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Sony's PXW-X500 XDCAM HD Camcorder - Rental Product of the Week

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February 17, 2016 5:44:47 PM PST February 17, 2016 5:44:47 PM PSTth, February 17, 2016 5:44:47 PM PST

Over many years, we have been using the Sony PDWF800 as our ‘go-to’ camera for almost all things that needed a 2/3” ENG camera. The F800 has been a real workhorse for our clients, but over time we have been wanting a camera that can do everything that the F800 can, but with less weight, lower power consumption, and faster ingest for fast turnaround TV workflow.

Last year at NAB Sony released the PXWX500, and we have found this to be a great answer to our needs. It weighs less, uses a whole lot less power (we can use smaller batteries to get the same run time!), and records to SxS cards. So, all in all, so far so good!

We recently used three of these cameras in the coverage of the Tour Down Under cycling event as the moto cameras, replacing the F800’s we have used in previous years. Very simply, after doing TDU with these cameras, I can’t see how we would go back! The pictures were great, and the lighter weight and low power consumption was great as we also had RF links running off the back of the camera, all off the one battery. Finally, the two card slots with 128GB cards installed meant that there was no need to change cards for the whole stage. While recording on to card based media is nothing new, it is nice to have all of the features were have been used to on the F800 XDCAM in a card based camera.

On top of this, the codec choice it has in camera is great, and while it can do the 50 Mbit XDCAM HD422 codec, it also has the 100Mbit XAVC 10 bit codec on board, so it means that we now have available a complete range of cameras that shoot in the XAVC codec, from our PXWX200 1Ž2” camcorders all the way through to the F55 Super 35 Digital Cinema Camcorder.

If you are looking for a camera that can do everything the F800 can do, only faster then take a look at the PXWX500. We like it a lot!