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Old August 4th, 2008, 01:53 AM   #1
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Is Sony SR 11/12 really that good?

Hi

I wonder one thing.
One the cover of Steve Mullen´s E-Book about the Sony SR11/12 it says that the cam can be used as a B-Cam to Sony EX1 and Z7.

Is the cam really that good ?

Has anyone actually used it as a B-Cam to Sony EX1 or Z7 ?

Cheers

Hans
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Last edited by Hans Ledel; August 4th, 2008 at 02:25 AM.
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Old August 4th, 2008, 03:21 AM   #2
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I would suggest you to decidse yourself. Search vimeo for "ex1 test" and "sr12 test". By the way, there is (at least) one person that published very good looking footage from EX1 and hf100. worth watchin imho.
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Old August 4th, 2008, 04:19 PM   #3
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The SR12 images are surprisingly good. I think they are on a par with my Sony V1 3 chip HDV, but not really close to my EX. I have a Blu Ray Disk with shorts from all 3 cams- all look great on HDTV, but I can always pick out the EX footage.
That being said, I do think the SR12 AVCHD images are quite credible and could be carefully intercut with EX HQ, and certainly with HDV.
I think what you can get away with will also depend on your delivery format: web, DVD, BD, 35mm film- the higher rez the output, the more the EX will stand out IMO.
For a consumer level cam, the SR12 is pretty amazing though.
If you want to see a Flash comparison, look here:
http://www.irondocvideo.com/Refuge%2...0Frameset.html
The first short is EX1, second one is SR12, third one is Sony V1
All three shorts were cobbled together from test footage from the three cameras.
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Old August 4th, 2008, 07:11 PM   #4
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The SR12 images are surprisingly good. I think they are on a par with my Sony V1 3 chip HDV, but not really close to my EX..
That's a good comparison. The EX1 captures with 6MP and is always going to provide REAL FullHD resolution compared to all the other PSUEDO FullHD camcorders.

TV Technology has a good story on just this issue. Pro NTSC camcorders have three 520,000-pixel chips. That about 1,100 samples for a 720-pixel line. That's OVERSAMPLING -- even without green-shift.

Today, we have supposed HD camcorders that not only don't oversample -- like the EX1 -- but, in most other cases, UNDER-sample. The V1 is soft and so is the SR12 -- compared to the EX1.

But, the SR12 and EX1 share the same EXMOR tech CMOS chips so they share the wide lattitude and color response -- as compared to CCD-based cameras.

Sony could have tuned the SR12 to better match the EX1. But, the consumer division seems to have no interest except selling to "consumers." Or, the Pro group could have used a tuned version, as did Panasonic, but it seems to want to sell only in the $4000 and up category because that feeds their sales channel with exclusive products.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 09:21 AM   #5
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If the pro-division had used a 'tuned' version of the SR12, people would have been screaming that they got the guts of a cheap consumer cam and spent lots more money for it. You can't win either way, someobody will always bitch. In the meantime, for the market it's aimed at and the price point it's at, the SR series does its job very well. Anyone that's expecting pro resolution & sharpness with either a Canon or Sony consumer AVCHD or HDV camcorder, is kidding themselves.

Does marketing come in to play? Of course! What company that wants to earn profits doesn't use this kind of marketing?
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Old August 5th, 2008, 10:27 AM   #6
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Well, I still wait for a consumer camera with really good auto function. For me SR11 is quite close, but at the end I don't want to be bothered anymore with manual controls in a consumer camera.
Why can be so difficult to make a very good AWB? You know your sensor response (suppose) so you could make your program to make compensations and make a lifelike recording (I know, it's subjective what is lifelike recording).
And with manual focus in HD... I really don't know how you can judge focus in a tiny LCD without some assist... It's more worse than DSLR, the distance is always relative (subject is moving), so you must adjust focus (or choose a safe distance).
Of course today implementation of AF is somehow good in proper light and not so good in lowlight...

So to response, yes, I think with it's imperfections this camera is good. It's the first right step from Sony in consumer avchd...
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Old August 5th, 2008, 12:13 PM   #7
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Thank you very much.

Ive just ordered the SR11, hopefully it will be here on Friday.

Robert, I loved your movies. I wish I was there.
I never really thought it would match the EX but if it will intercut more or less good with something like the V1 then it will be good for me.

I have one question and that is about the Sony aperture range.
I have been using a Panasonic GS wich is completly manual and in order to open up the aperture I have always used external ND8X (3 stop) to keep it open.

I think I read somewhere that Sony is using internal ND filters to keep the aperture open in order to get the sweatspot.

What I am wondering about is if Sony also raise the shutterspeeed together with internal ND filters to open up the aperture?
If they do that then I guess it would be good to use my ND filters on this cam also.

So my question will be like this.

Will I gain anything by using external ND filters with th SR11?

Once again

Thank You

Hans
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Old August 5th, 2008, 01:18 PM   #8
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I believe that Steve Mullen has addressed Sony's exposure strategy for the SR 12. You can search his posts on this forum, or check out his book. My understanding is that the camera makes every attempt to keep the aperture around f4, does have an internal ND filter, and probably there are situations that an add on ND filter would be useful.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 05:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hans Ledel View Post
Thank you very much.

So my question will be like this.

Will I gain anything by using external ND filters with th SR11?

Once again

Thank You

Hans
Not much I just shot a test video with a SR12 this last weekend. I was using the portrait mode to decrease the depth of field in conjunction with a couple of ND filters you can see for yourself but they dont make a huge difference. The video is labeled with which filters are being used.http://www.vimeo.com/1456775
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Old August 5th, 2008, 08:29 PM   #10
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Crazy trick I just tried to pull more DoF out of the SR11 - two circular polarizers stacked so that they could block as much light (or all of it...) as I wanted - then used the spot focus function. Seemed pretty effective from my tests, thought I'd pass it along... Probably a nutty idea that's somehow flawed, but I was getting decent DoF from what I could tell, at least for a small camera!
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Old August 6th, 2008, 02:06 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Ken Steadman View Post
Not much I just shot a test video with a SR12 this last weekend. I was using the portrait mode to decrease the depth of field in conjunction with a couple of ND filters you can see for yourself but they dont make a huge difference. The video is labeled with which filters are being used.http://www.vimeo.com/1456775
One more step is needed -- zoom in further. You need f/2 and about a 75% zoom. In other word a MCU or CU.
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Old August 6th, 2008, 06:53 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Dave Blackhurst View Post
Crazy trick I just tried to pull more DoF out of the SR11 - two circular polarizers stacked so that they could block as much light (or all of it...) as I wanted - then used the spot focus function. Seemed pretty effective from my tests, thought I'd pass it along... Probably a nutty idea that's somehow flawed, but I was getting decent DoF from what I could tell, at least for a small camera!
If it works Dave, go for it. Not such a nutty idea. :)
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Old August 6th, 2008, 09:23 AM   #13
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One more step is needed -- zoom in further. You need f/2 and about a 75% zoom. In other word a MCU or CU.
Not sure you watched the whole thing the last part is just that.
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Old August 6th, 2008, 09:33 AM   #14
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I will give it a try when I get the camera to see if there is any advantage of using external ND filter.
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Old August 6th, 2008, 01:50 PM   #15
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I will give it a try when I get the camera to see if there is any advantage of using external ND filter.
What makes a min DOF is a small, but not too small, iris.

Ideally, one would simply set the iris to f/2 or f/2.4.

Since you can't, you have 2 choices (both fully covered in my book):

1) Use Portrait Mode. It will push the iris open as far as it can -- within the limits of the camera's maximum shutter-speed. This is NOT a good way to achieve min DOF because any fast movement will strobe.

2) Use an ND filter. There is no advantage to using anything but an ordinary ND filter. All you want to do is make a huge reduction in the light entering the lens. This will cause BOTH the iris to open AND the shutter-speed to drop. You want to choose an ND filter that bring shutter-speed to 1/60th to 1/125th and the iris to f/2 or f/2.4.

And, you want to use the maximum possible telephoto. You may need to backup from the subject if you want a "wide" shot.
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