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-   -   PDX10 review in DV ?? (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/sony-trv950-pdx10-companion/9109-pdx10-review-dv.html)

Mike Moncrief April 29th, 2003 06:54 PM

PDX10 review in DV ??

Got my new DV magazine today.. I thought I read that there was going to be a review of PDX10 in either this issue or last issue ?? I rifled through it quick, but did not see the review??
what happened??


Boyd Ostroff April 29th, 2003 07:12 PM

Wasn't in this issue or that last one either. I thought maybe it was Videography Magazine that was going to run the review?...

Jeff Dobisch April 29th, 2003 07:33 PM

I just got the Spring issue of Videography, it's not in there either. There is a review of the Sony DSR-570WSL DVCAM, but no PDX10.

Maybe in the Summer issue?

Boyd Ostroff April 29th, 2003 07:54 PM

That issue came out a little while ago... I thought it was supposed to be the next one. How often is it published?

Mike Moncrief April 29th, 2003 08:22 PM

This is off topic..

Hey Boyd, Or maybe Yo Boyd..

I see you are from Philly.. I grew up in Philly area, actually Bucks County (close enough) now I reside in florida, but still consider Philly to be my home town..

Sorry gang for the off topic..

Mike Moncrief

Frank Granovski April 30th, 2003 03:17 AM

The PDX10 review was done some time ago for DV Magazine. However, it has yet to be printed! One of the article's praises is about the great audio.

Derek Beck May 9th, 2003 02:52 PM

i really wish it would be published b/c I'm still waiting on it before i buy either the X10 or the 150.

Boyd Ostroff May 9th, 2003 08:57 PM

Wow, it sort of amazes me that you would place that much faith in one review, especially when you consider the combined wisdom available to you on this site...

Derek Beck May 9th, 2003 09:57 PM

I'm not relying on that review. I'm basically on the fence between the PDX10 and the PD150, that's all. I wanted to see if the review would pursuade me one way or the other.

Here's why I'm on the fence:

X10 likes: 16:9, less money, uses same 37mm thread size as current cam, plus same infolithium battery type as current cam (driving the total cost down even further), and this one may have better XLR audio

PD150 likes: better in low light, more manual control (ie independent iris/gain), and i just trust bigger CCDs over smaller ones with better HAD technology

Boyd Ostroff May 10th, 2003 06:45 AM

I think your summary is quite accurate, so you've obviously given the choice lots of thought. Too bad you don't have a place to actually try both cameras. The one thing you don't mention are the ergonomic issues. For the most part, I like the "feel" of my VX-2000 (very similar to the PD-150) better. I also like the control layout better on the VX-2000. For example, you need to open the LCD screen to access some of the PDX-10 features. The most annoying of these being the custom preset button. The PDX-10 is much smaller and lighter, especially if you remove the mike and XLR box. That can be either a plus or minus depending on the situation. At the moment I'm shooting stuff without sound, and working outside where I have to hike out with camera and tripod. Anything that saves weight and bulk is good for that. Most of my shooting is on a tripod anyway, so these ergonomic issues of size and "holdability" are less important.

I'd also be hard pressed to choose one of these cameras over the other. Why don't you get one of each? ;-) But really, it may simplify your choice if you zero in on one important difference. How important is 16:9 for you? If you're not sure then you should probably just buy the PD-150. It's a great camera and you won't regret it. But if you want the best possible 16:9 then you don't really have any other option than the PDX-10, short of $14,000 for a DSR-570. (Okay Frank, I'll wait for you to put in a plug for the DV-953 too ;-)

OTOH, you could continue waiting for the PDX-10 review to be published... by the time that happens maybe Sony will release an update to the PD-150 with real 16:9 ;-) Seriously, I'm disappointed that this doesn't seem to be in the cards this year. That's the camera I'd buy in a heartbeat.

Derek Beck May 10th, 2003 10:13 AM

How the cameras feel isn't too important to me b/c I use a tripod almost exclusively. I actually have a local electronic store that let me toy with the young brothers (950 & vx2000) and run some tests. My conclusion was that they were the same in terms of video quality. There was nothing else about my test that really put me over to one side or the other, which I would've preferred.

I would be more decisive if I didn't know that Sony will come out with a next-generation vx2000/pd150, possibly in the next year, that will have the true 16:9, and probably also use the advanced HAD CCDs (but hopefully same size CCDs) leading to an even crisper image. Plus I can bet it'll use the newer InfoLithium M (blue) batteries versus the old InfoLithium L (yellow/orange) batts. So this is where the regret may come in. I figure if I were to buy the x10, then in theory, some of the footage would be interchangeable to what I would record in the future vx2000 camera. However, if I get the 150, then it won't be interchangeable with the next-gen vx2000 unless you don't use the 16:9. Of course, I want the pd150 for manual control and its big size makes me look more official because my use is for short films. A camera that looks touristy will decrease my credibility in the beginning.

From a business standpoint, I think Sony did shoot itself in the foot. The higher end camera should've got the 16:9 first. Some people in my position will go the x10 way.

Thanks for the comments and advice, and I welcome more :)

Boyd Ostroff May 10th, 2003 10:48 AM

Yeah, tough choice I agree. However I don't think your manual control issue is really much of a concern. The gain limit only affects the behavior in auto mode. In manual iris you just set whatever you want. Do you shoot in auto? Personally I do not. Someone else mentioned no manual shutter control, which is not true on the PDX-10. You can control both shutter speed and iris, the method is only slightly different. You punch a button for either one at the back of the camera, then use the thumbwheel.

The difference on the VX-2000 is that there's a separate iris knob at the front, but the function is identical. You have to choose either shutter or iris first before you change, you can't continuously change both. I don't find this a limitation at all. Now there was an extensive (and heated) discussion of the shutter speed controls on the PD-150 here a month or two back, and evidently there are some subtle differences between the VX-2000 and PD-150 although it was hard to sort out as the discussion was heading in the direction of a flame war ;-) Try doing a search. Regardless, I really think you've got as much manual control as you would want on the PDX-10.

True that the PDX-10 may not impress people as much, but I could care less. Then again, it does look pretty cool with the supplied large lens shade, and the black finish is very nice. In a way it is impressive when you consider the quality they pack into such a small unit; it looks high tech. Hell, if "size matters" why not get an XL-1s? ;-) I don't think the PDX-10 looks "touristy" in any way, but the 950 might. And you know, it isn't necessarily a bad thing to have a camera that doesn't attract too much attention. But if you're really concerned, take the money you save on buying the PDX-10 and buy a mattebox; that's bound to impress ;-)

And another thing you haven't mentioned; the LCD screen on the PDX-10 is far and above nicer than the PD-150. Larger and much brighter. But regarding what Sony will do next, who knows? There was a quote attributed to a Sony rep that was posted here and elsewhere saying not to expect an upgrade for almost a year. Shortly afterwards Sony denied that anyone made such a statement. But I think it's like computers, you can count on the fact that a better, faster, cheaper one will come out right after you make a purchase. Such is the way of the world. Buy what you need now. Then if things are going well next year, sell it and upgrade. In the meantime you'll have learned a lot in the process.

Again, I really think it comes down to the 16:9. Low light is a bit of an issue, but only if you're working in really dark places. I shot a bunch of video just after sunset of pine trees silhouetted against a dark blue sky from a moving car. It turned out beautifully, and it was really dark out there. As it got darker I cranked up the gain and the video still was usable, but with notable noise. My VX-2000 would have done a little better, but it really isn't a big deal.

However I sometimes film our opera performances, and the lighting tends to be quite dim at time (and yes, I also design the lights ;-) Shooting the final act of Traviata I was wide open at +6 db and it looked great. Not sure if I would have been happy with the PDX-10 there, will have to try next season. There isn't much reason to shoot 16:9 for these, so I may just stick with the VX-2000.

But I am really happy with the 16:9, and that was the only reason I got the PDX-10. I haven't taken my VX-2000 out of its case since then.

Derek Beck May 10th, 2003 11:27 AM

Another concern I have is that I have a possible 2nd cameraman for a shoot I'll be doing in Aug. He has a Canon XL1S. I feel that the PD150 will produce footage this is equal to what his camera will produce, thereby making the footage interchangeable in the post production process. Would you agree? (I'm going to post this same question to the PD150 forum)

Tom Hardwick May 12th, 2003 09:35 AM

More good observations Boyd, but although the PDX10 and the TRV950 allow you to set an aperture, you're not told in the viewfinder what this is. Ok, you can make a guess at the position of the bar chart, but why not tell us it's f4.5 or +6dB rather than make us guess or rewind the tape and replay with 'display' turned on? Hardly a pro feature on a pro camera to my mind.


John Jay May 12th, 2003 01:55 PM


Real pros dont need scales with numbers - they know light

they know when its f16 and they also know when its 5.6

Stevie Wonder never had a problem playing the keyboard, whereas some people put little stickers over the keys F# or Bb

just MHO :)

Tom Hardwick May 12th, 2003 03:40 PM

You're kidding John, right? $3000 Nikons have apertures marked. $20000 lenses for the IMAX body have apertures marked on them. Pros don't have to look at the sky and guess, and nor should we.


John Jay May 12th, 2003 04:58 PM

Ha ha

Well both kidding and serious

the point being a pro would get to know the kit and make it work for him/her

Forex: I dont need to be reminded that 3/4 of a foot scale is 9 inches

like wise 3/4 of a ParaDoX10 scale is f1.6 0db (yes its 1.6 not 1.7 as previously posted)

the point being anyone putting more than 10 tapes through such an exquisite machine would quickly pick up on that and numbers become irrelevent

Boyd Ostroff May 12th, 2003 07:27 PM

John, I tend you agree with you now, having used the PDX-10 for a few weeks. But when I first got it I felt it was a major oversight. I guess I'd still be happier if the F-stop was displayed though, but it really isn't hard to get used to. OTOH, sometimes it's nice to see the focus distance displayed in the finder. For some reason it seems they only felt they could display 2 parameters. On the PD-150 it's f-stop and shutter speed while on the PDX-10 it's focus distance and shutter speed.

But it kind of puzzles me why they use such a huge, clunky font to display all this info in the finder. As per another thread, both the LCD and finder are really quite high resolution. I often find those big numbers intrusive in the field of view. You can punch the display button and hide some of them, but not all while in record mode. I get this sense of deja-vu, like I'm staring at my Apple ][ screen back in 1978, when I see big uppercase characters like those ;-) It probably has something to do with legacy firmware from older cameras.

Also, with the addition of the touch screen on the PDX-10, it's kind of arbitrary which menus are accessed via the screen vs. the hard menu button/thumbwheel. The Sony engineers need to really re-think the whole human interface; maybe we'll see this when the PD-150 gets an update?

You said it: ParaDox10... I love that! :-)

Patrick Grealy May 21st, 2003 10:41 AM

PDX10 or PD150
Hi Derek.

Was exactly in your shoes a month ago.I coundn't decide either.

I bought the PDX10 and am very pleased.

If and when the PD150 adds 16:9, I will complete my arsenal of cameras, for good...



Derek Beck May 26th, 2003 07:24 PM

Well, don't say "for good" on the completion of your arsenal of cameras :) You'll want the cameras that will eventually come out that will over 2.35, 1.85, etc aspect ratios on top of the 16:9 and 4:3, and of course have HDTV quality (at first) and eventually Star Wars Episode II digital quality. :)

We'll here's my decision, for those that care: I'm not buying either. I only have a short-term need for a camera for the near-term because as of Jan 04 I'll be in grad school and be busy with other stuff, not working on films. So I'm renting for my short film shoot in Sept. After that, I'll go to school and hope that HDTV quality 16:9 cameras are out when I graduate in Feb 05, because I'm buying my camera upon graduation, as I intend to start filming more and more.

Happy Memorial Day to all,

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