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What is more important when buying a camcorder...

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Steve Hix
What is more important when buying a camcorder...
on Apr 21, 2016 at 4:44:37 pm

I plan to upgrade my Canon XH-A1s very soon. I'm considering the newly released Sony PXW-Z150. Their site promotes the large 1.0 'stacked' sensor (whatever that is). Many say this is an exceptional sensor (Crisp picture, good low light, DOF, etc.) Others say ONLY 8-bit and only 100 Mbps and 4:2:0 at 4K and would not consider it.
My video will probably never be broadcast but could end up on a 65"+ UHD monitor. Any thoughts? Any other possibilities? I do like the WIFI. I do need the dual SD card slots. Most of my work is indoors and includes stage performances, interviews, product promotions, etc. (I use PremierePro if that matters).


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Michael Slowe
Re: What is more important when buying a camcorder...
on Apr 22, 2016 at 6:06:14 pm

Steve, I too am thinking of changing cameras and, like you, am considering the new Z150. I've made many documentaries on my EX 1 and have no complaints at all with its performance. However, I do find it difficult in constrained spaces with minimising DOF, especially shooting interviews. The larger sensors of some other new Sony cameras would solve this but because of the size of the Super 35mm sensors the fitted lenses have a reduced range of focal length. I need a good range in my work so have been tempted by the Z150.

This new 1" Stacked sensor seems ideal as you say. Shallow DOF when required, three ND filters, very good focal length range with the option of a new device to double the focal length. With the improved sensor this should not involve significant loss of quality. You say that 100mbps might not be good enough. That can't be true, I've managed with 35mbps with the EX 1 and had films broadcast which looked great on transmission. If I do get the Z150 I'll continue to shoot in HD, 4K only really becomes useful for extensive manipulation in post, or cinema projection. There again, I've seen my EX 1 HD material in cinemas and it looked fine.

Anyone else seen the Z150 yet, I can't find one to try in the UK yet. There may well be a snag with it but it sounds perfect for what I want, documentary shooting "on the hoof",no time for lens changes.

Michael Slowe


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Steve Hix
Re: What is more important when buying a camcorder...
on Apr 23, 2016 at 12:16:18 am

Hi Michael,
"You say that 100mbps might not be good enough. That can't be true, I've managed with 35mbps with the EX 1..."

I'm not saying that, others on another forum is saying that. Which is part of the basis of my original question. I believe my XH-A1s is only 25 Mbps. The other part is 8-bit color vs 10-bit color. I'm thinking the difference is very subtle and probably not noticeable except under extreme circumstances.


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