HVX in SD vs. Current AGX100B? at DVinfo.net

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Old February 23rd, 2006, 12:18 AM   #1
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HVX in SD vs. Current AGX100B?

Hi there. Just curious if there was any difference in using the HVX in SD mode vs. the results you can achieve with the AGX-100B?

I would guess the AGX has better light sensitivity - maybe not...

I ran into a friend's AGX recently and liked it. I would far rather invest in the HVX though, unless it was at a significant disadvantage in similar environments.

I would want excellent low-light capability, 24p/24pa modes, shooting to miniDV tape, etc.

So essentially - is the SD section/capabilities of the HVX the same as the current 100B?

Thanks,
Shawn
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Old February 23rd, 2006, 12:40 AM   #2
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BTW - I meant DVX - not AGX. Sorry..
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Old February 23rd, 2006, 01:14 AM   #3
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Both cameras have 3 lux listed for minimum illumination on B&H's site. I have my doubts though, that the HVX200 would do quite as well in dim lighting as the DVX100B, but I have never touched either camera.
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Old February 23rd, 2006, 01:18 AM   #4
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There are a lot of similarities, and some differences, some of which are substantial.

If you're shooting in standard-def DV mode, they're quite comparable. The HVX has a more telephoto lens and a wider-wide angle, and it has a sharper high-def lens and native 16:9 chips so if you're shooting 16:9, the HVX will definitely deliver more resolution than the DVX.

However, the DVX has an advantage in sensitivity; in progressive mode it's about 1 stop faster than the HVX is. In interlaced mode it's another stop faster still.

The HVX has the ability to shoot in DVCPRO50 mode for standard-def though, and that's notably superior to anything the DVX could do. It requires P2 cards to shoot DV50, but then you get 4:2:2 color sampling and much milder compression.

Other than the sensitivity difference, you can pretty much think of an HVX as a superset of the DVX; it has everything the DVX has and a whole lot more. And it's $2,000 more as well, so it should offer more!
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Old February 23rd, 2006, 01:26 AM   #5
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Easy call... as noted... in 16:9 the HVX wins hands down



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Old February 23rd, 2006, 01:32 AM   #6
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Its also worth noting that you can match the HVX to the DVX in terms of gamma and overall image similarities in plain vanilla DV mode. Dont know what situation would arise for it...but if you had to do pickups for a DVX shoot or if you have a DVX and HVX and need to shoot DV you can match them.

Like Barry said though.. DVCpro 50 kills DV in every aspect.. and once you use it you will never want to go back to DV.
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Old February 23rd, 2006, 01:41 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Green
If you're shooting in standard-def DV mode, they're quite comparable. The HVX has a more telephoto lens and a wider-wide angle,

Hey Barry, would you (or anyone else) happen to know the 35mm equiv. for the DVX and HVX offhand?
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Old February 23rd, 2006, 10:06 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dylan Couper
Hey Barry, would you (or anyone else) happen to know the 35mm equiv. for the DVX and HVX offhand?
I think that would be 32 to 423 if I recall... Panasonic has it posted on the HVX200 page and it's probably in the users' guide.
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Old February 23rd, 2006, 09:00 PM   #9
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My 2 cents worth

From our studio testing, both the HVX and DVX100B have superb color. We shot both under controlled studio lighting conditions side-by-side and had both cameras pointed at a GreytagMacbeth Color Checker.

With the HVX in DV mode we were often hard-pressed to tell the difference between the two and in fact often got confused as to which clip we were looking at.

However, as Barry pointed out, once we shifted the HVX into DV50 mode the advantages of the 4:2:2 color space were clearly evident: Reds popped and overall gamma and chroma saturation were much better.

Panasonic has always been known for amazing color, even in the *lowly* DV realm. We put the DVX100B up against several other DV/HDV cams - XL2-s, Z1, H1, HD100 - and the DVX was the clear winner in color output. The most amazing thing about our results, were that even if we put the Z1, H1 & HD100 in full HDV mode all we got was better resolution, but not better color. That shocked us all.

I've said this many times, but if I were shooting anything that had an SD 4:3 final output, I'd take the DVX100B over ANY of the other cameras - with exception to the HVX, of course.
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Old February 23rd, 2006, 11:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Lane

However, as Barry pointed out, once we shifted the HVX into DV50 mode the advantages of the 4:2:2 color space were clearly evident: Reds popped and overall gamma and chroma saturation were much better.
I did a very similar test Robert; and i could even see a huge difference in the banding on the edges of the macbeth chart in 4:2:2.. i was actually shocked the difference was so extreme.
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Old February 23rd, 2006, 11:57 PM   #11
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You will get better chroma resolution by not going to DV25.... reds and blues will maintain more detail, a real achilles heal of the DVX



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Old February 24th, 2006, 07:03 AM   #12
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Jarred,

You bring up a point that answers a question that's taunted many an indi producer: If a project has a final output to DVD would it look better shot in DV50 or HD and then downconverted to SD widescreen for DVD authoring? The answer is, "absolutely".

As you mentioned, there is significant banding due to harsher compression from the DV25 spec. If that's what you start out with as raw footage things will only get worse as you recompress for DVD output.

It also points to being "future proof" for future iterations of the same project. The HD-DVD players are literally just around the corner with Toshiba launching it's player next month. In less than 2 years the HD-DVD player market will of course explode as consumer demand draws pricing down and availability up. If you shoot in the best codec you can afford now (and with the HVX full 1080p is a reality) then you'll always have that HD footage available to re-cut a "new" version of your original project and could re-release the true HD version.
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