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HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.

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James Mulryan
HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Oct 28, 2009 at 12:12:50 am

HPX 300
Pros: shoulder mount, true aperture, true focus, interchangeable lenses, sharp viewfinder AVC Intra 100
Cons: 1/3" CMOS chips= noise and skew/jellocam

Observations on noise: Have shot tons of stuff with the HPX 200, know noise is inherent to 1/3" chips. Why didn't panasonic put at least a 1/2" chip in this system? Is there a big jump in cost going from 1/3 to 1/2" chips?

Observations on skew: Barry Green's article on shooting in Africa recommended locking down all really long telephoto shots, not panning or tilting. One of Panasonic's videos suggests dutching the tripod to overcome skew while following race cars. Can you imaging spending time figuring out work arounds in the heat of action?

Non-contenders:

HPX 500 =low resolution and Non AVC 100 Intra

EX3= Sony long GOP non 422 formats, no shoulder mount


7000 out the door is a killer price for all of the camera's features. Even if I got a used 2000 or 3000, with lens, I would be looking at a minimum of $30000. Used tape Varicam 15-20000 with lens, 30000 with deck.

My primary clients are docs, corporate and web based.






James Mulryan
Sunset Park Media, LLC
Santa Monica, CA
info@jamesmulryan.com


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Michael Sacci
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Oct 28, 2009 at 2:17:22 am

The HPX-500 is a better camera, doesn't do AVC, full raster is nice but don't get taught up in the numbers games.

That being said it is hard to bet the 300 for the price but you are not getting more for less. Either one would most likely serve your needs the 300 keeps a lot more dough in your pocket.



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James Mulryan
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Oct 28, 2009 at 3:29:14 am

Good points Michael. Thanks.

Think full raster is pretty important moving forward. 1080p is in the sweet spot.

"Keeps a lot more dough in your pocket" -- very smart


James Mulryan
Sunset Park Media, LLC
Santa Monica, CA
info@jamesmulryan.com


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Nate Stephens
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Oct 28, 2009 at 4:15:13 pm

I had the similar concerns, I was waiting and still am waiting for a CMOS camera that I want to take home.

One with a global shutter in my price range. My clientele is the same as yours. Gov't, corporate, educational, etc...

What cured me of the cmos with the rolling shutter was a video documentary on our big local TV station talking about the reconstruction and beautification in a down trodden neighborhood. It was very well done, audio, camera work and editing... But they couldn't edit out the big interview of the big money guy in town talking about the project. This clip was shot in one of the rehabbed buildings. And there behind him on a blank wall you had a perfect example of a rolling shutter effect caused by a flickering florescent bulb.. It ruined the show, the interview, the reason for the video..

You can't guarantee the lighting you will be getting involved in. I am not Hollywood, with the big grip truck so I don't pretend to be.

I love my HPX500 (with my Betacam Lens) and my HVX200.. a great, affordable 2 camera set up.



FCP, Mac Pro, Mac Book Pro, HPX500, HVX200, Betacam, Dvcam
Write for the Edit, Shoot for the Edit, Edit.....KISS Principle


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David Jones
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Oct 28, 2009 at 7:19:53 pm

I would go with the 300 over the 500 BUT, my understanding is that the bigger the chip, the better it is in low light. The 500 is a 2/3" chip. I've read complaints about the 200 (only 1/3") being bad in very low light conditions.

You should still consider the EX-3 (with 1/2" chips) and add a NanoFlash. That way, you can record at 100bps or more and audio at 24bit.

Best,

Dave J


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Michael Sacci
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Oct 29, 2009 at 6:03:19 am

At the end of the day there is not a bad choice here. You do want to get something you can afford and meets your shooting style. Best thing to do is rent them a couple of times if at all possible.

The Panasonic has firmware that is suppose to address the flash problem with rolling shutter, I really want to get my hands on the 200 for a couple of days and check it out. I do concerts so the rolling shutter is a concern of mine. But as with everything we need to know the shortcomings of our equipment and avoid that causes the problems (I know easier said then done)



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Dan Brockett
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Oct 29, 2009 at 8:36:57 pm

Hi James:

The 300 is cheap enough in my mind as to be a no brainer. We are talking about a full raster AVC INTRA camera with a decent industrial level lens for around $7k.

I own the HPX170 and really love it but no question that the 300 is a better camera. 1/3" imagers are only a problem if you don't know how to light. Yes, obviously a 2/3" camera is better in low light but I have been shooting with the 5D MKII also, which is great in ultra low light. But you know what? You still have to light it to make it look good. Just because you can shoot in ultra low light levels doesn't mean things look good. You do shoot with lighting, don't you? I shoot very little available light these days, unless it is outdoors. But I don't know what you shoot, do you shoot in a lot of dark envrionments that you are not permitted to light?

Same with Jello and artifacts. Will they crop up occasionally? Yes. Will your audience care about them or even notice them? My experience says no. The only people who care about or notice that stuff are video geeks like us, audiences care about very different things. The Panasonic clip on YouTube that Jan put up does show some good and valid strategies to reduce or eliminate artifacting. I would like to own my 170 because of the small size and weight and the fact that I occasionally shoot red carpets where a billion flashes are going off. But for the lions share of my shooting, I would be in heaven with the 300.

It is up to you to decide if you can live with the limitations of a 1/3" sensor. I can and the payoff on other features is too great to not want the 300. The 500 has very little going for it that is better other than the 2/3" imagers. The VF and LCD on the 500 make it a no go for me, I care more about being in focus than having a larger yet thinner raster imager.

The 300 is superior to the EX1/EX3 from a feature and ergonomic standpoint. I like the picture quality better overall and the AVC INTRA100 codec makes XDCAM EX look pretty sad. Yes, a 1/2" imager set in the 300 would have been nicer but Panasonic doesn't do 1/2" sensors and from what I hear will not do them anytime soon.

300 is a great tool. Not perfect but an amazing value nonetheless.

Dan

Providing value added material to all of your favorite DVDs


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Mark Shepherd
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Nov 3, 2009 at 6:10:29 am

Don't pull the trigger on the 300. It is noisy even OUTDOORS in bright sunlight, and Panasonic's answer to this issue is shoot it @ -3db. I would wait for the new Sony 2/3 inch XDCAM, the PMW-350K that is card based coming out next year. $20K list with lens, but it too is CMOS based.


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Nate Stephens
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Nov 4, 2009 at 2:17:13 am

Dan "The 500 has very little going for it that is better other than the 2/3" imagers. The VF and LCD on the 500 make it a no go for me, I care more about being in focus than having a larger yet thinner raster imager. "

I love my 500 and I have just an old Cannon 16x9 lens on it. No fancy CAC. I guess being an old fart who learned to focus some really awful cameras, I should expect you youngens to have trouble with the 500LCD... For me, I have never had trouble getting a great hard edge focus with the 500 LCD... but then again I know how to focus. I like the 500 a lot. For the money invested it is one hell of a camera. I am currently looking to trade my Sony DXCwsl35-PVV3/DSR-1/Studio back for another HPX500 anybody interested??? I will sweeten the deal and throw in my Sony 4" studio viewfinder.

FCP, Mac Pro, Mac Book Pro, HPX500, HVX200, Betacam, Dvcam
Write for the Edit, Shoot for the Edit, Edit.....KISS Principle


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Michael Shugrue
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Nov 4, 2009 at 1:07:29 am


Do what most camera operators are doing at this time, since no one knows what the next format will be, and it will never be just one again, Rent the gear there are plenty of rental companies that have the gear, no out of pocket money and you can haggle with the rental houses for deals. No risk from you. All the cameras you mentioned make nice pictures , but it all depends on where the producer is doing the post.


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Chris Anderson
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Nov 5, 2009 at 4:13:54 am

I just shot a corporate event using the 300 and everything looked great. I shot ballrooms, a concert, hotel interiors, night parties and outdoor golf. The camera performed well, colors looked great and was overwhelmingly better then my 200 and Sony Z1 in low light.
The viewfinder and LCD is pretty good, the camera was quiet, quick to respond and it felt comfortable on my shoulder for 4 days.
I don't think it records any variable frame rates
I did shoot in DVCPROHD and didn't get to try out the new codecs.

I've shot with the 500 as well and was impressed with it also but I think the 300 makes a great corporate camera.

email me with any questions if you like.
-Chris

Chris Anderson


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Dan Brockett
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Nov 5, 2009 at 5:30:27 pm

Hi Chris:

Sure, the 300 does do VFR, I shot a lot of this video http://www.triplanevideo.com/new_metro.htm with it at 48fps and 60 fps.

What it doesn't do that bums me out, is let me map the VFR function to a user button as I do on my HPX170. That makes the VFR function so much quicker and easier to use.

Mark, we must have different standards. The project in the link above is being used for theatrical projection and I have had zero complaints from the director, editor or client on excess noise. I shoot regularly with the HVX200, HPX170 and EX1 and to my eye, the 300 is cleaner than the two little Panasonics and almost as clean as the EX1. IMHO, the EX1 is too clean, it looks very sterile, but that is just me. Definitely not as clean as the 2700/3700 level cams but for $7,000.00, you aren't going to get a much cleaner signal.

Dan

Providing value added material to all of your favorite DVDs


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Michael Shugrue
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Nov 7, 2009 at 10:36:23 pm


You are right I am not talking about that. The unit is a small adapter that changes the mounts from 1/3 to 2/3 support. It does change the focal setting of the lens, that part is correct. But do the math its your money. Pick up a 2/3 wide lens. 4.5 or 5mm on the wide side. You can use it on all 2/3 chip cameras. For your clients that require Avc Intra you can use the 300 and the this wide lens and a long or standard, lens. it works great and it also gives you options and that is what keeps your clients happy. I own a few 3700's for high end clients Hpx-500 for the eng guys, interviews,etc. and the 300's for docs and industrials.
I have more cameras then lenses at this point I can use the Canon HD 10x4.5 as the wide for the 3700 and the 500 . and use it as a long for the 300. If they are traveling far away I give them the 18x that comes with the hpx-300 camera. But they all seem to like the 10x. They should its 18k.

Be honest you want the most return on your investment no matter what it is. Fujinon has then and they are not too much $$$. If you have more questions just send a email or go to the Camera One Tech website and I can call you.


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Michael Palmer
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Nov 10, 2009 at 4:22:59 am

I'm going to canon-ball into this forum as an EX3 user and completely recommend you at least consider the Sony EX3 camera before the HPX-300.

I totally disagree that the 500 is a better camera than the 300, but if you need an SD sensor to interpolate to the lower HD raster with more weight and mass then the 500 is your camera.

Why didn't the 300 get the 1/2 sensors? Hum, Marketing. And what a mistake I made on having a production purchase this 500 for me when I was led to believe it was a real 2/3rd HD sensor camera. Complete BS by Panasonic at the time.

If anyone thinks their 500 is better than the 300, think again, and it's not even close the the Sony EX3.

When I purchased the 500 I didn't realize it was a 2/3rds 960x540 resolution system with interpolation to stretch to the lower HD raster 1200x720 just like the HVX-200.

You should really look into the Sony EX3 and the Convergent Design Nano Flash HD-SDI/HDMI digital recorder. You will save a ton recordering to this Nano Flash recorder as it only requirers affordable Compact Flash media and not the P2 or SXS cards. That alone will pay for it self and the all i-frame 280 Mbps Bit rate better than anything out.

http://www.convergent-design.com/

Good Luck
Michael Palmer


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Michael Shugrue
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Nov 12, 2009 at 6:18:41 pm


Canon ball .. nope just you opinion as we all have. The ex does make nice pictures,but I don't rent many, the ENG/Doc Style camera guys hate the feel of the pro sumer cameras. They like the feel of a camera on their shoulders. its not what you have, its what the Post super wants to fit into their edit system.


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Maximilian Dandy
Re: HPX 300 Can't decide to pull the trigger.
on Mar 23, 2010 at 9:47:56 pm

Broadcast Standard is 4:2:2-50Mbps and EX3 only 4:2:0-35Mbps.
4:2:2 color reproduction is thick and 4:2:0 is thin.

Buy EX3-unknown megapixel CMOS Sensor and add Nano Flash for 8bit 4:2:2-100Mbps and up,
plastic look with uncomfortable shoulder support.

Buy HPX300 : 2,2 Megapixel 10bit 4:2:2-AVC-Intra 100Mbps, great DOF, rigid full size ENG camcorder, DPX Conversion Plugin from P2 CMS to unleashed the beast :D



Cheers,

Dandy
HPX302, HVX202, DVX102
Letus Ultimate with Relay Lens
Jakarta-Indonesia


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