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Old July 7th, 2017, 03:25 PM   #1
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Equipment question AX100?

We shoot with AX100 GH4 and G80.

Our main go to Camera for the last 3 years has been the AX100 for it's ease of use. We are currently reviewing our set up and would like something similar to the AX100 with potentially better low light ability (this is when we revert to GH4 and G80)

We shoot Fusion weddings both stills and Photography and my wife shoots the video. With the AX100 having been about for a while and there doesn't to my knowledge appear to be an upgrade in the pipeline which may be worth considering.

Is there any other Camera/camcorder worth looking at that isn't to big or complex (Ala AX100) that is worth considering. Decent AF and ease of use essential. Budget preferably under 2000 UKP

Any advice appreciated
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Old July 7th, 2017, 08:28 PM   #2
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

There isn't a lot out there since the "consumer" video camera niche seems to have vaporized....

The RX10M2 and M3 use an improved version of the 1" class sensor in the AX100, so you'd get some performance improvement and get the same type of quality image, but you'd lose the video camera form factor. You would need to add the systweak hack to bypass the 29 minute clip limit, and there are pros and cons to each camera, but as far as an "upgrade"path, sadly, that's about it from Sony.

I don't know why the "Handycam" division (is there even still a Handycam division?!) hasn't created an "AX100M2" with the updated sensor, updated Bionz processing, etc., but perhaps they just feel that any market out there would be too small to produce a return on investment. Cell phones really beat the snot out of the "consumer" camera (still and video) market...

There are a few good used RX's out there for decent prices, as there was a pretty big migration to GH5's recently - i got a nice used RX10M3 from one such upgrader.... while it would bust your budget, the GH5 does look pretty nice <wink>...
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Old July 8th, 2017, 12:24 AM   #3
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

Thanks for the reply Dave.

I have to consider ease of use for my wife who is not as techy as some of us lads. The AX100 was an excellent pick up and go, she has mastered the manual side of things, ala, WB, exposure etc which is all very usable on the AX100.

The GH5 does fit into my budget (just) but I am not as sure about ease of use or AF reliability for the wife, we dig out the GH4 or G80 when the receptions or ceremony's are lower light but use them on tripods with manual focus etc, not so much run and gun.
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Old July 8th, 2017, 01:21 AM   #4
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

If you have the gh4 then you know how the gh5 will be like to handle as it will be the same, none of the current dslr's have the ease of use that you have with a handycam like a ax100. There is not that much out there in a handicam form that is better then the ax100 at it's current pricepoint, you might want to look into the panasonic fz1000/2000, from what I heard they are very decent low light and are easy to operate, you could ask Roger Gunkel or Chris Harding as both have these camera's.

It's too bad that it looks like not much further development is done in the handicam section, a ax100II with better low light performance and better inbody stabilization would be great but I think that will never happen, the ax100 might be the last of it's kind. Maybe they"ll update the x70 but then you are looking at a much higher pricetag.
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Old July 8th, 2017, 01:58 AM   #5
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

PXW-Z150 seems like the big brother to the AX100. New price is $3,200 but maybe you can find a good deal on a used one.

I thought the AX100 was the one that slipped through the crack, as Sony marketing didn't cripple it, rather it had lots of pro features, though it was initially classified as a consumer camera due to its codec. I still get plenty of use out of the two I bought. Compared to my older cameras, it has decent low light sensitivity, but can't compete with some of the newer cams, like the FS7.

Mark

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Old July 8th, 2017, 01:59 AM   #6
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

Thanks Noa

We have throughly enjoyed the AX100 and will continue to do so, it does however not perform so well in low light for my threshold, around 9 DB is all we push it to in low light.

I am not sure if the Panasonic FZ are noticeably better I will do some research

I was hoping there may be a m4/3 quality sensor in camcorder format that may be worth looking at.
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Old July 8th, 2017, 02:07 AM   #7
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

Thanks Mark

The PXW-Z150 is 3K in the UK, I would be wanting more than a 1 inch sensor for that money I think.

It looks like I will be choosing from the mirror less options at present
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Old July 8th, 2017, 02:11 AM   #8
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

Hi Phil

The FZ2000/2500 would be a LOT better in low light! However they are still the DSLR form factor and tricky to use and operate compared to a camcorder so if you want camcorder convenience then forget anything that looks like a DSLR ..sadly you will never get the ease of use that a proper video camera can give.

I still get immense pleasure using my Panasonic MDH2/AC-8 shoulder mount camera when we live stream weddings ..I have never got used to the DSLR zoom and the rocker zoom is brilliant!! Sadly whilst the AC-8 has awesome features like dual slots, good AF and batteries that last the entire wedding it doesn't have 4K and the best you can get is 1080 50P !! But despite the silly cheap price results are almost as good as my FZ's (I have three!) and just so easy and stress free to use compared to the other cameras !

You are probably better off just keeping the AX100!!
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Old July 8th, 2017, 02:16 AM   #9
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

An RX10M2 or RX10M3 is the obvious addition to an AX100 as they use a similar sensor but with better low light performance. They don't have the same ease of use as a camcorder but are more like a camcorder than a M43 with a fixed lens & power zoom (24-200mm equivalent on RX10M2 & 24-600mm on RX10M3). It will be much easier to match colour & look too.

It is a shame that Sony haven't updated the AX100 as it is a joy to use with a great image. The low light performance is all that needs improving not that it's terrible but just we all expect to be able to shoot by candlelight nowadays.
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Old July 8th, 2017, 02:19 AM   #10
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

Hi Chris

Thanks, we will keep the AX100 but we had a steady flow of work through the winter last year and with the murky UK weather often the AX100 was not an option, we also find it a little lacking at the wide end in tight scenerios.
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Old July 8th, 2017, 02:31 AM   #11
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

Thanks Nigel

It looks like it is boiling down to either the Panasonic FZ's or the Sony RX10's. My only issue is the 30 minute recording limit.

There is no hurry so I will look into these models
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Old July 8th, 2017, 08:16 AM   #12
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

Trouble is small handycams with their smaller sensors aren't built to handle low-light. For that you need larger sensors and then it's a big plus for the interchangeable lens cameras. Though you alas sacrifice the run n gun aspect of it. If you want better low-light than handycams, then something like the Panasonic DVX200 is a better upgrade. Though you're paying a lot more for it.
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Old July 8th, 2017, 08:37 AM   #13
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Stanley View Post
Thanks Nigel

It looks like it is boiling down to either the Panasonic FZ's or the Sony RX10's. My only issue is the 30 minute recording limit.

There is no hurry so I will look into these models
The FZ2000 does not have a record limit and does have ND filters.
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Old July 8th, 2017, 09:22 AM   #14
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

RX10 recording time hack works great. Also nice that they actually have picture controls unlike the AX100. You'd have to buy some speedy glass with an interchangeable lens camera to get 24-200mm at F2.8 all the way through. That's more than a stop faster than the handycam.
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Old July 8th, 2017, 09:56 AM   #15
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Re: Equipment question AX100?

I have a sony rx10 but the first generation, it's collecting dust right now as I did like the footage it produces in good light but the image fell apart when the lights went down.
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