2016 NAB IMAG Camera Review for Houses of Worship

Looking for a great entry-level camera for your church, these options featured at NAB from JVC, Sony, Panasonic and Marshall are worthy of consideration.

2016 NAB IMAG Camera Review for Houses of Worship
There were a number of video camera options on display at NAB in Las Vegas this year, ranging from models from JVC, Sony, Panasonic or this model by Marshall, the CV565-MGB.
2016 NAB IMAG Camera Review for Houses of Worship
There were a number of video camera options on display at NAB in Las Vegas this year, ranging from models from JVC, Sony, Panasonic or this model by Marshall, the CV565-MGB.

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2016 NAB IMAG Camera Review for Houses of Worship

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Hammond WFX 2017

Marcus was a speaker at WFX this year in Dallas. For 2018, the conference is slated for Orlando in November. We hope to see you there.

Every year in April, video geeks from around the world descend on Las Vegas to scope out what’s new in the world of moving picture technology.

This year was no exception.

Here’s a quick overview of some of the latest cameras released at the 2016 NAB Show that may have impact in the house of worship market, specifically for the application of IMAG (Image Magnification).

Each of the cameras on this list offers a fixed-lens (instead of variable), and they each have an HD-SDI, or High Definition-Serial Definition Interface (a high definition video transmission standard) output. Those highlighted here each fall below the $6,000 price point, making them a great entry-level camera for churches that are looking to ease their way into IMAG or recording their weekend services.

The 2016 NAB Show offered a glimpse into what video cameras could impact the house of worship market, particularly in the application of IMAG.


1080 HD cameras still have a lot of value for houses of worship, and JVC’s new HM660 is no exception. It’s the successor to the very-popular HM650 model, and sports three new 12-bit CMOS sensors and a 23x zoom lens. It has HD-SDI and HDMI outputs, but does not offer a genlock (a device that maintains synchronization between two different video signals)/reference input or remote control, other than local LANC control. The latest feature of the HM660 is the built-in ability to stream video content directly from the camera. The HM660 provides an RTMP, or Real Time Messaging Protocol, stream for direct connectivity to the Web and streaming to sites like USTREAM or YouTube. It also offers Zixi or SMPTE 2022 forward error correction. It’s priced at around $5,500 and is a great step if the 800-series cameras from JVC are priced outside your budget.

Sony PXW-Z150

While it was actually released at BVE, or the Broadcast Video Expo, a few weeks before NAB (the National Association of Broadcasters Show), the Sony Z150 is a fixed lens camera talked about frequently at NAB, mainly because of one feature – the ability to record 120fps.

This camera, while looking great in an IMAG scenario, would also be a great option for shooting in the field for interviews or a run-and-gun scenario. It’s a 4K camera with a 1-inch stacked CMOS sensor, and it offers a 12x optical zoom lens with Sony’s Clear Image Zoom magnification system, taking it to an 18x in 4K, or a 24x in HD.

An interesting note about the PXW-Z150 – while it has both HD-SDI and HDMI outputs, only one output can be used at a time, not both simultaneously. This is something to take into account if you’re using the camera in a live environment (like IMAG) and you wish to monitor your output locally. The Z150 will soon be available at a price of around $3,200.

More About Marcus Hammond
With over a decade of church technical leadership and production experience, Marcus Hammond serves as Church Resource Director with Stark Raving Solutions, based in Lenexa, Kan. Hammond is passionate about helping local churches connect with their congregation and helping church technical teams reach a new level of success. He lives in Kansas City with his wife, Jill, and enjoys travel, Hi-Fi audio, and KC BBQ! Connect with Marcus on Twitter @marcus_hammond.
Get in Touch: marcus@starkravingsolutions.com    More by Marcus Hammond

Latest Resource

Worship Facilities Magazine, March-April 2018
The March-April 2018 issue of Worship Facilities Magazine offers articles about how to prepare, prevent and respond to church violence, a look into what church management software can do for your church community, and a piece on how a once popular nightclub venue was transitioned to become Shoreline Church's new home.

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