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New camera tomorrow

Feb 27, 2011 10:50 AM

Well, the poking around is done and I have a new camera on the way which should land tomorrow. The Panasonic HMC70 was fine for its original intended purpose, green screen tutorial / interview type footage. However once I branched out into narrative work it just wasn't workable.

 

We've been using the DP's Canon but it irked me to have a $1600 piece of equipment that I couldn't use, so I decided to bite the bullet and upgrade. B&H buys old gear & offered $800 for the HMC70. Might have got a few pennies more on eBay but I'd rather not hassle with it, so it's on a UPS truck headed for NY as we speak (I told it to look Rod up once it got there).

 

Beyond the issue of not being able to use my gear, the Canon is also tape based. I've been full digital in the recording studio for so long I'd forgotten what a nuisance tape can be. Apparently you can only get a couple of uses out of each tape before the reliability becomes suspect, so it's essentially disposable media. However, what really got me moving on the upgrade was sitting around every night for an hour transfering the dailies from the camera to the computer. Real time. In the 21st century. You gotta be kidding me.

 

From a purist's perspective (and I'm glad I have a guy who's shooting for the best quality he can get) the DP wasn't wild about AVCHD but I was adamant about moving to a tapeless format. The Panasonics on P2 cards were his first choice, but the media is wicked expensive and my budget is finite. I want the best quality I can get, but this is a web series and best bang for the buck is a factor.

 

I was initially looking at the Panasonic HMC150, which seems to be viewed favorably in its class. After some conversation, we went instead with the
comparable Sony AX2000, which he felt was slightly better in specs. I'm sure either would do the job, so I trusted more experienced eyes. And so, this is the critter that's on the way:

 

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/671535-REG/Sony_HDRAX2000_H_HDR_ AX2000_AVCHD_Camcorder.html

 

Be nice to get away from tape. Even a week with it is one week too many. Sounds silly perhaps, but with my packed schedule, an hour a night is actually significant.

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 27, 2011 3:17 PM   in reply to Christopher Duncan

    how cool is THAT !   good going !  I'm jealous...

    See.....I mentioned in another thread that sony had some cool stuff....and off you go and buy a sony ! So I dont feel so dumb now pointing out the hdcam f900...your next camera probably

     

     

    whoops...forgot about the tape thing....well...you can hire someone at that point to do the tape stuff if you can afford the camera...think of the length of time you can record with it....that makes up the difference...

    basically keep it rolling even when you should cut ...cause its just tape

     

     
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    Feb 28, 2011 6:18 AM   in reply to Christopher Duncan

    Congrats, and good luck! I, too, was beyond frustrated with tape, having used an XHA1 (I'm guessing what your DP uses) for three years so I finally upgraded to the JVC GY-HM700u (I do more sports/reporter style shooting than narrative, so the shoulder-mount style was important). It's been quite a dream simply being able to copy and paste footage and start editing right away...

     
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    Feb 28, 2011 11:17 AM   in reply to Christopher Duncan

    Christopher,

     

    I'll just go with a Red. I understand that's what all the really cool snake movies are shot with.

     

    You are correct, but I hear that the DP is now moving to the Arri Alexa for the snake films.

     

    Hunt

     

    PS - good luck, and please report, when you have torn the box open and paraded around with that camera.

     
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    Feb 28, 2011 12:46 PM   in reply to Christopher Duncan

    cow gods ?  what parade ?

     

     

    its not beer thirty. 

     

    am trying to stop the beer thirty thing happening every day that I'm not working cause Im becoming fat as a cow without feeling god-like.

     

    later gator

     
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    Feb 28, 2011 1:56 PM   in reply to Christopher Duncan

     

    holy cow... funny.

    here's an old phrase I love to use ( like when trying to stop something from careening out of control )

    " Whoa Nelly ! "

     

    get camera ?

     
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    Mar 2, 2011 7:42 PM   in reply to Christopher Duncan

    Chris

    ----------

    all I've had a chance to do is take it out of the box and say, "ooh,  pretty."

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    LOL...that cracked me up...as I'm just like that... there's this strange attraction to gadgets and the more buttons and dials and connections the more impressed I am...hehe...I'm glad you got it and hope you're really happy with it !  I'm sure you will be ...

     

     
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    Mar 2, 2011 8:41 PM   in reply to Christopher Duncan

    Chris,

    Very cool... pointing that camera at your "talent" acting will probably ( now that you're into that stuff ) improve that product -  but still boil down all the stuff you've been working hard on to get right and produce good stuff. I can't wait to see your movies.

     

    ---------

    Now if they just made days with more hours in them..

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    they do make days like that.

    yesterday we worked 8 hours before "lunch" was called. Then did 14 hrs. total.

    Today was 13 hours.

     

    trust me, they do make days with more hours in them.

     

     
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    Mar 9, 2011 7:22 PM   in reply to able123

    think I'm gonna get a used canon xl2 ( sd )....  so I can at least shoot "something" and do more editing ( my computer can handle the sd).

     

    wish I could upgrade everything to hd and so on, but hey, might as well just do what we can , when we can do it ( that sounds like a promo for living )

     

     
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    Mar 9, 2011 8:37 PM   in reply to Christopher Duncan

    Chris,

    I think I know what you mean. A little anyway. That red camera test stuff I did was using cf cards. take the card, plug it into computer, copy to hard drive...done...took a few minutes but was fast.

    the safari edit I did a while ago had mini dv tapes that I captured using svlive and was real time ...6 tapes took six hours basically.

     

    ugh

     

    but I have to admit I know nothing about shooting video or "digital" or whatever you wanna call it...except what I've learned here mostly for the past year or so. And not from shooting ( dont have camera ), but from the posts and the red tests I did...with a mousey computer....

    that said, I'm thinking about the cost of upgrading my computer, premiere, and buying camera all at same time if I go HD.  I cant do that now.  I can handle the SD and this camera seemed OK re: the basics...

     

    I do appreciate what you mean and suggest but I can afford this thing and use my current computer and cs3...and at least shoot something with it and begin to learn what that is all about ( shooting with the video camera instead of film ).

     

    Im behind you re: whats new and all that, but its OK... and in a couple years can probably upgrade to hd and deal with that then ( if I have a client or 2...cause frankly, without monetizing all this stuff its just a hobby and not worth spending a lot of money on  )

     

    Id rather eat the time for capture now and afford it than go nuts with buying stuff I cant afford and have no clients or jobs to pay for it. ?? make sense  ? dont forget , I dont know if I even have the "talent" to write, shoot, edit a simple "story" yet...

     

     
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    Mar 9, 2011 8:58 PM   in reply to Christopher Duncan

    That makes a lot of sense....do you think I could find something like that for about this price now? I bet in a year or so I could but am not sure about right now. people are dumping the sd stuff to go hd and Im riding the "last generation" wave...

     

    http://www.keh.com/camera/Canon-Video-Camera-Outfits/1/sku-VC019990743 3605?r=FE

     

    at b&h its more like this....

     

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/339002-REG/Canon_9549A001_XL2_Mi niDV_Camcorder.html

     

     
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    Mar 10, 2011 5:21 AM   in reply to able123

    The XL2 is a good camera and if u want something in the prosumer category, u wont get chip based hd/sd recording for under $2k... plenty of handycam models, but they leave a lot to be desired.

     
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    Mar 10, 2011 6:52 AM   in reply to davidbeisner2010

    thats sorta how I'm feeling Dave,

     

    get the SD thing now that I can afford ( used ) and get HD later or upgrade computer and cs3..and borrow red maybe..

    thats getting too far ahead for me to plan.....

     

    hows stuff at home ??

     
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    Mar 10, 2011 7:43 AM   in reply to able123

    Yeah, that's what I'd do... sucks, I know--especially with the beauty of HD. But if you can't justify the expense with income, then you're making the right decision.

     

    Things at home are great! Little guy's just over two weeks old and already sleeping up to 6 hours at a stretch at night, so we're definitely happy!

     
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    Mar 10, 2011 7:58 AM   in reply to davidbeisner2010

    Dave,

    ---------

    Things at home are great! Little guy's just over two weeks old and  already sleeping up to 6 hours at a stretch at night, so we're  definitely happy!

    ------------

     

    GOOD news !  now you are getting more sleep too, and can now remember how to do simple tasks like "turn on light in living room", " turn on camera at work ", " drive car " , " boil and egg ", etc

     

     
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    Mar 10, 2011 12:27 PM   in reply to Christopher Duncan

    chris,

    thanks...

    hmmm, will keep in mind...the keh one is $1600. b&h was the 1995....lets see what happens...am working now and just making the $ to buy SOMETHING...will take a couple weeks, due to the usual nut to crack each month etc....

     

     
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    Mar 16, 2011 6:54 PM   in reply to able123
     
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