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Old September 24th, 2011, 02:22 PM   #1
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Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

Had a chance to put my hands on this camera at the DV Expo. All the features seem very good (as advertised) and the camera is lightweight and well balanced. HOWEVER, I find a major oversight (in my opinion) regarding the text overlay of the LCD screen. Basically, you can barely read it! I'm not sure why this is, but there is no relief between the background image and the text menu's on the LCD. On top of that, some of the words are color coded making it even harder to discern what they are. This is a big enough issue for me to have to reconsider my thinking to purchase...
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Old September 25th, 2011, 10:05 AM   #2
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Re: Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

If this is a big enough issue as you say it is, it's probably going to get addressed with a software update... I would still buy the camera.
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Old September 25th, 2011, 12:53 PM   #3
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Re: Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

I thought about that. Question is, can something like this be changed with a software update or is it a permanent display issue?
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Old September 25th, 2011, 01:23 PM   #4
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Re: Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

If you ask me this sounds totally like a firmware thing. It's not the screen that has the font and the stiles burnt in its hardware, is it:)
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Old September 25th, 2011, 06:55 PM   #5
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Re: Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

If history proves correct, you can bet this is not the only issue that will arise with this camera. Every new model camera, from all makers, has their issues that need fixed. As a rule, I won't buy a camera until it's been on the market for a year. Most of the bugs have been addressed by then. The worse feeling has to be spending all that money on a camera and, once it arrives, having to send it to the manufacturer for fixes (that should not be an issue to begin with) which could take several weeks or even months. No thank you!
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Old September 25th, 2011, 07:42 PM   #6
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Re: Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

Alas, monitoring issues again? For years, all of the professional Panasonic cameras used the same low resolution LCD that my HPX170 has, even the high, high end cameras like the 3000 and the 3100. But the good part was that these were 4 x 3 LCDs displaying a letterboxed representation of the 16 x 9 image so there was plenty of black space where they could superimpose the text overlays (or at least most of them) with the black space on the monitor. But those LCDs were so low resolution that focusing was a real challenge until you got used to the resolution and used the enhancement feature. I still occasionally miss focus when shooting because it is simply hard to tell when subjects are in focus.

When I have shot with the HPX300/370, the LCD is much higher resolution and sharper, it is much simpler to judge focus with the higher resolution LCD. But the glossy screen makes shooting exteriors a pain as it acts like a mirror and I often find my fatigued features staring back at me rather than the image unless I use a Hoodman and even then, I still often only see reflections. But I never noticed the overlays being particularly difficult to read. I wonder of the overlay circuit or if the screen on the 250 is any different than the 300/370 screen?

That's one possible downside of the 16 x 9 LCDs, there is no black area, all of the overlays are laid down over live image. Hmm...

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Old September 25th, 2011, 08:04 PM   #7
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Re: Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

Yes, the weird thing is Canon and Sony don't have this issue. I own an EX-1r and XH-A1, not an issue. The new Canon 305, easy to read. Maybe the gloss screen is the issue? In that case, then a firmware/software update may not fix the issue afterall?
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Old September 26th, 2011, 01:46 AM   #8
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Re: Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Johnston View Post
As a rule, I won't buy a camera until it's been on the market for a year. Most of the bugs have been addressed by then.
I agree. Maybe not a year but more like 6 months. It is ridiculous isn't it. It's a privilege to get a properly working item...
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Old September 26th, 2011, 05:49 AM   #9
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Re: Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

It will no doubt be addressed in firmware if it is a problem, for info the HPX301/371 has a "menu back" setting that adjusts the contrast of the on screen text to the background brightness, maybe the 250 also has this and that would solve the problem.
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Old September 26th, 2011, 07:58 AM   #10
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Re: Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

Menu contrast settings would do it. However, I spent 10 minutes looking through every menu I could find. Didn't see the one your referring to. Only adjustments to the brightness etc... of the LCD screen which affect everything.
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Old September 26th, 2011, 09:39 AM   #11
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Re: Poor design of HPX250 LCD display

All of this could have been fixed if they'd handed out about 20 of these things to demo for three months then went back and fixed the problems before putting the camera into full production. I have not heard of ANYONE getting to field test a 250 so Panasonic is basically going to mass produce defective 250's that will have to be fixed after the fact. You won't be able to buy a camera with no defects until that first group of mass produced cams is sold and Panny decides to fix the issue before producing more. Just very dumb business practice. This is what happens when you rush to get a camera to market. I bet the reason it was locked in a glass case at NAB is because it was probably just a shell, not a working camera, and Panny has been struggling to get it to work and to the market. I'm going to predict major issues with this camera when it ships.
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