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JVC Everio GZ-HD and GZ-HM Series
JVC's Everio Series 3CCD High Definition MPEG2 camcorders.


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Old May 26th, 2008, 06:19 AM   #1
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Manual Settings

I see where I can have aperature priority or shutter priority but all I can do is turn the gain on or off. Can I adjust the gain manually? or does it automatily go all the way up? or how can I get it to where it only comes up what I need? Is it the Brightness control?
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Old May 26th, 2008, 08:09 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Randy Johnson View Post
I see where I can have aperature priority or shutter priority but all I can do is turn the gain on or off. Can I adjust the gain manually? or does it automatily go all the way up? or how can I get it to where it only comes up what I need? Is it the Brightness control?
Randy Johnson,

You can not adjust Gain manually; you have only choice, you can put it on or off. Put always it off, if "Auto Gain" feature you put on while shooting in bright day light then you videos will look brighter some times it looks over exposed! I always check before I start shooting, and I always put it off.

If you are shooting in very low light then only you can put it on, but you videos will look little grayish!

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Old May 26th, 2008, 11:01 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Randy Johnson View Post
I see where I can have aperature priority or shutter priority but all I can do is turn the gain on or off. Can I adjust the gain manually? or does it automatily go all the way up? or how can I get it to where it only comes up what I need? Is it the Brightness control?
AGC -- like it's name implies -- adds gain only when it is needed. It adds only as much gain as is needed. I leave it on as it does no harm and is ready whenever needed.

You'll see in the LCD when the noise becomes too high. At this point you can add light, stop shooting, or live with the noise.

I see the EX1 now offers AGC. There really isn't a huge need to "know" what gain value you are using.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 09:48 PM   #4
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Being able to know precisely where the gain setting is at any given point in time is similar to having an auto with a dashboard full of dials and gauges or one with a speedometer and idiot lights. It may be nice to see information the instruments are displaying, but the reality is the car will let you know if there really is a problem.

I've found the HD7's AGC is gently responsive. I can keep my aperture where I have depth of field I want and let the camera manage issues of shutter speed and gain.

I wouldn't be too concerned with the HD7's lack of manual gain settings. It does a good job of managing exposure. But, you will have to learn the limits.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 10:18 PM   #5
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Dumb question: Where are the limits?
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Old May 27th, 2008, 10:43 PM   #6
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Dumb question: Where are the limits?
Actually, a good question, and not very easy to answer. The "limits" are personal decisions every camera operator has to make regarding what is a good exposure, what is a bad exposure, and just how much variance towards over or under exposure can be tolerated. JVC built some "limits" into the camera based upon common shooting situations.

The Backlight button automatically over exposes a scene 2/3, just enough to bring skin tones out of shadow is the human subject is on snow, on sand, on water on a bright sunny day. The auto-exposure "Spotlight" preset function decreases exposure by 2/3 stop to compensate for overly bright "hotspots" within a scene, as might be encountered with a theatrical performance.

Both aperture and shutter priority semi-auto exposure systems allow the user to set one exposure value for a particular look while the camera manages the other exposure value. Locking both values places the camera into almost complete manual control (AGC must be disabled in a different menu). However, the trade-off is only being able to make exposure value adjustments in full stops ... a bit extreme in that a subtle shift while recording is impossible.

The "Bright" button (the correct name is "exposure compensation"), allows subtle exposure shifts of 1/3 stop in either aperture or shutter priority modes, and is my preferred method of adjusting while recording.

Anyway, those are the hardware limits available within the camera, which actually give the user quite a lot of freedom to choose their own exposure comfort zones while shooting. I have different "limits" of acceptable exposure depending of time of day, indoors or out, and the activity of my subjects. Everything is always changing, so I always try to choose a set of exposure limits every time I look through the viewfinder and before I press the record button.

Hope I have provided a reasonable answer to your question.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 11:18 PM   #7
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Very good answer, indeed - thank you.
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