FX1000 vs AG-HMC150, esp. in low light? - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

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Old December 7th, 2008, 12:36 PM   #16
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sure whenever you want..... this quinceañera thing has been more bussines for me than weddings this year I made around 50 quinceañeras and only few weddings
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Old December 7th, 2008, 02:24 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Norman Gaddis View Post
Some of my best work are my first dance slomo scenes. The photogs in this neck of the woods are taking the "cast a huge net and you're bound to catch some fish" approach. They're bringing in 2-4 photographers and all of them shoot the main reception events simultaneously from different angles, almost in rapid fire mode. Add in a few guests shooting their digital cams and it's like the 4th of July. Try putting that in slomo with all of those white bars appearing randomly onscreen. No thanks!
Couldn't have put it better myself Norman.
I counted up the number of flashes in my 3 min 55 wedding montage
sec track. tom hardwick on blip.tv

That's a lot of flashes being slowed down to 40% speed (whereupon they're on screen 60% longer), and if they had been partial frame exposures they wouldn't have looked nice to me. Of course I believe there would be 'no client issues', but generally clients aren't tec-savvy and nor would I expect them to be. They just want the best looking film I can make for the money.

Same with my friend shooting weddings with his EX1. No client issues. Same with my other friend shooting 4:3 weddings (!): no client issues.

The only issues are with me.

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Old December 7th, 2008, 02:31 PM   #18
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Sometimes I think we get a bit hung up on a camera's low-light ability.

In reality my Z1 is a stop and a half slower than my old VX2k, so where the VX would film in a room (say) with 2 lights on, the Z1 will
require 8 lights on.

Put it another way. The VX2k would film in this room at f/1.6 and 0dB
gain up, and the Z1 would film in the same room at f/1.6 and +9dB of
gain up. It's not the end of the world, but adding gain adds grain
and loses you sharpness and colour.

I haven't come across situations where the Z1 won't film. But then again I'm proactive, and at yesterday's wedding I found the house
manager and asked him to turn the lights up. When he rather rudely
suggested the groom hadn't instructed him to do this I smiled sweetly
and told him I'd been tasked by the groom to video the proceedings and I needed light to do this. He upped the lighting.

But in the church (wedding at 4:15pm, so dark) I filmed entirely at
+18dB gain. The couple would have cause for complaint if I shot out
of focus, if I framed badly, if I wobbled the camera or if I had poor
sound. I got all of these right, so a bit of added grain is as nothing in the overall scheme of things, agreed?

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Old December 7th, 2008, 09:11 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Tom Hardwick View Post

But in the church (wedding at 4:15pm, so dark) I filmed entirely at
+18dB gain. The couple would have cause for complaint if I shot out
of focus, if I framed badly, if I wobbled the camera or if I had poor
sound. I got all of these right, so a bit of added grain is as nothing in the overall scheme of things, agreed?

tom.
Agreed. And if in a few cases when the video ends up being watched on a CRT screen, most of the noise and the grain will simply disappear, provided that your footage is originated in one of the HD formats (most often, HDV), properly downconverted to and delivered in 4:3 or 16:9 SD.

I used to shoot some available light scenes with the Sony HC1E (PAL) at or next to the equivalent of full gain and downconverted the output to mix with materials shot in HDV and DV. The final high-gain video on plain SD PAL DVDs (.vob) looked very good on all my test consumer CRTs with screen sizes ranging up to 34". No clients ever complained though they did complain about other issues. The same portion of the video of course looked noticeably noisy on bigger LCD screens and some clients did not like that.

This is one of the gain issues we should be aware of with respect to the limitation of delivery and viewing standards. BTW, the FX1 or Z1 at full gain (18dB) certainly would have done a lot better.

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Old December 8th, 2008, 11:33 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Greg Laves View Post
I am not a Panasonic expert but isn't the low light capability of the AG-HMC150 basically the same as the HVX200a? If it is, then the FX1000/Z5 will do obviously better in low light.

The HMC-150 and the HVX200a have exactly the same sensor block.

It will be nice to hear from Norman after he uses the two cameras a little more. For me, I got rid of the Canon XH-A1s in favor of HMC-150s. It's a nice camera.
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Old December 16th, 2008, 09:33 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Norman Gaddis View Post
Right now my biggest concern is whether I should continue archiving all my raw footage or sell it for cheap to the clients. I've been saving everything since about 2000. I have a bazillion mini-DV tapes stored in boxes and I'm running out of space. From now on I'm considering just offering all of the original AVCHD files burned to a Blu-ray "data" disc, along with the 1 tape from the FX1000, to the client. I suspect I'll have a lot of clients that will initially opt for SD DVDs only but may want Blu-ray down the road.
When I was shooting weddings with film, (long time ago) I used to factor in the charge for film and give them the film. I didn't evengive them an option to not take it. I priced myself a little higher and stressed, "AND YOU GET THE NEGATIVES!" It was often a deal maker. A little more expensive off the starting line, but they got the negatives. maybe for video it would also be a bonus. Stress they get the original footage for them to play with later and take the money and run. I rarely found the follow up sales where worth too terribly much. Better to make an extra $100 or so at the gates and wash your hands. If they want you to edit more later... treat it like any other project of the footage coming to your door.
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Old December 17th, 2008, 02:01 PM   #22
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When I was shooting weddings with film, (long time ago) I used to factor in the charge for film and give them the film. I didn't evengive them an option to not take it. I priced myself a little higher and stressed, "AND YOU GET THE NEGATIVES!" It was often a deal maker. A little more expensive off the starting line, but they got the negatives. maybe for video it would also be a bonus. Stress they get the original footage for them to play with later and take the money and run. I rarely found the follow up sales where worth too terribly much. Better to make an extra $100 or so at the gates and wash your hands. If they want you to edit more later... treat it like any other project of the footage coming to your door.
Almost everyone should give the RAW footage to the client, let them be responsible for archiving it. The client might even get some use out of it. Normans idea to give a B-R disc to the client is about the only way to do it. What would they do with the tape anyway? I have all my old XH-A1 tapes now but no way to ever get the data since the cameras are sold. Kind of the same thing.

Norman: How is the new camera ?
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Old December 18th, 2008, 02:37 AM   #23
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Almost everyone should give the RAW footage to the client, let them be responsible for archiving it.
Not on your nelly. I don't want clients seeing the sort of mess I film as I run between locations, camera in record. I don't want them playing the tapes and coming back to me asking that so-and-so be included, and why had I edited her out anyway?

When I engage the services of a carpenter to make me a kitchen table I don't want all the offcuts, sawdust and bent screws thank you very much. I just want a finished, edited table.

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Old December 18th, 2008, 06:04 AM   #24
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Not on your nelly. I don't want clients seeing the sort of mess I film as I run between locations, camera in record. I don't want them playing the tapes and coming back to me asking that so-and-so be included, and why had I edited her out anyway?

When I engage the services of a carpenter to make me a kitchen table I don't want all the offcuts, sawdust and bent screws thank you very much. I just want a finished, edited table.

tom.
HA its the way ya tell them tom.
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Old December 18th, 2008, 09:14 AM   #25
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Not on your nelly. I don't want clients seeing the sort of mess I film as I run between locations, camera in record. I don't want them playing the tapes and coming back to me asking that so-and-so be included, and why had I edited her out anyway?

When I engage the services of a carpenter to make me a kitchen table I don't want all the offcuts, sawdust and bent screws thank you very much. I just want a finished, edited table.

tom.
Good point. No one wants to keep trash.

But if a contractor builds my house and there are circuit breakers, fixtures and materials left over that I paid for and I might use someday, I want to keep them in the garage. I may end up throwing them away, but at least I have them. Do you want your contractor to sneak off with your extra material?

I wouldn't include tapes either (Im tapeless anyway now):
1. A tape is no use whatsover to a client. How would they play it? They wouldn't even know what camera to play it on and would instantly destroy it in the wrong camera (done it myself).
2. I wouldn't give them any useless footage on the B-D disc as that is deleted during editing anyway.
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Old December 25th, 2008, 11:59 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Norman Gaddis View Post
Not really. I edit with Edius/HDStorm, so I must transcode the AVCHD files to Canopus HQ first (my system is a Q6600 quad core and isn't fast enough to edit native AVCHD). I have a couple of older PCs that aren't fast enough for HD editing but come in handy for transcoding, capturing, etc.

Copying the .mts files to the PC takes just a few minutes. Transcoding takes longer but with my workflow it will not slow me down. I'll transcode on one PC while I edit on another. Plus, the time saved by not having to capture the footage in real time almost offsets the time spent transcoding.
Norm, I too have used Edius for years and love it. But I've found that it is FAR more time consuming to transcode to the Edius HQ codec than it is to upload in real time, tape-based HDV. Considering that conversion to the HQ codec takes several times real time to complete (depending on the speed of your computer), I still find tape preferable from the standpoint of speed.
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Old December 26th, 2008, 09:05 AM   #27
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Norm, I too have used Edius for years and love it. But I've found that it is FAR more time consuming to transcode to the Edius HQ codec than it is to upload in real time, tape-based HDV. Considering that conversion to the HQ codec takes several times real time to complete (depending on the speed of your computer), I still find tape preferable from the standpoint of speed.
You need to use the transcoder correctly. IF you drag the file over the Icon all cores are used , if you right click and select the files for conversion only one core is used, though you can transcode more than one file at a time. On my Q9450, 8G RAM I can transfer to the PC using Sony Motion Browser from my SR11 and convert to Canopus HQ in just over realtime. I don't consider it any slower than capturing tape from my FX1. Detailed instruction are included with the readme file with the transcoder. First click on the AVCHDPRE icon and set audio conversion to 2 channel or 5.1, then select the default folder for the transcoded file to be placed. Then just drag the file over the AVCHD2HQ icon. All cores will be used and it is fast.

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Old December 26th, 2008, 10:56 AM   #28
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Thanks Ron, I'll give it a try. But to be honest, I still think I'd use a tape based cam for serious work. This might help if I decided to use Edius for editing my SR12/Canon HG21 footage.

Out of curiosity, are you using Edius 5? The other question I've got is have you done an A/B on a relatively large screen HDTV (not a computer monitor) between the final rendered project (assuming you're outputting as 1920X1080) and the native clips that went into the project? I'm wondering whether you take any hit in quality when using 1920X1080 footage after it's encoded with the Canopus HQ codec. I know I've tried that with HDV and saw no discernable loss, but I'm wondering if higher rez clips may be subject to some down-rezzing.
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Old December 26th, 2008, 11:11 AM   #29
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Ron, I just tried the file conversion and it still takes me 3X real time for the conversion when dragging over the icon. Granted I've only got a dual core T8300 (2.4 gig) with 4 megs of ram, but it is slow for me.
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Old December 26th, 2008, 11:21 AM   #30
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The HQ codec transcodes the SR11 AVCHD to 1920 x1080 so it stays at the 1920x1080 it was shot at. Downrez does occur at output as the timeline is a HDV timeline and output is HDV. For most projects we use two FX1's and the SR11 for the fixed full stage shot. I have the copy of V5 but have not upgraded yet as I have a couple of projects I want to finish before doing the upgrade. Currently I use Edius 4.61. I use multicam to mix these three tracks the SR11 in HQ and the two FX1 tracks native HDV. I tend to apply a small amount of sharping filter ( 10 to 15 on the scale) to all the tracks as I think this improves the encodes later. Final output is HDV encoded with SpeedEncoder. I then take this into Vegas Pro 8 to do final audio mixing and set markers with names before letting Vegas encode to MPEG2 VBR as needed to fit disc for Bluray and authoring with DVD Architect 5. I usually get TMPGenc 4 Express to do the SD encode from the master HDV file, but use the AC3 from the Vegas encode, substitute files in Architect to get the SD DVD version with same menus etc as the Bluray version. As expected the Bluray version is virtually identical to the original and actually the SD played back from my PS3 and upscaled over HDMI to my 42" 1080P Panasonic Plasma is also really good though is 30P which can destroy some of the smooth motion of the interlaced source. ( you can tell I am not a fan of slow frame rates!!!). I think there is some loss of sparkle in the AVCHD through all the encoding etc compared to viewing from the SR11 HDMI directly on the Plasma but I do not think this is significant more me being really picky about quality. My wife and friends can't tell the difference !!!! The detail and deep colours are so startling to most compared to SD that any differences between versions is lost on them!!!
For single track AVCHD editing I prefer Vegas Pro8 to Edius. One can edit native on the timeline which makes life a lot easier. So for family stuff either from my daughters SR7 or my SR11 its usually Vegas.

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