Magazine article American Cinematographer

New Sony XDCAM HD

Magazine article American Cinematographer

New Sony XDCAM HD

Article excerpt

When I first saw it at Sundance, I suspected the Sony XDCAM PDW-F350 wasn't intended just for news, even though CBS and ABC had bought truckloads. The Sundance sighting suggests documentaries, event videography and independent productions with interchangeable lenses and compatibility with HDV cameras.

The Sony PDW-F330 and F350 join the tapeless trend, eschewing solid state media for much less expensive DVD-style Blu-ray optical media.

The PDW-F330 camcorder, with a list price of $16,800, shoots high definition at 1080/59.94i, 5Oi, 29.97p, 25p and 23.98p. It also does standard definition at 480/59.94i, 480/29.97p and 480/23.98p or 576/5Oi and 576/25p.

The PDW-F350, list price $25,800, adds a few more features, like variable frame rates of 4 fps to 60 fps in 1 fps increments.

Recording is similar to HDV, using MPEG 2, at user-selectable bitrates of 18, 25 or 35 Mbps. You can intercut XDCAM HD recorded at 25 Megabits per second with other HDV cameras on an Avid or FCP 108Oi editing timeline.

Canon and Fujinon make 1/2-inch HD lenses. You can use HD 2/3-inch lenses on the XDCAM HD with the optional Sony LO-32BMT adaptor, which is mechanical, not optical, and increases your focal lengths by a factor of 1. …

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