i am very interested in buying a camcorder. i require the camcorder to do short films and have some entries in competitions both locally and internationally. my budget is around £2,500. i can only imagine the final product to be on dvd. i have read several reviews but am undecided because of my ignorance in understanding certain specs and terms. from what i have read the panasonic dvx100 has the edge due to its leica lens and progressive scan at 24p. i have read that thanks to this progressive scan better vertical resolution is achieved. it also has a `cine` like gamma curve. on the other hand there is the sony dsr-pd170. correct me if i am wrong but i have read that progressive scan on the sony is only 12p. how much do these progressive scan and gamma curve differences, amongst others things actually differ in picture quality. is the dvx100 worth the price difference over the pd170? another dilemma is that if i understood correctly the sony pd170 and vx2100 are almost identical in performance except for one being a dvcam and has XLR inputs while the other not. am i correct? if so appart from the recording times does the dvcam format actually result in better picture quality. so would i be better off with the vx2100 and a DAT/minidisc? i would rule out the canon xl1s only for the fact that it has interchangable lenses which will incure a greater cost. am i right in doing so, or is the price gap worth it? is the Xl1s better than the pd170? how does the sony dsr-pdx10p (dvcam) and the panasonic agdvc30e compare to the above. i know that they both have XLR inputs but truely are they on the same leage as the above? i would not like to buy the cheepest product now and regret my decission in a few years time due to the lack of professioanl equipment i have. on the other hand I do not want fency stuff that i will not use. thanks a lot.