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Old March 7th, 2006, 08:21 PM   #1
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Promoting HVX200 to clients

I am in a strange position of needing to sell clients on a camera they have already purchased for the project. We are creating an archive of video recordings of oral history interviews for a Japanese university. I was asked to write a short list in simple declarative sentences (aimed at people who are not media professionals) about why this camera is a good choice for producing media for long term archival preservation.

I would love some suggestions as to how to articulate how this camera is more suitable or better than a consumer model.

Here is what I have so far:

The HVX200 is as simple to use as a consumer camera, but also provides skilled operators the ability to control various parameters in order to ensure a consistently good product.

The HVX200 and other pro-sumer cameras have the ability to accept an audio input from a microphone, making it possible to have better isolation of the interviewee's voice and reduce the impact of ambient noises.

When shooting high definition, the HVX200 samples color at 4:2:2 rather than the rate used in consumer DV of 4:1:1. Capturing more color data produces a perceptible difference and improves the quality of the format for long term preservation.

The output of the HVX200 can be a file rather than a tape; therefore reducing the amount of time needed to process the media.

It enables the use of archival best practices such as recording bars and tone.
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Old March 7th, 2006, 08:43 PM   #2
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i think u need to swerve more into the real world.
Being a Japanese client, they can be technically savvy, however i would note this. (i recently shot for a japanese client who flew me around australia on next to nothing. Money to them is peanuts, so try no tot delve too much into "budgetary" elements.

1) The camera allows for shooting High Definition in a variety of formats, as well as offering the ability to archive this footage to standard definition digital tape.

2) Offer professional microphone inputs. From Wireless lapel microphones to shotgun microphones, thse professional devices can be connected with audio inputs manipulated from within the camera as required.

3) The camera is EASY to use. From full automatic modes through to completely manual modes, the cameras operations are clear and precise and EVERY element pertaining to the exposure, shutter etc is visible to the user. With this information, the shooter can take notes on what settings work for any given shot.

4) The camera is light. It is not heavy such as a shouldre mounted ENG cam

5) The camera is cheap. The closest camera which can perform in this range and offer similar features is over $30k

6) The camera offers 6 user configurations allowing it to be switched instantaneously to manage any given environment. what this means is that one setting may be used indoors in fluro lighting, while outside, all it takes is the turn of a dial to recalibrate and configure the camera for the outdoors

7) Removal of redundant clips can be done in the camera without the need of a computer or editing system.

theres heaps more which can be added to this, but for Japs, the basics are pretty much what u need.
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Old March 7th, 2006, 09:21 PM   #3
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It has a color space of 4:2:2, vs the HDV 4:2:0.

It is intercuttable with the Varicam, which is a $65,000 HD camera.

Far better compression than HDV...and DV for that matter.

Variable frame rates. Can shoot true slow motion. Can shoot 720p24...24P! and is FULLY supported by many edit systems. HDV at 24P...HA!

Really, how do they need to be convinced? Better than DV or HDV?

No comparison to HDV in my mind...far superior in every way.
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Old March 7th, 2006, 11:24 PM   #4
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and other pro-sumer cameras
I'd drop any reference to so-called "prosumer" and "consumer" cameras. They're not going to understand those labels. If they do understand them, then they're not going to need your report in the first place. Such labels are pointless anyway. "Prosumer" is a non-word and practically meaningless. Frankly I hate it, but that's beside the point. And that point is, "consumer" and "professional" (or anything in between) really applies to the person using the camera, and not the camera itself.

Also "4:2:2" -- again. Pointless. That's not something they'll need to know nor are they likely to understand. If your clients do understand such terms, then they don't need you to make such a report.

You said yourself that these are not media professionals that you're reporting to. Therefore I strongly encourage you to drop these terms -- that only media professionals would understand -- like a hot rock. Otherwise you're only going to confuse them even more. Talk instead in terms of the tapeless workflow, of handling video in a file-based IT environment. Any literature from Panasonic about the P2 process will clearly and succintly help you with this. Consult my site at in its Resources section for links to such documents. Hope this helps,

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Old March 8th, 2006, 01:21 AM   #5
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You *really* want to sell it to them? :)
Put a matte box on it. Tell them it is a camera filmmaking professionals use to make feature films. Tell them it is high definition like George Lucas used on the new Star Wars movies. Glorify the camera. Make them excited about it. Unless you are in the tech, you don't care about the tech. There is nothing exciting about any of the above unless you are a camera nerd like us.

Peter's point 5 and Shane's Varicam comments are closest to the money.
"The next cheapest camera that can do what this camera can do is $40,000, you are getting 90% of a $40,000 camera for $7,000."

That's the closest I'd get to using numbers. Selling something is rarely about the product, as much as the feelings you can stir in people.
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Old March 8th, 2006, 06:24 AM   #6
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If you'll be performing interviews, another advantage of the HVX is its relatively compact design. Its likely to be less intimidating to the interview subjects than something like an HD100 or XLH1. Many people will absolutely want to get away from "professional" cameras (ie. big fancy removable lenses and shoulder mounted).

Of course the Z1 and especially the A1U (is that the right model #?) share that advantage as well, but don't offer the fast in-camera cutting and near immediate editing.

By the way, why did they get the HVX to begin with?
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Old March 8th, 2006, 06:50 AM   #7
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These points are all really great.
I resonate with the idea that the feelings that you can create is the key. I should point out that most of these people I have to convince are scientists, so my sense is that I have to appeal to their sense of "fact". That can be on my side though, because they are used to thinking in terms of "good data".

I also like the "value for your money" argument (90% of a 40,000 cam), but I think I need to take it a step further. One question I should address is how this camera is better than a $1000 handicam. Why should they want the quality of the $40,000 camera? (What's hard about this for me is that this is self evident to me.)

You all are great! I've found this users group very informative. thanks.
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Old March 8th, 2006, 08:30 AM   #8
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I'd say the primary reason to use this camera would be that it offers higher-bandwidth recording with less compression than other similarly priced alternatives. Progressive-scan recording is also a plus, and the comment someone made about its non-obtrusive appearance is worth mentioning. But appearance and other points suggested here could also mostly be attributed to other alternatives, so bandwidth/compression has to be the #1 point to make. I wouldn't emphasize workflow unless they're already using DVCProHD, since the HVX200 is a mixed blessing as far as workflow is concerned.
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Old March 8th, 2006, 08:47 AM   #9
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You can also say the HVX200 is the single least expensive way to shoot DVCPRO HD, if they know about that format.

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Old March 8th, 2006, 10:28 AM   #10
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I don't understand why anyone calls it a "prosumer" camera anyway. I've used a lot of pro cameras, and this one might be smaller, but not any different to me. Even comes in the same kind of box that two decades of Panasonic gear has come in.
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