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The NAB Interviews: Doug Jensen on the Sony PMW-160 and PMW-200

Shawn Lam and Doug Jensen discuss two new models in Sony's PMW camcorder line (that previously brought you the popular EX1 and EX3), the PMW-160 and its larger stablemate the PMW-200, and discuss the cameras' new 4:2:2 codec, recording media, and noise-handling features.


Sony PMW-200

Shawn: So that was the PMW-160. This is the PMW-200, the bigger brother (below). What’s different on this camera?

Sony PMW-200

Doug: The main difference between the PMW-200 and the 160 is that this has 1/2” sensors, whereas the 160 that we looked at a minute ago has 1/3” sensors. And of course it has the shorter zoom lens. You want to look at the PMW-200 as essentially the next evolution of the EX1R. The EX1R has been out for many years. People are very familiar with that.

This is essentially just the next version of the EX1R but they’ve renamed it the PMW-200. But the biggest difference between this and the EX1R is that this camera can now do 50 Mb 4:2:2. It’s the same lens, the same 1/2” sensors, lot of the same ergonomics, but it does add 50 Mb 4:2:2 and and it’s at the same price point, so you can’t complain about that.

Noise Handling

Shawn: What can you tell me about the noise handling on this? Does it handle noise a bit better?

Doug: I’ve done some comparison with the two cameras and I think the 200 and the EX1 are very close together. Some people might say that the 200 has better image processing and it may be not quite as noisy as the EX1. Even though I’m working for Sony today, I’m not going to tell you that’s necessarily true. I have not seen that in my own testing.

To me, this is pretty much an EX1 evolved to the PMW-200, and I wouldn’t try to tell you that this was substantially better picture quality or lower noise than the EX1. If you like the EX1R, you’ll love this camera.

Shawn: Excellent. Thank you very much. This has been Doug Jensen for Sony here, at NAB 2013.

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