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Panasonic AVCCAM Camcorders
AVCHD for pro applications: AG-AC160, AC130 and other AVCCAM gear.


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Old December 13th, 2010, 05:25 PM   #16
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"...dribbling out the minimum they feel they can get away with is tiresome."

Hey, it's a $5000 camcorder for cryin out loud.
I hope they're saving the good stuff for the next-gen Varicam...maybe an Alexa killer for 1/3 the price?

Hopefully P2 will not be a part of that....
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Old December 14th, 2010, 10:33 AM   #17
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Actually it's an $8000 device with SDI storage.

50mbps 4:2:2 from Canon is fine for commercial TV. It would cost Panasonic little or nothing to offer a bigger compressed file like that. The big lesson in the vDSLR thing is that people are willing to tolerate a lot of inconvenience for image quality. It will be interesting to see how close the AF100 comes to vDSLR, both in the AVCHD file as well as uncompressed output.
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Old December 14th, 2010, 03:19 PM   #18
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Personally the reason I like this camera is that I think it will be much better quality than my 5DmkII and 7D. Both the Canons have terrible problems with quality. From what I have seen from the AF100 it has eliminated the moire and aliasing problems from those cams.

If I could get a clean HDMI signal out of the DSLRs so I could use the NanoFlash with them I would love it.

I also think the ergonomics and video workability of the AF100 and upcoming F3 are very exciting. The DSLRs are very lacking in those departments.
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Old December 15th, 2010, 08:06 AM   #19
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50mbps 4:2:2 from Canon is fine for commercial TV. It would cost Panasonic little or nothing to offer a bigger compressed file like that.
Hey Don, you are comparing apples to potatoes. You can't compare quality between different codecs by bit rate.

I assume Panny has an AVCHD chipset designed for a specific bitrate--that they include in several cameras--hmc40, hmc150 and this one. Yeah, they probably have some minor differences but I bet they are more alike than different. So they'd need to re-design it for this one camera if they wanted a higher bitrate.

But the real point is that it really doesn't matter. Sorry, I can't remember where I saw it but there someone did a codec comparison--same camera with output recorded to several different recorders. The conclusion was that AVC at 24 was pretty darn close to mpeg2 at, well, some higher bitrate.

You have to pay for quality. There is no exception to this rule. At $6k (with lens) this looks like an absolutely kick ass camera..
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Old December 16th, 2010, 10:32 AM   #20
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I'm not comparing codecs by bit rate.
I'm comparing files from the AF100 to DSLR. From what I've seen so far the AVCHD file is inferior. That's fine for applications where avchd is adequate. But it's not going to excite people using dslr for mid level pro applications. From any codec 24mbps 4:2:0 is solidly consumer/low end these days.
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Old December 20th, 2010, 04:14 PM   #21
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I'm comparing files from the AF100 to DSLR. From what I've seen so far the AVCHD file is inferior.
Can you explain what you mean by inferior, and provide links that demonstrate what you are referring to?

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But it's not going to excite people using dslr for mid level pro applications. From any codec 24mbps 4:2:0 is solidly consumer/low end these days.
Which DSLR cameras are using a higher bit-rate with 4:2:2 color ?

...I have heard this line several times, but nobody posts links that actually demo what they are claiming to be true.
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Old December 21st, 2010, 08:18 AM   #22
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Canon is 4:2:2, which is twice the color information as 4:2:0

Specifically what needs to be looked at is low light scenes; The candle light scene Olof provided viewed in the downloadable file from Vimeo. Also, the night night street scenes posted don't look anywhere close to DSLR.

At this point in time just about everything takes good images in bright light. But there's no tonality at all in the posted low light scenes. But that said we only have pre-release cameras and uncertain post work flow.

AVCHD was a good effort at packing a lot of image into a small file. Now they're just using it to cripple low end cameras. Cheap storage can easily take twice or more the storage rate. AVCHD maxes out at 24mbps and 4:2:0 because it suits Panasonic's and Sony market segmentation strategy.

Not to say there aren't many other advantages of the AF100. In general the files from that camera and the GH2 look nice.
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Old December 21st, 2010, 08:27 AM   #23
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Canon is 4:2:2, which is twice the color information as 4:2:0

I'm assuming you're talking about some Canon cameras other than the 5DII, 7D and 60D here. Because those cameras also shoot in 4:2:0 color space.
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Old December 21st, 2010, 08:34 AM   #24
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Canon XF series camcorders are 4:2:2 -- not their D-SLRs.
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Old December 21st, 2010, 09:27 AM   #25
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I was thinking of the new videocams. But the DSLRs do have half the compression. Which means fewer pixels of similar values get assigned the same value.
The usefulness of a larger color space and lossy compression do play off each other. I expect a large color space in very high compression is meaningless. But I don't know (or particularly care) about actual tradeoffs.

The dark parts in AVCHD looks low end to me (so far). The dark performance was a big part of the "oohing and aawing" of the first DSLR videos from the 5D.
I don't think AVCHD is good or bad, just unnecessarily small.

But fortunately AF100 SDI gets around that for uses such as TV and documentaries with a bit of a budget. Personally I would never bother with AF100 SDI for event photography. The features/tradeoffs of the vanilla AF100 seem excellent. That's why I brought up the "mid level". I don't think there's any problem at all with AF100 AVCHD for its target market.
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Old December 21st, 2010, 04:53 PM   #26
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ag-af100

Of course, this is an 8 bit camera. How would that compare to 10 bit cameras?
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Old December 21st, 2010, 05:04 PM   #27
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Is it 8 bit? The Canon ADC are 12 or 14 bit in the DSLR's. Maybe 16 now.
I expect 16 bit is not meaningful. But certainly the sensors can resolve more than 8 bit.
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Old December 22nd, 2011, 08:10 PM   #28
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Re: AF100/AF101 plus nanoFlash

Wait a second! Are we talking bit depth of the camera's internal processing, or the bit depth of the file being recorded?

- Ken
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Old December 27th, 2011, 02:44 AM   #29
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Re: AF100/AF101 plus nanoFlash

I've compared many files shot with the AF100 do the similar ones, shot with DSLRs, Canon or Nikon or Panasonic for that matter. Nikon seems the best in my observations.

AF100 much better, have less noise, significantly less.. DD in better on the other hand, it resolves better shadows.. //better that GH2, no doubt about that, I do not have scientific test to present, that is a IMHO opinion.

??????.?????
compared 5dmk2 with nikon D5100 if anyone interested, I will be posting some observations, videos in January
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