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Old February 20th, 2015, 07:42 PM   #1
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PXW-X70 f11@2000?

This is a comparison of the Sony X70 vs the JVC HM790 at similar gain settings. Video was shot at a fixed f4.0-1/60, showing Sony then JVC at 0db, 9db, and 18db. The bright clips are Sony then JVC again, but at 33db and JVC using LUX2 at 1/30. Final two clips are both camera wide open, Sony at f2.8, JVC at f1.4, at 18db-1/60. Keep in mind that the JVC can operate at ANY focal length at f1.4, the Sony closed down to f4.0 on it's own, so I had to stop down the JVC to compare fairly.

The JVC is rated at "f10@2000". The Sony doesn't have an official rating, but it looks according to the clips that it may come out around f11@2000. The aperture thing is a huge variable, as the Sony wants to "squint" any time you zoom in even a little. I am considering replacing the X70 with a JVC HM200, but it is listed in the manual as "f5.6", with an aperture of f1.2-3.5 when zoomed. "f5.6" was the rating for the first 3CCD cameras back in the late 1980's, only they had f1.8 lenses. Wish Sony had put flip switches on this thing for gain and added an iris dial.

Paul

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Old February 21st, 2015, 05:18 AM   #2
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Re: PXW-X70 f11@2000?

I also wanted to find that rating for the X70 and as you say, it's not shown in the manual.
From the tests I did (and you know) that the best low light is reserved for the optical zoom only, since moving into Clearview does add additional noise to low light images.

I am hoping to test a X160/X180 and/or X200 (if I can get one on demo) vs the X70 to see how the 3 x 1/3 and 3 x 1/2 sensors compare to the single sensor X70 in low light...

If anyone knows of a comparison online, I'd like to see it!
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Old February 22nd, 2015, 03:49 AM   #3
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Re: PXW-X70 f11@2000?

I've done a quick test with the CX900 (same as X70 essentially) and Sony NX3. I shot with the NX3 at f3.4 and the CX900 at f4.0

Reason for this is that I shoot weddings and spend a lot of time at the long end of the focal range so adjusted the iris to what it would stop down to if fully zoomed in. On the face of things the NX3 is more sensitive quite noticeably but it's not the full story as the CX900 is much cleaner at higher gain levels.

Here is a link to the vid. I'm afraid that the compression has kinda ruined the finer details of the video -


However, I've uploaded the original file to dropbox -

https://www.dropbox.com/s/0c2xtwi83s...e%201.mov?dl=0
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Old February 22nd, 2015, 05:02 AM   #4
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Re: PXW-X70 f11@2000?

I am currently experimenting with various PP settings, gamma and such, to try to find the most usable adjustments for cleanest images all the way to 33db gain, without the dark areas vanishing into nothingness.

Paul
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Old February 22nd, 2015, 07:28 AM   #5
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Re: PXW-X70 f11@2000?

The X160/180 are newer versions of the sensors in my NX5U. When I had a X70 for a demo it was not as sensitive as my NX30U and definitely not as sensitive as the NX5U. So I think you will find the X160/180 quite a bit more sensitive than the X70. I think there are 2 reasons. The lens does not open as much and there are a lot more pixels which will be smaller even thought the sensor is larger.

Big difference is when gain is high as these newer single chip sensors are cleaner. However the X70 was 2 or 3 stops slower than the NX5U so would be almost at max gain before the NX5U was showing too much grain. The x160/180 should be better than this. Jon's comparison bears this out and if one can use these 3 chip cameras at more open iris there will be no comparison as their lens goes to f1.7. To get the zoom range of the 3 chip cameras one would need Clearzoom which would degrade the image considerably. If you are operating in low light a lot of the time the 3 chip will be a better choice. At least that was the conclusion I came to as the X70 did not offer a real advantage over my NX30U and would not replace my NX5U for a lot of reasons ( zoom range and low light performance for instance)



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Old February 22nd, 2015, 07:52 PM   #6
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Re: PXW-X70 f11@2000?

For reference, the X70 at f2.8/33db was equivalent to the JVC at f1.4/18db. The X70 was cleaner though at that setting, but as soon as you zoom in, it gets much darker and looses it's clean image, the JVC will stay consistently crappy. Wide open in normal use, I found the X70 needed 9db added to match the JVC in wide open use.

I would gladly get an X180 if it were not twice the size/weight. For the size/weight, I think the X70 is a jewel. I really wish they made a 1080p sensor version of the X70, with a 14-18x optical zoom. Sort of like an A7s low light version of this camera. :)

Paul
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Old February 23rd, 2015, 03:55 AM   #7
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Re: PXW-X70 f11@2000?

Totally agree Paul. The zoom I can live with but I just wish the sensor wasn't quite as packed to the rafters with pixels. Probably wishful thinking though as they always seem to design these cameras so they don't interfere with sales of other models.
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