I saw the PV-DV953 today. It knocked my socks off. - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

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Panasonic DV / MX / GS series Assistant
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Old April 30th, 2003, 12:30 PM   #16
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Ben. I'll try to find this halo later today. Here's a thought. The MX5000 came out last June/July (2002). The PAL MX500 cam out a few months ago. The North American version just came out and is probably a 2nd or 3d generation on the assembly line. Could it be, then, that the newest MX5 (PV-DV953) also has the most "bug fixes?" And perhaps the video quality is better than that of the 1st generation Japanese Domestic?
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Old April 30th, 2003, 02:14 PM   #17
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The source link for the 2 resolution charts I posted also has a trv950 resolution chart if wants to compare it to the mx5000 in regards to the halo effect.

http://www4.big.or.jp/%7Ea_haru/0208_3CCD.html

Reed
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Old April 30th, 2003, 04:11 PM   #18
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The source link for the 2 resolution charts I posted also has a trv950 resolution chart if wants to compare it to the mx5000 in regards to the halo effect.

http://www4.big.or.jp/%7Ea_haru/0208_3CCD.html

BLACK ON GREY, RESOLUTION CHART
I copied images from this site to PhotoPaint and then zoomed 4X with the following results from best to worst:

Sony VX2000=hardly any halo and hardly any smear
Canon VX2=some light halo
Sony TRV950=noticeable halo
Panasonic MX5000=heavy halo

As someone pointed out before the halo is probablly an attempt by the software engineers to avoid the jpg type smear, but appears to be overkill on some cameras. I don't use jpg for any black and white drawings due to such problems.

COLOR, BUILDINGS WITH SKY AND WATER
I copied images from this site to PhotoPaint and then zoomed 4X with the following results from best to worst:

Sony VX2000=hardly any halo and hardly any smear
Sony TRV950=some light halo
Canon VX2=noticeable halo
Panasonic MX5000=heavy halo

OVERALL, BUILDINGS WITH SKY AND WATER
I copied images from this site to PhotoPaint and then zoomed 1x with the following results from best to worst in general quality:

Sony VX2000=no halo, or smear, yet most defined
Sony TRV950=nearly as good as VX2000
Canon VX2=noticeably worse than VX2000
Panasonic MX5000=halos make picture quite noticeable worse than VX2000 where details are lost.

CONCLUSIONS
I can't read Chinese and so don't know what conditions the pictures were shot with. It does appear though that in bright sunlight the picture quality is not dependant on the pixel size, rather software. Can adjustments be made. We need more test shots of the DV953 to see if improvements have been made over the MX5000.
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Old May 1st, 2003, 09:12 PM   #19
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"I see halos"... but then, most normal people won't see it. My parent's and siblings don't see it. Not until I point it out to them, and they take a longer, closer look.

It's because they're so used to watching enhanced TV and DVD, where there is some sort of video processing done. The processing INCLUDES turning white into "ultra bright white", and gives an impression of sharpness & crispness. Not forgetting some edge enhancements. To normal folks, such pictures are NORMAL. They're used to seeing halos every time they watch TV or DVD!

Us "video pro's" on the other hand, have finely attuned visual senses, which allows us to spot compression artifacts & color bleeds etc. etc. I remember when I first started, I couldn't spot these. Then I got doing some picture comparisons with various MPEG encoders. Over time, I could spot even slight compression artifacts in commercial DVDs! I must stop myself from going into "picture quality analysis mode" every time I watch DVDs or I won't enjoy the movie.

Back to the halos... I also see color bleeds! Check out the last picture of Tommy's, the picture of the aircraft on the ground. The officers on the right has a red color bleed between his black suit's outline & the white halo. Yucks!

But the halos and color bleed COULD BE something to do with high JPG compression artifacts. I don't remember my MX300 having color bleed. It does have halos, but it lessens when I turn my sharpness one or two notches to the left of the default / middle.
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Old May 1st, 2003, 11:00 PM   #20
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Hi,

well at least some of us are actually seeing the 'halo's' as they are being referred to now. I'd like to thank those of you who spent your time investigating the posted images - and your own cameras to see if the edge issues were present.

My assumption is that SOME of us have these issues with our cameras and the lucky ones don't. That's great. It also seems to be the general opinion that this is something that the camera's image processing software is doing. To my thinking, that is good. At least there's the posiibility of it being rectified or at least improved with a firmware update from Panasonic.

We also have fooled around with the sharpness settings and while it does make an improvement on the edges AND the grain issues on objects close to the camera - the background (at least on our camera) turns to mush, so I don't think that's the ultimate solution for us.

Some posters seemed to leap to the camera's defense as if these questions regarding the edge artifacts were an attack on the unit. They weren't. I think we all agree this is a great little cam - probably why we all forked over our hard earned cash to purchase one - and since I also paid for my camera, I have the right to ask questions about its performance just like anyone else.

I also agree with Steven that videographers are obviously more critical of an image than general viewers - but I guess that's our job isn't it? Trying to get the best images possible from our equipment.

Our MX-500 is in at Panasonic as we speak, having the tape transport issues seen to and also the over zealous edge enhancement is being looked into. I will let you know the results. They had an MX-350 there when we took the camera in and it also exhibited the same kind of 'halos'. So the techs weren't too convinced that the issue would be seen as a fault. I guess we'll wait and see.

Thanks again to all those who have contributed here.

Best,

David.
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Old May 2nd, 2003, 12:50 AM   #21
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>having the tape transport issues seen to and also the over zealous edge enhancement is being looked into.<

Sorry to hear you have these problems with the MX5. Let us know if the "repair" fixed it.

Honestly, I couldn't see halos, but I did see the red bleeds Steven mentioned---but I felt this was due to the low res jpg.
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Old May 2nd, 2003, 03:41 AM   #22
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Hi, David.

Sorry to hear about your tape transport problems. Hope it gets fixed, fast!

re your reply>: My assumption is that SOME of us have these issues with our cameras and the lucky ones don't. That's great. It also seems to be the general opinion that this is something that the camera's image processing software is doing. To my thinking, that is good. At least there's the posiibility of it being rectified or at least improved with a firmware update from Panasonic.

Edge enhancement & halo's have been with us a very long time. Just that we've not been "sensitive" about it. It's there in ALL the DV vidcams, some are WORST at it than others.

DV vidcams also have the infamous "staircase" effect - if you vidcam a vertical fence or something white, and started moving the cam a bit, you would notice that the edges have a sort of "grain" moving - the grain looks like a staircase.
However, film cameras don't seem to suffer from these problems. It's the DV electronics & CCD technology...

re your reply>I also agree with Steven that videographers are obviously more critical of an image than general viewers - but I guess that's our job isn't it? Trying to get the best images possible from our equipment.

Yes, we should get the best images possible from our equipment. However... the customer may NOT be so critical. Don't kill yourself getting worked up over picture quality for these customers.

Here's a story from my own experience. In the early years of creating VCD, I tried many software encoders, all of which performed quite badly (in my eyes) and I would tweak the settings until I got the best VCD picture possible. Still not up to my high standards, I must say. Comparing the VCD and the original DV tape, it was obvious the DV tape was sharper. Back then, I did some wedding & event videos in VCD, about 3 years ago. The first few times that I gave my clients the VCD, I expected them to call me back & complain about the "horrible picture quality". Well, one of them did - they had a giant screen TV and was always watching LDs & DVD. So they had an "elevated sense of high picture quality". The rest didn't - they had been watching VCD movies before this and was familliar with all the artifacts & slightly softer pictures inherrent in VCDs, and my VCD was in the same league as the other commercially produced VCD movies. Some customers thought that my VCD was very very good (they hadn't seen the original DV tape, that's why ;)

Morals of the story? 1) Make sure your video is as good as other production video on the same medium. 2) If the customer likes it, you get paid :)

Now that DVD burning is feasible, our equipment NEEDS to be able to churn out top quality video - 'cos that's what's expected of DVD productions nowadays. And with a high quality encoded DVD, you can spot all the picture flaws easily. That's why I upgraded to 3CCD. But with all the inherrent flaws of DV, I must accept the fact that my 3CCD isn't going to beat an expensive film vidcam when it comes to picture quality.

I would say that the halos on the MX500 is a bit extreme, and it is very UNFORTUNATE that if you tone down the sharpness, the smaller details get mushy - and that's again why you need the sharpness the way it is. A terrible "either - or" situation. Still, some people insist on "film look" which means softer pictures & more blurred backgrounds. Go figure :~

OK 'nuff ranting...
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Old May 8th, 2003, 02:14 AM   #23
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<<<-- Originally posted by Steven Khong : Hi, David.

DV vidcams also have the infamous "staircase" effect - if you vidcam a vertical fence or something white, and started moving the cam a bit, you would notice that the edges have a sort of "grain" moving - the grain looks like a staircase.
However, film cameras don't seem to suffer from these problems. It's the DV electronics & CCD technology...

-->>>

Actually, it's neither. It's the simple fact that low-resolution digital images (and 720 x 480 is low-resolution, at least compared to a 5 MP digital still camera) will exhibit aliasing or "stairstepping."

You don't get it with film because:

a) Both 35mm and 16mm film are higher-resolution media than DV, however good the latter is, and

b) The "granularity" of film is random rather than regular. In other words, each frame of DV will have its pixels at the same coordinates. In film, the grains (i.e. "pixels") will change position from frame to frame, which can soften the image somewhat, but which also guards against aliasing being all that noticable.
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Old May 8th, 2003, 02:18 AM   #24
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And that random pixels on film is what creates the 'natural' softness in the 'film-look' which so many videographers are trying to achieve.

I see it as a different age, and a different media. I want my videos to look like videos, and films to look like films.

I wouldn't want poster colour paintings to be worked until they look like water colour. :)

Sorry about the rant... so many people looking for the 'film-look' on video.
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