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The 4K DVX200 plus previous Panasonic Pro Line cams: DVX100A, DVC60, DVC30.


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Old August 5th, 2004, 01:14 AM   #1
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NTSC vs. Pal - new perspectives?

As a filmmaker working in both the US and the Old Country, I'm torn between two equally vital markets for my work as I choose which version of the DVX100A to get. I plan to shoot in 24/25p for broadcast/DVD distribution in both regions. Blowup to film is not my goal.

It seems whatever advantages PAL has are undermined by the vagaries of NTSC conversion in the States, while the limitations of NTSC seem to make it ill suited to compete against better resolution PAL in Europe and beyond.

I've read all the threads - several times - and I still don't have a clear idea of what the consensus is, if any. I guess it boils down to which format has the greater flexibility when it comes time to convert.

Any new perspectives will be appreciated.
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Old August 5th, 2004, 05:45 AM   #2
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Shoot 25p, slow down to 24p, and add 3:2 pulldown to get to NTSC. That will give you best quality for both markets, but only if you can use a good post production solution to do just that.

Graeme
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Old August 5th, 2004, 12:16 PM   #3
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Hi Graeme,
How does your standards conversion handle NTSC-to-PAL when the footage has quite a few fast pans, camera motion and motion? Shot Footage is 50i. 25P results were not appealing with too much motion jerk.

Thanks
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Old August 5th, 2004, 12:42 PM   #4
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The 25p to 24p then to 29.97 via 3:2 pulldown will produce the highest quality result, but, as you say, if it wasn't 25p to begin with, it will get "filmised".

My converter does things similarly, but you have the choice of starting with 50i or 25p, and it goes straight to 29.97 avoiding the 24p intermediary thus FCP only has to account for the 29.97 to 30fps speed change on the audio, which is well within it's capabilities. It looks pretty darn good to me, but that's what the demo is for....

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Old August 5th, 2004, 02:20 PM   #5
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Based upon your situation, I would recommend the PAL version. The extra resolution is very welcome, especially when you use the widescreen mode of the camcorder (in letterbox modus).
I have the DVX100 PAL camcorder and had to convert 25P footage to a NTSC version on dvd. I did this with Vegas (my editing software) and the results were very good. I asked several forums for advise trying to get 24P footage with Vegas, but all suggestions and opinions didn't work out great. And believe me: I tested for a couple of days all kinds of pulldown and other settings trying to achieve this. But when I converted to interlaced standard NTSC footage, it looked great without shadow and motion problems, I got a lot of compliments with the NTSC output that was played on a big projection screen at a film festival in the USA.

Peter
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Old August 5th, 2004, 02:37 PM   #6
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remember extra work is required to slow down 4% to 24fps, and also you have to work with the audio so it doesnt show signs of slowing down. i just say, if youre in an ntsc country, use ntsc. stay with the standard.
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Old August 5th, 2004, 02:41 PM   #7
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25p to 29.97 is for all practical purposes the same as 24p to 29.97. Lots of people are in your boat. If you really have PAL distribution possibilites, shoot PAL, convert to NTSC when needed.

Vegas rocks.
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Old August 5th, 2004, 03:30 PM   #8
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Graeme, Kevin, Peter, Michael, Joe - I thank you all for the invaluable advice.

We just put our foot down and got the PAL DVX102AE. One more thing: In addition to 25p, I plan to shoot in 16:9 squeeze mode. Will this in any way further complicate the conversion process?

Peter - did you shoot in squeeze mode, or in standard 16:9 with the recorded letterboxing?
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Old August 5th, 2004, 05:22 PM   #9
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Zareh: I shot in letterbox mode, as the DVX100 (not the new A-model) does not have the squeeze function.
I can't think of any specific problems using the squeeze mode with 25P.

Michael: why is slowing down necessary if you don't want to transfer to film? If you stay in the digital video domain the way I did the conversion of my 25P PAL footage to standard interlaced NTSC material, you don't need any speed changes and the results are quiet okay. The 25P effect from the PAL footage is preserved voor 95% in the interlaced NTSC output video.
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Old August 5th, 2004, 05:42 PM   #10
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Slowing down 25p to 24p and converting via 3:2 pulldown can look excellent, and is easy to do. And it's reverseable without loss.

Graeme
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Old August 6th, 2004, 07:00 PM   #11
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Zareh, so where did you purchase your PAL DVX from? And how much? If you don't mind me asking.
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Old August 8th, 2004, 01:05 AM   #12
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Hey Joe,

We got it through a friend in the electronics biz for almost 4 grand, and he had a hard time finding it.

I noticed that Adorama, here in New York, carries it as well, but like B & H they're out of stock at present.
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