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Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast

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Tom Laughlin
Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 5, 2013 at 4:23:13 pm

With all the new Sony cameras coming out to replace the Sony EX-1 and EX-3 work horses, we get into a debate. New cameras showing up, and older cameras phasing out?

A lot of people still editing on Final Cut 7, for example, and some have moved on slowly to other NLEs.

What my question is, as the new Sony PMW-100, PMW-200, and others come out, and offer 50 MB/s recording, for those of you who are shooting on those cameras, are you seeing drastic improvements or better image quality?

I have several friends in the industry who are now selling off their EX-1s and EX-3s, in the $1500 - $2500 ranges, which makes me very interested in getting one. For my needs, an EX-1 would be fine for another 2-3 years, and I'm not shooting for broadcast, so.

But there are also many other cameras out there that are newer and are being offered in the market for $1500 - $2500.

Anyone else looking at this and thinking the same thing? All of the sudden, everyone is selling off their EX-1s and EX-3s, still great cameras, but I also do not want to lag too behind in what future holds.

The other question I have is about the 50 MB/s recording and how much of an impact that requirement is having, or how much US Broadcast is adhering to this? As an editor, mixing footage, and coloring, etc, by the time you're done editing, it's not always maintained it's original quality or codec, especially if stuff is trans-coded before or after editing.

Lots of people still shooting on the Canon 5D Mark 2, even though Canon has released their superior line of C-100s, C-300s, and C-500s.

Any thoughts, Mucho apreciado,

Tom Laughlin
Producer/Editor
Digital Chop House
Salt Lake City, Utah


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Michael Slowe
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 6, 2013 at 5:39:43 pm

Tom, the EX cameras are still doing a great job, you won't get better pictures with the replacements, could anyone tell the difference between stuff shot at 35mbps or 50, I doubt it? I've had material broadcast from 35mbps material and it looked very good. No doubt though that if you do a lot of broadcast work you'll need the 50mbps sooner rather than later. You could record off camera at much higher rates but easier to do it in camera of course. I'm not changing, my EX 1 does everything I want and the PMW 200 does not have the convenient 'joystick' on the top to operate the on screen menu, just a button which is much harder to use without actually looking at it. They wanted the screen to fold flat over the top, don't camera designers ever use the product they design? That 'joystick' is a lifesaver for me, anyone else find that?

Michael Slowe


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Gary Huff
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 7, 2013 at 12:26:00 am

[Tom Laughlin] "The other question I have is about the 50 MB/s recording and how much of an impact that requirement is having, or how much US Broadcast is adhering to this?"

It doesn't and I would be willing to bet they don't really.


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Clint Fleckenstein
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 7, 2013 at 6:40:11 pm

I just got three PMW200s. I used EX1 and EX3 cameras at my last job, so I've been without XDCAM EX for about two and a half years. My impressions (and I have yet to really ramp up the use of these new cams):

- I miss Shot Transition. Period.

- I liked the pivoting grip. I shoot in a lot of nooks and crannies, and a pivoting grip was an enormous blessing for my wrist. I know a lot of people griped about it, but I wonder how many of those will find themselves wishing they had it in certain circumstances.

- If you want to shoot UDF mode and 35Mbps, your footage will be 1440x1080, not 1920x1080. You have two choices for proper 1080p: shoot UDF/50Mbps or shoot FAT/35Mbps. Of course, you need to format the cards each time you switch between the two. I've seen advice on this forum to simply "delete all" instead of doing a full format as it's a low-level format. I'm using SxS-1 cards, so this is especially important.

I'm not shooting for broadcast, but once I noticed the 1080p discrepancy above I immediately switched all three cameras back to FAT/35Mbps. I also end up recording a lot of conferences where conditions are poor and HDV would be sufficient, which as I read the murky manual puts me back in FAT city anyway.

Cf


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Don Greening
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 8, 2013 at 4:41:47 pm

Clint, you'll probably notice that the image generated by the new CMOS sensors are less "noisy" than the older EX1R and EX3 units, which is a good thing. I didn't know that the PMW 200 doesn't have a rotating grip. That's a feature I would miss when shooting straight hand-held. I have plastic bones in my right wrist used as a repair from a previous injury and that rotating grip is a big deal for me.

- Don

Don Greening
A Vancouver Video Production Company
Reeltime Videoworks
http://www.reeltimevideoworks.com


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Michael Slowe
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 9, 2013 at 12:32:03 pm

Don, would you miss the 'joystick' that I refer to? Do you shuttle between on screen menus whilst on a shoot? I didn't realise that an improved chip might give (slightly) better picture quality.

Michael Slowe


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Don Greening
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 9, 2013 at 11:55:19 pm

[Michael Slowe] "would you miss the 'joystick' that I refer to?"

Yes, I always miss not having access to my joystick. (but seriously folks) I never use the thumbwheel to scroll around in the menus because most of the time it never does what I want.

[Michael Slowe] "Do you shuttle between on screen menus whilst on a shoot?"

No, because normally I set preferences or more importantly, the picture profiles I want to use beforehand as well as the audio sensitivity of each channel.

[Michael Slowe] "I didn't realise that an improved chip might give (slightly) better picture quality."

The improved imagers have less noise and a bit more sensitivity, but the overall package, including the 50 Mbit recording format is not nearly enough to make me trade in my EX1R and EX3 for the newer models. Besides, if I need to shoot for broadcast I'll use my Ki Pro Mini which can record at a much higher bit rate than the 50 Mbits/sec. recording rate. No one in a viewing audience or a client is going to rush up to a TV screen and exclaim "Wow, will you look at all that picture noise. How come you're not using the new cameras?"

- Don

Don Greening
A Vancouver Video Production Company
Reeltime Videoworks
http://www.reeltimevideoworks.com


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Clint Fleckenstein
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 19, 2013 at 8:06:47 pm

I miss the joystick. The IR remotes are the same though, so they have a joystick. Of course, you need to activate them in the menu first!

I did one low-light shoot so far since unboxing the cameras and yes, there is less noise than I remember. That was a VERY pleasant sight. I don't remember if this is because of a new sensor or new signal processing. In any case, it appeared much better than I recall since I last used an EX1 or EX3.

One thing I'm eagerly awaiting is the arrival of my WiFi adapters. Ian has posted screen shots of how the wireless control looks on an iPhone, and I have a 23" touch screen waiting for use with my three cameras in a studio setting. I'll pass along any observations once I get things up and running.

Cf


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anthony Faulkner
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 25, 2013 at 7:46:09 am

Is there any improvement in the zoom? The EX-3 has totally useless zoom operation.

I'm renting the new Sony next week for 10 days so I am curious as to whether I will be able to pull a better key from the new camera.

Shame they didn't get up to a 1080P 60fps as well.


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Michael Palmer
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 25, 2013 at 1:40:57 pm

Libec makes a very good zoom control, I also found that the small handle zoom works really well and you can sett a speed in the menu.

Good Luck
Michael Palmer


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anthony Faulkner
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 26, 2013 at 1:00:39 am

Yeah, the problem is starting it just seems to surge, and using the handle zoom is just not practical all the time. Anyway I should look into the libec. OR if they have upgraded the controls maybe I won't need to?


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anthony Faulkner
Re: Sony Cameras: New cameras coming out, older camera prices dropping, and 50 MB/S Broadcast
on Nov 29, 2013 at 3:56:42 am

My initial impression is that there are many improvements not much to detract in this new model…

They key I can pull is much better, the zoom mechanism is a dramatic improvement, the options of codec varieties is all good.

On the downside (for me personally) is that the UDF footage is too heavy to be logged effectively in our logging computer. And render times, and storage is also respectively up.

Do I need to upgrade, not really, as although I will get a better product, the time it takes me to get it is going to be raised….


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