Sony HXR-NX30 is its smallest, lightest handheld professional camcorder. It uses Sony’s Balanced Optical SteadyShot image stabilisation to make it more usable for handheld shooting. It can also take care of playout, as it has a built-in projector.
“This high-quality yet easy-to-use camcorder is an extremely versatile field production tool,” said Bill Drummond, Strategic Marketing Manager, Sony Europe. “It’s perfect for videographers, journalists, educational establishments or corporate users, for shooting in many different situations where other stabilisation equipment is not practical, such as on-board a vehicle or in a crowd”.
It has 96GB of internal memory (about 8.75 hours at the highest HD recording quality – 28Mbps), with a dual slot that accepts either SD or Memory Stick PRO Duo media cards for additional capacity.
By David Fox
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The HXR-NX30 is certainly light (under 2lb/800g with battery), and it looks like the stabiliser is as good as they get on a small camcorder.
However, it doesn’t appear to have any built-in ND filters, never mind automatic ones (it will probably adjust the shutter for you – although that is rarely a good thing for your image quality…).
Very few small camcorders have any sort of built-in ND filters. Some, such as our Canon XF100 offer negative gain (which they call an ND filter), which at least means it doesn’t mess with the shutter speed. You could add a variable ND filter.
If the main attraction of this camera is the stabiliser, and you don’t need the XLR audio inputs and some pro features like timecode, then save some money and have a look at the consumer version, the Sony HDR-PJ760 (see www.cnet.com.au/sony-handycam-hdr-pj760-339335621.htm for a review with video showing the stabiliser in action).
The camera set up we use when we need to travel light (whether on vacation or doing interviews) is our little Panasonic HDC-TM700 camcorder (superseded by the slightly upgraded 900 series), which is a three-chip camcorder and delivers very good pictures.
It does have a built-in stabiliser, but not as advanced as the Sony, but for extra stability we use a very lightweight Manfrotto 560B monopod (which has three little feet and the ability to pan the camera smoothly, with a tilt head), which should cost under $150. When we need XLR audio we use a small add-on BeachTek box with two inputs (which sits beneath the camcorder on the monopod).
Hope this helps.