XF300 compared to Panasonic HDC-TM700 at DVinfo.net

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Canon XF Series HD Camcorders
Canon XF305, XF205 and XF105 (with SDI), Canon XF300, XF200 and XF100 (without SDI).


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Old May 6th, 2010, 10:12 AM   #1
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XF300 compared to Panasonic HDC-TM700

Hello,

I hope it hasn't discussed before. Please compare the frame grabs of XF 300 and Panasonic hdc-tm700 at Camcorder test charts comparison

Why the panasonic image is sharper, more detailed at 1200 lux ?

Why the pana tm-700 low light image at 12 lux is still better than the xf 300 ?

How can it happen that a 1000 usd camera can record sharper, more detailed image that XF 300 ?

If i want to buy xf 300 later, i want minimum 2x times sharper and more detailed image that a regular camcorder. If canon xf 300 can't deliver it, besides the pro look and pro function, is there any picture quality advantage buying a camcorder costs 6x that a regular consumer camcorder ?
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Old May 6th, 2010, 10:36 AM   #2
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You need to ask this question at the site where you found that test.

Nobody associated with DV Info Net was involved with it, therefore
we're in no position to give you any useful insight into how that test
was conducted or why they got the results they did.
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Old May 6th, 2010, 02:14 PM   #3
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Slashcam Comparisons

Like Mr. Hurd said, since none of us did said tests, it's kind of hard to provide insight.

However, I offer the important point that the XF300 is in fact not released yet. I don't know how Slashcam manages to get it's hands on all these cameras before they're released, but I think it presents the important possibility that the XF300 they utilized might of not been indicative of the final release model. As they indicate on their website, the frame grabs in their database are all examples of cameras on fully automatic, so perhaps there is some quirks that Canon needs to work out on it's automation... or perhaps even the compression routines with it's implementation of the Canon XF codec. The comparison videos of the XF300 vs the EX1, which seem to show the Canon's lower light sensitivity compared to other models in class, even clearly state that the XF300s on the show floor were prototype...

This of course is all pure conjecture on my part, but it's a possible explanation. In addition, the TM700 in general is simply an exceptionally awesome camera for it's price range....best in class with lowlight, I believe. Meanwhile, Canon is known for great performance in regular lighting and awesome with their handling of colors... yet not so much known for leading in the low light performance category.


I'm actually going to purchase a TM700 very soon, since I need the low light performance. If needed a camera for daylight and controlled lighting.. like a cheap indy film camera, I might of elected to pick up a Vixia.. althought the low noise levels across the board on the TM700 still make it attractive for that option.

Last edited by Michael F. Grgurev; May 6th, 2010 at 02:16 PM. Reason: Afterthought
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Old May 6th, 2010, 02:18 PM   #4
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Prototype doesn't really mean very much. Camera settings do. There's no way to know for certain what the settings of each camera were regarding that NAB comparison, so frankly I don't think it's valid either. But the fact that those were pre-production samples isn't going to have much of an impact on the image. Custom presets, exposure values, etc. are the real factors in that one.
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Old May 6th, 2010, 02:50 PM   #5
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Chris, Michael:

Thank you for the explanation.

Chris:

So the prototype camera used for the slashcam test was set in auto all mode. At the moment in this state not only the pana tm700, but generally any hd handycam can beat its video detail.

Do you seriously hope / beleive that with auto mode, but final firmware the XF 300 will generate 40-80% better image, beating the tm 700 or probably the ex1 ? Both in daylight and night ?

To be honest, I think a good camera in auto mode should generate excellent video quality (color, sharpness, resolution), and tweaking should be used to make the excellent video to more mindblowing quality.

I understand that this is a prototype, but my guess is that even with tweaking it still wont reach tm 700 or ex1 quality. I would love to see that, but I don't hope it will happen.

Which is too bad, because of the specs (fast af, good stab, good colors, good sensors) i thought it will be the camere worth starting saving some money to buy it.
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Old May 6th, 2010, 03:00 PM   #6
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Prototypin'

Well I couldn't agree more with Chris in regards to settings, but with that notion in mind, I think a matter of "prototype" might matter in regards to those settings, as the person who posted the video even wrote that he couldn't get the white balance to work at all on this pre-release. So arguably, Canon might still be adjusting the software/controls.. so even knowing the exact settings both cameras used, might not be indicative of a fair comparison or what a release model will work like with those settings.

The poster of the video does seem to infer that both cameras were set to "1080 24p 48 with iris wide open"... but I would agree there's no mention of gain or any other relevant settings. Long story short.. to get back to orginal question... you really can't take full stock in a quick comparison of a somehow acquired in Germany prerelease XF300 vs the TM700... and even then it's a comparison of their out-of-box autoshoot modes.. not the most you can get out of them.... so lets wait and see what the shootouts say once the camera is actually released.
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Old May 6th, 2010, 03:46 PM   #7
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We've just had a similar discussion Judge these 3 camera IQ's, asking the same question about the CX550V...which is a pretty close contender with the TM700.

There are a LOT of variables in any test, manual adjustments can affect the results, and so on... even so, a regular who has shot XR500 side by side with the Sony "big cams" finds the image quality is a match, or perhaps even better... consistent with other "evidence".

BUT as I noted in that thread, consumer cameras are refreshed every year, and have to reach a mass produced market price point. I suspect that sometimes the technology can in some respects leapfrog the pro lines which have a smaller market and longer market life.

You're still talking about "pocket" cameras with relatively limited features, but they are getting frighteningly capable of producing a "professional level" image from that small package. In the hands of someone who knows how to shoot, these cameras offer a lot of bang for the $$.
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Old May 6th, 2010, 06:03 PM   #8
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Hope for the future.

Tans:

In regards to hope for some improvements before release date, I would say it's somewhat in the realm of possibility. For the sake of argument, lets accept the SlashCam and DVDAction.net comparisons as fair and accurate.. that being the case, I'd imagine we might not see much of a difference in the XF300's overall light intake, but I wouldn't be surprised if the low light noise levels are noticeably better on release. According to Slashcam's results... the XF300 is sharper at lowlight then their Vixia line, but with much more noise.. now variances in gain setting aside, I can't imagine the yet released 3CMOS XF300 would be inferior to their own single CMOS Vixia that's out already... at least in terms of noise at a given lux. So I'd say either the auto gain or sharpness on the XF300 was set unnecessarily high or the final release is going to more finely tuned in that area.

Dave has a very valid thought in regards to consumer cameras and leap frogging... but since the XF300 is still prelease, I can't imagine they'd leave any of their newest tech/implementations out... particularly if people are already saying the competition looks more promising.
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Old May 6th, 2010, 11:07 PM   #9
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That "strange" lowlight tests from the site Videoaktiv.de:
- Canon XF305: http://www.aktiv-verlag.com/~webvide...non_XF_305.MXF
- Sony PMW-EX1R: http://www.aktiv-verlag.com/~webvide.../Sony_EX1R.MP4
- Sony HDR-AX2000: http://www.aktiv-verlag.com/~webvide...HDR_AX2000.MTS
- Panasonic AG-HMC151: http://www.aktiv-verlag.com/~webvide...AG_HMC_151.MTS
- JVC GY-HM100: http://www.aktiv-verlag.com/~webvide...Y_HM_100_E.MP4
- Canon HF S21: http://www.aktiv-verlag.com/~webvide...anon_HFS21.MTS
- Sony CX550: http://www.aktiv-verlag.com/~webvide...Sony_CX550.MTS
- Panasonic TM700 (50p): http://www.aktiv-verlag.com/~webvide..._700_P_50p.MTS
- Panasonic TM700 (50i): http://www.aktiv-verlag.com/~webvide..._700_P_50i.MTS

I don't think that these tests are of any use. Since they run in full automatic mode.
What is the gain used on the cameras - +12 dB, +18 dB, +24 db or +33 dB? That is the question.

I would prefer to see the lowlight clips on the given values of gain:-6dB, 0dB, +6 dB, +12 dB, +18 dB.
This would help to estimate the actual noise level.

Hey, anyone who has access to the XF305, please lay out lowlight-test at different fixed values of the gain. Of course, as the original. MXF-files.
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Old May 8th, 2010, 06:35 AM   #10
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Ivan, I will do my best to fulfil your request this coming week

I have downloaded the MP4 files from the site, but cannot open them - what are the test shots of?

Nick.
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Last edited by Nick Wilcox-Brown; May 8th, 2010 at 07:57 AM.
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Old May 8th, 2010, 10:36 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael F. Grgurev View Post
Well I couldn't agree more with Chris in regards to settings, but with that notion in mind, I think a matter of "prototype" might matter in regards to those settings, as the person who posted the video even wrote that he couldn't get the white balance to work at all on this pre-release. So arguably, Canon might still be adjusting the software/controls.. so even knowing the exact settings both cameras used, might not be indicative of a fair comparison or what a release model will work like with those settings.

The poster of the video does seem to infer that both cameras were set to "1080 24p 48 with iris wide open"... but I would agree there's no mention of gain or any other relevant settings. Long story short.. to get back to orginal question... you really can't take full stock in a quick comparison of a somehow acquired in Germany prerelease XF300 vs the TM700... and even then it's a comparison of their out-of-box autoshoot modes.. not the most you can get out of them.... so lets wait and see what the shootouts say once the camera is actually released.
Michael gain settings are giving on the video. I tested the XF300 at NAB because I plan on purchasing one and decided to share the results with the forum. Anyone who is going to pay their hard earned money for a pro cam, Should not just depend on reviews, you should rent and test the cam for yourself to see if it conforms to your shooting environment. I usually will buy the cam test it for a month in real world conditions at an event etc. and if it does not suit me. I will sell it may be losing $600.00 on the sales price. More than likely my Dealer will loan me one on their demos if they have one in stock. I am also trying to get Canon to send me one of the XF300 to demo, will keep you posted.
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Old May 8th, 2010, 10:51 AM   #12
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Nick, MP4 files can be viewed with VLC media player - Open Source Multimedia Framework and Player

If it is convenient, please do the following tests:
- CA test: the branches of a tall tree against the sky (Zoom from Wide to Tele);
- Dynamic range test: the street with the shadows and the bright sky;
- Blue channel noise: blue sky;
- Street: just a street shooting in good light.

Ivan.
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Old May 8th, 2010, 12:21 PM   #13
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Ivan,

Normally .mp4 is fine in QT, FCP etc but not the awful German ones (they are very badly shot) - as you say they did finally open in VLC, even though they were not (bizarrely) not recognised by my Mac.

I will do the tests you suggest. First off, the CA is hugely improved over previous Canon camcorders. It was one of the first things I looked at - I have not seen it on any of my clips to date and I have been looking.

Now just give me a bit of sun or stop it raining even!

Nick.
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