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Old October 8th, 2003, 08:55 PM   #1
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Can Pan DV953 shoot this?

Hello 953 users, (Identical post on PDX forum)

quick question: I've owned a Canon XL1S, & GL2 as well as the Pan DVX100- all excellent cameras but none shoot native 16:9. I'd like to purchase the 953 (&PDX10 -b/c of the 16:9) but keep hearing issues of low light incapabilities. I primarily shoot nature and for the most part shoot under mixed lighting conditions (whatever enviornement the animal is in)......my question is: can the 953 shoot under lowish light into somewhat dark areas of say, "tree branches"? I have uploaded a very small 1.6mb .mov file that shows just the type of lighting i find myself shooting under....I wouldn't call it dark, but somewhat overcast.....check out the clip here-

http://stevenunez.com/hostedimages/rtwpigeons.mov

- I'd appreciate opinions on wether you guys think the 953 would be suitable for this range of light shooting?

The clip is of a redtail hawk eating a NYC pigeon under overcast conditions (just after rain) and into the branches a bit....hope it doesn't gross you guys out too much!
Not sure which camera shot this footage but likely the GL2.

<<I've posted this same question on the PDX forum as I am considering either the PDX10 or 953 for their 16:9 native shooting abilities...I hope this isn't in violation of forum policy....if so- delete this post>>
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Old October 8th, 2003, 09:12 PM   #2
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The GS100 is the replacement of the MX5000/PV-DV953. It is also better with low light than the PV-DV953 and PDX10.

I have tried a PV-DV953 a few times and really like it. But I would not use this cam for shooting weddings and funerals, because of its higher lux requirements.

I presume the GS100 will be out in North America late spring, but if you want one now, our good member Allan get get you one from Japan---either a black one or a sliver one. The GS100 (and PV-DV953) is also a lot cheaper yjan the PDX10.

Personally, I think the PDX10 is a great cam, but I don't like it at all for the simple reason that it's d_mn difficult to hold.
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Old October 8th, 2003, 09:28 PM   #3
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B&H has no listing for the GS100- is it available in the USA yet?
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Old October 8th, 2003, 10:03 PM   #4
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Steve:

The DV953 will have no problem shooting in the light your movie is in. The is not a problem for the DV953 in the sense of low light. When they talk low light.... they mean low light (one light on in the room, candle etc). The camera is very capable of handing most all situations especially with the manual controls you have. There is also a mode in the menu you can go into called "Gain Up". That assists with lower than normal lighting and opens up the shutter even more from 60 fps 30 fps.

It's a shame that people are comparing this camera's lighting with comsumer Sony that act totally different in "minimal" light. The two are totally different, but from what I can tell from your video you should be fine.
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Old October 8th, 2003, 11:29 PM   #5
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Steve, in my previous post, 3rd paragraph, I wrote, "I presume the GS100 will be out in North America late spring...." What this means is spring of 2004; but yes, the cam is out in Japan---that's why I mentioned Allan.
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Old October 8th, 2003, 11:52 PM   #6
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I was going to post this in other tread but then this came up so it's more apropriate as GS100 is not in the comparisons.

Here is a Japanese comparison of 4 top cams (VX2000, GL2, TRV950 amd MX5000) - there is even wide mode chart for resolution check.

http://babelfish.altavista.com/babel...0208_3CCD.html

Other review but no 16:9 ratio samples. Lot's of good tests though - you can see low+mixed light samples too.

http://babelfish.altavista.com/babel...p=ja_en&tt=url

Overall the MX5000 is getting the editors choice. TRV950 is pretty good too. As Frank points though GS100 is even better both in low light and wide mode.
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Old October 9th, 2003, 06:09 AM   #7
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I have viewed your video on the hawk.

You will find that the MX500 is more noisy than the XL1, GL2 and DVX100. The dynamic range of the MX500 is also not as wide, hence the white goes white, and the dark goes black.

A great home user cam, with semi pro features, but certainly not able to capture all the details of the bark of the tree in your hawk video.

I might sound critical here, but I used the MX350 side-by-side the XL1, and I have used the MX350 and MX500.

In low light, as in right after sunset (the sky is still bright, but ground in shadows) the typical exposure will be at +9 to +12 db already. And that's not good news, as the noise if very visible. Compared to the Sony TRV900 and VX2000, this is really poor.
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Old October 12th, 2003, 03:19 AM   #8
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fyr:
I tested these try cams side by site last week, the PD150, GY-DV301e and MX500 (all PAL standard)

Here are the frame grabs:

1. MX500 (ATW, F1.6, 50, 0 dB):
http://www.hourglass-production.com/.../mx500-0db.jpg

2. MX500 (ATW, F1.6, 50, +12 dB):
http://www.hourglass-production.com/...mx500-12db.jpg

3. PD-150 (ATW, F1.6, 50, 0dB) :
http://www.hourglass-production.com/...hots/pd150.jpg

4. DV301E (ATW, F1.6, 50, 0dB) :
http://www.hourglass-production.com/...ots/dv301e.jpg

I noticed that DV301 and MX500 captured more accurate color than PD150. MX500 +12dB gain is quite grainy.
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Old October 24th, 2003, 09:30 PM   #9
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Well I returned the Sony PDX10 and played with a 953 for a short time...I ended up leaving B&H and not getting a new camera but was disappointed in seeing how badly the 953 streaks- just as bad if not worse than the PDX10......is this because of the small CCD's or just low tech recording performance because of price point?

I was set to pickup a Canon Elura 50 just as a "fun, keep with me at all times camera" but the demo unit was tethered to a powerline and kept cutting off power- so a proper feel couldn't be attained for the little camera.....maybe on the next visit. I also can't find any resolution numbers published anywhere for the Elura 50- anyone know how many lines the Elura shoots?

I have to say- the Panasonic DVC80 looks absolute killer- it looks like a million bucks!
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Old October 24th, 2003, 10:02 PM   #10
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>...was disappointed in seeing how badly the 953 streaks...<

That's why you shouldn't point cams into the light. Any cam will "streak," even 35mm motion film cams. One solution, besides not pointing the cam into light sources (sun, bulbs, windows etc), it to spend $20 on a nice Hoya lens hood. :)
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Old October 25th, 2003, 12:26 AM   #11
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Frank,

looking back on my video footage- my GL2, DVX100 and XL1s didn't "streak" much at all- I found the PDX' and DV953's streaking to be too much of an issue personally, but did find them very suitable for controlled light shooting...but as a run & gun nature camera- they just didn't foot the bill! I was enticed to them because of their 16:9 shooting capability but eventually passed on them...although the DV953's sub $1300 price makes it an enticing camera for anyone!

If nothing new comes out soon- the DVC80 will be my next camera.
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Old October 25th, 2003, 01:35 AM   #12
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Steve, that was just a shot in the dark. When I played with the PV-DV953 several times, I didn't notice any streaking. There could have been something wrong with the floor model you played with.
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Old October 26th, 2003, 08:59 AM   #13
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Very true .... I own a DV953 and I have had no problems with any streaking! I even shot yesterday shooting into the early morning sun and I received a nice star effect by doing nothing but having the camera in automatic. One of the reasons why I didn't spend the extra 600 on the PDX-10 was because it had more vertical smear than I saw on the 953.

With little difference in picture quality and low light not being the big issue people claim (any camera at this level with a "low" single light source will produce about the same image). I myself decided to save the 600 dollars and go with the DV953 which suits my purposes very nicely. I will primarly use this camera in daylight and well lit arenas and stadiums, but I have shot in low light and it was just fine for what I'm looking for.

It's truly an impressive camera for the price and that is what people should consider when comparing this camera.
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Old October 26th, 2003, 05:55 PM   #14
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I never got smearing with my 2 older DVL9500 cams, 1/3" CCD with 380K total pixels (360K video effective), nor any smearing with my MX300. On the other hand, I did get streaking with my MX300. I couldn't figure out why. Then I replaced the Heliopan slim UV with a Cokin UV, and then there was no more streaking.
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Old October 26th, 2003, 08:47 PM   #15
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Notes & Questions

Hmm, so the consensus is that the 953 does NOT smear as badly as the demo unit I played with or as badly as the PDX10....this is encouraging as it now puts a 953 in contention as my next camcorder.

Is there a lens hood available for the 953? I have yet to see one with a hood on and I would imagine it would aid in flare/smear reduction.

Also- the PDX10 widens the angle of view when switched to 16:9 mode- is this not the case for the 953? Has anyone tried a 953 with any tele lens add-on- what were the results and what did you think? I'd like to try the Kenko 5X 37mm scope lens and 3X units- anyone try any of these - I need long range video capabilties.

If responses are favorable I may get one this week if i can get down to B&H. Thanks a million guys- keep up the networking.
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