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


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Old November 24th, 2004, 12:07 PM   #16
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I agree with Tommy. 16:9 and frame mode are not this camera's strong point especially if you are doing nature work. However in normal 4:3 mode it really shines.
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Old November 25th, 2004, 12:18 AM   #17
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DVC30

Rob,
I had a GL1 and am XL1 from 1999 until earlier this year, when it was stolen I picked up a GL2 and wasn't as happy with the color and look, that I was used to with the GL1, so I got a JVC GY300U with 1/3" chips. Sold it and got the DVC30. While the low light is not supposed to be as good as a 1/3" inch camera, the low light is very decent on this cam compared to the GL2 and even the JVC. The JVC went lower in light, but the grain was very noticable and color went bad, the DVC30's grain is much less apparent even at 12db. The image stays bright and colors remain good. I would say very good for a 1/4" cam and can compete with some 1/3" chips depending upon their electronics (except the Vx2100/PD170 which I think are unbeatable)

I am happy with the Frame mode on the DVC30, for the 5 years I had the GL1, I used it's frame mode almost all the time. You lose some res on frame mode, but it's really hard to tell, except when I shot a resolution chart and the white spaces between the black lines on the 600-line vertical set looked gray and the horizontal set looked clean. Thin or sharp diagonal lines will look jagged. And as with even progressive mode, you have to be careful about zoom and pan speeds. But remember that the vertical resolution loss is compared to genuine progressive mode, as interlaced mode also loses some vertical resolution compared to progressive as well. I get better resolution and results shooting frame mode on the DVC30 than I do de-interlacing with DV FIlm Maker.

16:9 does lose some resolution as well. It's actually not too too bad compared to the 4:3 mode, but definitely noticable compared to the GS400 or PDX10.

But (for reference to my opinions) I shoot talking head interviews inside and outside (carefully set up) so softening, or resolution loss isn't wouldn't be an issue for me.

I have played with the 1.25 digital zoom (and on the 120" projector) didn't see much of a degradation. But if you start to stack some of these "slight losses" on top of each other, it can get pretty ugly.

IR, I have used the IR (but not the slow shutter speed super IR) and it does a nice job of a smooth B/W image at a close distance, say 6 feet or so. At longer distances the image gets noiser and more and more indistinguishable, but at close distances, it's nice. It depends on whatever ambient light might be present (helps) as opposed to pure darkness, and also light colored walls and surrounds as such also aids in this. Haven't used any add-on IR light banks as I really have no practical use for it.

Zoom is nice and smooth and controllable speeds is great.

Haven't used any wide or tele converters on this cam.

My GL1 filters were all 58, the lens hood has no inside threads, so to use the lens hood, you need 43mm filters, then the hood bayonets over that. For me, I used a 43-58 to use my existing filters, and had to get a 58mm hood.

All-inall, its a really great cam for $1650-1750-ish. It's great to hold and shoot and very well thought out, a better shooter than my GL2. (and I like the image better) Frame mode is just as good as the GL2 (IMO) Now, the GL1 had such a low res and with the pixel-shift, the frame mode had this dreamy kinda look (for people shots), but the DVC30 is a bit sharper. It's a little heavier than it looks.

However, you need to have an adequate usage for 4:3, I think to justify this cam, if you do, than it will be a nice cam. I think if all or most you shoot 16x9, you might want to look at 16:9 cams, like the GS400 or PDX10.
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Old November 26th, 2004, 04:29 AM   #18
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hey Brian would you say the day time video quality of the dvc-30 is as good or better than the jvc-gy300u thanx for te input
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Old November 26th, 2004, 02:50 PM   #19
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Joe, I would say color-wise, yes.
I prefer the color of the DVC30.

If you lower the sharpness on the JVC and boost the sharpness on the DVC30, then the same level of detail on perfectly lit subjects. (the DVC30's default sharpness is set lower -no edge enhancement- than say a PDX10 that I tried) So I know some PDX10 owners that turn their sharpness down to avoid over-edge enhancement (MTF) as I did, I turned down the sharpness on the JVC about 1 indication, while I would turn up the sharpness (for my tastes) on the DVC 30 about 2 indications.

The JVC handled a higher range of contrast better, maybe about a stop or so more range between clip and black. (maybe, maybe more, just my impression) They both hold color pretty well in areas about to go black and areas about to clip. The DVC30 has a built-in knee which helps, and the cinegamma helps too.

On paper, the specs say that the JVC is an incredible, professional unit, which is soley why I bought it. Nothing to complain about, it seemed like a nice cam, like I should like it more than I did, but it left me wanting more.

This is not scientific, but there was a lot I liked about the DVC30 image better or just as good. I enjoyed shooting the DVC30 more and at the end of the day had footage I personally liked better.
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Old November 27th, 2004, 07:02 PM   #20
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thanks for all the info guys. I'd still like to hear from someone who has used the additional infrared that mounts on top of the cam.
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Old November 29th, 2004, 03:47 AM   #21
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Century 1.33X Anamorphic Focusable Converter

I am really interested about the Century 1.33X Anamorphic Adaptor that you will see here (for use on the DVC30):

http://www.centuryoptics.com/pdf/CPGL2.pdf

It sounds good from the product literature.

It is EXPENSIVE (about $1159 to $1299 - depends where you look).

Has anybody used this adaptor ? I am concerned about resolution loss and the fact that it would have to use a step up ring from 43mm (DVC30) to the 58mm size of the Adaptor.
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Old December 2nd, 2004, 05:21 PM   #22
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Re: DVC30

<<<-- Originally posted by Brian Carrell :
16:9 does lose some resolution as well. It's actually not too too bad compared to the 4:3 mode, but definitely noticable compared to the GS400 or PDX10.


But (for reference to my opinions) I shoot talking head interviews inside and outside (carefully set up) so softening, or resolution loss isn't wouldn't be an issue for me.


However, you need to have an adequate usage for 4:3, I think to justify this cam, if you do, than it will be a nice cam. I think if all or most you shoot 16x9, you might want to look at 16:9 cams, like the GS400 or PDX10. -->>>

Well, at last someone puts the DVC30 in a better perspective, comparing it with the GS400 and PDX10.

It's even quite likely, as it was once suggested, that their CCDs are the same. Though if they were "blood-related" that should show in their 16:9 response, which apparently they do not share.

The PDX10 also seems to produce a vertical line when shooting against the sun or a very bright object.

But it's my feeling that those three cameras share a lot.

Now where did you find the DVC30 selling in the $1650-1750 range? Around $2100 was the least I could find, without the XLR adapter.


Carlos
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Old December 2nd, 2004, 05:33 PM   #23
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B&H Photo has it for about $1750.

Bill J.
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Old December 5th, 2004, 07:56 PM   #24
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check out:

http://store.yahoo.com/royalcamera/camcorders-sony.html
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Old December 5th, 2004, 09:33 PM   #25
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Thanks for the post Carlton but you might want to check out http://www.resellerratings.com where you can read the horror stories associated with online retailers such as Royal Camera. Then compare that site with some of our well established and respected DVinfo.net sponsors.
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Old December 6th, 2004, 06:30 AM   #26
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Those prices seem ridicuously low. That should tell you something is fishy.

Tommy, do you know or have you heard about using Anamorphic Adaptors on a camera such as the DVC-30 ? I am curious about the quality of the footage one can shoot using an adaptor.
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Old December 6th, 2004, 11:08 AM   #27
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Adam, an anamorphic adapter would be ideal for the DVC30 but I was unaware of one made for the DVC30? Is it made by Century and if so is it expensive?
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Old December 7th, 2004, 05:21 AM   #28
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Century 1.33X Anamorphic Adaptor

Tommy,

It is not made specifically for the DVC30. It is made by Century Optics and is here:

http://www.centuryoptics.com/pdf/CPGL2.pdf

It sounds good from the product literature.

It is EXPENSIVE (about $1159 to $1299 - depends where you look) and would require a step ring for the threads. So I wondering what type of 16:9 I could get using this on a DVC30 ?

I talked with Peter Jefferson and he uses an Anamorphic Adaptor (not the Century I believe - I think he uses it on his DVX100) and he likes the results.
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Old December 15th, 2004, 10:09 PM   #29
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DVC 30

I have owned the DVC30 since the first batch landed in the US. I am always confused ny the statements about the 16:9 performance. there were a few Japanese shots published wthout any exposure/settings info that seemed to show a problem. And, admittedly, Adam Wilt did some tests that seemed to show a theoretical problem with vertical resolution. But I do all my taping in 16:9 squeeze mode and display it on a 6' across wide screen projector screen and it is beautiful.

I get expected problems when i try odd fast scans or pans. I get the expected jaggies when I go into frame mode (they emulate the way film works).

Re: the XLR microphone adapter: use only the Pannie version. It uses a connector that is A LOT more reliable than the minijack and that will support better interference resistance.

An excellent camera. No buyers remorse (but I still wish I could have afforded the DVX-100)

BTW the IR mode does have a small illuminator. I have used it to great extent for local (say, up to 8') capture.
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Old December 16th, 2004, 08:00 AM   #30
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Chris, there isn't a problem with the 16:9 squeeze mode on the DVC30 just that there are cams with noticeably more resolution due to megapixel CCDs. My VX2000 is similar to your DVC30 in that it has above average low light performance and mediocre 16:9 but that doesn't stop me from using it 100% of the time. I don't really notice the difference unless I'm viewing some old GS100 or PDX10 footage adjacent to the VX2000.

Chris, maybe you can share some of your 16:9 frames?
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