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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK, my nephew spent some serious coin on some artsy fartsy film school in San Francisco, and he needs an HD camera. Using Apple Final Cut Studio and all on an Intel Mac Pro. What camera would you all recommend?


Mike
 

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Final Cut will handle whatever you throw at it. So that narrows it down to all HD cameras. Without knowing the budget, and what you want out of the camera, it makes it hard to recommend anything.

But I will start at the Sony PMW-EX1 - US$6,000

Panasonic HPX-170 - US$5,200

JVC GY-HM100 - $3,500

Panasonic HMC-150 $3,500


If he doesn't need a camera urgently....

Apparently, there is a "fourth phase" to Sony's XDCAM being released in 2010. I don't know what the changes will be, but it could be big.


Phase 1. was Standard Def

Phase 2. was XDCAM-HD

Phase 3. was either the XDCAM-EX or XDCAM-422? I don't know which one they are not counting here.

Phase 4.?? Anyone's guess. I will bet it is a significant upgrade.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Sorry, should have said he is probably looking at spending around $1000 or somewhere in that area. I don't think he realized what he was getting into $$$ when he plunked down some serious money for this school which starts in a few weeks. Trying to keep his budget on the lite side, as he still needs to purchase the Intel Mac and a 35mm camera kit.


The poor kid did not do his research, as he thought he would get by with his $500 pc laptop and his mom's digital camera. He had a rude awakening when he came over to my house with his list of needed equipment. I about fell over... Thank God he has some money set aside.


And Chevypower, how steep is the learning curve on Final Cut Studio? I know what Photoshop is like, he needs that too. I think he may have bitten off more than he can chew.


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Quote:
Originally Posted by localnet /forum/post/16906269


.....And Chevypower, how steep is the learning curve on Final Cut Studio? I know what Photoshop is like, he needs that too. I think he may have bitten off more than he can chew.


Mike

Final Cut Pro seems to appear daunting when you first load it up. But when you figure the interface out, its not so bad. I only refer to the manual if I can't figure something out on my own, then my next step is Google, then after all that, I will look up the manual. I really like FCP.

Hard to get a semi-pro camera for $1000, even a good used one. I would probably look at some of the older HDV cameras maybe on Ebay. But I think they would be still going for over $1000. Anything older than that is not going to be HD. You could go for a consumer camcorder like a Sony XR500v, but then I would get a Beachtek adaptor DXA-6VU, and get some good mics down the track.
 

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I have the Canon HF200, and love it. You can get them for around $600. It films in 60i, 30p, and 24p -so he can emulate that film look. There are manual settings as well, which I think they'd deem important in film school. If he has the cash, I'd go with the HFS100, as recommended above. It has a bigger sensor size, for better low-light ability and a few more features than the HF200.


Do they have a list of recommended cameras, since they require him to have one? I remember getting a list of recommended items before starting art school -including what computer they recommended and why.


As for FCS, it is daunting at first, but once you get the basics down, it's super easy. There are also a ton of tutorials and forums available online to help him dive right into FCS.
 

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Sony HVR-HD 1000, is a few hundred dollars over the 1000$ mark, first relevant google hit has it at 1361 USD, so should be able to find something at 1300 or less with a serious search. Advantage is that it is a shouldermounted camera. From what I read this is basically a consumer tape based camera, with consumer HDV image quality, in a prosumer jacket, so manual(?) controls and most of all a large plastic case to make it a shoulder mount camcorder.


Price comparison site: http://www.nextag.com/SONY-HVR-HD100...61/prices-html


There's the current crop of top-of-the-line consumer handheld camera's. The Canon HF-S10 and the Panasonic TM-300, both retail around the 1000 USD mark. Unlike Chevypower I didn't mention the Sony's as they lack the manual controls they look for in filmschool. Eventhough it's stabilisation is top notch, and imagequality is also very good according to the reviews and online samplevideo's. Image quality might (quite likely) even surpass the budget (pro)sumer tape (HDV)camera's.


As an aside there's still the new Canon HV-40 HDV consumer camcoder. So tape, but the US version is reportedly doing true 24P (again might be of interest at filmschool). And it has a focusring.


Thirdly, there's the option of the Panasonic GH1. A new photocamera, that takes high-quality 'film-like' video. Not for the point & shoot user, but it might be great for a film student that is needing both a still and a video camera, for (carefully) planned shoots.


US full retail at dealers is 1500 USD. Was pleasantly surprised to se it online for 1200 euro this week, though this store in Amsterdam was out of stock, as are many retailers.
 

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It's ok Donald challenges every opinion I have in every thread :)

Just teasing Donald!


I was thinking along the same lines, but for $1000, it's either get an old SD semi pro camcorder with an out of date picture quality, or get a new HD consumer camcorder, with an impressive picture, but lack of manual controls. I was actually going to recommend the Sony HD1000, but it is just a consumer camera in a big body. It doesn't even have XLR inputs! So I found it hard to justify the extra $700 over an XR500v. I am not as familiar with the Canon consumer camcorders because I don't use them. I have a few SR12s, they do have manual controls, they just suck for accessing them, so if you are going to use manual controls a lot, I would get a bigger, more professional camera.

If you can find a cheap second hand Sony Z1, it would be worth checking out!


Donald, no HDV camera has "true" 24p. They all have to conform to 1440x1080 50i or 60i playback.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank YOU ALL!


I will do some checking on all of your suggestions, and still trying to figure out what this school actually requires. My nephew informed me that his first class will require a 35mm film SLR with interchangeable lenses and a good old Super 8mm! He did not even know what a Super 8 was. I think the kid is in over his head.



Mike
 

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According to what I can find the US version of the HV40 has the old 24 Frames in 60i wrapper mode Canon refers to as 24p Cinema Mode, the new one that it calls Native 24P Mode. Canon uses the 24F container on this.


Not opposing V8, just expanding upon the suggestions you and others made. I agree get a nice consumer unit, and a cheap shoulder mount and or camera caddy handle. But, the one thing the Sony 520/500 doesn't have is an abundance of manual controls, so look into the two other top brands in consumer camcorders.


The Canon HF-S10 has the highest resolution, with associated higher noise levels, plenty of manual controls, but generally in menu's, as expected from a consumer camcorder. The Panasonic TM-300 has a focusring and viewfinder, which is getting rare in consumercamcorders. Drawback is the 17 Mbit/s AVCHD profile.


If money is getting tight, one might look into the Canon HG21, HDD instead of flash, not the resolution of the HF-S10/100, but 'only' that of the HF11. But it does have a viewfinder and manual controls, albeit in menu's. And does use the 21/24 Mbit/s AVCHD profile.


I was looking for info on another Canon this week and noticed some stores overhere are now selling it at only 700 Euro, instead of the 1000 euro they charged a few months ago, so it looks like Canon is clearing this model.


And I do seriously suggest he looks into the Panasonic GH1, since is also looking for a still camera. Look at the vimeo samples, and it does have the filmlook many people are looking for. http://www.vimeo.com/videos/searchanasonic%20gh1
 

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Well the Canon 5DmkII, is top notch when it comes to DSLR and has great 'film-like' HD video capabilities, but it does cost something like 2500 USD plus whatever one is willing to spend on lenses.


He needs to ask if 3/4 Micro is accepted, so he could get the Panasonic GH1 instead, as it is 1500 or less including the stock lens, wich according to Philip Bloom is 'a wicked stock lens, albeit a bit slow'.

http://www.vimeo.com/videos/searchanasonic%20gh1
http://www.vimeo.com/videos/search:p...%20gh1%20bloom
http://www.vimeo.com/videos/search:canon%205dmkii
 

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I would go a dSLR over a film SLR, but if he requires film not much you can do there. The good thing about film is you could get a 20 yr old Pentax, and be perfectly happy. I checked out that GH1, camera looks great, but the range of lenses doesn't impress me. So I would also say Canon 5D Mk2 or in oct/nov aparently there will be a Nikon D700x with 24.5mp and 1080/24p video. I would only buy Nikon or Canon because of the lenses.

Maybe, get a Nikon 35mm film slr with an F mount. Buy the D700xwhen it comes out, and buy some good lenses that you can use on both cameras? 14-24, 24-70 and the just announced 70-200 f/2.8 VRII. Don't buy a camcorder, just use the D700x for digital stills AND video! Use the same lenses on the 35mm film camera for school.
 

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Here (making it a bit more clear)

Buy this 35mm camera body
http://nikonusa.com/Find-Your-Nikon/...1689/FM10.html


The dSLR will be the replacement of this
http://nikonusa.com/Find-Your-Nikon/...5444/D700.html

(except it will have 1080/24p video and 24.5 Megapixels)


and use these lenses on both of them...


14-24 f/2.8 http://nikonusa.com/Find-Your-Nikon/...2F2.8G-ED.html


24-70 f/2.8 http://nikonusa.com/Find-Your-Nikon/...2F2.8G-ED.html


70-200 f/2.8 VRII http://nikonusa.com/Find-Your-Nikon/...-ED-VR-II.html


Or get the Canon EOS-1V film camera and the 5D Mk2 dSLR

and these lenses 1. 16-35 f/2.8L, 2. 24-70 f/2.8L, 3. 70-200 f/2.8L IS (ISII coming soon).


The Nikon will ONLY do 1080/24p, and the Canon will ONLY do 1080/30p. At least unless they do a firmware update which changes things.

some other things to consider getting to make it good


1. Zacuto shoulder bracket (to make the dSLR feel ergonomic in video mode)

2. Beachtek DXA-6VU XLR adaptor (to plug in pro mics)

3. Sennheiser MKH-416 shotgun mic.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
WOW! I had no idea these DSLRs could do what I saw in those videos, truly impressed. I think I might just go out and grab one for myself and a Merlin Steady Cam that the one soldier was using, now that was cool.


Donald and Chevy, thank you both. Now were really have some neat stuff to look at.


Mike
 

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Chevypower there's a adapter for the GH1 that enable the user to work with proper film lenses like Zeiss primes, I believe there's also an option for 35 mm lenses if needed
. It is explained in some of the Philip Bloom video's (and associated links to his blog) I linked to above.


From 3:50 onwards;-), 'we have ****loads of 10K$ lenses laying around, so let's get some cheap camera's for them';-)
.


That Nikon 700 is a proper DSLR? Not one of the new 3/4 micro camera's?


This is all still quite new stuff, so if one can wait things will improve or get cheaper fairly quickly.


If they indeed require him to get a 35 mm still filmnegative camera for classes, hit Craigslist, for one of those oldies Chevypower suggested.


A friend of mine is a crack at finding old glass (even pre-WWII), on Ebay, cheaply, and uses those on his Canon 5D, and Pentax DSLRs. Personally I often think there's too much Bokeh, but that's what he is looking for.
 

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Chevy, for the same price as one of those beachtek's (well only the most expensive one I see at the BTek website) one could also get that Zoom H4N, you love, with 4 track recording, XLR inputs and phantompower, to use with any professional mic required. I just learnt there's a Final Cut plug-in that sync's up audio and video automatically. Couldn't find out how much its though at the vendor's very basic website.
(guess who'se vimeochannel I have been perusing last night;-).
 

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Yeah I got the Beachtek 6VU because it had Phantom and VU levels. The cheaper ones didn't, but I didn't know of any alternate brands either. The D700 is full frame, as will be its replacement (D700x). So it will fully utilize the area of those lenses. I am about to get the 5D Mk2 body and looking forward to the Nikon coming out... hope i can invest in that too. (Photography equipment is part of my business).
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chevypower /forum/post/16920430


I think mine was about $400.

Unless they are not listing it, the only one Juicedlink has with a meter, is with 4 inputs? $569 on their site.
http://juicedlink.com/index_files/CX...dio_mixers.htm

I couldn't find it on Amazon. B&H doesn't list that model? Good find though, the more competition, the better.

And they aren't available. As you need to calibrate the meter to the camerasettings, according to the status update video.
http://juicedlink.com/index_files/CX...xers_CX471.htm


B&H does carry the one without the meter, the store is out of stock though. Pricing the same as buying direct http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...der_Audio.html
 
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