While I was down at Haydock Park last week I had a play with the new Sony HXR NX70, this was a working model and not some trumped up plastic demo unit with no gubbins.
Sony let me film for about 45 minutes getting a few interviews and shots round the show so how did the new baby perform…
When I tried the camcorder side by side with my MC50 the first thing that struck me was the lack of light compared to the MC50, this was disappointing as I had been assured by Sony that it was using the same chipset as the MC50. I decided to dig deeper and discovered that the last person to play with the camcorder had set the shutter to 1/2000, so that was my discrepancy solved the shutter had been on with no indication in the viewfinder.
The first thing that strikes you is the new home screen I did not have time to photograph it so this is thanks to CVP who have also done a good review of the NX70. All the above are touch screen the same as the MC50 but with far more manual over rides, gain, shutter, iris to name a few. As a note the “Camera/Audio” icon is not as you first think a menu for the “Audio” it’s the main menu for the camera functions and the audio.
This camcorder is just bristling with features the main one being it’s ability to produce 1080 50p pictures…unheard of from such a small professional camcorder until now, with Sony Vegas 10, Edius 6 from Grass Valley and the new Final Cut Pro 10 you can now edit the “holy grail” of 1920 x 1080 Full HD 50p.
I decided to let the 1080 50p pass by me till I get my hands on my own NX70 but from all accounts it’s a further step up the HD ladder that will be hard to climb down from and will even give dearer camcorders a run for their money but time will tell.
The camera is bigger than the MC50, thank goodness, but it’s still small enough to give you that ease of use of a hand held but with all the big Pro features and more. There is no slacking in the audio department with phantom powered XLR inputs and gain pots, you also get audio level indicators on the viewfinder…fantastic.
The SD card slot is easily accessible and the camcorder comes with a built in 96GB of memory which can record simultaneously with the SDHC card giving you a nice back up feature.
The camera performed flawlessly and it was great to be able to set your gain to 0dB giving you a very punchy picture indeed. I am a big audio buff and having balanced XLR inputs is a joy, I will be doing a full video review when I get my own NX70 possibly by the end of May but this wee camera will find it’s way into some big HD productions. From weddings to broadcast there is no doubt in my mind that Sony have produced a cracking jewel in their crown and I hope Japan can keep up with the world wide demand on such a perfect wee camcorder.