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What kind of equipment do i need?


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#1 Tobias Johansson

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 08:13 PM

I would like some suggestions about what equipment that i could need.

We want a camera that is good at capturing the image, color and white balance as close to reality as possible.

I have bin looking at a panasonic AG-HVX201AE or AG-HPX171
Maybe even a Sony PMW-EX1 or a PMW-EX3
I was looking at a test with a sony and a panasonic.
However, in that test, the panasonic must have the wrong settings.
http://www.pairofhan...X Shootout.html
Is it really that bad?

I think that the sony in that test makes a good picture but does the camera fit my needs?

I am looking at a camera that is good for making documentaries at first but we would also like to use it for shooting with studio lighting and make episodes in a tv-serial way that we maybe could sell to a TV-station.
Or even make a movie to show at some local film festival in a cinema.

I have heard that when you are making a documentery, the camera is not as important as what the documentary is about but when it is scripted television, you need a better camera.
I want a camera that lasts and when we have the ball rolling we can buy a better camera.

My absolute limit is 10.000 euro, i prefer 4000-7000 euro if that is possible for all equipment.

The questions:
What kind of camera could fit me?
The panasonic that i am looking on has 100mbps and the sony has 35mbps. what diffrence does this make?
The sony cameras is XDCAM, is this better than P2?
What kind of equipment do i need for example the sound?
Do i need mixers and external audio recorders or do i just need a good microphone?
If i have two external microphones connected to the camera, do they save the sound in diffrent tracks or at the same time and the same track?
If i save on memory cards, can i transfer the files to the computer via the camera or do i need a expensive cardreader for several $$$?

Edited by Tobias Johansson, 03 February 2009 - 08:16 PM.

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#2 Tobias Johansson

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 08:20 PM

A little more about me

I am a stillphoto photographer.
Me and a friend have bin talking for a long time about expanding with moving images instead
I am at the moment not a photographer for moving images but i say to myself that the gap is not so big if i know about taking still photos ;)
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#3 Tobias Johansson

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 06:59 PM

Too stupid questions? :ph34r:
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#4 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 07:07 PM

Well the answer normally is, it depends. For the money, though, I'd go for the EXs. Newer/bigger sensors, and the codec is fine for the most part. There are issues with strobes and a lot of complexity in shots, but on my own EXs I havn't had a problem, yet.
The camera is only as good as what you put in front of it, and how you do so. I normally recommend buying lights, as they're more useful on all shoots, as opposed to a camera which may or may not fit x or y criterion.
For Documentaries, the Exs are definitally better because they have a longer record time per g/b on the SxS media as opposed to the HVXs. I don't know exaclty how long an HVX can run on 8gb, but memory serves it not being all too long. The Sony, on the other hand, is 28 minutes of 1080p.
That's my two C
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#5 James Martin

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Posted 19 February 2009 - 05:15 AM

As someone who is trying to become a pro cinematographer, I recently sold my Sony Z1 and swapped it with a lot of useful DP-type things (my DP's bag of goodies, lightmeter, lights etc). I now rent cameras and the relative kit. It is useful for the work I do, because I can have a different camera for every project. I can have a Z1 one week and then an HDW-750P the next.

HOWEVER, owning your own camera is incredibly useful for learning and the sony EX series are a great place to start. DON'T, however, get into 35mm adapters. Just don't. That is a slippery slope for a beginning cameraman.
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#6 Tim Tyler

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Posted 19 February 2009 - 10:05 AM

Tobias,

As James' post suggests, it is probably better to rent or borrow some gear before you spend your whole budget. The actual equipment you use to make movies is a small part of the equation.

Choosing a video camera is not that much different than choosing the cameras you use for still photography. There are many factors that you'll use to make purchasing decisions, and no one else can honestly tell you which equipment is best for you.

I recommend you take some time to read through this "First Time Filmmakers" forum, and maybe buy a couple of books that will give you an overview of documentary film production.
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