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Old January 20th, 2003, 08:54 PM   #1
Dan Freedman
 
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Locked audio on DVX100???

Hi,

This is my first post to the forum (good to be here, looks like a nice community).

I'm in the midst of the tough decision on my first high-end DV purchase (mainly between pd150 and dvx100, but that's another discussion). I'm a little concerned about whether the audio on the dvx100 is locked or not (I feel confident that it _is_ locked on the pd150 when using DVCAM).

My main source of reference is Adam Wilt's very technically in-depth reference at:

http://www.adamwilt.com/DV-FAQ-tech.html#LockedAudio

Besides offering an in-depth discussion on audio locking (and differentiating its importance in theory and reality) his page also states, under the DV Formats section, that plain vanilla DV does not provide audio locking, while both Sony's proprietary DVCAM and Panasonic's proprietary DVCPro (used on many Panasonic Pro/BCast devices, I believe, but not on the DVX100) do guarantee locking.

Elsewhere, (http://www.smsprod.com/products/cameras/panasonic2.html), the DVX-100 is listed as having a "Built-In SMPTE Time Code Generator/Reader," which suggests to me something along the lines of audio-locking, but I'm not sure if it's not just referring to something else.

Clearly, I'm somewhat confused about things, and would hope that people here might straighten me out. For a machine as relatively high-end (for sub $4000) as the DVX100 is, with built-in XLR, etc., I wonder whether many folks are surprised that Panasonic did not offer DVCPro recording medium as an option (the way PD150 can use both DV and DVCAM).

Thanks so much. I look forward to hearing from folks out there.

Take care,
Daniel
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Old January 22nd, 2003, 04:47 PM   #2
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I think the primary reason why Panasonic chose not to offer this camera in the DVCPro format is because they have actually recently discontinued the standard 25mbps DVCPro format. Panasonic will, however, continue to offer DVCPro 50 (the 50mbps version) for the professional broadcast/news gathering market, and are concentrating primarily on that format. Again, to clarify, DVCPro as we know it (a variant of the standard DV format similar to Sony's DVCAM) has been discontinued by Panasonic. Hope this helps and welcome aboard,
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Old January 22nd, 2003, 05:14 PM   #3
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It's not so important to me, but I could have sworn that I read the DVX DOES have locked audio. Has anyone confirmed this is or is not true?

Skip
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Old January 23rd, 2003, 04:08 AM   #4
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Skip, I re-read 3 reviews and couldn't find anything about locking audio.
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Old January 23rd, 2003, 05:34 AM   #5
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On John Beale's website he states that the DVX100 has locked audio (look for the audio information listed under 11/18/2002):

http://www.bealecorner.com/dvx100/index.html

Not sure where or how he obtained this data.
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Old January 23rd, 2003, 06:05 AM   #6
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Thanks. That's one of the reviews I re-read. Funny how I can miss things sometimes.
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Old January 23rd, 2003, 09:37 AM   #7
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In Panasonic's big color brochure on the DVX100 it states:

"Unlike consumer DV cameras, the audio is locked to the video with a PLL circuit."
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Old January 23rd, 2003, 11:38 AM   #8
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Too bad they couldn't lock the audio to the actual frame it goes with...doh!

In all seriousness, the way Panasonic had "locked" audio to PRO25 was really an analog reference track that laid down markers telling the audio where it was recorded for. It isn't really "locked" per sae but it is referenced acurately hence the 18 micron track pitch. It wouldn't supprise me if they actually did use the DVCPro25 format but quit calling it that because of it's discontinuance in marketing.
Regular DV doesn't record locked audio or true time code and yet the DVX100 does. If you look at the specs for the heads in this thing it really does resemble DVCPro25 and it writes a lot of information to the subcode area of the tape. So maybe you really did get DVCPro and just don't know it.
You never can tell with all the marketing speak.
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Old January 24th, 2003, 09:15 PM   #9
Dan Freedman
 
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Hi folks,

Thanks for all the guidance. Sorry I missed that reference to locked audio on the Panasonic brochure. It's still pretty confusing what's really going on, though.

Is the general concensus that Panasonic is probably using the DVCPro25 spec (without saying so, due to marketing considerations), and getting the locked audio through that? If so, I guess it might actually be advantageous that locking's combined with the more ubiquitous miniDV tape format.

I tried calling Panasonic Broadcast tech support, but got _absolutely_ nowhere there. Does anyone have a personal contact at Pana Broadcast that might be willing to shed light on this (obviously, only if it's permissible by Panasonic, not trying to ask them to reveal proprietary info)?

Thanks again,
Daniel
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Old January 24th, 2003, 11:15 PM   #10
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hi everyone out there,

first of all could someone please explain to me in simple terms what they mean by the audio being "locked" or "unlocked". 2nd is this a good thing or a bad thing for us indie filmmakers?


john,
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Old January 25th, 2003, 10:59 PM   #11
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Locked or unlocked is a relatively minor feature (or lack there of). Adam Wilt has a good description of it on his site. Boy, he saves me a bunch of typing. If you have additional questions, please post back and I can elaborate.

Jeff
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Old January 26th, 2003, 01:06 AM   #12
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<<<-- Originally posted by Chris Hurd : ... Again, to clarify, DVCPro as we know it (a variant of the standard DV format similar to Sony's DVCAM) has been discontinued by Panasonic... -->>>


Hey Chris, where did you find this info? This was discussed at DV.com a month or two ago and a Pana Rep [I think for the DVC Pro 25 line itself] said there is no such discontinuance. Wondering...

Thanx.
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Old January 27th, 2003, 08:42 AM   #13
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DVCPRO is not discontinuation

Let me say once and for all, DVCPRO is not discontinued. We will be showing new machines at NAB. Please, this was incorrectly posted by a magazine undert an Ikegami Press Release. We are not discontinuing DVCPRO and have no intention of doing so.

Thank you very much,

Jan M. Crittenden
Product Line Business Manager
DVCPRO, DVCPRO50 and Standard Definition Cameras
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Old January 27th, 2003, 08:56 AM   #14
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Nice to hear this directly from you, Jan! Chalk up another one to the DV rumor mill. Sure appreciate you setting us straight -- many thanks,
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Old January 29th, 2003, 10:48 AM   #15
Dan Freedman
 
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In answer to my own question:

I exchanged emails with two _very_ helpful product line managers at Panasonic (Hi, Steve and Jan) and they give the following strait scoop:

"The AG-DVX100 does have locked audio much the same way as the AG-DVC200 does. It uses a Phase Locked loop circuit to achieve this."

They also reminded me to reinforce the fact that there is NO planned discontinuation of either DVCPro25 or DVCPro50 as alluded to above through the rumor mill.

Thanks, everyone, for all the help.

Best wishes,
Daniel
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