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Forums Panasonic Cameras Should I buy a HPX3100 or a PMW500?

  • Should I buy a HPX3100 or a PMW500?

  • Peter Corbett

    March 1, 2012 at 10:20 am

    Just looking for a utility camera for general run-and-gun to replace my ageing H-series Varicam and SDX900. I already have a Sony F3 for commercials and music videos which has been fantastic, but I feel I need a good 1080 utility camera for general non-artsy work, if you will.

    In Australia, the Sony 500 is around $5K dearer than the Panasonic, but I have a long history with Panasonic 2/3″ cameras and like the Panasonic look.

    But I do have several 64gb SxS cards, so that is attractive in the other direction, plus the 720 50P slo-mo is useful in the Sony. While the 3100 is very good value and a great reliable camera.


    Peter Corbett
    Powerhouse Productions

  • Helmut Kobler

    March 1, 2012 at 10:53 pm

    You should check out my review of the HPX3100 here on the Cow. Just do a search. It covers some of the more interesting features of the 3100 that a lot of people aren’t aware of, or don’t consider. Maybe those features aren’t useful to you, but personally I appreciate them!

    Documentary Camera in Los Angeles

  • Peter Corbett

    March 1, 2012 at 10:58 pm

    Yes I’ve already read your review Helmut. Very nicely done. It’s a tricky point in time to be purchasing a 2/3″ camera. I still believe they are incredible useful.

    Peter Corbett
    Powerhouse Productions

  • Robin Probyn

    March 2, 2012 at 8:36 am

    Im sort in the same situation.. I have a pana HDX900 with a nanoflash.. works fine.. but will have to go totally tapeless sooner than later.

    I had my eye on the 3100.. but get very few requests for P2.. and tons for XDCAM 422 HD.. (which the nano covers well) so now thinking of the Sony 500.

    The 3100 is a nice camera.. but as the saying goes.. buy the camera your asked for.. not the camera you want to buy..


  • Ken Zukin

    March 2, 2012 at 1:55 pm

    I own the 3100 and have been pleased with it — I faced the same decision a year ago and went with the Panny as I already owned P2 media & a pricey card reader — no regrets — but the Sony may be a pound or two lighter if my memory serves can’t go wrong really — both great!

  • Dave Goulding

    March 2, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    I was also in the same situation. I am an F-3 owner and love the camera. Having said that it’s not always the best tool for the job. I bought a 3700 Varicam 2 years ago and is my go to camera for run and gun, uncontrolled situations, sporting events, live concerts etc where that extra depth of field really comes in handy. I had an HDX 900 for many years. Many of my clients like to work in DVC Pro HD or now AVC Intra 100. I didn’t want to abandon them or sell them on a new format. Plus from a business stand point I think it’s good to have something that can accommodate clients who like to work in either DVC Pro/AVC Intra or XDCam.

  • Peter Corbett

    March 19, 2012 at 12:09 pm

    Thanks guys. It’s a tricky market at the moment. I read on the DVINFO forum about rumours of a new 1080 60P shoulder-cam, but it could be just that; rumours.

    Peter Corbett
    Powerhouse Productions

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