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AVCHD Format Discussion
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Old March 7th, 2009, 07:48 PM   #1
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Sony XR520/500

I have just been reading the manual as I was thinking of upgrading my SR11 for the XR500 and I discovered that Zebra is no longer available. I guess I can't have GPS and Zebras!!!!


Ron Evans
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Old March 7th, 2009, 08:34 PM   #2
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I'd guess it's more likely a result of their "dynamic range optimizer", which I suppose they would say eliminates the need for manual input/adjustment... but it appears the zebras have left the reservation...

Probably got more complaints from consumers about "all those diagonal lines dancing on my screen" than it was worth to them...

While I used them as a guide to adjust exposure, I suppose I'd learn to live without them if the camera was nailing the exposure a bit better out of the box, but still, I really wish Sony would clue in to the idea that SOME of us would like a camera with a FEW controls on it like the old TRV900... and still compact... sigh.

Get what looks like a great new sensor/OIS, lost another "pro" feature...

I don't suppose that the function is still there, just got left out of the documentation?? It was pretty deeply buried in the new menu format with the SR11/12 and CX7/12.
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Old March 7th, 2009, 09:45 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Evans View Post
I discovered that Zebra is no longer available. I guess I can't have GPS and Zebras!!!!


Ron Evans
I feel pretty bad to hear this Ron. I assumed it would be there on the camera at the XR500/520 level. Now one more useful feature is gone and we have, let's count.. auto audio gain with no manual, no separate shutter/iris control, no zebra etc. Let's hope the LCD is accurate enough to tell you the whites in the image mean there is no image there.

Or does this mean from now on we just have to put up with the awkward portability of cameras like the FX7, FX1000 for casual shooting?

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Old March 8th, 2009, 04:00 PM   #4
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Or switch to the Canon HF-S series...

Canon at least seems to be catering to the "videophile" market while Sony seems to be catering to Joe and Susie soccer mom/dad.

I'll be waiting to see how the XR and HF-S stack up in terms of video quality - the low light and OIS are intrigueing features for the XR's, but the HF-S is looking good so far too!
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Old March 8th, 2009, 05:34 PM   #5
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For tripod use Lanc is a must and that rules out the Canons. Once the use is for family stuff I think the Sony wins for all the reasons mentioned. Batteries are another issue too. I can go to a shoot with my FX1 and big battery and the SR11 and the H1000 battery and know I could shoot until tomorrow!!!! About 5 to 6hours off each with constant indication of battery state. I might still try the XR500 and see if I can get the manual control or even the spotlight or AE shift to work in a satisfactory way as a full stage camera. You never know the dynamic range expander might actually work!!!

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Old March 8th, 2009, 11:33 PM   #6
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The footage I've seen looked pretty good, so I'm probalby going to keep an eye out for a deal on an XR500 myself. I've already got all the accessories, so it's a bit more logical upgrade for me, and I like the LANC capability as well.

I just wish Sony would ADD features as far as manual control instead of reducing each new version... giving a whiz bang new sensor and OIS and taking away another "pro" feature is frustrating!
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Old March 9th, 2009, 07:56 AM   #7
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I think Sony feel that if one wants full manual control a big camera is OK, ie FX7 , FX1 or FX1000 etc. However I often shoot two or three cameras and like to carry then all in my backpack. I can get the FX1 and two SR11's etc in but not two FX1's. In the theatre I do not want the camera correcting for the stage lighting. When the stage goes dark or light I want the camera to do the same without blowing out the whites so manual is the only way really get that but some dynamic control would be nice as a small variation. I expect however that in manual the dynamic range expander is not working and there will be no way to limit the exposure to stop it seeing in the dark!!!!

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