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Sony DXC- D30/35/50 WS <- {Wide-Screen} Cam Series


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#1 Michael McIntyre

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Posted 20 July 2006 - 03:05 AM

Interested in opinions, experiences or any thoughts on this product line. I'm looking into used (SD) cameras and somehow missed the 'info boat' on these.

Aided with the requisite googling, I've seen ebay offerings, marketing pdf's, rental rates and used / bundled sales. Searches here turned up white balance issues and a comparison but not the 'meat of the matter' for in-field production. I'm setup for Beta SP workflow, so I'd probably dock one with a PVV-3 deck, avoiding the DVCam route & DigiBeta. Seems you can get an adapter and marry it to a BVV-5 but those things can be tanks.

Sony's marketing materials look slick (as always). Re-sell's seem to be holding their value well and I was just surprised that I didn't hear or see more discussions about the DXC__WS's. The 16x9 / 4:3 switchable aspect looks like part of the CCD sensor and not the lens set-up, so interchangeable's should work. Might be wrong.

Anyone with notes on these cameras, please cmment. Thanks in advance.

PS - The pic's just for reference (DXC-D30WS) and has the studio-adapter installed.

SonyDXC_D30WS.jpg
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#2 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 20 July 2006 - 05:16 AM

Hi,

I've only really used them very briefly, with the DSR-1 DVCAM recorder, which effectively makes it a DSR-570. Found the performance very similar, but of course it's heavier than the one-piece. I would take some convincing not to go DVCAM, I have to say.

Phil
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#3 Michael McIntyre

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Posted 20 July 2006 - 05:32 AM

Hi,

I've only really used them very briefly, with the DSR-1 DVCAM recorder, which effectively makes it a DSR-570. Found the performance very similar, but of course it's heavier than the one-piece. I would take some convincing not to go DVCAM, I have to say.

Phil


Thanks for the response, Phil.

I'll admit to being somewhat on the fence regarding DVCAM.... longer record times, smaller tapes, etc. but I don't have a deck and wouldn't want to put the hours on the camera. I'm running a BVW-70 through AJA IoLA (whoops! that's a post-production reference) and I do have a vault of good Beta stock.

I did just shoot something on the DSR-300 (DVCAM) and it looked great. Either way (Beta vs. DVCAM), I really would love shooting 16x9 and I like the feel / weight of a camera that size.

Was your footage acquired 16x9 or 4:3? Thanks again - Michael
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#4 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 20 July 2006 - 09:27 AM

Hi,

16:9, as almost everything is in the UK now.

I would have thought the decision to go DVCAM was even more clear if you're posting it yourself. Maintenance is less, both because the deck maintenance is easier (therefore faster) and less frequently necessary - I find Beta decks must be in absolute top nick to work well, or the performance dropoff is very visible. Digital decks work perfectly until they break! My experience is that DVCAM usually looks better than Beta SP, if only because the Beta decks have to be so carefully maintained. Even the best Beta decks cannot compete with DVCAM for stability, dot and grain.

They're also lighter and less power hungry, but the main issue is post - you can very literally post DV(cam) on a laptop now and the convenience is staggering.

As to buying a deck... a DSR-1 is cheap enough that I wouldn't personally bother. All you're doing is doubling the time till they both wear out, so just keep and maintain one!

That's how I work, anyway.

You will like the weight for the first ten minutes. I run a Panasonic AG-DVC200, which is much smaller and lighter than a DXC-50/DSR-1 combo - similar to a DSR500 - and after half a day I start envying the PD-150 boys (until I see the pictures, of course).

You can get fantastic used deals on a DXC-35/DSR-1 combo now. But I am talking about the UK in all of this; DVCAM has replaced BetaSP in all but niche markets.

The silly thing about this is that you may as well start looking at the JVC GY-DV5000 series as well. They have similar performance and they take miniDV tapes. The DVC200 only takes the large shell tapes, making it difficult to get supplies on location.

Phil
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#5 Michael McIntyre

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Posted 20 July 2006 - 01:47 PM

Well put, Phil (as always).

Good points on all fronts. I was very impressed with the DVCAM footage we got back. Add to that never really changing tapes and not having Beta's all over the place. I'll keep looking for some deals. I have seen a lot more DXC__WS activity-in-general 'across the pond' as far as discussions and deals. Your 16x9 reference would help explain a lot of that. Live & learn!

Whole different can of worms (but relatable):
I had gotten pretty wrapped up in all this Panasonic HVX200 cheerleading and was seriously considering some form of HD transition. Having said that, economics and current projects still dictate an SD equipment rack (for me, now anyway). As you mentioned, there are still some great deals to be had. Not just this particular Sony package we've been discussing but all around. No surprises there but interesting to see this many shooters unloading / breaking up camera packages.

Thanks again - Michael
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