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JVC GR-HD1U / JY-HD10U
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Old August 22nd, 2004, 12:12 PM   #1
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Down-rezzing to VHS

I shot a daytime football game using the HD10, an ND filter and shot with a fixed shutter at 1/30 sec.. I dumped the footage onto VHS for review by the coaches. My initial impressions of this experiment--
1--I was hoping it would look "sharper" but it doesn't. It looks "different."
2--The colors are less saturated and have more of a "filmic" look in that sense.
3--The 16:9 aspect ratio certainly lends itself to the game of football. The action seems to unfold within the frame more "naturally."
4--The ~5-10 frame audio drop-out at the end and/or beginning of each shot is annoying.
5--The LCD was virtually useless for following action in the sunlight. The viewfinder's coarse "pixelly" look wasn't real pleasant to use either but better than the LCD. (It's tough enough trying to follow the dark ball within a sea of dark uniforms even using a high-rez B&W viewfinder!!!)
6--It's kind of nice not to see edge enhancement. In fact, it's down right cool. But it takes getting used to. It's like seeing the world in a whole different way.

I've asked my client who hired me for some feedback. I had shot the first half using a run of the mill DV 4:3 camcorder and the JVC HD10 on the second half. Haven't heard back yet. If he prefers the HD look, I'll let him know it's going to cost more to shoot that way. ($25/hr. more than DV).

A question for you--what's the best prices on the HD10 these days. The one I used for this trial run is from B&H for $3100. I've seen ads for $2300 from Broadway Photo but aren't they kind of slimey to deal with?
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Old August 23rd, 2004, 06:17 AM   #2
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I noticed the same thing as Lynne when I down rezzed to DVD. Color is not very saturated, and it does SORT of have a 'filmic' look (I hate that word). When I did my test bunr to DVD, I did not make an anamorphic DVD, which I would venture to guess would look much nicer.

Regarding BROADWAY PHOTO - STAY AWAY AT ALL COSTS. This company advertises a low price for the camera, then tries to load you up with "accessories". Only problem is, their idea of 'accessories' are things like the battery, charger, CD ROM, cables, etc -- virtually everything else in the box. STAY AWAY FROM THESE GUYS. It's well worth the money to patronize a quality, reputable dealer like B&H. They are out to earn lifelong customers. BROADWAY PHOTO is out to rip you off.

(Most of the time they don't even have the camera in stock and will lie to you and tell you that they do.)
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Old August 23rd, 2004, 06:42 AM   #3
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learning the hard way...

Bill--Thanks for the heads-up. I thought I'd heard some disaster stories about Broadway but I wasn't quite sure. It's too bad that such bad publicity doesn't motivate them to clean up their act. Yet they still run full-page color ads in video magazines showing the HD10 (and many other cameras) at ridiculously low prices and thus suck people into their liar.
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Old August 23rd, 2004, 07:05 AM   #4
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Lynne,

Why not purchase from one of our sponsors? You know you won't get ripped off.

Plus, I've heard bad things about Broadway Video. You buy the camera for $2300, then you're obligated to buy over-priced add-ons that don't amount to anything.

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Old August 23rd, 2004, 09:43 AM   #5
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cheapest???????????????

Interestingly enough, I did a price search on the internet and called the first two listings that had the camera around $2000 or so--Royal Camera and A & M. The key question to ask right up front is this, "What's the price for the camera all decked out with cables, batteries, software, etc.?" At least they're up front with you then. Unfortunately you'll discover that the "decked out" price is around $2900. And then, you ask the next question, "What's shipping to...........?" One place charged 6%. That's $160 for shipping!!! The other place charged $80. (That's shipping from NYC to PA no less!!). So in the end you may save less than $100 and end up with a lousy return policy no doubt. So, Heath, I'm sure the sponsors here are as good as they get.
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Old August 23rd, 2004, 10:13 AM   #6
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Lynne,

I've heard so many horror stories about people getting ripped off (I kind of did 5 years ago with an XL-1, but paying an additional $1000 for a cheap knock-off battery, a $7 tripod, and a flimsy bag...I was SO naive), it's sad. That's why we offer the sponsors' page.

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Old August 24th, 2004, 02:02 AM   #7
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shutter speed

Lynne,

you said the video was not as sharp as you would have liked it to be...football is a fast-paced sport, and shooting at 1/30th. shutter speed will definitely give you more motion blur than you may want.

i suggest you try shooting at 1/60th., which still gives you very good motion continuity, while maintaining a much sharper definition.
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Old August 24th, 2004, 06:23 AM   #8
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Well, actually I was alternating between those two shutter speeds as lighting changed (ie, clouds) and I really didn't notice a difference at either speed. Frankly, it looked fine under all conditions!
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Old August 24th, 2004, 06:55 AM   #9
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shutter speed

ok, i was hoping that this may be what you were missing in sharpness.

i just shot some rock concert footage a while ago, and made the mistake of locking the camera to 1/30th., which definitely resulted in more motion blur than i liked...especially during pans (even slow ones), the crowd became very undistinct...

of course the differnece to 1/60th. isn't *huge*, but drawing on my experiences with photography, i'd say 1/30th. of a second is definitely a pretty long exposure per frame for high motion...unfortunately 1/120th. does start to show some serious choppiness...unless you shoot 60P, which i haven't yet experimented with.

anyway, good luck with your further advances into HD land...it sure is a promising and eventually rewarding excercise, isn't it ? ;)
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Old August 24th, 2004, 09:55 AM   #10
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Till,

What concert was it, just out of curiousity?

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Old August 24th, 2004, 11:32 AM   #11
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concert

i was filming my old buddy Todd Rundgren, who was performing at an open-air concert in the Netherlands last month, before starting his England tour of "Liars" (his new CD).

it was a first test at doing something in the line of back-stage/touring documentary making, which may be an option for a future HD release by his label...it's all just in its infancy though, and i won't even be able to fully evaluate the material until i get back to San Francisco next month.

what i looked at so far, is great in some places, horrid in others...the sound in particular was a nightmare...the house-mix going into the Creative-Jukebox was lost, because the power they fed the player/recorder was not really providing juice...so the entire recording was never saved to disk.

the audio from the NT4 stereo mic i used on the camera was so clipped, that i don't know what to do with it all.

the video suffers from the usual focus problems in places, and extreme clipping in light and dark places...in other situations it looks great.

thank God i wasn't spending other people's money yet, as it was purely a test to evaluate the possibilities...lots of pitfalls to look out for, but when you hit its good parts, it is *very* good ;)
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