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Sony HDR-FX7


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#1 Brent Curran

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Posted 28 February 2009 - 04:04 PM

Im a student that has to make a video documentary as a graduation project. Ive looked all over the web for different cameras and stuff. This looks like the cheapest model that films in HD and has some professional features like other cameras.

http://www.sonystyle...ductId=11034787

Is this perfect for someone on a small budget that only needs video quality like ...maybe the local HD news channel...or is there a cheaper alternative that may give me the same looking videos?
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#2 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 01 March 2009 - 06:15 AM

On the low-end they're all pretty similar. I would recommend looking for something with 1/3" chips as opposed to 1/4", but that's just me. You could look into used cameras, like a Sony Z1U, which I've used before and liked a good deal, though I doubt you'll find anything cheaper than 2000. If I were you, though, perhaps it would be better to buy a higher-end camera and then just sell it at the end of the project. Might not make all your money back... but you could probably get a better resale price on a higher-ticket item .
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#3 Brent Curran

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Posted 01 March 2009 - 10:25 AM

If I buy or lease anything its something that I'm going to keep for filming random events. I'm still unsure if I should go HD, all I need is something that gives me a nice wide screen DVD quality. On the other hand if I go up to the HD level that will kinda future proof it when BluRay drives come down in price. $2000 is the limit new or used.
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#4 Evan Ferrario

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Posted 27 April 2009 - 08:31 PM

I have owned a fx7 for about 2 years. I think it is a great camera and ahead of it's time. Despite many critics who say the z1u and fx1 are a nicer camera, I think most cinematographers prefer a bigger camera so the z1u seems more professional. I had a z1u and my fx7 together for a shoot and the images from the fx7 were noticably nicer, especially in low light situations. In a nice bright lit space, both seemed comparable.

The mic upgradability is one downsize. I use a xlr to mini adapter for a shotgun mic but even I will admit there is a lot of noise to this method. The on camera mic is great but it picks up everything, if you are around cars or a buzzing machine, you're going to hear it later.

Here is a trailer for a feature I shot on my fx7 last year . It is only watchable if you load the HD version. I have done a lot of color correction and I compressed all the footage to 24p from 1080i using compressor before I edited the piece. I have the V1U available to me at school and I couldnt tell the difference between v1u 24p converted to true 24p and fx7 1080i converted to 24p.

If you have any specific questions about the fx7 please ask, I have used the camera a lot and feel I know the best way to get great images out of it. HDV is the biggest obstacle because fast movement just makes it pixilate. An interesting option with the fx7 is a blackmagic Intensity HDMI capture card. I have been considering getting one of these and a long HDMI cable. Using the card you can record true HD from the HDMI port on the FX7 by skipping the HDV compression. Granted the camera always has to be connected to the computer but I still think it has some interesting uses.
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