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Old December 3rd, 2006, 05:55 PM   #1
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SP vs. LP mode

I was wondering if there is a big difference in quality using SP mode versus the LP mode when uploading to a computer. Obviously it's 60 minutes on SP mode and 90 minutes on the LP mode on most mini dv's. Is there a big difference? By the way, I use a GL2.

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Old December 3rd, 2006, 06:17 PM   #2
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One of the advantages of digital video is that there is no loss of image quality between SP & LP modes. Moved from Open DV Discussion to The Long Black Line.
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Old December 3rd, 2006, 06:46 PM   #3
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I agree with Chris on the quality issue.

One word of caution: Capturing LP footage is best done on the camera that recorded the footage. It may not capture properly on a different camera. Of course, if that happens, you can always try to capture it on the original camera, if it is still available.
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Old December 3rd, 2006, 07:58 PM   #4
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So the question is then: What is the difference between the two modes other than recording time...is there less bandwidth to tape with LP or more susceptibility to failure? Coming from the analog world, LP is bad! Is that an antiquated preception?
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Old December 3rd, 2006, 08:09 PM   #5
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SP vs LP

For what I've read, capturing from LP risks more frame drops than SP. So while the data input is theoretically identical, the tape/camera quality is being pushed to the limit in LP. I always do SP recordings and captures so I don't introduce any problems I don't need!
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Old December 3rd, 2006, 08:18 PM   #6
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SP vs LP

For what I've read, capturing from LP risks more frame drops than SP. So while the data input is theoretically identical, the tape/camera quality is being pushed to the limit in LP. I always do SP recordings and captures so I don't introduce any problems I don't need!
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Old December 6th, 2006, 09:32 PM   #7
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The main difference between SP and LP recording in DV is the track pitch. SP is 10 microns wide while LP is 7 microns wide, hence the tolerance level decreases with LP.

As mentioned prior, it is best to play out of the device that recorded in the LP mode since the tape alignment would be optimal.

If given a choice, recording in SP will provide higher tolerance to recording and playback data errors than LP. There is not difference in picture quality, as Chris has stated.

Just in case you have an LP recording, or any DV, DVCAM or DVCPro25 recording for that matter, that may be out of tracking alignment: the Sony DSR-2000 is able to engage it's preread heads at 1x playback that can pick up track data that has been recorded outside of the primary head alignment. This deck is the only DV, DVCAM or DVCPro25 VTR with this capability, and the DSR-2000 is the only VTR I know of that is spec'd for LP playback.

Good luck, and hope this information helps.
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Old December 7th, 2006, 03:12 PM   #8
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Faster recording speeds preserve quality by reducing "cross talk". Provide as much blank tape as possible between the recorded data and there is less of a chance the recording will get muddy.

With video tape, the scan paths are closer together. Add to that the issue of alignment differences between the recording device and the playback device and the probabilities of quality degradation increase.

Because digital is so much more reliable, I suspect recording speed is a moot point if you were to dump your video directly to a hard drive.
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Old December 8th, 2006, 12:37 PM   #9
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What I do is upload from my GL2 directly to my hard drive and edit with Adobe Premier.

Would it be ok for me to use LP mode so I can record 90 minutes instead of 60 minutes? Or am I better off just sticking with SP mode?

I've been using my GL2 on SP mode only and haven't had any problems with getting it uploaded.
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Old December 8th, 2006, 12:55 PM   #10
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I highly recommend that you stick with SP mode.

I have had problems when a cameraman accidently used LP mode.

I know it should work, but are you willing to give up your footage if it doesn't.

If you need to record for a longer time, I recommend purchasing some 83 minute tapes.

You will not have your GL2 forever. It is possible that you will get another camera and the possibility of that camera not being able to recapture your footage, if necessary, is very high.
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Old December 8th, 2006, 01:26 PM   #11
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Chris I always use LP mode because of record time for shows I record. I have experienced no problems in many years of doing this( over ten years now). BUT I have always used the same brand of tape in my camcorders( Sony Premium ) and capture to the PC for editing from the camcorder that recorded the tape. In my case I use Sony FX1 and TRV50, but also have Sony PC10 and TRV740 with the same results. The data on the tape at both speeds is identical. However the amount of tape used to record this data at LP is 2/3rds the amount used at SP. So any tape defect has a greater chance of being more than the error correction can recover from and will thus be visible. It is therefore important to have a clean mechanism and use the same mechanism( camcorder) to playback to avoid any tolerence issues with the alignment of heads. A new/clean camcorder using only one brand of tape will likely have no difference between SP and LP. However the LP tape may not play in any other machine!!! The message in my mind is by all means use LP because of record time, but do not keep for the future, always transfer to SP after editing even if this means using more than one tape as you may not be able to play that LP tape in the future.

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