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Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40

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Melina Kolb
Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40
on Jul 26, 2010 at 10:57:39 pm

I am looking to upgrade my really old Sony VX-2000 and am looking at two options: Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40. I just can't seem to decide whether I should get the HD model or not. I shoot mostly videos for the web.

I know that the HD requires at least FCP 6 (so I'd have to upgrade that) and my computer is relatively old (Apple iMac with 2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo and 2GB 667 DDR2 SDRAM - 2x1GB).

If you recommend going HD, would my computer be able to handle it? How does the workflow process change with the AVCHD files? And how much hard drive space would I need to edit them?

Thanks!!


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Guy McLoughlin
Re: Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40
on Jul 27, 2010 at 12:55:15 am

My advice is to buy a used DVX100B with no more than 200 hours on the heads. You can buy these quite cheap used, sometimes as little as $1,200 with batteries and accessories.

If you are buying new, then I would wait until you can afford a HMC-150, or try and find one used if you can. ( very hard to find used )


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Rick Zeimann
Re: Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40
on Jul 27, 2010 at 11:33:01 am

Personal opinion - go the HD route, even if you're a hobbyist.

I picked up the AG-HMC40 this past February and love it. Super versatile; I use it everyday in my work (HD stock footage & VFX HD): AVCHD 1080p capture, Neo HD intermediate, and on thru to CS5 production suite for post work finishing. The footage from my AG-HMC40 hasn't let me down yet.

Good luck!

FYI: B&H Photo has AG-HMC40 for $1920


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Noah Kadner
Re: Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40
on Jul 27, 2010 at 3:05:15 pm

Mos definitely go HD. standard definition is really really dead and buried. I mean an iPhone 4 shoots higher def than the DVX100- that ought to be a wake up call. And this is from someone who *worshipped* the DVX in its day. But that day is gone and the 40 is the right way to go now.

Noah

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Melina Kolb
Re: Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40
on Jul 28, 2010 at 3:37:46 pm

Know anything about working with AVCHD files in Final Cut? I want to know how long it takes to convert footage into the Apple format (and whether my iMac can handle it) and how much hard drive space it takes up.


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Mark Ducker
Re: Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40
on Aug 6, 2010 at 3:09:52 pm

Two follow up questions on Panasonic AG-HMC40. Any issues in working with FC Express? What is audio quality, assuming use of the adapter with xlr inputs?


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Guy McLoughlin
Re: Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40
on Jul 27, 2010 at 8:14:24 pm

...I shoot everything in HD, and then down res it to SD format because almost all of my corporate clients have no way of playing HD video.

The final delivery platform for almost everything I shoot is still a SD resolution DVD player. ( Some day I hope to be able to deliver HD on Blu-ray discs, but so far none of my corporate clients are set up for Blu-ray playback )

And most of the wedding videographers I know are also delivering standard SD DVD discs because that is what their clients want.

HD is great to work with, but the non-broadcast market is still playing catch-up.


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Dave Haynie
Re: Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40
on Dec 2, 2010 at 11:17:29 pm

Of course, online it's different... even YouTube supports 720p and 1080p, albeit at crappy bitrates.

But that's another factor in favor of the HMC40.. you can shoot in 1080/30p, 1080/24p, 720/60p, etc. Interlace and the net don't mix as well, and HD is already the expected delivery format, at least for much of the net.

-Dave


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Chip Thome
Re: Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40
on Aug 1, 2010 at 7:34:53 am

I bought a pair of used DVX100Bs 5 months ago, and love 'em. One had 10 hours, one had 26 hours and I paid 2500 for the pair with Kata bags. Buying a new DVX would be a waste of money, IMO.

The 40, just face it, you need new software and new hardware to go to HD and work with it easily and well. That was one part of my reasoning to go with the DVXs over the 40. I am upgrading my computing on my schedule now, not the cameras.

The next of my reasons, the DVXs were added to existing GS models, as I often shoot 4 cams. I got into both DVXs for less than what 1 HMC150 would have cost. The last of it, the vast differences between the two cameras. The 40 shares a lot with the consumer cam, but nothing with the HMC150. When I tossed in the fact CMOS still has some issues that are slowly being rectified, the DVX just came out on top.

Going with the DVX now and putting an upgrade path together for your software and hardware, and replacing the DVX later on with the next version of the 40 might be a real option worth considering, for you.


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Melina Kolb
Re: Deciding between Panasonic AG-DVX100B or AG-HMC40
on Aug 20, 2010 at 1:03:03 am

Thanks everyone. After much consideration, I decided to get a used AG-DVX100B for about $1500. I figure I can get some good use out of it for the next year or so, then upgrade my entire system (computer, editing software, Sd to HD) when I've made enough money off of this camera!

Plus, most of my stuff is distributed online anyway so I wasn't convinced that HD is quite necessary yet for good looking footage.


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