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JVC GY-HM 70/100/150 Series Camera Systems
GY-HM70, HM100, HM150 recording AVCHD MP4 & QuickTime .MOV to SDHC cards.


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Old September 22nd, 2009, 03:58 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Robert Rogoz View Post
I was wondering if we are going to hear from JVC on issues raised in this topic. HM700 had one important firmware update to unlock recording MP4 to SDHC cards. I was wondering if the company is taking any steps to fix some of the issues with HM100 raised in this topic or if it will just leave us stranded because we didn't spend enough money?
Or, we already _have_ spent enough money, and that's the end of it.

Perhaps the purpose of the HM100 was just to get a quick cash input, and that's that. Not unheard of. Take an existing consumercamera, make some cheap mods, call it a "Pro" camera, borrow a bit of new technology from the flagship HM700 and stick that into the consumer mod camera, toss in a few consumer accessories, push hard with some full page ads for a couple of months, get some friends to post favorable early "reviews, and voila, a nice profit for the quarter and time to move on.

Kind of like a big studio pushing out a very bad "block buster," shutting out any previews for legit reviewers, grabbing the cash the first weekend, and move on.
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Old September 29th, 2009, 10:36 PM   #32
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Well in fact they should just not include that shotgun, and drop the price. I agree. I'm a sound person by trade, and that mic is insulting. Cheap, it feels like a toy, and is hissy beyond use except for recording the very loudest stuff where the noise floor would be down very very low. But I replaced it right away, and might as well toss the plastic one away.
Tim - unfortunately this is the standard even for "pro" cameras. The reason being is no pro ever uses the top mic to record anything other than natsound. If you shoot interviews or sound pieces for a living you'll want your own gear anyway, or you'll use a professional soundie.

I shelled out a few bucks for a Rode NTG1 and I use that as a top mic as I found it absolutely useless as a shotgun. I then went out and bought a Senheisser 416 to use for interviews, plus lapels radios etc. So the point is where would JVC stop? Any decent mic is going to push up the price of the camera considerably. Instead JVC have elected to do what Sony do and include a throwaway as the top mic. It probably adds less than $5 to the price of the camera.

Give it some thought and I'm sure you'll come to the same conclusion. Not really a firmware issue either. Tim D - you might want to split these posts out of this thread to avoid clutter.
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Old October 1st, 2009, 10:54 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by Jack Walker View Post
Or, we already _have_ spent enough money, and that's the end of it.

Perhaps the purpose of the HM100 was just to get a quick cash input, and that's that. Not unheard of. Take an existing consumercamera, make some cheap mods, call it a "Pro" camera, borrow a bit of new technology from the flagship HM700 and stick that into the consumer mod camera, toss in a few consumer accessories, push hard with some full page ads for a couple of months, get some friends to post favorable early "reviews, and voila, a nice profit for the quarter and time to move on.
I'd have to agree, after all, JVC is charging $500 for an SD card cataloging/storage case. Which is just plastic sleeves, paper, and a cheap case.

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Old October 1st, 2009, 03:38 PM   #34
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I'd have to agree, after all, JVC is charging $500 for an SD card cataloging/storage case. Which is just plastic sleeves, paper, and a cheap case.

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Actually, it appears not all of those are included for $499.95... since under the photo of the case it says? "Shown with Optional Equipment." Or maybe it's the dividers that are optional equipment, not the any of the things you mentioned.
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Old October 1st, 2009, 05:00 PM   #35
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I would like top stay on the topic, so JVC actually listens. I would like to see at least some issues fixed. However I would like to remind JVC companies live and die every day, and at this day and age no one is too big to fail. If we- the users stop buying your product your shelf life might be quite quick. It has been now quite a few weeks and I hope there is an update to fix some of the issues soon.
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Old October 2nd, 2009, 02:20 PM   #36
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What do you guys expect from a 3k camera. The HM100 produces far better images than any tape based camera in the same price bracket, and I have used most, if not, all of them. Sure there are niggles with the cams operation, mainly, to me, the exposure control, but hey, you just adapt to the fact that you adjust exposure from the back of the cam, rather than a lens ring. The work flow and image quality way outweigh, for me anyway, any design faults that this cam has. If we want all the features of a fully pro cam, we have to pay an awful lot more for it. The quality of the mic is mentioned quite regularly, when did any of us not discard the mic supplied with a new camera, for our already owned, Sennheiser, AT, Beyer or Rode mics. At 3k the HM100 does exactly what I want it to. It took a while to get used to it, but once we got aquanted the cam works, for me superbly. Bottom line is, if we want a cam with all the bells and whistles, dig deeper in the wallet
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Old October 2nd, 2009, 03:14 PM   #37
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Image quality- my old HD100 produced almost as good of a picture as HM100, for me the main reason is size is portability. Regardless, I think the issues go way beyond "niggles", like inability to put a polarized filter onto the lens- regardless if it is a $200 or $3500 camera. The same with lack of 1/120 shutter speed- one of the reasons I bought it is for 720/60p. So why isn't there 1/120 shutter, only 1/100 and 1/250? It's obvious you are much better camera op, since a lack of safe areas on LCD is non issue for you.
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Old October 2nd, 2009, 03:35 PM   #38
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It's obvious you are much better camera op, since a lack of safe areas on LCD is non issue for you.
Probably, (he says, tongue in cheek) But surely Robert, you checked such features as filter fitment, safe area indications, shutter speed options etc before making the purchase. I dont use the LCD for anything other than replaying footage, and even for that its crap. I purchased the cam, and any other cam I have ever owned for picture quality, and I stand by my statement that for the 3k price it takes some beating. I use it regularly alongside an EX1 and for the price paid, I cant fault it. I am not a JVC fanboy, in fact I have used Sony equipment, solely, for the last 23 years. I have no regrets regarding the purchase of my HM100. I went into it, having checked and tested the cam extensively, with my eyes wide open.
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Last edited by Colin Rowe; October 2nd, 2009 at 04:41 PM.
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Old October 4th, 2009, 08:07 AM   #39
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Hey, nobody held a gun to our heads and ordered us to go out and buy this camera. Tell me about any cam in this price range that some people wont find something they dont like about. The bottom line is we dont have to buy anything we dont want to. Its no good making a 3k purchase, without having thoroughly tested it, to see if it meets the purpose it is intended for. If it doesnt meet those needs, buy something that does.
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Old October 4th, 2009, 08:53 PM   #40
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I think this thread is not just to voice our dissatisfaction with the HM100, but to also provide JVC with some feedback from professionals about what they'd like to see in a professional camcorder of this form factor. The reason I think that some people who purchased the HM100 are so vocal is that the HM100 was promoted as a "Pro" camcorder, by JVC, a 'breakthrough.'

In many ways it was and is, and is unique it the size, codec, and sensor. There is nothing else like it out there.

I think what we're puzzled about are some of the seemingly boneheaded decisions by JVC on things that could have been fixed in firmware or with small changes in the design. I'm sure there are lot of variables in manufacturing something like this, and as somebody who has some experience in manufacturing and software development myself, I know sometimes you just can't put in all the 'bells and whistles.' You just run out of time and you've promised the public a release date. Also in this economic climate sometimes things just stay on the drawing board because it's just too expensive to make changes when you're trying to cut costs and save money.

So I'd like to keep this thread focused on the issues about the camcorder, how to make this version better with a firmware upgrade, or help JVC make the next version better. I don't regret my purchase decision and use the HM100 all the time, I'd just like some of these issues resolved for the next firmware update or the next HM100. If they came out with another one with the key features, size, codec, CCD, and included all the suggestions here, I'd buy another one.
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Old October 5th, 2009, 12:09 PM   #41
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I think this thread is not just to voice our dissatisfaction with the HM100, but to also provide JVC with some feedback from professionals about what they'd like to see in a professional camcorder of this form factor.
If JVC was going to offer a firmware upgrade, it would have done so. Things like the lace of frame lines is purposeful.

JVC made a miscalculation on the HM700 with the MP4 hobble it put on that camera, and it had to make a change to keep customers (and really annoying early purchasers who got duped into buying the SXS add-on).

The hobbles on the HM100 don't fall into the same class and won't be changed, I predict.

Contrary to other things JVC said, the HM100 was an adaptation of a previous consumer model, and the design flaws were inherited or the adapted body wasn't suitable for more reasonable accommodation.

However, it is also likely the JVC designers working on the HM100 are not top notch, and thus some of the problems.

Also, even though JVC has a history of being "first" in some areas (first HD camcorder), it also has a history of being inferior to offerings from other companies such as Sony and Canon (again, first HD camcorder).

Of course, even the big guys can take shortcuts, such as the sound problem on the PD150. However, in this case, the camera was revolutionary and bullet-proof enough that an aftermarket fix was developed. I doublt anyone will take the time to hack the firmware on the HM100 to fix some of those problems.

Canon has dealt with a problem on the XH-A1 in a straightforward and honest way... the hand strap anchor that breaks free under constant use. Canon put out a notice and is fixing any cameras without any kind of a run-around.

Whether it's the designers level of skill and fore thought, a cost saving problem, or what, JVC seems to built in a few major problems with each model, such as the too easily blown firewire port, impossible to change fuse, and always break viewfinder on the HD series. Not to mention the inferior 16x lens... a lens that is way less good than the built-in lens in competing prosumer camcorders selling for less (Sony cameras, XL-Hx, etc.)

The JVC standard seems to combine an innovative vision with unnecessary design flaws and insulting hobbles.
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Old October 5th, 2009, 04:00 PM   #42
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I am sorry, and I realy dont want to drag this thread away from its original direction. But I feel it is turning into something of a witch hunt. I cant believe that every one here has purchased an HM100 for 3k without satisfying themselves that is would meet their needs, and expectations. As I said before, the camera does fall short in some areas. But I, for one was more than aware or these shortfalls before I purchased. An analogy, I need 4 wheel drive vehicles to work on my shooting ground, I dont go out and buy a sports car, then moan about it not being any good in woodland and rivers. I buy the vehicles, ie, equipment that will do the job for me. I know a camera that ticks all the boxes, (well most of them), its called an EX1, and it costs over twice as much as an HM100. I use them both, together regularly, and am more than happy with the results from both cameras.
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Old October 6th, 2009, 02:30 PM   #43
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Colin, not everyone lives where you can just test the camera. For me it's about 2 hour drive to the nearest dealer. I had a test scheduled for this camera, but JVC was very slow to ship to this part of the US- they were shipped several weeks after B&H already received them. So with a project scheduled I had to buy it from B&H, have it shipped here, set it up and go on a shoot. A lack of 1/120 shutter speed is like buying a 4x4 truck just to find out it doesn't have a transfer case. Also inability to screw filters on and off is like buying a car without wheels- doesn't get you very far. Like I mentioned before- these are issues I would like to see resolved, some of them are just a matter of firmware update. JVC was very vocal prior to the release of HM100, I find it very interesting none of them is addressing these issues at all.
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Old October 6th, 2009, 03:12 PM   #44
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Points taken, Robert. I agree, as I have said in previous posts, that the design and functionality of the camera could be improved on a great deal. But having said that, a lot of people reading this thread are being put off by only the negative points of view of the cam. I to, would welcome any firmware updates to improve on an otherwise superb little camera, that gives amazing picture quality.
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Old October 6th, 2009, 06:17 PM   #45
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I agree with all the drawbacks on this camera, especially the zoom ring and rocker zoom, lanc control and something like making OIS a "User" definably button. I guess I have small fingers, I don't really have trouble putting in a filter and removing it, I just carefully drop the filter in place, and screw it on. We are all left speechless on why the filter thread is recessed, perhaps the 46mm thread is only meant for the wa lens and the lens hood 72mm is meant for filters?

For me, even with these drawbacks, and comparing to the other camcorders in the current market, I would buy this again in a heart beat!
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