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JVC GR-HD1U / JY-HD10U
All about the original single-CCD HDV camcorders from JVC.


 
 
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Old November 29th, 2003, 12:33 AM   #1
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Sony f900 / JVC comparison

I just finished a 4 day shoot with the f900, the P+S Technik Pro35 adapter, and a set of Zeiss Super Speeds. I double shot some of the footage with the little JVC camera and kept the crew late one day to do tests in the studio. I'm going to email some pics to Chris, maybe he can link to them.

I also ordered the regular video lens with the f900 so I could do testing without the Pro35. An unexpected surprise was that Mizell from ZGC made arrangements with Barry Green to test one of the prototype DVX100 mini35 adapters. We got the PL mount so we could put the Super Speeds on the Mini35 also.

To make things even more interesting, we were able to rig the JVC to the Mini35 so we could shoot HDV with the Super Speeds also.

We didn't have much time, but we ultimately conducted the following tests:

1. Sony f900 and JVC HD1 with standard video lenses

2. Sony f900 and JVC HD1, both with P+S Technik adapters and Zeiss Super Speed 85mm

3. Sony f900 and Panasonic DVX100, both with P+S Technik adapters and Zeiss Super Speed 85mm

I'm in the middle of another project but will post more pics and info as soon as I get some time.

Jay
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Old December 2nd, 2003, 04:19 PM   #2
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Please do. That sounds interesting. What is your opinion when
you look at the footage?
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Old December 2nd, 2003, 08:46 PM   #3
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" To make things even more interesting, we were able to rig the JVC to the Mini35 "

jay, you mean there's a top-secret hidden screw somewhere that detaches the hd10's zoom lens and allows a clear path to the chip?

jeez. those jvc developement techs may be craftier than we all give them credit for.
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Old December 3rd, 2003, 01:08 AM   #4
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I wish. It works like the PD150 set up, the mini35 attaches to the front of the camera's non-removeable lens. A combination of macro focusing and a relay lens allows you to focus on the ground glass. Zoom in past the vignetting. We actually had to make a spacer that would allow the JVC to focus. The grips also came up with another spacer to support the camera on the existing block. When the actual JVC version of the mini35 is released, it should be a slam dunk for those trying to squeeze the best image out of this camera. In addition to getting the reduced DOF everyone is after, it also reduces contrast. While this is probably not an intentional effect, it's welcome on this particular camera. Some softening of the image is noticeable, but no real loss of detail. It almost looks like a Lo Con and Black Pro Mist combination.

As soon as I figure out a place to host some stills, I'll put them up.

Jay
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Old December 3rd, 2003, 01:55 AM   #5
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"I wish. It works like the PD150 set up, the mini35 attaches to the front of the camera's non-removeable lens. A combination of macro focusing and a relay lens allows you to focus on the ground glass."

ground glasss means the viewfinder optics, i guess, and not the recorded image.


"Zoom in past the vignetting."

wouldnt wide at infinty give the sharpest start point for added glass?


"We actually had to make a spacer that would allow the JVC to focus. The grips also came up with another spacer to support the camera on the existing block. When the actual JVC version of the mini35 is released, it should be a slam dunk for those trying to squeeze the best image out of this camera."

i dunno about that. 1/60 sc at f4 looks as pretty good as it gets with this camera. how is more glass in front of that going to make a difference?


"In addition to getting the reduced DOF everyone is after, "

my experience with the jvc is the same as with film rigs. you either shoot really close at the wide end of the barrel, or frame it nicely at full tele. (full tele feels like about 75mm in 16)


"it also reduces contrast. While this is probably not an intentional effect"

a 5 thousand dollar fog filter?


"it's welcome on this particular camera."

when shooting a face on an overcast day against a dull cement wall, the jvc's image is as low con as 5274. -- but when the clouds open up to let a peek's worth of the sun through, nothing can save you. not nd's. not reframing. not even paul mogg's hd monivision patience and lurv.


" Some softening of the image is noticeable, but no real loss of detail."

the five thousand dollar fog filter strikes again.


"It almost looks like a Lo Con and Black Pro Mist combination."

consider the processing chain.

1. the chip's bayer pattern obliterates the integrity of the grayscale by fringing it to helol and back.

2. the hd10/hd1 sharpens/reallysharpens the stucturally lowlatitude highlights

3. the additional glass diffuses these sharpened highlites in an attempt to recover their pre-sharpened glory.

4. mpeg2 moves in executioner-style and has its way.



"As soon as I figure out a place to host some stills, I'll put them up."

send me your stills and i'll take a shot at seeing whether my alotted bandwith can survive the dvinfo onslaught. i'm puuting up a site for my soontobefinishedbeingshot movie.

contact1@splitbrain.com


disclaimer: pardon my sarcasm jay, but ive suffered seriously at the hands of this camera (while enjoying its charms and power and glory) and frankly nowdays i feel like being much less the fan than the tenacious scientist.
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Old December 3rd, 2003, 02:07 AM   #6
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Chaim ,
Is the JVC that bad? How do you like regular DV ? Like the web cam detail on those?
I think for a $3K camcorder, it does pretty well.
-Les
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Old December 3rd, 2003, 05:48 AM   #7
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<<<-- Originally posted by Chaim Bianco :


disclaimer: pardon my sarcasm jay, but ive suffered seriously at the hands of this camera (while enjoying its charms and power and glory) and frankly nowdays i feel like being much less the fan than the tenacious scientist. -->>>

Ha! I know exactly what you mean, I've been put thru the ringer with this "not ready for prime time" camera. Yet, I continue to wear the labcoat, and see how far I can push it. At least until something else comes along.

Check out the P+S Technik forum here at DVinfo, it will explain alot of the why the ground glass, and the principal behind photographing another image. The point of the system is to get extremely low depth of field by using spherical movie camera lenses creating an image on an academy aperture size target. You keep the T-stop wide open ( I like Super Speeds for their sharpness and T 1.3) to make the backgrounds go way out of focus. There is another aperture downstream of the ground glass marked in ND increments to adjust the amount of light hitting the CCD, this ring does not affect depth of field.

I wouldn't say this camera ever looks like 74, I actually like the contrast ratio on overcast days, almost like shooting reversal stock. I have also had great success shooting subjects in broad daylight with no fill or extra lighting. Just don't let the camera pick the exposure, always underexpose and pull the detail out of the blacks in post.

I can completely relate to your frustration, I have shot some of the most amazingly bad images with this camera.

Jay
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Old December 3rd, 2003, 12:47 PM   #8
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<<<-- Originally posted by Jay Nemeth : There is another aperture downstream of the ground glass marked in ND increments to adjust the amount of light hitting the CCD, this ring does not affect depth of field.-->>>

Minor correction -- you're thinking of the Pro35 there. The mini35 doesn't have the second aperture ring, it relies on the camera's internal aperture control.

<<<-- Originally posted by Jay Nemeth :
I can completely relate to your frustration, I have shot some of the most amazingly bad images with this camera.

Jay -->>>

And guys, if you know Jay's stuff, you should know it's INCREDIBLY DIFFICULT for him to shoot something that looks bad! This guy won an Emmy with a spot that was shot on an Eyemo, for heaven's sake!

Regarding the mini35 -- as Jay says, we were able to use the PD150 mounting kit, and then we jerry-rigged a macro extension tube to allow the camera the proper focus distance to the close-focus diopter. The grips rigged a height block to allow it to sit at the right height on the rails (the JVC is really a lot smaller than the PD150/DVX100!) You must zoom almost all the way in, to get the ground glass image to fill the screen. The mini35 has a portal that the camera points into, to point at the ground glass. If you're zoomed all the way out, all you'll see is a screen full of black with a little tiny illuminated circle in the center. You have to zoom all the way in to get that circle to fill the screen.

Our implementation was not perfect -- nor did we expect it to be. The field of view didn't match the CineAlta/Pro35 or DVX/mini35 field of view like a proper, "official" JVC->mini35 rig would. On our implementation the JVC was quite a bit more telephoto than the others. I'm sure when/if ZGC creates a mini35 adapter for the JVC, using the right combination of spacers and proper-magnification on the diopter, they'll be able to replicate the 35mm field of view exactly.

With that said, THE MINI35 ROCKS! It really is a very handy tool. The footage on the DVX is just stunning. Jay has the HD1 footage, I haven't even seen it yet, but on the DVX you could get razor-sharp images, in my opinion the images were much sharper than those that I've seen on the XL1 clips on the ZGC mini35 demo DVD. I had wondered how much the camera's internal fixed lens would degrade or mitigate the usefulness of the mini35, and the answer is: don't even worry about it.

Expect some light loss though. On the DVX the maximum aperture at wide-angle is f/1.6, at full telephoto it's f/2.8. I don't recall if the JVC's aperture also closes down at full-tele, but with the DVX I found about a two-and-a-half to three-stop loss in light sensitivity (compared to using the camera's lens alone). Because you have to zoom in all the way with these cameras, you lose that light sensitivity (without the mini35, to get the same field of view you can zoom out quite a bit and recover that wider aperture). Part of the light loss was also due to that we were using f/1.8 and f/2.4 lenses on the mini35, had we used the SuperSpeeds exclusively that would have bought back a stop or two.

In summary, the mini35 is a REALLY GOOD THING, even on a fixed-lens camera. On standard-def, I couldn't really see any noticeable image degradation, the images looked just as razor-sharp as I would expect without the mini35 in place. Perhaps in high-def, with its greater resolving power, there would be a more noticeable change in image quality, I don't know... hopefully those pics/clips will get posted soon. Especially a side-by-side between the CineAlta/Pro35 and the HD1/mini35!
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Old December 3rd, 2003, 08:05 PM   #9
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I feel like I wasted $3000 some times. I have other friends who have used it and were unsatisfied, and still more who can't even find interest in renting it out for a production (mostly because of the editing solution problems).

If someone asked to buy my HD10, I'd probably think about it. I don't know.

But we're shooting something soon, and I'm hoping it comes out good.

Also, Chris Hurd would be happy to host the f900/HD10 pix! We're still waiting for approval from producers on the Varicam/HD10 pix/clips.

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