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Sony HXR-NX30 pro camcorder topic
  • 26mm-260mm Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T fixed lens,
    Sony’s ‘Balanced Optical SteadyShot’ technology (IS) and detachable XLR input.
    The HXR-NX30 is handles 1080/60p as well as 60i/30/24p videos all in AVCHD.

    Specifications and info:

  • 17 Replies sorted by
  • Looks like their top consumer camcorder rapackaged and with added XLR module.

  • I would have loved this camera, only if I wasn't spoilt by the interchangeable lenses and the high bitrate and matrix hack.

  • This reminds me of the td20.. Which is quite handy for 3d shooters. I wouldn't personally invest in any of these but some may have use for it. 2500$ sounds pretty steep though..!

  • Check out this video review. Testing the Balanced Optical Steadyshot and a built in pico projector!

  • @zcream was absolutely right about NX30.

    You can still only control one manual function at at time, only improvement is the shutter speed value will stay on the screen while shooting now, but disappears when you control the iris and will only then show the iris.


  • Not the NX30 but basically the same kind of video quality you will get.

    As for manual controls yeah thats correct. There is no full manual control. There is a workaround that replicates full manual however.

    When you set the three onscreen control buttons to Shutter speed Auto gain control WB and set the Manual dial (on front of camera) to AE shift you can then control all three of these in conjunction without the camera reverting to auto. (AGC allows for limits for 0,3,6,9,12,15,18,21,24db so its basically manual!)

    Using this combination you get to control Shutter speed,DB and exposure and WB.

    Use any other method then you can only use one thing at a time while the others are auto.

    Sony fucked up the firmware.

    Im covering this when I eventually finish my video review.

  • Howdy,

    Big thing in a small package - I'm working on a doc, that is going to enjoy theatrical release. The main cameras are epic, 5d 3, gh2, sony 900 and this little marvel.

    Yesterday we took a few clips from all these cameras and viewed thm on a sixty foot screen, using the cinema's brand new projection and sound system.

    We expected that the small Sony wouldn't hold up, but we were wrong. The image is 100% usable for our needs.

    The image stabilization is cutting edge - middle of the lens handheld shots were stable and natural.

    The follow focus (cont) is as good as it gets.

    The small sensor, helps rolling shutter (and that was really tested to the limit)

    Auto iris was right on the money.

    In short, you'll never miss a shot with this tiny gem.

    An experienced op could do quite a bit with this, as well as a first time user.

    Amazing doc camera!

  • @bheath As I've said a hundred of times on these forums, this camcorder family rocks! We use 4 CX740s (the consumer version without XLR inputs) for our weddings and we absolutely love them :)

  • I keep my eye on NX30 for a very long time. In the meantime, Canon XA20 came to the scene with the similar design and specs (even the price) so, for the sake of conversation, I wonder - NX30 vs XA20 - who will win and why? What do you think guys based on your experience with NX30.

    Tnx in advance.

  • I wouldn't be able to compare the Canon, only Sony has a great rep with camcorders, as do Pana.

    This camera (sony) could be given to a 90 year old granny and she's be able to bring back usable images, (With built in slow motion:) )

  • The Canon pro CMOS sensor is very good, I use it for the features. If you are only interested in lines of resolution get something like Panasonic TM700 with nearly 1000 lines of resolution if you shoot in 60p. You can get a cheap G10 refurbished, then save your money for the newer 4K Sony.

  • Does anyone know if it's possible to copy footage from the internal memory to the SD memory card? Is there a menu option for that?

  • I know this is an old thread but I just purchased this camcorder. I can confirm there is no menu option (as of March 2014) to copy the internal memory media to the memory card slot.

    edit: my mistake, it DOES allow this (screenshot from manual attached)

    288 x 514 - 62K
  • @kameraguy

    would you be so kind to share your impressions how you like NX30 so far. I wonder how NX30 would stand in direct comparison with GH2/GH3 regarding quality of picture and "usability" in post.

    Thanks in advance.


  • All my apologies. After reading the manual, there is indeed a way to copy footage from internal memory to an inserted memory card (page 80-81 in the manual).

    Hi SveNaj, I have only used mine for three days so my opinion is due to limited experience. But I can say that the hacked GH2 is going to offer much more flexibility in getting the base image how you want prior to post. There is no manual control in the NX30 to tweak the picture profile for a flatter preference. Also, the bitrate is a fraction of what is possible with the hacked GH2. I am not familiar with the GH3 in these regards. With this said, for "my" needs the NX30 is perfect as it's benefits outweigh any limitations.

    The reason I purchased the NX30 was to get a "camcorder". But a very good one at that. Positives for the NX30:

    • form factor: extremely small when XLR audio block is detached, and is unassuming. Does not look like a pro-level camera.

    • Balanced optical steady shot: quite simply amazing: This was the key selling point for me, and thankfully did not disappoint. I am in awe at how excellent this works. It's not a steadycam replacement. But wow you can get amazing stable shots handheld.

    • XLR audio block is great: it is well designed and robustly constructed, feels like it is made primarily of aluminum. Controls are easy to manipulate, has cable clips for clean routing. Supplied shotgun mike is effective. Has hotshoe mount for additional accessory such as wireless LAV receiver or video light). Top handle integration is a huge plus for easy handling.

    • It has focus peaking and zebra overlay. Really great.

    • 96GB of internal memory is a really nice thing.

    • auto modes are actually useful: I am going to use this for documentary work where scenes will be unpredictable. From the limited testing I've done so far, the AF and auto exposure modes of the NX30 are more than acceptable. For me at least they work faster at achieving both that I could, and do so intelligently. Especially impressive is the face detection feature works. Super simple to register and deregister the subject with a tap of the screen. It locks in AF and exposure on them and amazingly adjusts both in challenging situations very unobtrusively. For example if other people move in between you and the registered subject, it doesn't break focus. And if moving into a heavily backlit scene, it will understand that and won't crush the scene. It works amazingly well.

    • excellent batteries: an NP-FV100 is amazingly small yet offers almost 400 minutes of record time at the highest quality!

    • construction: I learned this after purchase. This camera feels extremely solid. And in closer inspection it looks like it has better quality material than the consumer counterpart. My only complaint of the NX30 in this regard is the flimsy door that covers the audio block interface when not in use. Probably not going to break off, but I wish it was a sliding panel like the SD card slot and headphone/mic input covers.

    I really love my hacked GH2 and the NX30 wasn't purchased to replace it (or my 5d2). You just can't get the out of focus ability as you can with those. And the NX30 probably won't win any contest for "sheer" image quality as what is possible with the GH series. But I think the NX30 is still simply the best compact run and gun camcorder due to its small form factor and superb image stabilization. For documentary work I know it's going to be fantastic. And it's built in abilities are more than adequate for most people I think.

    My only "wishes" of the NX30:

    • Huge wish: Wish it had built in ND filters! Or, it would have been nice if the supplied hood had a provision to snap in ND filters. It does come with a 58mm step down ring for ND filters to be screwed on, but you lose the ability to use the hood.

    • weather resistance like the NX70. I would have purchased the NX70 but that doesn't have the Balanced optical steady shot.

    • true manual control of shutter speed, iris, focus, with dedicated external controls for each. I don't mind the camera growing a little larger for this, but not much as it's form factor is desirable.

    • record and variable zoom controls on top handle would be excellent.

    • Would have been great if you could write to both internal storage and SD card simultaneously for redundancy (possible firmware update??)

    • nitpick: I wish the tripod mount was centered with the lens. It is slightly shifted to the left when facing the rear of the camera. My plans to use an F&V HDR-300 ring light with 15mm rods has been thrown a loop as it doesn't line up.