GS400 vs. PDX10 ? at DVinfo.net

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Old June 17th, 2004, 03:14 PM   #1
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GS400 vs. PDX10 ?

OK- I know everyone's tired of these types of comparisons but I'm planning on replacing my PD100 and I was sold on the PDX10 but this rumored camera finally coming to market throws a new light on matters. Obviously the improvement I'm after is 16x9. How will the GS400 improve over the sony? Are they using the same ccd?thanks for your comments- Kurth
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Old June 17th, 2004, 04:15 PM   #2
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PDX10 vs GS400 on widescreen is still a toss up with the NTSC GS400 unreleased but my guess is that it will have the same HQ 16:9 as the PDX10 along with the PDX10s increased wide angle of view (compared to 4:3).

What its going to come down to for most is price and features. The PDX10 is presently $1850 at B&H and if the GS400 pricing follows DV953 then it should be between $1200-$1300 street at the beginning. The PDX10 of course has XLR inputs and lower shutter speeds. The GS400 is much lighter (probably better balanced as well) and offers frame mode and cine-like gamma.

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Old June 17th, 2004, 04:26 PM   #3
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<<<-- Originally posted by Tommy Haupfear : The PDX10 of course has XLR inputs and lower shutter speeds. -->>>

...and the same mike as the PD-170, a high res BW viewfinder, DVCAM recording, pro black finish. It's been on the market awhile and there's plenty of user feedback available as compared to a new camera that isn't even shipping.

I'm not putting down the GS-400; from what I read here it does sound like a nice camera. Just that the PDX-10 is a known quantity (both strengths and weaknesses), and it is the heir to the PD-100 which means it's distributed by Sony's Broadcast/Pro division. I'm guessing that the low light performance on both of these cameras will be inferior to your PD-100 however.
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Old June 18th, 2004, 10:58 AM   #4
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The GS400 also offers a frame mode with cine-like gamma in which they call Pro Cinema mode. I have this on my current GS100 and its quite impressive but the 16:9 mode on the GS100 is noticeably less resolution than my past PDX10. Lets hope the GS400 addresses this.

Here is a Pro Cinema frame from my GS100

http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2002-...ProCinema1.jpg

Here are a few 16:9 frames from my PDX10

http://www.villagephotos.com/pubbrow...elected=441334

and a few pics of each cam.. The second photo shows how the PDX10 properly displays the 16:9 mode as letterbox in the LCD whereas the GS100 (and most likely GS400) show the anamorphically squeezed shot in the LCD. Panasonic should have payed attention!

http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2003-...040(Small).jpg

http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2003-.../pdx10wide.JPG

http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2002-...15/NVGS400.jpg

http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2002-...X2000PDX10.jpg

http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2002-12/74415/GS100.jpg
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Old June 18th, 2004, 03:25 PM   #5
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Tommy is that a wide-angle lens inside the hood on the first shot of the PDX?
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Old June 18th, 2004, 05:28 PM   #6
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re.

thanks Tommy - I'd seen your pdx10 framegrabs already. I guess the questions most important are those that can't yet be answered- concerning cinema gamma and frame mode- but do we know if it's just basic frame mode or , is there a possiblity that it's 30p ?I've seen contradictory info. Also , has anyone heard anything about adjustable gamma or is it like the gs100. Iknow with either I'll be limited with low light compared with my pd100a but I'm also keeping it and I've found the anamorphic pretty good and might intercut ok with the pdx10 for night shots. The DVCam aspect is a minimal gain but the 500 line viewfinder that shows true 16x9 is hard to ignore.OK , thanks for your inputs
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Old June 18th, 2004, 06:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Tommy is that a wide-angle lens inside the hood on the first shot of the PDX?
Yes, Its the cheap Sony WA (around $40-$50 USD).
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Old June 18th, 2004, 06:27 PM   #8
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Kurth, I definitely think its frame mode as the PAL GS400 manual (p. 56) says that when you activate Pro Cinema the cam record mode is set to "Frame". Frame mode is also mentioned on p. 19 and p. 54. Panasonic will often mention 30p followed by an asterik and a disclaimer that the images recorded are not progressive.

I'm not 100% sure if the cine-like gamma is adjustable on the GS400 but if it follows the GS100 then it will not.
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Old June 19th, 2004, 08:55 PM   #9
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One other thing to keep in mind -- a huge weak spot with the DV953 (I owned one for two weeks) was the small, low-res viewfinder. I found that the viewfinder made it impossible to do quality work with the camera -- and the LCD is unusable in bright daylight -- and I moved up to the AGDVC30. I'm pretty sure that the GS400 will have this same weak 113,000 pixel viewfinder.

I imagine it will also share a problem inherent in the tape transport mechanism which Panasonic used in the DV953 and I believe in all the GS models: if you are recording and then put the camera in 'pause', the transport disengages with all the attendent noise and delay that would normally be associated with turning the camera off. A real problem if you are trying to shoot in a quiet public situation (such as a concert or lecture), or if you are doing interviews. I suspect that this noise is a trade-off which Panasonic had to accept in return for the unusually quick turn-on times its consumer cameras are capable of.

Too bad, Panasonic seems to be doing a good job in all other respects, and I certainly like the size of the GS400.

Zack
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Old June 19th, 2004, 09:36 PM   #10
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Actually, Allan said in another thread that Pana has announced an improved viewfinder (123k pixels) and LCD. I don't think transport noise is an issue with the gs100k - that I've noticed, anyway - maybe I am misunderstanding what is meant by pause? - so I hope it won't be with the gs400k. I also hope Pana keeps the audio system it has built into the gs100k. It picks up no noise from the camera functions (off/on) and handles live music beautifully for a small consumer cam. (I have shot a number of jam sessions involving family/friends - miked and unmiked - a couple of weddings - with and without music - and a miked lecture. So far the only sound flaws have had to do with me learning to use the cam correctly.)
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Old June 20th, 2004, 04:51 AM   #11
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Shifting between pause and record doesn't incur any noise with the DV953. Turning the cam on and off does. The 953 also picks up no noise from the transport.
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Old June 20th, 2004, 08:46 AM   #12
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<<<-- Originally posted by Guy Bruner : Shifting between pause and record doesn't incur any noise with the DV953. Turning the cam on and off does. The 953 also picks up no noise from the transport. -->>>

How noise can be a problem when you turn the camera on and off? Noise is a problem when it can be recorded only.

Or do you mean noise in the editing point, when the camera is put on rec again over the end of another take?


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Old June 20th, 2004, 08:51 AM   #13
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Socket conflict

One thing I did not like on the GS100 was the same 1/8" socket was used for the external mic input and the cabled zoom control.

Is that the same on the GS400? How do you do if you want to use both?


Carlos
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Old June 20th, 2004, 09:07 AM   #14
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Re: Socket conflict

<<<-- Originally posted by Carlos E. Martinez : One thing I did not like on the GS100 was the same 1/8" socket was used for the external mic input and the cabled zoom control.

Is that the same on the GS400? How do you do if you want to use both?


Most probably the same socket assignment/sharing as the GS100.

Buy Pany's proprietary hot shoe mic
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Old June 20th, 2004, 09:49 AM   #15
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Re: Re: Socket conflict

<<<--
Most probably the same socket assignment/sharing as the GS100.

Buy Pany's proprietary hot shoe mic -->>>


Most certainly not! Except if there's a hot shoe with no mic involved that you can use to input audio through.

We are talking serious audio quality here, not toy audio, so 99% of standard prosumer mics (included those on cameras like PD170 or DVX100) should be ditched.

That is one area where to get audio quality at the same level as the improving video quality you have to use better mics and/or external preamps. Even a Shure or AKG dynamic microphone will do a better job than those included on camera package.

You also need balanced inputs and sometimes proper phantom power.

What I am not so sure, because I never saw it personally, is how that sharing is accomplished. Is it a regular stereo 1/8" plug or what?


Carlos
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