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Old March 25th, 2012, 07:10 PM   #1
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XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

I'm just a bit confused by the chart of the recording modes on page 49 of the manual.

It says that MXP and FXP modes are recorded in 1920x1080, and the other three modes record in 1440x1080.

1) If MXP and FXP are both recorded in the same resolution, then what is the quality difference between those two modes? Likewise, if XP+ SP and LP all record in 1440, what is the quality difference between those three modes?

2) If I'm recording video that will ultimately be sold as downloadable products from a website, what recording mode should I use? The footage is basically talking head material, not a lot of fast movement at all....
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Old March 25th, 2012, 07:33 PM   #2
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

The difference is the data rate (amount of compression of the image)
Less compression generally means higher data rate and better image quality, for the same resolution and frame rate.
See page 149 for the data rates of the several modes.

As to a web site - generally best to shoot and edit at the highest quality yo can, then transcode to the distribution format as the final step. The web page should tell you what format they want.
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Old March 26th, 2012, 11:15 AM   #3
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

If the material is web only and no future sales in dvd or Blu-ray are expected, recording it in the closest to web delivery is easier and can result in cleaner looking footage with less chance of compression artifacts. Easier computer wise to edit and longer record times on the cards are also benefits.

1280x720 by 24 or 30 fps or as close as possible to that will give you great footage to upload. Good Luck!
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Old March 26th, 2012, 02:32 PM   #4
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

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...recording it in the closest to web delivery is easier and can result in cleaner looking footage with less chance of compression artifacts. Easier computer wise to edit ...
That depends on the quality of the compression in the recorder vs. the compression in the transcoding software used. It also depends on the nature of the editing being done and the NLE in use. Transitions, filters, and similar effects involve a decompress/recompression cycle that can introduce artifacts, especially with highly compressed material.

A good approach is to run some tests of the alternative appraches in your shooting/editing environment to determine what workflow gives you the results you want/need in terms of time and quality.

Keep in mind that not all things can be reshot if you need higher quality later.
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Old March 27th, 2012, 07:42 AM   #5
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

Mike, I'm pretty sure the simplest workflow with the XA10 for the type of footage you are shooting is as follows:

1. Shoot in 1080 24p
2. Render a mp4 file to 1080 24p, then upload that file to Youtube. You may have to play around with a bitrate, etc, but other than that this is pretty straighforward.
3. You are done.

The reasons I suggest this is as follows.

1. 24p will not have to be de-initerlaced by Youtube.
2. Youtube can handle 1080 24p footage just fine.
3. For your particular subject matter 24p is fine. If you were shooting scenes with action, etc, it might be a different story.

You are wise to be asking these questions before you shoot, as it's best to shoot using settings so that your resulting file will not need to be deinterlaced or resized later if possible.
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Old March 27th, 2012, 11:10 PM   #6
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

Thanks for the reference to page 149, now I see the data rates.

As I mentioned, these videos will be downloadable products (not youtube, although I will also shoot some vids for youtube), so I'm not quite sure what would be the best resolution to offer these products at for customers. Should they be full 1920x1080? Maybe that's too big for most folks? I don't want the file sizes to be any bigger than they have to be. Where does 1440x1080 even come from? Shouldn't the 1080 dimension be less than 1080 to be proportionate to 1920x1080? Very confusing..
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Old March 28th, 2012, 04:03 AM   #7
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

Hi

I guess that 1440x1080 comes from for example HDV. It's using anamorphic horisontal pixels, stretching them to aspect ratio 1,333 which leads to 1920x1080.

Regards,

/Bo
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Old March 28th, 2012, 07:45 AM   #8
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

FWIW 1440x1080 is a 4x3 pixel ratio, and is the HDV frame size in pixels, non-square pixels

Keep in mind that the standard NTSC SD DV frame is 4x3 aspect ration, but is 720x480 pixels (pixel aspect is not square). This number is likely legacy from analog video. Keep in mind that a substantial degree of backward compatability is required in any new system when it is introduced to ensure the installed base of TV sets, etc. will continue to work.

Nominal full HD display is 1920x1080 square pixels. But using 1440x1080 non-square pxiels is nearly as high quality for most purposes and reduces bandwidth/storage substantially (by 25%).

As to best formats for distribution, do a business model analysis. What is the minimum level needed to fairly present the material? Who are your customers, what viewing capability do they have (the lowest common denominator), do you want to offer more than one level of quality, what enhanced capability do you need for slect customers if you plan to offer more thatn one level. What alternate distribution formats and methods might you want to support in the future. And of course what does all this cost vs. return to you.
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Old March 28th, 2012, 08:19 AM   #9
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Costantini View Post
Thanks for the reference to page 149, now I see the data rates.

As I mentioned, these videos will be downloadable products.
Sorry missed that Mike.
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Old March 28th, 2012, 01:13 PM   #10
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

I hadn't considered shooting 24p because this isn't a film type production, not a movie, just instructional video.

Page 50 of the manual says: " PF30: Shooting at 30 frames per second, progressive. Use this frame rate to easily edit your recordings, for example, to post them on the web"

So I see there's PF24 and 24P modes, and now those are rather confusing too because PF24 says " 24 frames progressive*, the * says recorded as 60i"

Could this be any more confusing? I just want to determine the best frame rate and frame size when the ultimate destination is commercial downloadable (not streaming) videos.

I just had another thought.. If I plan to use this XA10 with another camera (older Panasonic DVC-80) for a multicamera shoot for the purpose of picture in picture, will both cameras have to shoot in the same framerate, or will I still be able to sync the footage in post if the framerates are different?
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Old March 29th, 2012, 07:54 AM   #11
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

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will both cameras have to shoot in the same framerate, or will I still be able to sync the footage in post if the framerates are different?
Will depend in large part on the capability of your NLE. Things usually work better if all items on the timeline are the same format
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Old March 29th, 2012, 08:02 AM   #12
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Re: XA10 Recording Modes (MXP, FXP, etc..)

You might want to select your method of delivery first before shooting, but I suspect you will want to deliver using WMV files. In that case I don't know what I'd choose, but I suspect you'd end up shooting in PF 30. When setting up your render settings you would have to choose your dimensions and bit rate. That's a whole 'nother thread, best addressed in your editing software forum.

For now, stick with 1920X1080, 1440 is an "odd size" , just avoid it. The camera's sensor is designed to shoot 1920X1080 so you'll get the best results that way. You will likely be resizing later anyway no matter what you shoot in, so just start there.

As far as the size and quality settings of your videos for delivery, deal with that separately as mentioned above.

My personal thought on your mixing in an older Panasonic is that it sounds like a very poor match, but hey, that's just me.
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