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Old November 12th, 2012, 09:57 AM   #16
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Re: Hpx 600

I would venture to guess that the single CMOS was done to reduce cost.
In the world of TV news, where the 1/3" JVC and P2 cameras are the norm, this camera makes sense. Especially if the TV station is abandoning SD cameras and already has a large supply of 2/3" lenses and A-B mount batteries. Plus, single chip CMOS cameras are becoming the accepted norm, albeit usually with larger sensors.

What the 600 has over the PMW350s is a much better codec, with an upgrade to some type of AVC-Ultra. I would expect the Sony's 3-chip system to make a better image, but it will be hampered by the 8-bit, 4:2:0 codec. And TV news organizations will not slap on an external recorder, so don't go there.
Personally, I would take the stronger codec over the presumed loss of image over the PMW, but YMMV.

I read in another forum where a Panny rep said the 600's image was comparable to an HPX2000. That probably isn't a stretch, as the 2000 uses older 1280x720 CCDs.

If so, the 600 offers an HPX2000's image (no slouch there) in a lighter, smaller package, with AVC-Intra codec and all the professional connections you could want. And a color EVF. And it's cheaper.

I like the 600, maybe because I used to own an HPX500, and this has all the features I wish the 500 had.
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Old November 12th, 2012, 04:17 PM   #17
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Re: Hpx 600

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Originally Posted by Glen Vandermolen View Post
I would venture to guess that the single CMOS was done to reduce cost.
I suppose so - but although it means one chip versus three, it means more complex processing and the need to deBayer. I'm not convinced the cost of a three chip 1920x1080 assembly is that big compared to a single, not relatively, in a camera of this cost, especially when you take into account 2/3" lens costs.
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Plus, single chip CMOS cameras are becoming the accepted norm, albeit usually with larger sensors.
Yes, the accepted norm for large format sensors, but that's more out of neccessity than desire. For 2/3", three chip is easily feasible, but the bigger the sensor gets the more difficult it becomes to scale 3 chip manufacturing up. And it becomes feasible to overcome the disadvantages of single chip in other ways. Three chip makes far more sense in 2/3" cameras.
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I read in another forum where a Panny rep said the 600's image was comparable to an HPX2000. That probably isn't a stretch, as the 2000 uses older 1280x720 CCDs.
Quite likely - and the implication therefore is that it's a single 1920x1080 Bayer sensor. There's a lot of evidence that such will deBayer to give luminance res of close to 80% of the fundamental, and chrominance res of about 50%. (The R and B sub-matrices are effectively 960x540.)

Hence luminance res. of about 1500x850 (so a bit better than an HPX2000), but the chroma res will likely be worse, and it is likely to have chroma aliasing that the HPX2000 doesn't. CMOS should give better sensitivity than CCD - but then you'll lose at least a stop due to 1 v 3 chips. "Comparable to an HPX2000" (overall) therefore is probably a reasonable assessment if it's a 1920x1080 chip.


Trouble is, that is significantly worse than a PMW350.
Quote:
What the 600 has over the PMW350s is a much better codec, with an upgrade to some type of AVC-Ultra. I would expect the Sony's 3-chip system to make a better image, but it will be hampered by the 8-bit, 4:2:0 codec. And TV news organizations will not slap on an external recorder, so don't go there.
Personally, I would take the stronger codec over the presumed loss of image over the PMW, but YMMV.
It has a better codec, but it won't make up for the difference in front end image quality. At this level, the codec should be pretty well transparent at the first generation, and it's difficult to see any degradation at all due to the XDCAM 35Mbs codec. If the HPX600 does have a 1920x1080 sensor, that will be easily noticeable against the PMW350 - over a stop less sensitivity just for starters.

Significant in a camera which seems targeted at news especially.

In Europe broadcasters tend now to go along with the EBU recommendations for new camera purposes, see EBU TECHNICAL - News - Are your cameras tiered enough for HD? . Two parts - how to do the measurements and how to assess. The latter is R118, and it's well worth looking at that - http://tech.ebu.ch/docs/r/r118.pdf

Assuming the HPX600 is a single 1920x1080 Bayer, it falls at the very first hurdle:
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1.1.1 Resolution

The camera should achieve the full resolution of the recording/production system. This requires sensors in 3-sensor cameras to have pixel-dimensions which are not less than those of the transmission system, or for a single-sensor camera to have significantly more pixels in order to do a satisfactory decode of the colour-patch pattern.
For codec, then AVC-Intra 100 or XDCAM422 50Mbs is definitely preferred - but it does say:
Quote:
For Journalism/News these standards can be relaxed to allow the use of.

* 35 Mbit/s MPEG-2 based inter-frame codecs at 4:2:0.
So for News/Journalism the PMW350 has a full seal of approval with no external recorder. And a number of large News organisations positively like the 35Mbs as it allows the use of SD cards for a number of reasons. (Not least being that for field edits SD cards fit directly into pretty well all laptops - no separate readers, cables etc.)

DVCAM has been (and still is) hugely popular for newsgathering, and that (for PAL) was 4:2:0. For news that was never seen as a problem, though Digibeta may have been seen as the de facto format for other work. 35Mbs XDCAM is the HD equivalent to DVCAM - best to use better for general production, but great for news, factual etc.
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Old November 13th, 2012, 01:04 PM   #18
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Re: Hpx 600

PMW350 - 13.1k
HPX600 - 12.3k
(taken from CVP)

That's a 800 price difference. Not much. As much as I love Panys cameras if I were buying a 2/3 camera at the moment I don't see a reason why I wouldn't buy the 350 over the 600.

What I like about the 350:
- IQ
- hypergamma
- a nice stock lens

I don't like:
- internal codec
- rolling shutter

The hpx600 doesn't have a stock lens nor does it have a flat gamma (film rec, or S-LOGish). To me this to facts mean a lot.
I wonder how much DR it has and how the highlights rollof. And if the IQ isn't on par with the 350 I Really don't see a reason why this camera isn't 2k cheaper... (because then it would cost a tad more then HPX370 I guess:))
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Old November 14th, 2012, 05:26 PM   #19
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Re: Hpx 600

Like I said, give me that AVC-Intra codec.

I will have a chance to see the HPX600 at a demo next month. I plan on going, unless I'm on a shoot.
Does anyone have any questions you want answered? I can ask the Panasonic reps.
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Old November 14th, 2012, 05:39 PM   #20
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Re: Hpx 600

Just a simple definitive answer to what the sensor resolution actually is.

And ideally, why it's single chip and not three chip.
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Old November 14th, 2012, 06:50 PM   #21
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Re: Hpx 600

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Just a simple definitive answer to what the sensor resolution actually is.

And ideally, why it's single chip and not three chip.
Definitely, those questions.

But I'll bet it is a 1920x1080 chip. If it were 4K, like the C300, I would imagine they'd be bragging about it.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 03:50 AM   #22
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Re: Hpx 600

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Originally Posted by Glen Vandermolen View Post
Definitely, those questions.

But I'll bet it is a 1920x1080 chip. If it were 4K, like the C300, I would imagine they'd be bragging about it.
It may well be a 4k chip but as it is primarily a broadcast camera 1920x1080 is all that is required as it suits the workflow better.

David knows a lot more than me about this but how you derive the final image is down to the maths and making sure that what you end up with does not have problems in the broadcasting chain, so a 4k chip with correct filtering resolving 1920x1080 is what we need for broadcast. I agree a 3x chip is better but it may be that panasonic want to keep this in the CCD domain.

It will be an ideal alternative to the HPX371 with 3x1/3" 2k chips or the more expensive CCD HPX3100, a lot of the news freelancers here are being asked to upgrade to HD from DVcam but the networks are not prepared to pay any extra for it so low cost full broadcast camera's are essential these days.

I personally went down the HPX371 route over three years ago but the P2 card format may not be ideal for news operation but once the adaptors arrive it will be a smoother workflow as you feel better handing an SD card over to a journalist or editor and the news operations can buy hundreds of them for use in the field.

A lot of people are using the sony 320 and 350 even though they are not full broadcast spec and the 500 is a perfect camera for broadcast but our rates have already been squeezed over the past ten years so investing in such expensive kit is no longer viable.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 03:53 AM   #23
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Re: Hpx 600

As for chip spec once someone such as Alan Robert's measures it we will have the answers, until then it is all just speculation as usual.

As we now know a lot of full 1920x1080 HD single chip camera's only resolve around 720p so we shall see what panasonic have done this time.

Like David I wish manufacturers like panasonic would just tell us what the spec is but I suppose they have secrets to keep and it's where the marketing bunnies take over.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 11:16 AM   #24
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Re: Hpx 600

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It may well be a 4k chip but as it is primarily a broadcast camera 1920x1080 is all that is required as it suits the workflow better.

David knows a lot more than me about this but how you derive the final image is down to the maths .........
The point with maths is that if you want to end up with 4, no matter how you well anyone can add up, even Alan Turing couldn't make it from 2 plus 1.

And if you want to end up with 1920x1080 final resolution - you need to start with either 3 1920x1080 chips OR a single chip with a higher photosite count than 1920x1080. Which is exactly what a camera like the Alexa does, albeit with a big chip. In the case of the Alexa it's 2880x1620, which deBayers very nicely down to 1920x1080.
Quote:
I agree a 3x chip is better but it may be that panasonic want to keep this in the CCD domain.
But what about the HPX371? The HPX250? They are CMOS 3 chip cameras from Panasonic.
Quote:
It will be an ideal alternative to the HPX371 with 3x1/3" 2k chips or the more expensive CCD HPX3100, a lot of the news freelancers here are being asked to upgrade to HD from DVcam ..........
But from a news organisations point of view, they are not going to have much interest in what make of camera the buy/use/specify. Cost, yes. Workflow, yes. Performance, to an extent. Manufacturer - whoever most suits the previous criteria.

And from what I've heard so far, then although yes, the HPX600 may be preferable to an HPX371, it's unlikely to be preferable to a PMW350. For the 350: same cost, better workflow possibilities, almost certainly better performance.
Quote:
I personally went down the HPX371 route over three years ago but the P2 card format may not be ideal for news operation but once the adaptors arrive it will be a smoother workflow as you feel better handing an SD card over to a journalist or editor and the news operations can buy hundreds of them for use in the field.
From what I hear, that's already the case with organisations who have already made an upgrade. To the extent that I recently heard from a freelancer with a PMW500 who had 35Mbs specified by a large broadcaster specifically to make use of the SD card workflow.

And sorry, but when the P2-SD card adaptors come, I believe they will be limited to AVC-Intra 50 - not 100.
Quote:
A lot of people are using the sony 320 and 350 even though they are not full broadcast spec and the 500 is a perfect camera for broadcast but our rates have already been squeezed over the past ten years so investing in such expensive kit is no longer viable.
Gary, the 320 and 350 DO fully meet the EBU broadcast spec for "Journalism/News" according to EBU R118. They clearly fall in to Tier 2J. Whether or not the HPX600 will is a matter to be seen, but it's nowhere near as clear cut because of criteria 1.1.1 (Resolution) and 1.1.4 (Spatial aliasing) - assuming it is a single 1920x1080 Bayer chip. It certainly won't be rated any higher than Tier 2J, or the PMW350.

As you say, it's DVCAM that many news organisations are upgrading from. Nobody would claim that was as good as Digibeta in many respects - but it had certain qualities that made it preferable to Digibeta for "Journalism/News" use. Easy integration with laptop NLEs over Firewire was vastly more significant than it being 4:2:0. And XDCAM 35Mbs is seen as a natural successor to DVCAM in the HD world.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 11:40 AM   #25
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Re: Hpx 600

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Like David I wish manufacturers like panasonic would just tell us what the spec is but I suppose they have secrets to keep and it's where the marketing bunnies take over.
There are a lot of things I don't expect manufacturers to make public, and yes, they will all have their proprietory tricks.

But basics like sensor resolution? Firstly, it's silly to try to keep it secret - point the camera at the right chart and the fundamentals are revealed straight away. It's something a rival manufacturer could work out in minutes with the right chart and knowhow.

Secondly, isn't it something that potential customers have a right to know? Go into a restaurant and the chef may not tell you all the subtleties of his recipes, but you'd expect to know whether you're being given chicken, lamb or beef before you order, wouldn't you?

I'm afraid a policy of keeping information like that quiet just makes me suspicious, makes me suspect that they are only too well aware it leaves something to be desired.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 06:02 PM   #26
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Re: Hpx 600

Totally agree with you David and after the so called new sensor of the HPX371 which seemed to turn out to be no more than a filter that didn't work, I personally as a long term panasonic user tend to err on the cautious side when the latest thing comes out.

We shall see but my HPX301/371 still does most of my business and is totally acceptable for 90% of my broadcast and corporate work, if I need a C300 or a shallow DOF camera I will just rent one in as its cheaper in the long term.

There are far too many models coming out to keep up with the manufacturers these days and for me it is still always down to what is useable and acceptable for the job in hand rather than the latest mega pixel camera.

P.S just read all of your other comments and when I said re 3x chips being CCD I meant it regarding the 2/3" cameras in the range not the 371 or 250.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 06:51 PM   #27
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Re: Hpx 600

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We shall see but my HPX301/371 still does most of my business and is totally acceptable for 90% of my broadcast and corporate work, .......

There are far too many models coming out to keep up with the manufacturers these days and for me it is still always down to what is useable and acceptable for the job in hand rather than the latest mega pixel camera.
I agree that if what you've got ain't broke, don't try and mend it. But you yourself said "a lot of the news freelancers here are being asked to upgrade to HD from DVcam but ......" and it's people like that who don't have the luxury of keeping with the camera they have. They have to upgrade, and the question is to what.

If the market is "journalism/news" the overwhelming choice recently seems to have been the PMW350. The HPX600 seemed to offer a similar cost alternative, but the more I he,ar the more the PMW350 still seems the better bet overall.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 08:02 PM   #28
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Re: Hpx 600

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I agree that if what you've got ain't broke, don't try and mend it. But you yourself said "a lot of the news freelancers here are being asked to upgrade to HD from DVcam but ......" and it's people like that who don't have the luxury of keeping with the camera they have. They have to upgrade, and the question is to what.

If the market is "journalism/news" the overwhelming choice recently seems to have been the PMW350. The HPX600 seemed to offer a similar cost alternative, but the more I he,ar the more the PMW350 still seems the better bet overall.
Not so fast, Dave.
The choice of cameras for TV news here are JVC HM700s, Panny HPX370s and 170s, plus some Sony EX1s and PMW320s. There's one thing they all have in common: they all come in under $12,000. TV news budgets are tight.

If you really want to watch your budget (and I do), the PMW350 is the most expensive option of all of these. The HPX600 is right up there with the 350 in price. We'll have to see how they compare.

I don't know what you're hearing, but I haven't heard squat about the 600, not one review. Understandable, as it hasn't been released yet. I hope to rectify that when I see one next month. If you know of a review, please supply the link, I'd love to hear about it.

Don't get me wrong, the 350 is a great camera. My buddy has one and he loves it. The video quality is excellent. But I won't crown it King of TV News just yet.
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Old November 16th, 2012, 04:40 AM   #29
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Re: Hpx 600

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Not so fast, Dave.
The choice of cameras for TV news here are JVC HM700s, Panny HPX370s and 170s, plus some Sony EX1s and PMW320s. There's one thing they all have in common: they all come in under $12,000. TV news budgets are tight.
Yes, sorry, Gary went on to talk about "low cost full broadcast camera's are essential these days" and together with the comment about DVCam replacements I was assuming he was thinking primarily of a direct DSR500 replacement. (Certainly in the UK, DSR500s have been heavily used for such as news etc)

As such, the PMW350 has been seen as the direct replacement for the DSR500 for upgrade to HD, and to enable file based working. Like the DSR500, it and the HPX600 are 2/3" and similar in price - hence the comparison.
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I don't know what you're hearing, but I haven't heard squat about the 600, not one review. Understandable, as it hasn't been released yet.
I agree - very little has been said, hence my earlier question - if it's single sensor, why, and what fundamentally is that sensor? Understandable? I'm not so sure. It was NAB where it was first announced AFAIK, and according to CVP they list it as already in stock ( Panasonic AG-HPX600 (AGHPX600) Lightweight 2/3 Shoulder Mount P2HD Camera Recorder with AG-CVF10E Viewfinder Bundle ) . So where are any reviews?
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Old November 16th, 2012, 05:10 AM   #30
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Re: Hpx 600

The daft thing in all of this is that the solution to DVcam upgrade is probably the PMW350 as you say but it will be the plethora of cinematic camera's that forces the change rather than the need for a useable ENG camera.

Probably no reviews as the Philip Bloom's of this world are far too busy pixel counting and making test vimeo video's on the latest cinematic camera releases to keep the marketing peeps happy!

I can see the crazy flip to all of this when some muppet in the news dept says that all the journalist needs is his own DSLR and off they go and can shoot their own news stories in cinematic search for focus mode!

Forget the practicalities of it all as it is what a lot of people are using so it must be OK???
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