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Pro and consumer versions including PXW-Z150, PXW-Z100, PXW-X70 / FDR-AX100


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Old April 2nd, 2014, 07:43 AM   #796
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

Steve, I think you are making things far too complicated. For instance I leave my NX5U and AX1 in manual ALL the time. With all the parameters auto I just have to press any one of them to move into manual or just one of them to come out of full auto. When that happens on the NX or AX1 the parameter goes to the value set ( what ever switch is set for gain and the current value for iris etc.) any AE shift is then cancelled as this only works in auto mode. So for instance I can have gain set manual, shutter speed set manual and iris in auto with spotlight set for a stage show. When the lights come up from spotlight I just press the iris control and I am back in manual control. Same thing works for AE shift etc. One button press for all these options but you do need to understand what you are doing. Sony have had this system since I bought my VX3 Hi8 and also then the lower cost V801. They left this to just the prosumer stuff over the last few years and I am glad they are now bringing it back to the lower cost models.

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Old April 2nd, 2014, 09:04 AM   #797
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

I don't know about anybody's els's AX100, but mine is super easy:

To adjust "shutter speed", "gain" or "iris":

Step 1: Push any of the three buttons you want to adjust. ("Gain" button, "iris" button or "shutter speed button".)

Step 2: Turn wheel until you are happy.

That's it on mine. If you see an "A" next to that value display, it means that function is running on "Auto". if you don't see an "A", that means YOU have control of it.

Maybe somebody got an AX100 with some crazy firmware on it? Yes, this setup is similar to the VG20/30 as well.

I LOVE Sony for give this camera full manual options with easy access to controls.

CT
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 12:16 PM   #798
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cliff Totten View Post
I don't know about anybody's els's AX100, but mine is super easy:

To adjust "shutter speed", "gain" or "iris":

Step 1: Push any of the three buttons you want to adjust. ("Gain" button, "iris" button or "shutter speed button".)

Step 2: Turn wheel until you are happy.

That's it on mine.
Same here, and it's the exact same on my VG900 as well. It couldn't possibly be any easier as there are dedicated buttons for each item.
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 12:16 PM   #799
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

ten characters
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 12:24 PM   #800
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

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Originally Posted by Adriano Moroni View Post
1) If you use NP-FV100 batteries can they hinder using the viewfinder because the battery is just below this.
I attached a pic of my AX100 with a FV100 battery, and pulled the viewfinder out to turn the camera on. I don't use the viewfinder with this camera as I use a scorpion handle instead, but I was able to look into the viewfinder without my face bumping into the battery.
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 12:33 PM   #801
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

BELOW, READ CAREFULLY AS A NEWBIE WOULD.

[26] Adjusting the shutter speed

The procedure to set the shutter speed is explained as follows.
1. Press the PROGRAM AE button to set the IRIS (aperture), gain (ISO), shutter speed, and exposure to [Auto].

EVERY INSTRUCTION TELLS YOU TO PRESS THE AE BUTTON FIRST -- WHICH WILL ALWAYS CANCEL ALL YOUR MANUAL SETTINGS. THAT'S NUTS!

2. Press the SHUTTER SPEED button to set the shutter speed to manual. << OK

Each time you press the button, the setting switches between manual and auto. << NOTE IT CLEARLY SAYS THERE ARE TWO MODES -- NOT THREE.

Descriptions of icons to switch operating mode.
(no icon): manual operation << OK
: automatic operation << OK
: manual operation of [Exposure] << WTF DOES THIS UNEXPLAINED CONCEPT MEAN? SHUTTER SPEED ALWAYS AFFECTS EXPOSURE IF YOU CHANGE IT. I FIGURED e MEANT Engaged.

3. Rotate the MANUAL dial to adjust the shutter speed. << OK. BUT, THE CONTROL REMAINS LIVE. ANY BUMP AND SHUTTER SPEED IS VERY LIKELY TO BE CHANGED WHICH CANNOT BE ALLOWED TO HAPPEN! ONE MUST BE ABLE TO LOCK SHUTTER SPEED AND GAIN.

I'm not making it complicated.

I'm reading the manual and doing exactly what it says to do. And, what it says to do and what it does are simply not compatible with how pros shoot. The fact that other Sony cameras work like this doesn't matter to me. Shutter-speed in every pro camera is able to be set -- almost never to be changed. Likewise, Gain is added by the shooter -- not auto-added by the camera in Exposure mode.

I wouldn't mind if AUTO worked this way, but when marketing claims the camera can be used in manual mode, I expect that the firmware supports this in a logical manner and the documentation describes correctly how to use the manual mode.

Thankfully, by chance, I started with Shutter, went to Gain, and finished with Iris -- leaving IT live. Had I done settings in reverse order, Shutter would have remained live. And, thankfully, I didn't read the manual and learn I had to press the AE button before selecting each mode to adjust.
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 12:35 PM   #802
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

I never read my manual. ;-)

I just unboxed it and started shooting. I remember that before I even started my first recording, I switched to manual shutter, iris and gain before I hit the record button.

Switching is quick and easy. No matter what the Sony instruction manual says. I promise that you don't need to touch the Program AE button in any way to adjust Gain, Shutter and Iris.

In fact, I don't think I have ever pressed the Program AE button even once yet on my AX100

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Old April 2nd, 2014, 12:37 PM   #803
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Mullen View Post
Unfortunately, Cliff that's not what Sony's manual says to do. BELOW, READ CAREFULLY AS A NEWBIE WOULD.

[26] Adjusting the shutter speed

The procedure to set the shutter speed is explained as follows.
1. Press the PROGRAM AE button to set the IRIS (aperture), gain (ISO), shutter speed, and exposure to [Auto].

EVERY INSTRUCTION TELLS YOU TO PRESS THE AE BUTTON FIRST -- WHICH WILL ALWAYS CANCEL ALL YOUR MANUAL SETTINGS. THAT'S NUTS!

2. Press the SHUTTER SPEED button to set the shutter speed to manual. << OK

Each time you press the button, the setting switches between manual and auto. << NOTE IT CLEARLY SAYS THERE ARE TWO MODES -- NOT THREE.

Descriptions of icons to switch operating mode.
(no icon): manual operation << OK
: automatic operation << OK
: manual operation of [Exposure] << WTF DOES THIS UNEXPLAINED CONCEPT MEAN? SHUTTER SPEED ALWAYS AFFECTS EXPOSURE IF YOU CHANGE IT. I FIGURED e MEANT Engaged.

3. Rotate the MANUAL dial to adjust the shutter speed. << OK

BUT, THE CONTROL REMAINS LIVE. ANY BUMP AND SHUTTER SPEED IS VERY LIKELY TO BE CHANGED WHICH CANNOT BE ALLOWED TO HAPPEN! ONE MUST BE ABLE TO LOCK SHUTTER SPEED AND GAIN.

I'm not making it complicated.

I'm reading the manual and doing exactly what it says to do. And, what it says to do and what it does are simply not compatible with how pros shoot. The fact that other Sony cameras work like this doesn't matter to me. Shutter-speed in every pro camera is able to be set -- almost never to be changed. Likewise, Gain is added by the shooter -- not auto-added by the camera.

I wouldn't mind if AUTO worked this way and supported Exposure mode, but when the documentation claims the camera can be used in manual mode, I expect that the firmware supports this in a logical manner and the documentation describes correctly how to use the manual mode.

Thankfully, by chance, I started with Shutter, went to Gain, and finished with Iris -- leaving IT live. Had I done settings in reverse order, Shutter would have remained live. And, thankfully, I didn't read the manual and learn I had to press the AE button before selecting each mode to adjust.
I don't know whether you are ranting about the manuals or the controls! You did learn that you can fix the shutter and not worry about bumping the dial, so what are you now complaining about?

Here is another tip you could have learned too: There is a 'manual' button. If you hold it in, you get a menu of additional choices that the dial will adjust, including AE, Exposure, and WB. If you set it to one of those then you could have fixed (beforehand) shutter, iris, and gain - all fully manual and set without any chance of moving any of them by bumping the dial, unless you set the dial to Exposure.

Btw, 'Exposure' adjustment means when you turn the dial exposure changes and the camera (not you) alters the iris, gain, and shutter. I do not find this useful, but that is what it does.

I shoot shutter priority, fixing the shutter and gain, then setting the dial to AE so I can offset the auto iris to my liking. It is exactly what I wanted in a camera/camcorder.
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 01:54 PM   #804
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

[QUOTE=Mark Rosenzweig;1839531

I shoot shutter priority, fixing the shutter and gain, then setting the dial to AE so I can offset the auto iris to my liking. It is exactly what I wanted in a camera/camcorder.[/QUOTE]

For the AX1 and NX5U I have AE shift set to one of the custom buttons so that I can do much the same with the option of including AE shift or by making iris manual cancel the auto at this level and go to full manual. For the smaller Sony's I have ( CX700, NX30U ) I also use fixed shutter and AE shift a lot letting the camera chose the best gain and iris for the situation as most of mine is in the darker theatre environment.

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Old April 2nd, 2014, 02:17 PM   #805
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

"I don't know whether you are ranting about the manuals or the controls! You did learn that you can fix the shutter and not worry about bumping the dial, so what are you now complaining about?"

Because I'm reviewing the AX100 I have to look at it as someone who has no experience and/or does read the manual. Controls, ergonomics, and documentation play as much of a role in my judging a camera as does image quality. In fact, a poor control system and poor documentation prevent someone from getting the best from any camera. What would you think of a camera where the reviewer said "if you have experience with past Sony cameras and do a bit of trial and error, you can use the AX100. If you don't have prior experience, you will find documentation is either missing (not in the box) or wrong."

For example, putting the Magnification button on the right side where it can't be reached without jiggling the camera insures this function will never be used. Where is the "My Button" located? Every camera I've used has one more User Buttons and they are physical buttons. A DSLR has an Intelligent Mode, but it is physical setting. By the way, the words Shutter Priority are not to be found. But, who thought up Program AE when the "program" is never discussed. Seems like the word AUTO is a lot simpler. (Somehow I got the AE shift to work with Auto Exposure. I have to start over today in trial and error mode.)

I look in the manual to find the frame-size and frame-rate of the marketed FAST option. This information is not in the manual. (I do find a Golf mode. Wow.) In fact, the entire menu system is not documented in the manual. Thankfully, I found a full manual posted in Europe.

Moreover, with no Sony camera experience the controls make no sense. How would anyone guess what "blank" "a" and "e" mean? Sony must have some corporate concept of "exposure" operation, but it is sure not obvious. So the buyer grabs the manual and will find no explanation of "blank" "a" and "e". In fact, even with shooting experience, I still have no idea. I'm guessing I don't want to see an "e."

We are not talking about a $900 HDV camera. It's 2014 and for $1000 I can buy a Blackmagic Pocket Cinema camera. For $1700 I can buy a 4K GH4. For $3200 I can buy a Digital Bolex. Sony has competition below it and above it. And, all these cameras offer far better quality images with a better codec. Their attitude toward customers, I think deserve a rant. Could this be why Sony has lost money for 5-6 years?
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 02:47 PM   #806
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

Hmm, so this IS a rant about the manual. Got it.

Steve, your review of the manual is one thing, but do you see any owner complaining about this like you are? Most manuals are quite lacking, so I can't get nuts over this. Been there, done that...many times.

As for the cameras that you mention that offer 'far better PQ'. Really? The AX100 certainly offers far better resolution & sharpness than the BMPCC. It's not RAW, but not everyone wants or needs RAW. Additionally, as was seen in the A/B between the AX100 and the BMC 4K camera (same scenes), the AX100 even offered better resolution than that 4K camera.

As for the GH4, how can you say anything when there isn't a single downloadable native clip yet posted? That's just a bit silly. What I can say thus far, based on Vimeo & YouTube clips, it again appears the AX100 has better resolution than the GH4, but we still need to wait for the final firmware and actual native clips. You also list the price at $1,700. Do you use a lens with your bodies? I think in the interest of honesty we can say that the price significantly exceeds that of the AX100 when you shoot the GH4 with a lens. I've always found I get much better pictures and video when I use a lens. ;)

"Far better PQ"? Me thinks you need to take a chill pill, put down the manual and actually work with the camera. It's far better than you make it out to be and just seeing owner's reactions confirm that. Of course they're not obsessing over the owner's manual. :)

Finally, Sony is losing money not for the reason you stated, I think you know that. Just as Panasonic made great plasmas, but lost money doing that, this had nothing to do with the quality of the product or its attitude toward customers. You're really being a bit disingenuous.
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 03:07 PM   #807
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

Manuals? We don't need no steenking manuals! <wink>

Hopefully the sarcasm font was working?

Seriously, manuals (and documentation in general) are often a major weak point, opening the door to aftermarket "camera operation for dummies" (or people who just can't figger it out on their own) books!

I've run into it when I try a different brand, and it doesn't "work as expected" - cameras, cars, cell phones... ANY complex piece of tech may be designed or implemented "logically" or less than logically... even better is when buttons get "switched" between versions from the expected positions in "user interfaces" - there oughta be a law against that!?

In the end, this is why one needs to spend some time learning how a particular device "works", at a time when the frustration won't cause a major fuss or disaster... the more complex the device, the more this applies.

Not trying to excuse "bad manuals", but some things just need to be "hands on" - which of course then produces "muscle memory", which of course then makes one crazy when the next device is set up completely differently... my A77 frustrates me almost every time I pick it up, while the RX10 makes me smile... without reading the manual of course <wink>!

I've noticed over the years that "Sony design logic" is different from "Panasonic design logic" is different from "Canon design logic"... and so on. It's a PITA for users that have to, for whatever reason switch regularly, but it is what it is. Reviewers seem to struggle a lot with this phenomenon...
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 03:24 PM   #808
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Mullen View Post
Because I'm reviewing the AX100 I have to look at it as someone who has no experience and/or does read the manual.
Here I'll help you out with your review. From seeing other websites, what I've gathered is that the correct way to review a Sony camera is as follows:

1) Start with a reviewer that is familiar with Canon or Panasonic gear, then have then criticism everything about the Sony camera because it doesn't work like the Canon or Panasonic gear they are used to.

2) Then spend the next bunch of paragraphs ranting about how the interface is all wrong because it's not identical to the Canon/Panasonic interface they are used to.

3) Next go on about how it is impossible to film anything valid unless you have 14 stops of dr, 600mbps raw codec, full manual everything, zero aliasing and moire and only a fool would ever consider a camera that doesn't have all of the above.

4) Always be sure to include a rant about no prores support because clearly prores is the only valid codec on the planet.

5) Then ignore all positives of the Sony camera like being able to share accessories with other Sony camera gear, oled viewfinder, good battery life, etc...

6) Next ignore all negatives of other competing brands like poor ergonomics, not being able to format memory cards or delete individual files while in the field, shitty battery life, etc...

7) Finally you find the best edge case you can that makes the Sony camera look bad and make a video of it so everyone else can link to that one video as the complete summary of the Sony camera, because everyone knows that a single edge case of failure for a piece of gear clearly reflects upon how everyone on the planet will use it.

There you go, Sony camera review done. At least that's how I gather they are done from reading other websites, your mileage may vary of course.
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 03:28 PM   #809
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

Dave, true. Additionally, most novices are not going to buy a $2,000 camcorder. This camera is aimed more at the enthusiast or prosumer who wants to get in to 4K. This won't be the choice of the soccer mom who wants an occasional video of the kids.

So the target audience will likely have experience with cameras/camcorders and, I bet, multiple brands. They'll be willing to sit down with the unit and learn it. Further, they'll likely come to forums like this to ask questions and learn.

Camera forums, isn't that what we nerds...err, folks do? ;)
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Old April 2nd, 2014, 03:31 PM   #810
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Re: Sony FDR-AX100

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Siamidis View Post
Here I'll help you out with your review. From seeing other websites, what I've gathered is that the correct way to review a Sony camera is as follows:

1) Start with a reviewer that is familiar with Canon or Panasonic gear, then have then criticism everything about the Sony camera because it doesn't work like the Canon or Panasonic gear they are used to.

2) Then spend the next bunch of paragraphs ranting about how the interface is all wrong because it's not identical to the Canon/Panasonic interface they are used to.

3) Next go on about how it is impossible to film anything valid unless you have 14 stops of dr, 600mbps raw codec, full manual everything, zero aliasing and moire and only a fool would ever consider a camera that doesn't have all of the above.

4) Always be sure to include a rant about no prores support because clearly prores is the only valid codec on the planet.

5) Then ignore all positives of the Sony camera like being able to share accessories with other Sony camera gear, oled viewfinder, good battery life, etc...

6) Next ignore all negatives of other competing brands like poor ergonomics, not being able to format memory cards or delete individual files while in the field, shitty battery life, etc...

7) Finally you find the best edge case you can that makes the Sony camera look bad and make a video of it so everyone else can link to that one video as the complete summary of the Sony camera, because everyone knows that a single edge case of failure for a piece of gear clearly reflects upon how everyone on the planet will use it.

There you go, Sony camera review done. At least that's how I gather they are done from reading other websites, your mileage may vary of course.
Peter, can I give your post 5 stars? This is so true that it's scary. What's scarier is that I could have seen myself writing it. Why didn't I? :)

But wait, as one poster here repeats 100s of times on different forums, didn't you forget about the 30p limitation? There, now the list is complete!
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