MX500, what is the story with low light at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Panasonic P2HD / AVCCAM / AVCHD / DV Camera Systems > Panasonic DVX / DVC Assistant > Panasonic DV / MX / GS series Assistant

Panasonic DV / MX / GS series Assistant
...and other Panasonic DV camcorders.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old May 13th, 2003, 02:16 PM   #1
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: An English man in the South of Germany.....
Posts: 40
MX500, what is the story with low light

Hi

I was about to buy a Panny MX 500, but i keep hearing horror storys about it being bad in low light. Some reviews and users say its ok in low light, and some say its poor.
The Panny web site says 15 LUX.

I just want a good picture from my home cam, some of the work would be indoors under household lighting, the rest would be outside, Is this cam upto the job?
Or would I be better off with a different cam Like the Sony TRV 950 ?

Thanks for your replys
Sean Allen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 13th, 2003, 03:57 PM   #2
Outer Circle
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Hope, BC
Posts: 7,527
Both the MX500 and TRV950/PDX10 have small CCDs with small pixels so the LUX requirements would be higher than cams with larger CCDs and less pixels.

http://www.dvfreak.com/lux.htm
http://www.dvfreak.com/mx5_go.htm
http://www.dvfreak.com/pana_mx5.htm
Frank Granovski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 13th, 2003, 04:52 PM   #3
Outer Circle
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Hope, BC
Posts: 7,527
It looks like the member, lyonhart, from dv.com, has a faulty unit, but hasn't realized it yet. He posted some 953 pics---and that's the conclusions the other members came to.
Frank Granovski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 13th, 2003, 08:13 PM   #4
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Singapore, Passport: Malaysia
Posts: 407
When the MX500 arrived in Singapore in October 2002, I had tested the cam next to the TRV950. On standard analogue TV and on PC, I saw no significant difference except the price. My wife actually liked the MX500 colours better and saw less grain on the 'grainy*' MX500, compared to the TRV950.

Having used the TRV900 over several jobs, I find the quality of the 950 a drop from that of the famous 900.

* half the users of the Mx500 and those who have seen teh results, including myself, have commented that the 500 is grainy. NO, for example, at +6 digital gain, the MX500 outperforms the MX350 that I have, ie less grain. BUT, thanks to smaller CCD, I suppose, for the same light the MX500 is shooting in +6, the MX350 is only at +3. That is less grain than +6.

So, for Sean, my opinion is that, price and features, the MX500 is really great. Video quality, surely can be improved. For home use, no problems. Noise and grain is there, expect it and own a nice affordable and 'semi-pro' cam. If you buy the MX500 hoping to seeno grain, then... sorry.
__________________
Cam: Panasonic MX350EN, SOLD my MX8EN
Mac: G3 400MHz PowerBook, 256 MB, OS 9
PC: Pentium 4 2800MHz, 512 MB, WindowsXP
SW: iMovie, Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere, Ulead Video Studio, various little utilities
Yow Cheong Hoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 14th, 2003, 01:48 AM   #5
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: An English man in the South of Germany.....
Posts: 40
Hi Guys,
Thank you for your replys.
This has given me much to think about.......

Frank,
Sorry to be a pain about this, I just want to get the right cam for me.... and not make a expensive mistake....

Thank you for all of these links.....
Sean Allen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 14th, 2003, 02:09 AM   #6
Outer Circle
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Hope, BC
Posts: 7,527
If your main concern is that the 953/MX5 is not a good "low light" performer, don't buy this cam. Buy a VX2000 instead. However, you are going to miss out on some features, and the small, hand-held footprint. Honestly, if I needed a cam right know for lower light shooting, I would buy the VX2000. But I would also get the audio upgraded. For everything thing else, I would go with the MX5/953. You have to decide what cam will suit your needs to best. Maybe even a good 1 CCD cam might suit your needs better. The TRV70 looks pretty good.
Frank Granovski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 14th, 2003, 12:06 PM   #7
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Aus
Posts: 3,884
u know, its all good to suggest another camera, but seriously, when you think about it price is only a factor depending on where u are.
Here in oz, it is a $2000 difference between the mx500 and the VX2000....
sure the VX is an awsome cam, and so is the MX500, but the two cannot be compared in price.
even the canon GL2 and is almost $2000 more
I dont know, but for $2000 i would be investing in a lighting rig and a wireless mic system and still have change leftover...

dont get me wrong, there lots of choices out there, but price is a major factor...

personally, im happy wth the footage i shoot on the MX, and my clients seem to like it as my work has doubled since i bought 2 of these babies...

if only they were black....
thing with these cams is that they dont look pro, but they have many features to rival afew of the other boys...

either way, low lighting can suck on this thing if your not careful, i run this at 15+db gain level in extreme low light and im happy with the results, Sure their not creamy smoth, but if u lower the sharpness and clean up the colour saturation its fine...
Any higher (18 and up by using the gain effect or colour night shot) and distortion is CLEARLY visible. 15db is not that noticeable, and most people appreciate the fact that your not using a light..
Just make sure the client understands the compromise between the 2 and let them decide whether you can use a light or not.

Mind you this minimal distortion could be from the fact that these are PAL units and are obviously running different configs to NTSC..
I could be wrong, but n all honesty, the low light shooting on this thing satisfies my needs and i do alot weddings... havent had a complaint yet...
Peter Jefferson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 15th, 2003, 01:08 AM   #8
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: An English man in the South of Germany.....
Posts: 40
Hi Peter,
Thank you for your reply,

I'm not a pro, I'm just a home user that wants good quality DV footage, and a good all round cam.
The VX2000 is too much money and too large for my needs.
The trv-950 is as much as I want to spend.

I'm going to my local store today with a DV tape, and will test the footage for myself on the MX 500 & TRV 950.

I'll let you know what I think.

Thanks again for your replys
Sean Allen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 15th, 2003, 01:18 PM   #9
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Aus
Posts: 3,884
if you want an all round cam, the mx will do you fine IMO.
I dont knwo about price differences where you are.
The GL/XM and VX2k, here in oz, is about a $2000/2800 dollar difference.. with that money u could almost get 2 cameras...
and if u want decent still, depsite the "bad" press, for printing purposes the MX's resolution is fine. (basically i take phorots using that cam as well as video and the fotos are used for covers and slideshows)

in the end its up to how much $$ your willing to spend...

good luck
Peter Jefferson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 15th, 2003, 04:59 PM   #10
Outer Circle
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Hope, BC
Posts: 7,527
I'm going to my local store today with a DV tape, and will test the footage for myself on the MX 500 & TRV 950.

Sean, that's a good idea. I've done that before, but with other cams.

If you want a good all around cam, there are several to choose from, depending on how much you want to spend. Personally, I think the MX5 is a better cam than the TRV950. But both of these are very close. How much of a price difference is there? Wait, I'll check their prices at http://www.cameraaction.com.au

MX500 = $2,953.63 AU Dollars
TRV950=$4,090.00 AU Dollars

Hmmmmm....

You will find the MX5 a lot easier to hold than the TRV950. You will also find that the 950 needs a bit less light, but not much. My biggest concern with the MX5 is it's useless viewfinder. The 950's is much better. If you need or want frame mode, you won't get it with the 950. The Pana has it. The video quality is good with both these cams, and depending on the color saturation you like better, that may help you with deciding.
Frank Granovski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 16th, 2003, 05:07 AM   #11
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: An English man in the South of Germany.....
Posts: 40
Hi guys,
Thank you for your replys,

Here in Europe I can get a Panny MX-500 for 1099 & a Sony TRV-950 for 1299, From http://www.letsgodigital.co.uk

So there is only 200 between the two.

Hopefully will get to test the cams this weekend, i'll let you know how I get on.
Thanks for all the info....
Sean Allen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 16th, 2003, 06:17 AM   #12
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Singapore, Passport: Malaysia
Posts: 407
Which is why we put our location in our profile, easier for discussion involving locality!

Just a suggestion to you, Sean, certainly no obligations. :-)
Yow Cheong Hoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 16th, 2003, 12:42 PM   #13
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: An English man in the South of Germany.....
Posts: 40
<<<-- Originally posted by Yow Cheong Hoe : Which is why we put our location in our profile, easier for discussion involving locality!. :-) -->>>

Ok, it's done.....
Sean Allen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 16th, 2003, 03:02 PM   #14
Outer Circle
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Hope, BC
Posts: 7,527
Oh, that's where you are. My mother lived in a small town in Southern Germany during the war years. She says that she doesn't miss it---she does miss the old Berlin where she was born and spent her childhood years, though.

It's funny that there's such a small difference in price between these 2 cams. Personally I'd go for the PDX10 over the TRV950, but, I still like the MX5/953 better; and my second choice would be a Canon GL2/XM2. But if I needed a new cam for weddings etc, for lower light stuff, VX2000 all the way, baby! :)
Frank Granovski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 16th, 2003, 10:39 PM   #15
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 101
I've played with the mx500 for the last five months. Overall it is great in good light. Indoors its footage is very poor. The picture is very dark and grainy even in lighting that would be good enough to read a newspaper despite any adjustment you make. I just shoot for recreational purpose but I would not use this camera to shoot inside an enclosed space.

I filmed some stuff at a circus where the lighting was good and the images were superb. Alas the whole point of having a small camera for personal use is to shoot on the run and bringing lights with you would defeat the purpose of a having a small camera. I disagree people with people who say its not that different to other cameras. A friends old sony tr30 had much more useable images in low light than the mx500.

Yowchoo what is the price of a pal vx2000/pd150 going for in Singapore? its hideously expensive here $5300 aust ( you can get a second hand car for that!). I shot some footage on a vx2000 and was just flabbergasted by the performance indoors. I'm going to SG later this year and would be interested to look for one if its cheaper.
Tung Bui is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Panasonic P2HD / AVCCAM / AVCHD / DV Camera Systems > Panasonic DVX / DVC Assistant > Panasonic DV / MX / GS series Assistant

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:23 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network