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srproductions
05-09-2007, 01:45 PM
Hey Guys!

I am about to purchase a camera. I have $1300. I can either get a VERY used DVX100 (not a or b) or the Canon HV20. Which do you guys think I should get? I will be making indie films, music videos, etc. Hopefully will try to sell my films. Which one would most suit my needs? Thanks!

Justin Kuhn
05-09-2007, 02:26 PM
Either of those would be a camera you'll upgrade from eventually if you're serious. The DVX is a better camera to train on since it has completely manual controls. The HV20, on the other hand, while HD, doesn't have fully manual controls and could impede your learning process as a camera operator somewhat. But it could make a decent B-camera for a higher-end HD camera, while DVX footage doesn't cut very well with 720P. So if (or when) you upgrade, you'd likely end up regulating the DVX to BTS camera or selling it--and the selling point for the first-model DVX is only going to drop. So my point is that while the HV20 probably has more staying power, the DVX is definitely a better beginner's camera.

srproductions
05-09-2007, 02:32 PM
OK. Also, if I make a feature and try to sell it, is having it in HD a selling point?

Digigenic
05-10-2007, 12:25 PM
OK. Also, if I make a feature and try to sell it, is having it in HD a selling point?
Absolutely

HorseFilms
05-10-2007, 12:43 PM
Remember that the biggest selling point your feature can have is that it's good. If it's a good movie, they're not going to care what camera it was shot with.

dalotn.t
05-10-2007, 03:24 PM
Remember that the biggest selling point your feature can have is that it's good. If it's a good movie, they're not going to care what camera it was shot with.

Exactly.

srproductions
05-11-2007, 11:39 AM
Also, if I am the director/dp, and I show up on set with an HV20, will I lose respect from the cast/crew?

mrWr0ng
05-11-2007, 11:43 AM
I don't want to say yeah, but it's a possibility. People can respect the DVX because it's a workhorse camera, it's been around and many, MANY projects have been shot on it. If you show up with a DVX, people know you're serious.

If you show up with a handycam, some people will lose respect for you. The quality of the camera is not important to these people, they want to see a big, serious camera. But that said, those people could either A) change their tune when they see the footage or B) generally be disregarded because they don't know sh*t if they're making a judgement based on the look of the camera over its footage. BUT, they still exist, and some of them are people with money who could make or break your project.

I would go with the DVX because, as was said before, it's a great camera to learn on. I've seen footage shot on the DVX that looks HD because it was such a good image. It will be a relevant camera for years to come. The HV20 is slightly future-proof because it's HD, but it will quickly be eclipsed by better HD handycams once the technology arrives.

Barry_Green
05-11-2007, 11:44 AM
Also, if I am the director/dp, and I show up on set with an HV20, will I lose respect from the cast/crew?

Have you seen an HV20? :)

In other words, if someone is likely to be impressed by the size of the camera, you would unquestionably *not* impress them by an HV20. It's a palmcorder. One that's capable of a beautiful picture, but a palmcorder nonetheless.

Eric Piccoli
05-11-2007, 11:45 AM
I guess you could but you need to show that you're well prepared. Show them previous films you did, not equip yourself only with that camera too. Rent some sound stuff, lights, a good tripod, matte box. I don't know how much you have for your feature, but I saw little camcorders that looked so monstruous with a 35mm adapter and a matte box.

Again, prepare yourself well, storyboard, a good script, know what you want and the way you want it, the crew will follow the captain if the captains knows his game. That's for sure.

Nathyn
05-16-2007, 05:16 PM
Remember that the biggest selling point your feature can have is that it's good. If it's a good movie, they're not going to care what camera it was shot with.
It wasn't always this way. Originally there were a few stories of people being turned down when distributors found out their movies were shot on DV. Digital Video had a pretty sketchy beginning. Film companies were running scared yet there was no real reason as the chose delivery format was still (and is still) film. Things have changed a lot in the past ten years.

-Nate

Nathyn
05-16-2007, 05:34 PM
Have you seen an HV20? :)

In other words, if someone is likely to be impressed by the size of the camera, you would unquestionably *not* impress them by an HV20. It's a palmcorder. One that's capable of a beautiful picture, but a palmcorder nonetheless.
And people are impressed/turned off by the size of camcorders. When the DVX came out people were impressed by the look. Put it on a tri-pod open the door screen and it looked real space agey (add a matte box and that certainly sold it) but still some people even on some of the forums complained about losing jobs to people with bigger (think shoulder mounted) cameras.

The XL2 was the best hybrid of a small shoulder mounted camera with 24p. I used to teach FCP and how to use the XL (which I had to learn by doing, as I was a DVXUser) and I did like it. The shoulder mount and look of the XL did look very professional. But the beauty of the DVX and smaller cameras is that they don't[/a] attract as much attention. People expect that if you're using an XL you're making a film, that's not always the case with smaller cameras.

Actors my also be turned off by this. Some actors like Kiefer Sutherland (they used this camera a few times as well as the HVX and Sony for some shots on 24) are used to bigger cameras and had problems with even the likes of the JVCHD100 but in the end it all worked out, Sutherland did his things and all was fine. But the more professional your equipment looks on the indy scene, the more confidence your actors will have.

[b]BUT don't let that detour you. Our first film was shot on the Panasonic PVDV 100 with a dead pixel. It wasn't a feature but it still got us used to using the camera as well as editing and directing and editng. You are far more advance. I to considered the HV20 but I know I want the A1 and since I have the DVX100 I'm not really panicked for HD. I want to do it but I just shot my second feature on the DVX and I think I may get another one or two from it before I give it up, who knows. Plus I know rendering HDV on a G4 1gb will take forever.

-Nate

jaket
05-22-2007, 04:35 PM
Here is a picture of my HV20 rig. If that sways you either way.

http://www.fullspectrumstudios.net/?dir=%2FMy+Rig&image=Frank1.jpg

Aaron Marshall
05-23-2007, 09:43 AM
Honestly, just looking at the technology, HDV is pretty silly. You have the same bandwidth (25), and even less if you decide to shoot in SD on an HDV system (19.7).

Imagine you have two Honda Civics. They're good 4 cylinder cars. In their league they're hard to beat. Now imagine you get a semi chassis and decide to take the engine out of one of the Honda Civics and put it into the big rig frame. Which vehicle is more feasible? Which one is kind of a silly concept? Do you get the picture?

Yeah, with HDV you'll get a bigger image. Just like with the semi, you'll get a bigger chassis. In both cases you won't move as well. Motion artifacting is a big thing. Also the chroma subsampling standard on HDV is 4:2:0 not 4:2:2. I don't know why there are rumors to the contrary. 4:2:0 is almost identical to 4:1:1, so no more color depth to be had on HDV.

If I had to pick between the HV20 and the DVX100 I would pick the DVX100. You would also see me driving a Honda instead of a big rig with a 4 cycle engine. If I could afford it I would get a Porsche (HVX200, DVCPRO HD), or a Ferrari (RED camera), or just shoot 35mm (LearJet).

Nik Manning
06-03-2007, 06:14 PM
Honestly, just looking at the technology, HDV is pretty silly. You have the same bandwidth (25), and even less if you decide to shoot in SD on an HDV system (19.7).

Imagine you have two Honda Civics. They're good 4 cylinder cars. In their league they're hard to beat. Now imagine you get a semi chassis and decide to take the engine out of one of the Honda Civics and put it into the big rig frame. Which vehicle is more feasible? Which one is kind of a silly concept? Do you get the picture?

Yeah, with HDV you'll get a bigger image. Just like with the semi, you'll get a bigger chassis. In both cases you won't move as well. Motion artifacting is a big thing. Also the chroma subsampling standard on HDV is 4:2:0 not 4:2:2. I don't know why there are rumors to the contrary. 4:2:0 is almost identical to 4:1:1, so no more color depth to be had on HDV.

If I had to pick between the HV20 and the DVX100 I would pick the DVX100. You would also see me driving a Honda instead of a big rig with a 4 cycle engine. If I could afford it I would get a Porsche (HVX200, DVCPRO HD), or a Ferrari (RED camera), or just shoot 35mm (LearJet).

HDV codec as way better than the mini dv codec. Don't let the datarate fool you. HDV is a newer technology. So you would be comparing a 1992 Honda Civic with a 2002 civic.

Get the HV20 and shoot with that. Use your left over money to by accessories that will make your HV20 more professional and functional.

srproductions
06-12-2007, 09:12 AM
OK. I've almost decided to buy the HV20. Just one more question.

I decided I don't want to buy an old, used, worn out camera, which is what I would have to get to afford a DVX. So, should I own an HV20, or just rent as needed a DVX or HVX?

Zim
06-15-2007, 09:08 PM
can't you borrow like $1500? Get the DVX100 when they start hitting the stores later this month.

stigkam
06-16-2007, 02:21 AM
Don't take this the wrong way guys, But if you can't afford a high end Camcorder there is no way you're going to afford 6-8k for a 35mm adapter. Those things cost more then the average indie camera. Matte Boxes obviouslly serve a purpose on older video cameras but on the newer HD cameras, My understanding is they're already video taping in anamorphic so a matte box doesnt serve much purpose.. does it?

MovieSwede
06-16-2007, 05:22 AM
Don't take this the wrong way guys, But if you can't afford a high end Camcorder there is no way you're going to afford 6-8k for a 35mm adapter. Those things cost more then the average indie camera. Matte Boxes obviouslly serve a purpose on older video cameras but on the newer HD cameras, My understanding is they're already video taping in anamorphic so a matte box doesnt serve much purpose.. does it?


Matte box isnt about anamorfic footage. Thats what anamorfic adaptors are for, and for HD-cams they are pretty much useless.

kiyong
07-20-2007, 06:53 PM
OK. I've almost decided to buy the HV20. Just one more question.

I decided I don't want to buy an old, used, worn out camera, which is what I would have to get to afford a DVX. So, should I own an HV20, or just rent as needed a DVX or HVX?

depends on what you want to learn and what kind of stuff you want to make. if you want to be practice directing, and you're going to shoot a couple of shorts a year, just rent a camera. or better yet, hire a dp that has his own camera.

if you plan to shoot a lot, then yeah maybe buying the camera would be better. but be honest with yourself. how many shorts can you really make a year? you can always try renting the first couple times you make a movie to see if you'd really benefit from owning.

if you want to practice cinematography, buy the dvx.

good luck.

Drew Ott
07-20-2007, 11:55 PM
Do you have a script you're about to shoot right now?

If the answer is no; I'd say save up your money make a real investment that will last you a while.

dormouse
08-02-2007, 04:14 PM
I've got the same problem choosing among them. I will use Breavis like adaptor and possibly HDMI recording 4:2:2, but I can't understand $2000USD e-bay prices for plain DVX100A.

Total budget is ~1200USD, so I cant afford DVX100a/b easily.

HV20 costs only $900 which is much better (I will not use "low light environment" where the 3CCD has a greater sensitivity).

Eric Piccoli: As dvx100b user please explain me "weakness" of HV20 except low-light sensitivity, manual focus and XLR lack.

Regards,
dormouse.

ransom
08-17-2007, 08:54 PM
I would recomend the DVX100 without reservation. The HV20 gives you nice resolution gain but not a lot more. I have a XHA1, which I like a lot, but I will never get rid of my DVX100a.

Ian-T
08-17-2007, 09:59 PM
I recommend the HV20. The HV20 might not have as much manual controls on its body like the DVX, but if you are going to use an adapter like the Brevis exclusively with the cam then it (HV20) will be just another cam head where you will manipulate more of the adapter functions instead of the controls on the cam's body. Plus...the resolution speaks for itself.

Kevin Lee
08-17-2007, 11:13 PM
With only $1300 you are stretching yourself to get a DVX in good condition. If you had the money, I'd say DVX. But with a tight budget like that go with the hv20. It doesnt look like much, but getting great reviews against any other cam in it's class. Thinking of getting one myself, but won't get rid of my DVX!

tcindie
10-02-2007, 12:13 PM
If you use the hv20 with a Blackmagic Intensity (http://www.blackmagic-design.com/products/intensity/) card, you can capture the 1920x1090 image in 24p @ 4:2:2, otherwise you'll be capturing 24p (in a 59.97i format) @ 4:2:0, and resized to 1440x1080 to fit the HDV standard. It's still got a lot more picture information than a standard def camera.

On the other hand, I've been very happy with the quality of DVX footage projected onto a big screen in a theater. For my money though, I'm getting an HV20.

My reason is that I will be using the camera primarily with a 35mm adapter, so the camera is just there to take the best picture possible, with focus and aperature settings being determined by the adapter lenses. Also, I think standard def is on its way out. However slowly that might be, it's definitely old tech.

Incidentally, if you want to record in 4:2:2 colorspace at 24p, you can get the blackmagic card and hv20 for under $1200. But you still have to worry about disk space to store all that footage, and a couple extra batteries for the camera would be nice too.

anxo69
10-02-2007, 07:26 PM
Ya I can understand how we are all freaking over how the hv20 looks. I just bought a hv20 and a xh-a1 and I'm considering sending both back to buy a dvx100b!

You know why? because I shoot to show others. not to look at threw my viewfinder.. That is what bugs me, The choices for distribution stink. and I think it is going to take a long time before it becomes affordable . a blank blu ray cd 11.00 each . burner 750. ... and so on. and its a 1x burner!! we are starting all over.

I think by the time we can use the cameras they will have full hd cams with no sd on them. then it may be time to switch.

This decision is the hardest thing I ever had to think of.. I have been on my computer for weeks trying to make the right decision. so I don't get burned and can have a camera that I can actually use for a little while. look how long the dvx has been around. You think we will get that lucky with our investments with a hv20,hvx200,xh-a1,z1.......

I watch everybody dumping there nice sd cams (Just like I did) to go hd and stare at it or maybe upload a video to you tube .. I don't know what to do anymore.

I already sold my brand new sony vx2100 for a dirt price. now at least if I could replace it with a dvx100b for the same money. atleast then I can say I got a good deal.. or did I.......keep the xh-a1 and send back the hv20..no keep the hv20 and send back that xh-a1 so you dont have much money invested....send them all back and go to sleep.....:violin:

ivionday
10-05-2007, 12:58 AM
This debate is killing me. I am curently in the same situation, deciding between hv20 and dvx100. I am leaning toward the dvx100 firstly because i hate the idea of some cheesy consumer device with only 3 buttons on it, and a four way joystick for navigating an onscreen menu, and those awful things.

The camera is going to be for shooting soccer games that will be distributed on DVD, but also for my personal use, to explore the endless ideas i have for music video and youtube sensations. I hope to make stuff I can put on a demoreel and get hired at a cool agency somewhere far away.

The main tradeoff in question here seems to be , do i want HV20 Sexy High Resolution or DVX100 Dynamic Range and Manual Control (and a downright tonally superior picture)? Certainly the HD rez would be better for sports where the light is abundant and rez really helps to capture detail far away. Plus we have an HDTV to plug it right into. I am trying not to underestimate that benefit.

On the other hand, I have seen footage of the HV20 and it appears the sensor has a much narrower dynamic range than the DVX100. HV20 skies are blown out and shadows are mud. The cinegamma stuff on DVX100 seems to produce a magical advantage! If someone can really explain or demonstrate that there isnt' much of a difference, that would make it easier for me to get the HV20. And tell me, doesn't HV20 video smashed down to web res look far inferior to the DVX100? I am almost positive in my opinion about this. Maybe it's only because amateurs are posting HV20 test clips. I dont know.

There is one last thing pushing me toward the DVX100; the footage will be much faster on the computer compared to HD for editing. But...a moot point if the HV20 can playback to capture in 24p SD. I'll be grateful for any response. thanks all..

Barry_Green
10-05-2007, 02:33 PM
If your main distribution outlet is going to be DVD, the DVX beats the living snot out of the HV20 in every imaginable category (as it should, since it's 3x the price).

The HV20 exists for one reason only: cheap 1080/24p. Higher-than-standard-def resolution isn't going to do much of anything for you on a DVD though.