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Old July 1st, 2011, 08:26 PM   #256
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

George,

Welcome to the forum. I think for someone who cares about the image and doesn't want to spend a lot, the TM900 is a great place to jump in. I know it seems expensive, but for the image it produces, it's quite a value. It's also quite easy to use in comparison to professional units. I think you'll be glad you made the purchase. As far as storage, that is a much discussed topic on various forums. Most resort to multiple hard drives for serious work, but there isn't a perfectly safe, super easy way yet. It is one of the downfalls of digital media, but the upside for productivity is very positive. I'm staring at a box of miniDV tapes with old projects and a few new, unopened tapes. I'm not down on tape at all, it has its advantages, but it would be very hard to go back. Storage will only get cheaper and simpler with digital and I imagine we will ultimately store our work in the cloud and laugh at the days of having our own disc drives. I just finished uploading all of my rendered work to the cloud, but its not practical to load source files yet.

Enjoy you camera!

Last edited by Roger Shealy; July 2nd, 2011 at 06:46 AM.
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Old July 5th, 2011, 06:08 PM   #257
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Thank you, Roger and Andy, for your advice.

Now I'm faced with another challenge: whether to buy the TM900 now or wait a week or two. The price seems to be coming down. Today, two well-known reputable on-line sellers are listing it at US$889.99. The price is about $40 dollars lower at less reputable dealers who resort to aggressive upselling once you place your order.

I wonder if the $110 drop in price is due to rumors of a newer model, or just the competitive market at work.
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Old July 8th, 2011, 04:40 PM   #258
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

I've decided to order the TM900 later today or tomorrow. The price now seems stable at $889. I'm going to buy some cards, too, and I'm wondering if anybody can sanity-check my thinking on required speed rating, as follows:

About.com gives me the following two info-bits:
1) "The amount of data recorded at any given second is called a bit rate, and for camcorders itís measured in megabits (one million bits) per second, or Mbps. The more data youíre recording, the better the quality of your video."
2) "The bit rate also matters if you own a flash memory card-based camcorder. Memory cards have their own data transfer rate, measured in megabytes per second or MBps (1 megabyte = 8 megabits). Some memory cards are too slow for high bit rate camcorders, and others are too fast. Theyíll still record, but youíll pay extra for speed you donít need."

The TM900 Users Manual tells us to, "Use SD cards conforming to Class 4 or higher . . . for motion picture recording."

So, the highest recording speed on the TM900 is 28Mbps. Converted to MBps (divide by 8) we have 3.5MBps. The SD industry standards for Class 4 SDXC card say it writes at a minimum 4MBps (the standards specify the rating has to be the minimum - not average or maximum or optimal - speed).

Therefore, if I am using only the TM900, am I correct in assuming I should NEVER have to buy any SDXC card higher than a Class 4 rating?

If I pass the sanity-check, then this looks like a very attractive cost effective on-board storage option for the TM900.

SDSDRH064GA11 SanDisk 64GB Ultra Secure Digital Extended Capacity, SDXC, Memory Card, Class 4 15MB/Sec Read/Write Speed

It suggests I can get an additional 64GB for just about $4.00 over what the cost of the camera alone was two weeks ago.

Does all this make sense, or am I missing something?

Any comments will be appreciated. Thanks

Thanks for any help.
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Old July 9th, 2011, 05:11 AM   #259
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

@ George

You are correct, that is why I bought the HCD SD900, it uses only cheap cards ;-}

But the card speed also defines your offloading speed of a 64 GB card ...

See also my post:
HS900, storage questions?

Last edited by Anthony Schrijer; July 9th, 2011 at 05:45 AM.
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Old July 9th, 2011, 09:50 AM   #260
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

7:30am here in California. Can't sleep due to excitement about my upcoming purchase!

Thanks, Anthony, for this clarification. I'm sorry I didn't see your referenced post before posting my query. I had wondered about download speeds as well, but decided that if I use swappable cards, I won't have to worry too much about how long my backups take. (I'm an amateur and don't have to adhere to deadlines.)

Given the speed ratings numbers we've talked about, are there any other reason sbeyond the higher capacity available (64GB) that I should consider SDXC of SDHC?

Edit:
Ooops! I just read through your answer to Barry on the other thread (I had missed the second page) and I think I've got all the info I need on SDHC vs. SDXC.

I think my best choice, keeping price in mind, will be Class 6 SDHC.

Thanks much.

Last edited by George Taylor; July 9th, 2011 at 09:59 AM. Reason: New information.
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Old July 9th, 2011, 04:04 PM   #261
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Well, I just ordered the TM900 and a Transcend 32GB Class 6 SDHC card on Amazon for a total of $933.69 (US). I also ordered an SDXC-capable USB card reader ($6) and 15 ft. mini-HDMI/HDMI cable ($12) so I can watch my raw footage on my large LED TV.

Delivery in 5 - 7 days, and then I can start practising....Hooray!

I have learned a lot from this thread and others on DVInfo. Now, forgive me, I have two more questions:

1) Previous posts have talked about the Raynox wide angle adapters. I am looking at the Raynox HD6600PRO-46 0.66x model. Does anyone have specific experience with this on the TM900? Online reviews at various selling sites mention that it works well on the TM700, but the Raynox website cautions to be sure that it will mount correctly on your specific cam because the inside glass extends a bit out from the screw mount. I'm hoping the 900 is no different than the 700 in this regard.

2) I already own B&H 72mm Polaroid and UV filters for my D200. Would these work OK on the TM900? It appears I would have to use two adapter rings to get from 46mm to 72mm. Would this present any problems?

Incidentally, the outer screw mount on the Raynox is 72mm, so it will handle my filters without any adapters. I really don't want to buy additional 46mm filters if I don't have to.

Thanks again.
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Old July 24th, 2011, 08:35 AM   #262
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Re: Panasonic TM900 & Rode Videomic Pro (Pictures & Comments)

@ Andy Wilkinson: -

I was looking at your pictures of the Rode VMP thinking the same thing about overhang but having received my HS900 I see the shoe mount is in a different position, on the top, nearer the rear, so it will be further back with no worries about the dead-cat should I get/need one.

So, only decision now is whether or not I need one!

:D
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Old July 24th, 2011, 09:14 AM   #263
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

George, my advice would be to stay well clear of any sort of filters with a camcorder using such very short focal length lenses. OK to fit a UV if you think you're going to be hit by sea spray or Sahara sand, but otherwise don't do it. Certainly don't use filters with additional screw-on lenses.

You're adding two extra air-to-glass surfaces (which are never spotless) and you're reducing the lens hood's efficiency hugely - just when you most want it. I've demonstrated to disbelievers the image degradation filters can bring to your footage in against the light and wide-angle situations using matched cameras, and they've removed their filters immediately. Just use a microfibre cloth on the front element every now and again, as I've discussed here many a time.

I owned a 6600PRO a few years ago and was pleased with the lens. It sacrifices full zoom through for tight control on the barrel distortion, a fair compromise in my view. I haven't tried it on the 900 but one thing's for sure - the standard zoom is too tele-orientated, and would be a lot more useful if it was moved towards wide-angle.

tom.
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Old July 24th, 2011, 09:35 AM   #264
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Re: Panasonic TM900 & Rode Videomic Pro (Pictures & Comments)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Sampson View Post
@ Andy Wilkinson: -

I was looking at your pictures of the Rode VMP thinking the same thing about overhang but having received my HS900 I see the shoe mount is in a different position, on the top, nearer the rear, so it will be further back with no worries about the dead-cat should I get/need one.

So, only decision now is whether or not I need one!

:D
I was aware the shoe might have been in a different position on the HS900, i.e. under a plastic flap on the top rather than fixable to the front/RH side on the TM900 (with the TM900's provided/removable accessory) - but could never find any pictures that clearly showed this on the HS900 - other than a hint of where it would be on some official Panasonic web pages!

Maybe you could post some pics for the benefit of everyone? I've just noticed this thread has been viewed 31,500 times so I'm sure someone, somewhere would love to see pics of a HS900 with a Rode VMP on top! The deadcat will help a little in mild breezes, just don't expect miracles...

Enjoy your new camera Barry!
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Old July 24th, 2011, 09:54 AM   #265
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The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread - Updated Index

Very brief summary of what we've covered below - lots of nuiances I've missed so don't forget you can use the "Seach this Thread" function too...or even read all 265 posts!!! ;-)

Page 1 - TM900 specs, first impressions, link to Panasonic information, new battery type needed, suggested camera settings, No "Bondi Blue", remote control.

Page 2 - Filters and chances of vignetting, editing 1080p50/60.

Page 3 - 1080p50 as slow motion in post, hybrid optical image stabilisation and iZoom test video.

Page 4 - No Bondi Blue (again...), tendency to overexpose in bright sunlight, low light test video.

Page 5 - TM900 and Steadicam Merlin test video, larger battery pics/comments, battery charger.

Page 6 - More TM900 and Steadicam Merlin tests, Rode Videomic Pro/Nikon ME1 discussion, my accessory shoe modification.

Page 7 - Polarising filters, ND filters, more test films.

Page 8 - Wide angle adapters, TM900 and Canon 7D comparison test video.

Page 9 - More on wide angle adapters, manual settings.

Page 10 - More on manual settings, menus, shutter speed selection, relay recording clarified.

Page 11 - Rode Vidoemic Pro and deadcat information (link to audio section), editing 1080p50 (again), iZoom and polarising filters clarification.

Page 12 - Fan noise (or lack of in some cases), wide angle adapters (again), recording specs - still unanswered - anyone?

Page 13 - Some discussion on Intelligent Contrast Mode.

Page 14 - Discussion on AVCHD, editing, wide angles for the TM900 etc. series and ultra close up (i.e. macro ideas and lens tips). Discussion on F stops.

Page 15 - F-stops discussion continued. Pics of the Rode VMP (with Deadcat on) on a Rycote bar with my TM900.

Page 16 - Shutter speed discussion. Tendency to blow out highlights and exposure compensation settings discussed again.

Page 17 - More thoughts and demos on shutter speed. Good new user summary.

Page 18 - Just scroll up!
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Old July 24th, 2011, 12:56 PM   #266
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Hardwick View Post
George, my advice would be to stay well clear of any sort of filters with a camcorder using such very short focal length lenses. OK to fit a UV if you think you're going to be hit by sea spray or Sahara sand, but otherwise don't do it. Certainly don't use filters with additional screw-on lenses.

You're adding two extra air-to-glass surfaces (which are never spotless) and you're reducing the lens hood's efficiency hugely - just when you most want it. I've demonstrated to disbelievers the image degradation filters can bring to your footage in against the light and wide-angle situations using matched cameras, and they've removed their filters immediately. Just use a microfibre cloth on the front element every now and again, as I've discussed here many a time.

I owned a 6600PRO a few years ago and was pleased with the lens. It sacrifices full zoom through for tight control on the barrel distortion, a fair compromise in my view. I haven't tried it on the 900 but one thing's for sure - the standard zoom is too tele-orientated, and would be a lot more useful if it was moved towards wide-angle.

tom.
Thanks for your advice, Tom. Regarding filters, there has been considerable comment about the advantages of polarizing filters, so it's interesting to hear your suggestion about eschewing all filters on the Panny. I was thinking a polarizer might provide the opportunity for more dramatic skies in Africa (I probably won't need it for water reflections). But now I will certainly consider what you're saying, especially about impairing the effectiveness of the lens hood, which I imagine I will be heavily relying on.

I'm pleased to hear confirmation that the Raynox .66 might be a good buy. Again, for Africa, I'm looking to capture moods of expansiveness, vastness. I don't see lack of full zoom through as a problem, given that objective.

I have had the TM900 for a week now, and I'm just beginning to understand its more basic features and capabilities. Even so, I am stunned by the clarity and brightness of my test images, shot in 1080p/60 and played back on my 60" LED TV directly from the camera. Also, I'm impressed with how the iA function works (even though I will wean myself from it in due course). I live on a hill in San Francisco with a view south past Candlestick Park to the City and bridge of San Mateo, about 15 miles away. I did a slow zoom in on a sailboat by the bridge, which couldn't even be seen at full wide. As I zoomed, the imager caught a thin telephone line crossing the view about 100 yards away from the camera and locked focus on it for a few seconds before returning to long distance. It's not what I wanted, but it indicates how acute the imaging is.

So far, I simply love this little beast, my first ever camcorder. Thanks to everybody for your advice over the past few weeks.
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Old July 24th, 2011, 04:29 PM   #267
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Just wanted to say a big thanks to Andy for starting the thread and all who have have posted here; I have just spent the last few hours reading the entire thread! And in doing so, have confirmed my initial thoughts about getting the SD900 to work alongside my Canon 5D2 and 60D cameras. I still have my old SD format Panasonic GS400 and it seems many of the operational concepts are similar with the new 900 series.

So, looks like I'll be placing my order soon, selling the GS400, but keeping my Raynox HD7000 Pro WA lens, the old Beachtek adapter and the little Manfrotto 700RC2 head after all!

Thanks again for an interesting and very informative thread.
Peter
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Old July 25th, 2011, 03:04 AM   #268
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

George - as nobody has answered directly your query about the 660PRO+900 I'd urge you to try before you buy or get a sale or return deal. This lens does have a hood thread at the front (note I don't call it a filter thread) which could be useful in Africa. Peter's HD7000 was Raynox's answer to those who wanted a full zoom-through, but it 's less powerful and distorts more.

Polarisors are so difficult to replicate in post that I'd admit that it's the one filter you could make good use of in your travels. As their effect is zilch on axis with the sun and max at 90 degrees from the sun you could well find that the pluses outweigh the minuses.

The downsides are:

1) It's very difficult to find multi-coated versions - and would you have bought the 900 if it was plain for all to see that the front element (THE most important one) was completely uncoated?

2) Continuity headaches. Shot A is fine, Turn 90 degrees and shot B looks like a different month, let alone day.

tom.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 02:36 PM   #269
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Shealy View Post
Andy,

I've already pulled the trigger on a non-circular polarizer, understanding they are better for reducing glare and shouldn't be a problem without a silvered mirror in the chain. Will know in a few days! I am going to the Moab desert in early June, so I needed something to cut the glare.
Hi Roger....How has your experience with the linear polarizer worked out? There is no end to the number of threads on DVInfo about circular vs. linear polarizers, and no end to the controversy and conflicting information. After three hours of research, I still haven't come to a definitive answer as to whether a linear polarizer will be OK for the TM900, which has three sensors and therefore might (MIGHT) have the kind of technology that will be defeated by a non-circular polarizer.

So, best to go straight to the horse's mouth (if you'll pardon the analogy). Does the linear polarizer work OK on your TM900? No problems with auto-focus or auto-exposure?

Many thanks......George
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Old July 25th, 2011, 02:40 PM   #270
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

My bad, Roger. I just found your answer in May in this forum. Thanks.....George
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