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Old January 2nd, 2009, 12:24 AM   #1
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Hpx171e : How to know if lens wobble is fixed

Hello there, I recently bought an Hpx171e, when I've opened the box I found no polystyrene, just a white and soft paper around the camera, and two transparent plastic box with two rectangular vacuum cavities (maybe original allogement for p2, and the other plastic one was at the base of the camera, at the bottom one cardboard with cables and two little box with two P2 of 32Gb each one - AG-HPX171E PSP Winter Campaign). I checked in the menu and I've found a line "Operation time" 0000015h. The seller said to me, before shipping, that evr'y unit has this problem and I must send the camera to Panasonic when received, the payment/shipping delayed one week, and after that, their tech-guy lost my data account on their site and created a new one warning me one-day before shipment (my old account contained two messages, I wrote the first one about lens wobble problem before they shippped the camera, the second one was the response of the vendor, telling me to wait the camera arrives and do by myself the repair thing, but as I stated before payment/shipping delayed one week (maybe repair thing processed in secret?), and one/two days before they shipped the unit their web-guy deleted my account for error and send me new password and username creating a new one, so I've supposed they could sent to me some message about it but the guy that fixed my account has deleted everthing.
I received the camera some day before xmas, so I was a bit confused.
I "squeezed" the lens as there : HPX170 Lens Wobble Remedy on Vimeo but it seems not exagerated as this one. Considering my great ignorance in this subject after reading some posts about that, I was sure that lens wobble problem would affect the footage at full tele generating some sort of vibration. So I made some personal test shot with auto-focus at full tele and manual focus here : YouTube - Panasonic Hpx171 - Autofocus Issue at Full Telephoto
Some people said that's normal effect when autofocus is at full tele (having problems to hold focus) and nobody clearly illustrated me what problem lens wobble generates. Hope someone can explain what I gonna do to be sure that my unit it's not affected and maybe already fixed in "secret"...
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Old January 2nd, 2009, 01:15 PM   #2
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Carlo - my advice would be to return the camera to the dealer and insist on a factory-sealed unit. Only the first distribution of the HPX had the lens wobble problem. I also would object to a counter that showed 15 h of time on it when you received it. If the dealership is worthy of your business, they will send you a newer factory-sealed unit.
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Old January 2nd, 2009, 01:53 PM   #3
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In the first message I sent to them, I wrote that I wanted they send the camera already fixed before they ship to me, but they refused telling me that I must personally send to Panasonic. So my father suggest me to attend and don't reply to them, and see what happens. After the delaying of shipment, I was close to contact them, but sudden they ship the unit. What do you think about the problem that I've showed in that youtube clip, is it normal? And how the lens wobble affect the footage? I registered the camera on Panasonic site and I'm sure the vendor where I bought the camera just sell to big companies, they just don't give a damn about a single private client.

Last edited by Carlo Sigismondi; January 2nd, 2009 at 03:05 PM.
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Old January 5th, 2009, 01:20 PM   #4
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Carlo - In another thread in this section entitled "HPX-170 Impressions", Dan Brockett replied to my post and referenced his excellent review of the HPX-170, which includes discussion of the lens wobble problem and how to check and see if your camera has the problem. It involves mounting the camera on a tripod, moving the lens to full telephoto, then checking to see if the wobble is there. Read his post and try the test. If the wobble has been fixed correctly, there should be no problem with this issue. I still don't like the idea that the camera use counter showed 15 hours when you received it, and I would protest to the dealer.
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Old January 7th, 2009, 09:11 AM   #5
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Just got a new HPX172 (PAL version) yesterday. ZERO lens wobble. And the usage counter was ZERO too.
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Old January 15th, 2009, 10:18 AM   #6
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I discovered when I set manual focus, I must also deactivate Manual focus Assist, the problem that I've encoutered at full zoom (99%), it's present with manual focus (with MF assist) or the autofocus, the camera seems to have a problem to lock the focus, causing a little vibration (side to side), it'like you see an image through a soup bubble for two or three seconds. When i set off MF assist, the problem disappear, I dunno if Dan has tested with Manual focus assist on, unfortunately I've access only to little tripods at a little tv studio in my province. I will buy a pro-tripod in february. The ideal thing is that Dan watches the first videos in my first post and confirm that the lens wobble is like those examples...hope Dan read here. It's my first camera, so I'm a lot confused.

Last edited by Carlo Sigismondi; January 15th, 2009 at 01:19 PM.
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Old January 15th, 2009, 10:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Donnell View Post
I still don't like the idea that the camera use counter showed 15 hours when you received it
When I received the camera i saw some numbers there, after some day I've understand that was the time of usage, unfortunately it was near to xmas, I've also send some messages to the dealer, but they're disapperead again mysteriousely from my account (sent messages). So i shot some hours of videos, to test the camera and a week ago I've started a documentary, now the hours are 00028h ( i did'nt use the camera for 28 hours!!!!) so I must have see right the first time...

Last edited by Carlo Sigismondi; January 15th, 2009 at 01:25 PM.
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Old January 15th, 2009, 01:18 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Donnell View Post
I would protest to the dealer.
Some news, I just contacted the dealer via phone, they don't know what's happened, but they can't do nothing! They just have only a message (where I've indicated my previous messages talking about problem 00015h and my ( I was very kind) hypothesis about lens wobble repair occured by that time reported in OPERATION. I sent those message 1/2 january, the second one only was not deleted, in this one I wrote about the deleting of the other messages, where I was talkin about of my theory of 00015h and lens wobble) After that I also bought a bag (indicating in the specs, that a white balance paper was included, but they don't!) and again they told me it was an error, they correcting in real time in their site while I indicate the item, just an error and I can't protest!) And...it'n not finished guys, it seems that my model is lens wobble afflicted (my lens mount shift of 1,5mm when you squeeze it, so the tech-guy tell me that it's affected). They just told me for future purchases they will give me a discount of 150 euros, about 196 dollars and I must send the camera to Panasonic indicating the problems...Oh guys...saturday I must shoot other footage, so I must wait the next week to contact Panasonic. What do you think? This company is very famous here...it's not a scam one.
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Old January 15th, 2009, 07:54 PM   #9
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I won't do any more business with that company in future - if they don't want to fix the problem for you FOC. You just brought a brand new camera - but, the usage clock shows it has been used already for 15 hours. Next, they insist you bring your camera to Panasonic - why can't they do this for you? My dealer in Singapore will even loan me a spare set if such a thing happens to me, while he takes my faulty unit to Panasonic to get them to repair. That's good service. Your dealer - well, I don't think he is worth your money.

It looks like your camera must be from the very early batch of HPX170 then. I am very surprised.
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Old January 15th, 2009, 10:21 PM   #10
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Dear TingSern, they send me the camera in 20 december, I tried to inform them in 2 january (as I've said the previous messages were mysteriously cancelled by their site, just one is intact that advise them that previous message were deleted, but this last one doesn't describe the problem), so they say "Because already passed 15 days from your purchase, we have only this message that says that you have tried to contact us, but in this one you have not described the problem, we can't do nothing about it". They were also closed during the festivities, so those days are added to 15 days limit for italian laws (what a mess!) and this 17 january will be 30 days from my purchase (adding festivities). They just said they're acting as by law enacted, after I told them that I've used the camera turning on and shot some footage they pointed that I used the camera ( I noted the OPERATION in the menu, but it was my first camera so I just hypothized that was something else, after studying and printing the pdf manual I realized that line was about operation time - my native language is italian, camera menu in english- , so added some hours from original time (original 00015h, now is 00028h) because I need to do a little work in the meantime, while attempting also to understand if the camera had problems, because their lack of support. I ask them if that time was caused by repair by Panasonic, and they can't tell me nothing, they said it's a Panasonic problem, they simple can't do nothing, they have requested my youtube videos to analyze those problems...They also suggested me to send to Panasonic for a full checkup...this story is incredible...I'm pretty sure if I lived in USA, Panasonic Usa or Barry Green and others, they sure would be scandalized if happened there, we don't have a Jan Crittenden Livingston here, damn!
I forgot to say that I paid ALL full price 6000 euros, with two 32GB P2 card (64gigs)!

Last edited by Carlo Sigismondi; January 15th, 2009 at 10:56 PM.
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Old January 15th, 2009, 11:28 PM   #11
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Hi Carlo,

I am shocked to hear this level of support - we are not talking about amateur products - this is professional level hardware - and you should demand the same level of support from your dealer as well.

Law is one thing, but, if the dealer is that good (and worthy of your money) - I am sure they will able to handle that for you without all the hassles that you are now going through. If your dealer wants to invoke the law to cover for themselves - well, I say this ... "Let's take your money elsewhere the next time round".

I mean - why would I want to get a pro equipment from a dealer with this kind of support - if I just get it direct from Panasonic - I am sure Panasonic will give you a better level of support then.

You have my sympathies ...
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Old January 15th, 2009, 11:55 PM   #12
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TingSern thanks a lot for your support, I just preferred to keep calm, I don't want act in legal way because the dealer is a big company, so I hope Panasonic will check the next week my camera and do the lens wobble repair, I've regurarly registered the camera the second day after I've received (reporting also in the Panasonic's registration form the dealer where I bought the camera, also their VAT Registration Number of the dealer). It's the best thing to do, luckily the camera doesn't have mechanical parts, so operation time it's bit "relative", P2 cards were sealed and other parts too. Excluding also the lens wobble and my perplexities about manual focus assist and autofocus problem indicated in the first post (they could be unrealated to lens wobble effect), the camera seem to work right. Hope this camera it's not a Pandora Box of unknow problems, considering it's my first camera I would be very unlucky...I can't compare it to others (for example Hvx200), so I just surfed on the net and forums before buying, when you try to start an activity or study without having professional friends of the same field, and nobody did the same thing before you, this is the risk you must take I suppose...
Their quote was "Law doesn't accept ignorance", when I told that I was not a pro and take some day to understand the meaning of "OPERATION" and the strange numbers there, if I was smart enough I could inform them immediately but I received the camera near to xmas, and I was a bit distracted by this...what cruel story...!

Last edited by Carlo Sigismondi; January 16th, 2009 at 12:26 AM.
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Old January 16th, 2009, 12:17 AM   #13
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Do you have the book by Barry Green - The HVX200 Book and now his updated HPX170 Book as well? If the book does not come with the camera, I suggest you order one copy for yourself (get both if you can). It is written in English, however. But reading that book alone will answer FAR more questions about the camera than you can ever get from asking questions in forums like this one. You might need English to Italian translation - however.

But, your standard of written English is good - so, I think you should have no problems understanding Barry Green's book as well.

If you are new to P2 recording formats (especially variable rate recordings) - this is one book you have to read. After that, you can be an advisor to your other professional friends about this camera :-).
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Old January 16th, 2009, 12:35 AM   #14
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I know the famous Barry Green book, unfortunately it's not included in the european package, so I must try to buy one via ebay :-)
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Old January 16th, 2009, 01:14 AM   #15
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Try AMAZON.COM will be better for you. eBAY - sometimes, the quality of stuff is suspect.

I have not read the HPX170 book - but, I have the HVX200 book. Because I am now very familiar with the HVX200 - when I brought the upgrade from HVX200 to HPX170, I don't need the HPX170 book anymore. Nearly everything is similar to HVX200 - and I just read the Panasonic instruction manual to find out what's new in HPX170. That's all.
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