Getting buried!

How to shoot best high-definition video in various specific situations, regardless of camcorder model. Accessories: tripods, stabilizers, lights...
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Roscoe105
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Getting buried!

Post by Roscoe105 » 26 Jan 2013 20:24

Hi, I will try and keep my inquiry succinct;

Basically I film for an operation with international exposure, and have done for a few years. I also do the lighting, stills and editing, and I have to make sure things look good. Stills are fine, I use Nikon with great results. Scenes are generally shot indoors and lit with soft boxes. Everything runs great, except quality of footage. The footage has always looked rough. I have been informed that this is due to my camera, a Sony VX2100E - one I was informed was brilliant, turns out it isnt. So, I want a HD camcorder up to and around £1100 which produces good, clear footage, isnt flimsy and does not use mini DV. I got all excited today when somebody recommended the PanasonicAG HVX200 and by all accounts the footage is awesome, I nearly bought one until seeing that they use the Panasonic P2 card which only lets you record about 10 mins of HD footage before having to change the card (8GB average card) So, in a nutshell, I want a decent prosumer camera around £1100 which can export to Elements 10 or FCP X and produce crisp, clear footage for download and viewing on laptops, monitor screens and maybe TV's. In this day and age I would think that a simple request, but I am getting buried in cameras! Can anyone offer any simple advice? I have also just had the Panasonic HDC MDH 1 and the Sony HXR-M2000E recommended to me.

Many Thanks,

Roscoe

acgold7
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Re: Getting buried!

Post by acgold7 » 27 Jan 2013 08:18

There is an extensive review of the Sony MC2000 right here on this forum so you may wish to look at that to see if you think that cam is for you. Most of the current non-tape cams these days shoot to AVCHD, which may pose some problems with FCP and Macs; I don't know whether they have worked those out yet, so you should be aware of them.

You could look at the Sony FX1000/Z5, which, while tape cams, integrate well with their MRC card recorder, which shoots to standard inexpensive CF cards. A 32 GB card will hold 2 1/2 hours of footage. The two models are identical except the Z5 is the pro version with more features and the card recorder integrates seamlessly into the cam's body.

A half-generation newer are the AX2000/NX5, which are virtually identical to the previous pair but lack the tape capability and shoot only to card. Same body, chip, lens, but Sony cleverly removed some features via firmware. The NX5 has a bolt-on external card recorder as an option, which I don't believe works with the AX. They record to SD cards and Memory Sticks if I am not mistaken if you are not using an external recorder.

(The VX2100 is briliant, for what it is -- an SD DV cam. Some say it's one of the best that ever was, but it just got outpaced by HD. It's still unbeaten in low-light, although the Z5 does equal it.)
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Stephan
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Re: Getting buried!

Post by Stephan » 28 Jan 2013 00:54

acgold7 wrote:Most of the current non-tape cams these days shoot to AVCHD, which may pose some problems with FCP and Macs; I don't know whether they have worked those out yet, so you should be aware of them.
FCP X works very smoothly with AVCHD. Went all through the workflow on this video - Costa neoRomantica - without any significant glitch.

acgold7
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Re: Getting buried!

Post by acgold7 » 28 Jan 2013 07:42

Good to know. Wasn't there some issue about being unable to capture/transfer from Sony cams to Macs not too long ago? It dominated all the boards for quite a while....
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Doughie
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Re: Getting buried!

Post by Doughie » 30 Jan 2013 17:33

Hi Roscoe

OK with budget of around 1100 quid, I would suggest considering these 2 HiDefinition Sony camcorders (one of which, the VG20, a friend of mine has got and shoots with professionally all the time) :

Sony HDR-CX730E
http://www.wexphotographic.com/buy-sony ... r/p1530355

Sony NEX-VG20E
http://www.wexphotographic.com/buy-sony ... r/p1527474

1st cam is more a prosumer but it has a fantastic image, fantastic image stabilisation. I think Stephan has that cam, or one very very similar.

2nd cam is the VG-20 and it comes with a quality zoom lens (interchangeable so you can use all kinds of lenses on it, including nikon lenses via an adaptor, although with non-Sony lenses you may lose some functions like autofocus).
Yes the UK price is around 250 over your stated budget but consider it anyway. this is the cam my friend shoots with professionally. It has a LARGE image sensor, an APS-C sized sensor, same size as many Nikon cameras like D5100 / D3200 / D5200 / D300s / D90 / D7000. larger image sensor will give inherently shallower depth-of-field which can be very cinematic.

Anyway, i leave it to you to do some more research and studying, but with a budget of GBP1100 you should be able to get a fine machine.

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