Need advise

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sak
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Joined: Feb 15 2012
HI 
I am looking to upgrade from my lovely sony Z1 to  AVCHD camcorder . So can anyone help me to choose a decent camcorder  within the budget of £3500. As  I am only making videos for the weddings.
thanks
Barry Hunter
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Joined: Nov 30 2001
Re: Need advise
We use a couple of Sony HXR-NX5e`s.

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ChrisGill
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Re: Need advise
There are only 2 cameras that I would look at the Panasonic HPX250 and the Canon XF305 neither of them are AVCHD but do have better codecs IMHO. What is the reason for wanting AVCHD?

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Mark M
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Joined: Nov 17 1999
Re: Need advise
Why not just buy an Atomos Ninja 2, attach it to the camera, and record in full 1080i Pro Res?

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infocus2
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Joined: Mar 2 2012
Re: Need advise
ChrisGill wrote:
There are only 2 cameras that I would look at the Panasonic HPX250 and the Canon XF305 neither of them are AVCHD but do have better codecs IMHO. What is the reason for wanting AVCHD?

I'd agree with the sentiments above about not going for AVC-HD if possible, but what about the PMW200? Personally, I'd say the 1/2" chips put it way ahead of the other two in terms of quality, sensitivity, dof control etc etc. Basic price may be more than the other two, but by the time you've bought P2 cards for the HPX250 that probably brings the package price of that up comparable to the PMW200 (depending on what run time you need before downloading). Apart from the chip size differences, the other big negative against the HPX250 IMO is that the lens is not a true manual - it relies on servos for the "manual" mode. OK, by the time you've added memory costs in for each of them, they all three may be more than your target price. If that's too much, then the obvious choice has to be the JVC HM600 (see http://www.creativevideo.co.uk/index.php?t=product/jvc_gy-hm600 ). What makes that stand out from the other competition at the price point is choice of codecs out of the box. It will do AVC-HD - but also XDCAM EX, or the same codec as the .mov variant - so immediate import if you use FCP.

Medidox
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Joined: Jun 20 2005
Re: Need advise
Mark M wrote:
Why not just buy an Atomos Ninja 2, attach it to the camera, and record in full 1080i Pro Res?
 
Sadly the Z1 doesn't have HDMI out so that's not an option.
 
sleepytom
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Joined: Sep 15 2000
Re: Need advise
The NX5 is the most logical upgrade from a Z1 as it uses the same batteries / chargers / psu.  If you want better codec than avchd the pmw150 or pmw200 are the best choice.  
 
The rental companies I deal with say the canon xf305 has a lens which gets scratched much more easily than the Sony lenses. Worth being aware of. 

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Mark M
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Joined: Nov 17 1999
Re: Need advise
Medidox wrote:
Mark M wrote:
Why not just buy an Atomos Ninja 2, attach it to the camera, and record in full 1080i Pro Res?
 
Sadly the Z1 doesn't have HDMI out so that's not an option.
 
 
Doh! That's a good reason then!
 

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tom hardwick
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Joined: Apr 8 1999
Re: Need advise
If it's any help I too went from a much-loved Z1 to an NX5 for my wedding video business.  Would you like some pros and cons?
 
The beauty is you'll be up and running in an afternoon because the Sony menu will be very familiar.  Your batteries will all be carry-over and the camera's form-factor will have you feeling right at home in no time.  The camera has a lot more wide-angle and telephoto and is better in the gloom.  The image is much more menu customisable.  SDHC cards are cheap and you can interchange them to give you continuous recordings.  Full HD (and progressive if you must) looks better than HDV. Lots more camera connectivity available. More ND filter options. Better lens hood bayonet.  Really useful assign buttons.
 
Cons.  The NX5 is at the end of its production run.  Doesn't make it a bad camera but others using full raster chips have it beaten.  Push for a good price.
The top screen is not a patch on the Z1's.  It can't be used in sunlight, it's smaller and the font used for display info is ludicrously small.
The lens exhibits wild barrel and pincushion distortion throughout its range - but then most cameras do this.  The much-touted 'three rings' is not a patch on the Z1's big chunky (and separated) alloy iris control.  In the run-n-gun of weddings you don't want to be turning the wrong ring.  With the NX5 you can be, but with the Z1 you never are.
 
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Steamage
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Joined: Nov 11 2003
Re: Need advise
Mark M wrote:
Medidox wrote:
Mark M wrote:
Why not just buy an Atomos Ninja 2, attach it to the camera, and record in full 1080i Pro Res?
 
Sadly the Z1 doesn't have HDMI out so that's not an option.
 
 
Doh! That's a good reason then!
 
One way to prelong the life of a Z1 is with an MRC1K. Plugs into the Firewire port, records to CF card. You still get the same slightly murky "first generation" HDV image quality though, since you are still using the same lens/chip/encoder. What comes out of the Firewire port is exactly the same signal as is recorded to tape. One advantage of this route is you wan't need to change your editing set-up. All the other choices involve different codecs and so probably require new hardware (certainly true for AVCHD which is much more processor-heavy than HDV). On the other hand, it's probably only putting off the day of the upgrade.
 
I agree with Tom that the options for a direct replacement for the Z1 are limited. Moving up the scale, there's the Sony EX1 & EX3 - or rather their PMW-series replacements (not got my head around the model numbers yet) - or the Canon XF300. All are larger than the Z1. Down-sizing, there's lots of choice (Panasonic TM9xx series, Canon XA20, etc.)
 
Have you considered the Canon XF100? About the same size as the old VX2000 or XM2, records MPEG2 in 3 different bit-rates (just like the XF300), XLR and unbalanced mic inputs, LANC for remote control, etc. Although it only has one 1/3" chip, the image quality is a significant improvement over the Z1. The zoom reach is nothing special, but you could say that about the Z1, too.
 

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