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Old March 3rd, 2006, 09:27 AM   #1
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Heres somethign to consider for the HVX200a

just a thought here..

how bout getting rid of the tape drive altogether.. then with the space that is being saved, wack in 4x 60gb microdrives as found in an ipod... run a HW raid configuration chipset as found in the P2 cards and voila, instant 240gb internal drive ready to fill with goodies...

then when ur ready to dump, just connect to the PC and transfer...

P2 could then be a backup format in case you run out of storage space during the shoot...

all this is possible, theoretically...

personally, id rather shoot with the HVX when it comes to HD material, simply for the bitrates and i know DVCPro is a nice CLEAN format... much cleaner IMO than HDV ever could be, especially with motion ertefacts... but the only problem I personally have is that i cant use it for teh work i do, being long form productions....

My next option is to go for teh JVC, which IMO is a decent enough camera and very similar in Gamma/picture control to the DVX100, i just dont like HDV.. ive been using Z1s and to tell you the truth, im far from impressed... the Canons price range is really a joke.. here in aus its going for $14000 i can buy a car with that money... or i can throw in afew extra grand and get a Sony XDCamHD unit.. which id prefer above tape and P2 as i need to archive my work for long times before i even edit...
on top of that if i stick with Panny, I can at least use my 5 existing batteries... i mean 2grand may not be much for some, but 2 grand to run power into a camera is alot, when u consider i can build a whole new workstation fo that much money...

so what do u say Pana? U gonna ditch the tape drive and give us inbuilt data storage?
Id be more than happy to pay a couple of extra grand for this.. it would then make the HVX feasable to use in longform projects...
right now, i have no choice but to lean towards teh HD101 as i persoanlly consider it to be far surperior to the Z1 and the canon is jsut way out of my price league...
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 09:38 AM   #2
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You really cannot compare the Z1's form of HDV to JVC's. They are both HDV but totally different forms of it at different bitrates. Progressive mpeg2 just naturally compresses better along with the JVC having more bits per element. HDV2 might have a larger datarate at 25mb/s compared to HDV1 at 19mb/s but the HDV2 tries to cram a lot more info in those extra 6mb/s.

I'm not saying JVC's HDV1 is perfect but it is much better than HDV2.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 09:41 AM   #3
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Cineporter lists a 240GB drive in the works for the HVX. It'll mount on the bottom of the camera. That could give you 4 hours of record at 720p60 or closer to 10 hours at 720p24n. I have a hunch it'll be around $4000 though given the 100GB model is probably close to $2000.

Next we'll need a 50GB BluRay recorder for archival purposes. I have a hunch the first ones out the door will be around $2000 (heck the players are close to that price! so it may be more).

All told that would make the HVX200 an $11,500 camera. Actually still not a bad price given the above capabilities. Make sure you double your rates though.

One might want the built in drives as you request and/or BluRay disk recording built in (like XDCAM HD).
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 09:41 AM   #4
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They could remove the tape drive but I doubt that they'd put in an internal HDD to record on. If they were to add in anything, it would be more P2 slots, maybe four instead of two. I can't think of any other features that would be upgraded besides the resolution of the viewfinder and LCD. But anyways, I'm pretty sure there's already been enough speculation about an HVX200A in other threads. We don't know if Panasonic will even do that with the HVX200, they could move on to some new camera entirely, who knows?
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 12:25 PM   #5
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They should skip the tape and use the money/space for a in camera processor that will host an off the shelf 2.5in portable hard drive. Evidently the existing processor is linux capable. Seems to me this could be a realistic solution....

Reguardless, I am excited to own this camera. I will just make do like everyone else until P2 is more realistic.

Jay
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 01:13 PM   #6
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I actually like it has the tape option. I aso agree with some of above, that if they were to make no tape drive, just make a whole new camera. One of the reasons I got this camera was the option to do more stagged stuff on HD, but more docu and lazy-cheap shooting with tape. I have found the quality on tape super nice for minidv as well, so im not totally into the idea of this camera ditching the tape option. Cool idea though, just all drives, but some people like myself love the option to have minidv as well.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 01:24 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig Seeman
That could give you 4 hours of record at 720p60 or closer to 10 hours at 720p24n.
One might want the built in drives as you request and/or BluRay disk recording built in (like XDCAM HD).
My understanding is that the Cineporter will not capture 24PN.

Check that, it is my understanding that the company's intends to provide this capability.

Sorry

Last edited by David Saraceno; March 3rd, 2006 at 02:31 PM.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 07:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay Stebbins
They should skip the tape and use the money/space for a in camera processor that will host an off the shelf 2.5in portable hard drive. Evidently the existing processor is linux capable. Seems to me this could be a realistic solution....
I agree that future revisions should lose the tape mechanism alltogether. What do do with the extra space? Perhaps the HDD isn't a bad idea, or maybe room for a couple more P2 cards.. How about a modular media bay that would allow for various accessories to be attached to the camera? Oh, I like that... They could offer a 120GB HDD as one accessory. Maybe a large capacity solid-state device, not necessarily P2 cards. An insert that holds another two P2 cards wouldn't be a no-brainer. I could think of other things too... GPS devices, audio processors, etc... Digital SDI interface...
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 08:28 PM   #9
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My observations...

Hi all:

Panasonic will not put hard drives in the HVX-200A, if they even do an HVX-200A. I have a feeling that hard drives were evaluated and discarded when P2 was being created and that is part of why they went with P2. P2 cards are solid state, no moving parts and really nothing to fail like a hard drive of any kind has.

There are several decent external HD solutions being released soon so that should take care of run time issues and cost issues over P2. Personally, I find that as soon as we have 16 and 32GB P2 cards and the prices drop below $1,000.00, I think most users will be satisfied.

Thank goodness the HVX-200 has the MiniDV deck! We have eight Avid XPress DV systems (Mac-based) for off-line editing and they can only work with DV, not P2 so the ability to make frame accurate downconverted DV dubs of my HD footage has been a Godsend, we could not have used the HVX-200 without this capability as my boss has stated that he is not ready to replace eight Avid off-line systems yet.

I agree, the next version or two of the HVX-200 will possibly drop the DV deck entirely and I think it would be very cool to have an additional couple of P2 slots on board like the big boys do.

My personal complaints are:

1. Please let the HVX-200A output component (for monitoring in HD using my Dell 2405) AND composite video at the same time (need to still run a VHS simultaneously for interview transcriptions). I just bought the Dell 2405 and am using it as a field monitor for interviews and it looks GREAT for judging focus but then I have to unhook the component cable for the Dell so I can record a VHS with window for transcription when we do interviews.

2. Let the HVX-200A record HD AND Mini DV with identical TC at the same time. This would save me a lot of extra post work in transferring P2 files from the FW drive backups back to the cards so that the Mini DVs for off-line can be output. When you get into long interviews spread out over 6-8 cards, it takes all afternoon to get the stuff back onto the cards and output via the camera to DV.

3. Please give the HVX-200A the ability to letterbox 16x9 HD onto it's 4x3 analog output like the Z1 does. This is one thing that the Sony does that HVX-200 does not that is killing me, we still have mostly 4x3 NTSC field monitors and it sure would be nice to use them with the HVX-200 without seeing a squeezed display.

4. Please, please, please, a better LCD flipout screen. I am sorry but the beloved screen from the DVX seems to be a piece of junque when used on the HVX. I did a side by side shoot rolling two HVX-200s with two DVX-100s as backup cameras and the picture on the DVX-100s looked fabulous and then sitting six inches away was the supposed same display on the HVX. It sure doesn't look the same, it's grainier, milky blacks and softer. It's off-angle viewing seems to be much worse as well.

Regardless of the above, I LOVE the camera and am having a blast shooting with it. It makes great pictures but if Pansonic addressed my above complaints/requests, it would be hands-down the best camera made for what I shoot.

Best,

Dan
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Old March 4th, 2006, 12:41 AM   #10
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Dan, this is a bit off the thread, but are you satisfied with the HD analog out of the HVX200 to the Dell 2405? I had read it didn't work right unless you bought some adaptors (about same price as monitor) and went DVI into the 2405.
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Old March 4th, 2006, 12:52 AM   #11
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I use the HVX with a Dell 2405 all the time. It plugs right in. Haven't tried to adapt it through DVI, but it does work on the component inputs. Not really designed to be a video monitor (it makes an excellent computer monitor though) but it does work for showing your footage.

One thing I would say is you really, really should go into the Dell's menus and turn the "sharpness" down to 1. The Dell monitor comes preconfigured to add a ton of edge enhancement to your picture, and that's not flattering. Once you turn off the artificial edge enhancement, it looks fine. I believe this is also why so many people say that SD looks so bad on the Dell -- it's not so much the footage or the scaling, but the extraordinary amount of edge enhancement the monitor adds by default. Turn it off and you'll be much happier.

Oh, you should also go in and change "Scaling" to either "Aspect" or "1:1". "Aspect" will display the image in the proper aspect ratio, so 1920x1080 fits properly within the 1920x1200 resolution without getting stretched to fill 1920x1200; instead it's 1920x1080 with thin black letterbox bars at the top & bottom. But 720p and 480 will be scaled up to 1920x1080 by the monitor. Whereas with 1:1, each mode is displayed at the pixel size indicated by the format, so 720p takes up a smaller section of the screen but is displayed without stretching/resizing, and 480 does the same (although smaller still). On 720, if using the 1:1, it's like having a 17" monitor instead of a 24" monitor, but it's an unstretched image.
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Old March 4th, 2006, 07:57 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Brockett

4. Please, please, please, a better LCD flipout screen. I am sorry but the beloved screen from the DVX seems to be a piece of junque when used on the HVX. I did a side by side shoot rolling two HVX-200s with two DVX-100s as backup cameras and the picture on the DVX-100s looked fabulous and then sitting six inches away was the supposed same display on the HVX. It sure doesn't look the same, it's grainier, milky blacks and softer. It's off-angle viewing seems to be much worse as well.
Dan,
This is not the same LCD screen as on the DVX100 or 100A. It is a new model introduced on the dvx100B and also the HVX. I talked with Andrew Hoffman at Specialized Communications and he has checked the part numbers and they are not the same. It is a different part completely. This conversation was as a result of me being unhappy with the lack of clarity, the milky blacks and the off angle viewing issues.

When shooting with a DVX and HVX side by side the DVX screen smokes it. Even in standard def on the HVX it is clear the LCD on the HVX is sub-par. It is supposed to be higher res but it really doesn't look like ot is. Even with evf dtl on it is nowhere as sharp as my dvx.

I am sorry to see that you are unhappy with it but I am glad to see someone else who is as disapointed in it as I am. I thought I was going crazy.

Peace!
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Old March 4th, 2006, 10:54 AM   #13
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As usual, Barry is ahead of the curve...

Hi Barry:

Thanks for the tips on setting up the 2405. I just got it last week and have not even had time to play with it so your tips here will cut down on my need to experiment too much. As far as the picture quality, for interviews, so far, it seems pretty useful, at least I can judge focus, that seems to be the most important part of it.

Best,

Dan
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Old March 4th, 2006, 11:02 AM   #14
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Marty, let's comiserate about the HVX screen

Hi Marty:

No, you are not going crazy, yup, the HVX screen definitely is the biggest disappointment with the camera. While I liked the idea of having the letterboxed 4x3 screen, in actuality, the 16x9 screen on the Z1 is MUCH better, I can take having all of the displays superimposed on the screen if the screen is decent, like the Z1 because you can always turn the displays on and off but with the HVX, we are stuck with the lousy screen, period.

Oh well, maybe they will get it right on the HVX-200A? I hope so.

I have heard reports so far from the screen is "acceptable" from Barry and a few others to the screen is "really sucky" from users like you and I. I am curious is there were "better" batches of cameras with the "better" screens or if they are all identical and we all just have wildly differing perceptions of them. What say you Barry? Are the blacks on your screen all milky and gray and the image really soft, the numbers and letters blurred? Or is your HVX screen contrasty with black blacks and the display type clear and crisp? Just curious if we all should take our cameras back to Panasonic service?

Dan
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Old March 4th, 2006, 12:20 PM   #15
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I remember Barry showing pics of his LCD display and the screen showed up fine. Maybe some just have higher expectations than others? Shoot, you could always buy a better LCD if the HVX's is not enough for you. The focus assist option seems to help out a lot from what I've read though some disagree in the ethics of having to resort to it versus just getting a WYSIWYG LCD screen to start with. =P

Whatever works for you I suppose.
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