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Thread: Why buy a video camera

  1. #1
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    Default Why buy a video camera

    With Panasonics new Lumix doing 4K is there a good reason for me to buy a dedicated video camera any more for sports.

    I was considering the Panasonic 160A at £2.5k but is it worth it any more

    Thank you

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by JR1 View Post
    is there a good reason for me to buy a dedicated video camera any more for sports.
    I typed a reply to this question yesterday. Dunno what happened to it. Anyway the answer is one word -

    Ergonomics.

    This is what BMJ is referring to above. To expand. When shooting sports or ENG or anything where the action is not recreatable - especially if it is not predictable, you need quick access and ease of operation of as many functions as possible (focus, iris, shutter, ND filter, gain etc) as well as being able to switch between auto and manual settings for these. You need all the facilties built into the camera and ready to go straight out of the bag. You do not want to be choosing and swapping lenses or attaching a mic pre-amp.
    Tim

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    Thank you, that is what I needed

  4. #4

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    Interesting Tim, I also typed a reply to this but for some reason it's not here either!

    For sports I would typically select my video camera over my DSLRs. Why? Mainly because I want good (not shallow DOF) in order to make sure they are in focus, coupled with a fast, continuous AF system that's proven. Sound may also be critical, and that's not something DSLRs are that great at.

    The GH4 is an awesome camera, I'm seriously considering adding one to the bag this autumn, depending on what happens with the 7D mkII. I have at least one 4K job to shoot this autumn for someone who wants a big 4K display at a trade show stand, so if I don't buy I'm going to have to rent.

    If I were buying the GH4 for sports I would be asking some serious questions in the forums that have lots of GH4 owners. The questions would include how fast and accurate the focus tracking is, not just with the GH4 body but with each and every lens you're thinking about using. Jumpy zone focusing won't cut it all the time, you really need ultra smooth focus tracking.

    Lack of ND filters means you're going to have to add more stuff, like vari ND filters, which can be cheap and nasty or good but expensive.

    You're going to need several lenses, which negates any cost savings you made by buying a cheaper body.

    If you want great sound then you're either going to have to go dual system and sync in post (the Tascam DR-60 makes it trivial) - with all the added cost and hassle of external recorders, or you're going to be buying the panasonic audio / 4K add-on for the GH4 which also costs a lot and requires external power!

    Seriously, if sport is the main use for the gear, a video camera is probably the best option.

    Let's see if this post saves this time

  5. #5
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    If Video is the way what about the Sony 4K

    http://www.sony.co.uk/electronics/ha...ers/fdr-ax100e


    Or the Sony FDR-AX1
    Last edited by JR1; 07-06-2014 at 11:18 AM.

  6. #6

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    The AX100 is a very competent camera, though it's very much still in the consumer camp in terms of audio and tactile controls. If you plan on running in automatic modes most of the time it's likely to serve you very well, with the options to go in to manual mode and adjust lots of things via menus. It has the benefit of a large 1" sensor too.

    The FDR-AX1 is very much aimed at the jobbing professional with professional features, including all the XLR inputs etc plus built in user selectable ND filters. It still records to SD cards, unlike it's bigger brother that needs XQD (which are still rare and expensive). It's AF should be excellent and it has the advantage of multi ring lens, so you have separate rings for zoom, focus, iris etc, whereas the AX100 has only a single multi-function ring.

    The AX100 would be much easier to shoot discreetly, while the FDR-AX1 is likely to draw more attention. If it's creditability you want (on-site) then the FDR-AX1 would be better than the AX100, but if you're trying to not be noticed then the AX100 would be better - and a lot cheaper!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Partington View Post
    The AX100 is a very competent camera, though it's very much still in the consumer camp in terms of audio and tactile controls. If you plan on running in automatic modes most of the time it's likely to serve you very well, with the options to go in to manual mode and adjust lots of things via menus. It has the benefit of a large 1" sensor too.

    The FDR-AX1 is very much aimed at the jobbing professional with professional features, including all the XLR inputs etc plus built in user selectable ND filters. It still records to SD cards, unlike it's bigger brother that needs XQD (which are still rare and expensive). It's AF should be excellent and it has the advantage of multi ring lens, so you have separate rings for zoom, focus, iris etc, whereas the AX100 has only a single multi-function ring.

    The AX100 would be much easier to shoot discreetly, while the FDR-AX1 is likely to draw more attention. If it's creditability you want (on-site) then the FDR-AX1 would be better than the AX100, but if you're trying to not be noticed then the AX100 would be better - and a lot cheaper!

    Thank you then it is the latter, I have omitted for NO reason other than sheer forgetfulness that I am a sports photographer (NOT PRO), and want to start video more professionally than with a handycam, at the moment I am using a Panasonic HC-X920

    Thanks for all your help

    https://www.facebook.com/JRSPhotography.co.uk

    http://www.jrs-photography.co.uk/

  8. #8

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    OK - well, the first question I always have for people looking to upgrade is this:

    What is it that the HC-X920 is NOT doing for you that you want / need it to do?

    Also, be aware that if you're planning on shooting in 4K you're going to need a computer with some serious grunt to edit smoothly (fast CPU, fast i7 or better, lots of RAM, 16GB minimum, and decent GPU), not to mention large amounts of storage space
    Last edited by David Partington; 07-06-2014 at 11:55 AM.

  9. #9
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    The computer is fine, I have way more than that, the top of the range (my sons x gaming pc)

    However perhaps I am (being very new) missing something, 4K

    You may be right that I need nothing better

  10. #10

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    At this point in time, do you really 'need' 4K or just 'want it'?

    The only real advantage to 4K for most people is the ability to reframe in post and still get decent (or better) fully HD.

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