The camcorder is made from die cast aluminium and is pretty robust. Unlike the others in this market, it has a proper adjustable shoulder mount, so it should be more comfortable to operate. It can be a bit front heavy, but if you opt for an IDX or Anton/Bauer battery option, it will help balance things out. If you are used to ENG-style cameras like the DSR500/570 then this camera will probably suit you best.
Advantages: It is good for the film look, because the CCDs are progressive (720-line 24, 25 or 30p - although an on-board standards converter can output 1080i/50, 1080i/60, 720p/60 & 720p/50); there are many lens options (and you can actually mark the lens and focus pull accurately, whereas all the other cameras have focus rings that just go round and round and round); it is probably the most ergonomically designed of the models available; and you can store your menu settings on an SD card. You can access the camera's uncompressed 720p HD signal, to give you a better quality picture, but this needs to be put through an HDV-to-HD SDI bridge (costing from about £750 to £2,000).
Disadvantages: The standard (Fujinon16x) lens (5.5mm) is not as wide angle as the Z1's and you can see some colour aberrations at the edge of the frame - there is also evidence of some barrelling (straight lines at the edge of the frame curving inwards) when the lens is on its widest angle. It definitely requires an upgraded battery as the standard battery lasts only about an hour, and this will add about £800 to the cost. Final Cut Pro currently (version 5.0.4) only supports JVC's 30p mode (as used in the HD10) - unless you use workarounds (www.lumierehd.com or www.hdvxdv.com or have a look at this AJA whitepaper: www.aja.com/pdfs/AJA_whitepaper_HDV.pdf).
Canon's recently introduced XLH1 (about £4,800) is a particularly interesting option for anyone equipping an HD studio or OB on a budget, as it is the cheapest way of getting a full 1080i HD-SDI 4:2:2 signal. You do this by plugging into its HD-SDI output, which bypasses the HDV compression. It can be plugged straight into an HD vision mixer. It also does SDI (Serial Digital Interface) for SD. It will deliver high quality pictures for live big screen presentations at concerts or conferences. The H1 can also be genlocked and have timecode synched with other cameras, so it should behave nicely in multicamera set ups. It is probably the ideal smaller camera for concert videos, where its sheer style will also help it fit in.