material from 5ds.

Our two camera options will output XDCAM EX on the PMW F3 and the other AVCHD from the FS700 (I appreciate that the XDCAM EX is a better codec but workflow stability can be more important at times for me)...

I will also be recording to a Samurai in DNxHD format as an experiment for the next few months.

Would really love to hear your thoughts as I really don't want to move from Vegas and that governs what camera I next invest in to a certain extent.

Thanks in advance!
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Old April 9th, 2014, 03:13 PM   #2
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I have both and it is a mixed bag. The xdcam ex codec is much better for editing because it is easier on the computer, plays smoother, and grades better, while the avchd is better for me to give directly to a client because the 700 can make 2 copies at once and I can give an sd card to the client, where you would never give your client a SXS card. Most people can play the avchd where there are more steps involved for a client to handle the xdcam footage, not to mention the heavy cost of SXS. Also I like 60p so that gives the 700 an edge, not to mention the super slow mo also.
It's a hard choice!
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Old April 9th, 2014, 10:53 PM   #3
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XDCAM EX looks some sharper and AVCHD looks little cleaner with the similar bitrate. But the option for future investment is XAVC vs XAVC-S. XAVC have a 422 I-frame codec and XAVC-S have a 420 Long-GOP codec. XAVC-S is more economical and XAVC is more professional. Let XDCAM remains for proxy editing.
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Old April 11th, 2014, 09:57 AM   #4
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XAVC and XAVC-S are nothing new, just Sony putting a trademark on the same old H264 encoding we've been using for eons and wrapped it up in a container. This means XAVC-S will edit with the same performance as AVCHD except typically it will use a higher bit-rate and have better quality. Not all (or any) manufacturers want to pay Sony for the trademark rights so typically it may not seem that well supported going forward. For example Panasonic on their GH4 are using H264 at 50Mbps long GOP up to 200Mbps all Intra for HD, this is the same thing as XAVC-S without paying Sony for the brand name and also wrapping it in more consumer friendly containers.

Don't be swayed by the fancy names, look at the codec and bit-rate used and type of encoding, i.e. all Intra or IBP then you can compare them.


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Old May 15th, 2014, 02:19 AM   #5
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thanks for your thoughts.

After careful consideration of how we work and different customer needs I bought both! it's so useful on the fs700 to give the client an SD card or even copy those files quickly to their laptop. Although we've discovered the SD-SxS adapter and you can effectively do the same given some explanation on how to find the clips...

We've found that the images out of the F3 are much richer and work better natively in Vegas for any corrective work. Although now I've gone an ordered a new edit machine with Vegas 13...will be interesting to see how if at all the work-flow is affected!
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