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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We are currently expanding our editing business to include wedding videography and I need a new camera. Any suggestions?
I am looking at the Panasonic AG-DVX100 and the Canon XL1s, and the Sony PD150.
Any suggestions would be helpful. Thanks

[ September 18, 2003, 12:39 PM: Message edited by: questvideo ]
 

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If you are doing video for weddings and such, you might want to look at the Canon GL2. This little gem has very similar quality to the XL-1s lacking some of the lens options, but with about a $1500.00 savings. I also enjoy using a camera with a view finder. I know it's not professoinal, but it just feels good when panning around large groups with a tripod. ;)
 

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I've used both the PD-150 and the XL1 and have to give the nod to the PD-150. it has better image quality, the abilty to shoot DVCAM and bulit in XLR's. The only downsides are no interchangable lenses and it's much smaller than the XL-1. I do like the XL1 and XL1s but it's due for a major revision. I've never used the Panasonic.
 

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The XL1 image quality is pretty good, but the design is a pain in the a**! I shoot with one everyday and I would trade it in a second if it wasn't my employers. The XL1 lacks balanced audio inputs. If you want them you need a $400 shoulder pad thingy, which does help to improve the ergonomics slightly. I've never used the panasonic, so I will be of no help there.
 

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you may want to look at the sony pd-150. I've heard good things. Oh and if you do go with the XL1s... get the manual lens... the servo focus is my other big complaint.
 

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PD150 is the way to go if you need serious video. I have had experience with the Pro-sumer Sonys which are fine for light duty but like the Canons, are not truly built for the daily rigors of professional shooting. Too many things bumped or broke off in general use. The Canon GL series was especially bad for tape transport failures and major repair cost and delay. Not the dealers fault BTW.

Am shooting with the PD150 this week for a new series and it'll match very nicely with the footage being shot on DVCAM. Yes, really.

Your clients will be amazed and will thank you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you all for your input, but I can't seem to find any specs on the SONY PD150. I can only find the DCRVX2000 and the DCRTRV950 (both from SONY)
Does this camera have the XLR inputs for the mic
Also any suggestions on where to purchase, since I live about 8 hours from the nearest high end videocamera store
 

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Does this camera have the XLR inputs for the mic
It does. Try this link

It is excellent. It's even being used for television broadcast. Used it myself for a wedding video. I loved the viewfinder -- very handy. My only problem was I didn't read the manual carefully enough before shooting. You'll definitely want to switch to manual focus if you zoom in tight on something. The damn thing always focuses on what you don't want to focus on.
 

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Watch your warranty if buying from the U.S. Most Sony products can't be sold/shipped from one country to another. After exchange, duty and taxes it's not always worth it anyways. Try Sony directly at
http://www.sonystyle.ca
 

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I have to say, in my use of the PD-150 I haven't been thrilled. Sure, the camera takes great footage, but the ergonomics are a pain. I find the camera very "back button heavy" meaning you're always holding it away from you to look at the back for button control.

Also, it is too long and I get a sore back shooting with it handheld.

I prefer to use the AG-DVX100. This is an awesome camera. It has the same benefits of the PD-150 (the manual zoom, the 2 XLR inputs with Phantom Power), but a much better lens and a better design. If you're shooting a wedding, the soft 24p look is perfect, and you'll love the depth of field you get with the lens. The best Depth of Field I've ever seen in video!

The only drawback for some is that when shooting 24p, everything is manual, even autofocus doesn't work. But I hating using autofocus anyway...
 

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I'd certainly consider 24p as it's the "next big thing" and the quality is fabulous.
Offering a product that gets better as the time goes on ( HD is a tidal wave) will put you out front.
All the subtle details and shadows and textures make it come alive and a demo in your studio should convince anyone coming in.
You'll need a 16:9 authoring software for DVD and LOTS of drive space :eek:

We would be interested in working with you if you are local to the GTA as we want to explore this level of equipment for other clients and we have an experienced video guy on staff you can talk shop with.
The industry is moving so fast it's hard to know where to jump in.




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in my use of the PD-150 I haven't been thrilled... Also, it is too long and I get a sore back shooting with it handheld.
One neat trick I learned was to always use the shoulder strap as a brace. I typically held the camera at gut level, not eye level, and was able to sustain rock-steady shots. I could view everything via the lcd viewfinder and it was comfortable throughout.

Not I'm tall to begin with, so the images didn't seem drastically low. On the other hand what made them more interesting-looking was that most operators capture images at eye level, but there's more drama at lower positions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thak you everyone for all of your input. I am going to go to Toronto next weekend to check out the cameras in person.
 

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I don't know if you have a dealer in mind, or someone who you deal with on a regular basis, but of you're traveling all the way to TO, then check with these guys The DV Shop. They carry the Panasonic and they're also an Apple dealer. Best to have a few places to comparison shop.
 

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Funny I was just going to post the same thing. I have an XL1 and have used the PD150.

I don't have good feelings about most of the retailers in Toronto. Vistek, Henrys both camera store with some guy trying to make a commission selling you a camera, not the best place to go if you don't know enough. The DV shop seems more down to earth. Just my 2 cents.

John

Oh and look at the Sony pdx10.
 

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I have been using the Dvx100 for almost a year and it kicks some serious ass! It's lightweight and a great lens. Best of all it has the option to shoot at 24p. You would be silly not get this camera. Check every review and the nod goes to the DVX100.
 

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I just shot a wedding and opted for the DVX-100 for the 24P mode.

Color and video quality is very good.
Not too heavy, good automatic white balance
easy to use menu (figured it all out before i even got home from vistek :D )
2 XLR inputs, with level bars on the display and manual volume controls came in very handy.
It has syncro-scan if that's important to you

things i think need to be improved

1. focus ring is digital, not analog, it does diplay a number between 1 and 99 for the focus (and zoom) which is good for reference but i'd still prefer a REAL focus ring.

2. When you shoot in widescreen it records the black bars to the tape, so if you want to shift the image up or down a little in post it's not going to happen, i would prefer guide lines on the screen for the widescreen setting.

3. The lense. Everything looks flat, which is good because 95% of the time you won't have to worry about focus, but everything still looks flat and i would prefer to have the focal depth than the zoom.

But yeah overall i would definately love to own one, i haven't used the XL-1s or the PD150, but like i said the 24P mode and "cine-like" gamma was what made me choose the panasonic.
 

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I have a PD150 but on occasion have rented the XL1. I have to go with the PD150. It has balanced XLR inputs to my way of working a much better feel when your working and in my experience with footage from both cameras in the same shooting situation a better picture. There is something about the XL's picture it seems muddy compared to the Sony. Can't help you with the Panasonic - only played with one. Do have a look at the GL2 - I have edited some footage from it and thought its picture was amazing
 
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