Summary: I have been using Sony cams for over 20 years now but this one is the DB's! My previous cam was it's predecessor, the domestic version of the Z1, good in itself but not in the same league as the FX1000E. Low light performance is astonishingly good, the new lens is incredible and the image resolution is simply broadcast quality. Unless you need the XLR balanced audio and DVCAM capability, don't bother with the Z5 and save some dosh.
Summary: I bought the Sony FX1000 as I wanted a semi pro video camera to use for my own videos. I have a background in TV production and found the manual controls great to use. The image quality is brilliant. Being digital you can import the footage straight into you computer to edit. The movies I have filmed have looked great, sounded good and have been fun to produce. If you want a great camera, this is it.
Summary: This camcorder can see in the dark, it was a great choice for dance shows (bad lighting, change all the time). Build to last, and its nice to keep MiniDV as a backup. Large battery good for 7-8 hours (lots of zoom action) Can't find anything negative.
Excerpt: I use this camera for dance and theater videography. The low light capabilities are stellar. In super dim scenarios, there is a lot of noise as people have mentioned. Keep in mind that most cameras would give you no visible imagery at all. I have found that setting the gain on high and closing the iris down helps get a cleaner image. No XLR inputs is a con but Beachtek solves that easily with good results. All in all, I find this to be a great camera for the price.
Pros: Good in Low Light, Great Picture Quality, Large Clear LCD
Excerpt: I use these camcorders for 3 years and like them a lot! Just got another one! Good low light capabilities, excellent image quality and lots of features! Zoom range is incredible!!! It doesn't have XLR, but it can be added through adapter, so it is no issue for me...
Pros: Easy to Use, Good Image Stabilization, Good in Low Light, Great Picture Quality, Great Sound, Great Zoom, Zoom range/performance