My dream kit…

…is on a B&H Photo wish list. Not that I’m expecting it for the upcoming holiday season – no way. But it is definitely in the future as part of a retirement gift to myself.

Camera
Panasonic AG-HMC150. I’ve been eyeballing this little girl for a while. She’s compact, sturdy and shoots to memory cards. At the high end of my affordability scale, but with nearly everything I want. The lens isn’t as long as i want (I hear your pain, Lenslinger), but with a tele converter, maybe, just maybe I can ease that pain a bit. Having used the 200A (at about $700 more), I like the heft…and the controls are pretty much in the same positions of the many pro cameras I’ve used. This is where it gets personal. There are other styles of cameras out there – shoulder mounted, bigger, heavier and pretty much in the same price range. So my final defense in getting this one is – I like it.

Accessories
The usual. At least two/preferably three extended life batteries. Two 8GB and one 16GB cards. Not cheap – but they amaze me. I can get up to an hour twenty of hi-def on the 16GB card. Wow. That and the ability to choose which scenes to download? I’m in the choir!

(Rant warming)

Allow me to digress for a moment. I will ALWAYS go with removable media. I was never a fan of the the current crop of hard drive cameras. Why? If the recording media goes down, what cha gonna do? That is reason #1. Reason #2 is convenience. I can shoot on one card and hand off a full card to someone else for editing. I can store different stories on different cards. If a card goes bad, I can replace it.

Card reader. Yeah…ties in with the rant above. If I hand off a card to download, there must be a way to get it into the computer. Plus, less hours on the camera.
LED dimmable light. May as well update the on-camera light while I’m shopping. Longer run time, brighter light than what I’m using now.

Still checking prices, but most likely Kangeroo or other foul weather gear and maybe (further down the line) tele and wide angle adapters. Whoowhee!

Tripod
The old Bogan-Manfrotto is getting heavy as I get older, so in the market for something lighter with a half or full-ball head.

Computer
A Mac of course…what model/processor, etc depends on what’s on the market when I get my stuff together.

The final tally won’t be cheap…which is one of the reasons I’m back in school, doing the long term sub gig. Life’s little pleasures must be earned. And during the next six months, who knows? The next bright shiny object of my desires may change…

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4 thoughts on “My dream kit…

  1. Well done piece.
    I’m thisclose to purchasing a Panny HMC150.
    Would you know if shooting with a shot gun and a wireless, you have the option of recording all on one channel, or if desired separate the channels?
    Thnx!
    Ron

  2. Ronald…the times are swiftly changing. The Panasonic AG-HMC150 is actually a model that is more than seven years old. Very reliable and I loveit. But if I were you I’d be looking at something newer – the AG-AC130A for example. Dual slots so you can shift seamlessly from one card to the next. A bit more expensive, but if you can find the 150 for sale, I’m guessing it is still in the running.
    Truth be told…I’m not too sure about recording to separate channels. When I do an interview I set both Channel 1 & 2 to external mike. Let me give this a shot and see if I can separate them out. Don’t see any reason why I can’t…but hold on. Will try to have an answer by tomorrow.

    • Thanks so much for reply on this. Looking forward to your reply, with re; to separating channels.
      As far as upgrading to newer AG-AC130A, for the time being, I don’t need the advancements that it offers. I’m actively pursuing the Panny AG HMC150, to purchase.
      I’ve seen for as low as $1,200.
      Regards,
      Ron
      ronald_wolf@mac.com

  3. Ronald…yes, you can record to separate channels. Here are some variations:
    1. Send audio from on-board shotgun to both channels
    2. Channel 1 on-board mike/channel 2 to off-board mike for interview
    3. Channel 1 to off-board mike #1/channel 2 to off-board mike #2
    These are all set on the control panel that is visible when you flip open the LCD.
    Keep in mind there are some additional settings you need to be aware of.
    -You can choose to set each mike separately to line or mike input/these swtiches are located right beside the XLR inputs
    -You can also set either channel for phantom power/these switches are right beside the mike selectors on the control panel
    Enjoy the camera…and the difference scenes. I tend to use Scene Cine D a lot.
    Finally if you are using Premiere (as I do) you’ll need to separate the channels once you’ve imported the video (PP doesn’t do this automatically like FCP).

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