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Old October 17th, 2010, 11:00 AM   #1
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Pro Cams - do any have snapshot?

Curious if any of the pro camera's have a still shot option.

I was filming a rockin charity fund raiser last night for montclaire schools. I was going to take the little consumer camcorder out and do some close up shots, while the main AX2000 was in lock down shot mode. But the Audio was so loud (Band could be heard two blocks away clearly ;) ) that it overloaded and shut down the instant record was pressed.

One of the things I like about that cam, is that it takes photo's (mine somehow takes them WHILE recording by itself, but I think that's a malfunction, not a feature!). With the AX, I have to go frame by frame and find them manually.

If I get a second pro cam in the future (which I fear might be needed), do any of them have a still shot option?

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Old October 17th, 2010, 11:34 AM   #2
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That's typically more of a "consumer" camera feature, at least as far as higher relative resolution pix. The "pro" Sonys have the capability, but at relatively lower resonlutions - my FX1 and FX7 had it - but it was something in the 1 Megapixel range IIRC... The consumer cams claim much higher resolutions, although they are interpolated at the highest resolutions, and aren't really comparable to a decent P&S camera (some of which now have 1080 video!).

It's really a bit of a "marketing feature" when a duck claims to cluck like a chicken, or a chicken says it can quack - although it may "work", that "alternate function" is always somewhat compromised from my experience, although they are getting better with each generation. Video shot with my DSC-TX7 under decent lighting conditions is surprisingly good, and comparable to top end consumer camcorders a generation or two old, and only slightly less quality against current Sony flagship consumer cams.

I'm going to presume you had an HDD camera and the high volumes shut it down to prevent damage? Maybe go solid state/flash memory next time to avoid that?

And if you have a Sony, there's a "smile" shot function that can auto trigger "snaps" while it's recording video, and you can go in and set the sensitivity. I think the latest cameras from Canon and Panasonic added a similar feature too. The latest Sony 550 series can't manage to pull off this feature when running in the highest bitrate, apparently not enough bandwidth to process the stills on the fly AND the higher bitrate video, but you can still drop back to 17Mbps for the dual shot capability.
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Old October 17th, 2010, 11:44 AM   #3
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I've never had a camera shut down on me because of noise, but if the camera is vibrating this could trigger a slack tape warning, in a tape based camera, I guess - but loud audio will just distort and the camera won't care!

There's no need to have a still facility on any camera that will have it's media edited in a proper edit suite, because they can all export a single frame - and the correct one at that, from a series of frames.
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Old October 17th, 2010, 12:13 PM   #4
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XF300 from Canon does it.

(from B&H)
Photo Capture
For applications such as storyboarding, continuity and publicity shots, the XF300 offers the ability to capture 1920 x 1080 still images. Photos may be captured to an SD memory card during the time of recording, as well as "frame grabbed" during playback.
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Old October 17th, 2010, 01:35 PM   #5
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The Canon XHA1 does this very nicely, storing the image to an SD card. The quality is good enough that, before I retired from a major newspaper, I several times had photos the full width of the front page made from an in-camera still. It is also possible to do a creditable framegrab in your editing system from an hdv image, although iirc the Canon still function produced a higher-res image.
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Old October 17th, 2010, 02:40 PM   #6
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http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-..._4689105_n.jpg

This is the image quality from the AX2000.... It looks good, but still a lower resolution than I'd like.

And yeah, the Conusmer model was the XR520V. The older Sr11 also had the same problem. Noise got too loud, it shut it down
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Old October 17th, 2010, 11:21 PM   #7
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Yep, that makes sense, the HDD cameras are a bit sensitive to really high sound pressure levels. You might take a look at the CX series cameras - the current CX550V or perhaps last years CX500/520.
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Old October 18th, 2010, 01:41 PM   #8
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HDR-CX550V | Full HD 64GB Flash Memory Camcorder | Sony | Sony Style USA

So something like this wouldn't vibrate off due to the flash media? Is it one of the newer models?

Now I've got a choice to make....Do I keep the XR520V, or trade it in to try and cut the cost of this model. XR520V won't cut it since I am in spots with lots of loud noise shooting at times...
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