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Old November 12th, 2016, 04:17 AM   #106
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

I've concluded that the internal HD downconversion in the AX53 leaves the AX100 in the dust.

Not very scientific, but just objective visual impressions.

Both units have the latest firmware loaded.

The HD recording quality of the 53 is almost as good "visually" ( I'm looking at complex images of trees, leaves, branches running to the horizon ) as a 4K file from the 100 - that is, when viewing on an HD timeline in Edius out to a 42" Samsung.

So, if I want the AX100 to look as detailed on an HD timeline, ie. for delivery, then I have to shoot at 4K to keep up with the AX53 superior internal downconversion - when recording to HD at 60mbs.

The AX100 appears to produce slightly more detail with less enhancement at 4K than the 53, I guess this is down to the sensor size.

All in all, the AX 53 is remarkable.


Paul :-)
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Old November 13th, 2016, 08:38 PM   #107
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

Paul,
Im tempted to buy this as a b camera to my ex1r as well as a main cam on more mobile run and gun shoots.
ive read so much about this camera.
would love a compete review from u based on your usage.
also what manual setting are u using the ring for
thx
jim

my b cam has been the sony cx550 which does nice hd for b and mainstuff.
my manual choice on the little know is for the xposure, easy to adjust, the auto focus actually has worked well
thx
jim
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Old November 14th, 2016, 01:00 AM   #108
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

Hi Jim,

Interestingly I have been using my EX1 for the last decade - is that possible? it must be the longest lasting workhorse I still use every day!

My main work is recording sessions with Orchestras, solo artists, as well as concerts - over the years, working with colleagues, I've used Sony HDCam, Red Epic, Sony F7, Blackmagic, GoPro and a multitude of Canon and Nikon DSLR's.

I decided to add two "4K" capable B cam's to my rig, after having such incredible results from my two Gopros shooting at 2.7K - great because I can hide them on a stage set up -

Dilemma: The AX53 is so much better in HD than the EX1, that I have to rethink using the old Sony at all !

I'm now testing shooting with an AX100 as the main camera, and the two 53's as B's. Another but... The AX53 produces considerably better in camera downconverted HD than the AX100 ( I guess as it is older - despite the larger sensor ) so to get the same results on an HD timeline between the 100 and the 53 - I have to record in 4K on the 100 - OK, this is being very picky - but the 53 also has real time code and user bits - set them off together with the remote - and for me it also has time-lapse which is fantastic.

I use the 53 with the lens ring controlling iris, I set the AGC to 6dB max and have spot focus which is excellent, also zebras and peaking on - I've been really surprised by the results shooting the last few sessions, focus is practically always perfect.

I use tripods generally, so I turn the BOSS off completely - this reduces the zoom to pure optical, I found that when set to active or intelligent active, the image has an element of digital zoom - I think the standard setting is true optical - still testing this, result is slight mush on full zoom.

Upshot of all this is that I may have to retire my EX1, it just doesn't hack the competition from this tiny new breed of camera. I'm an old school operator, I like big glass and manual control, but that said, the proof is in the pudding - I get 4 hours plus recording with one 128gb card at HD and one high capacity FV100 battery, the results are stupidly good, OK, poor Bokeh on such a small chip, and a million other purist no no's BUT - I need to be out there shooting, the 53 is a dream come true for my purposes.

Hope this helps with your decision

Paul :-)
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Old November 14th, 2016, 06:49 AM   #109
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

Jim, as you know I shoot theatre with NX5U, AX100, AX53 and NX30U most of the time with occasional FDR-AX1 in UHD 60P. Like Paul's EX1 the NX5U is clearly the week link for me compared to the AX53 and AX100 and very obvious in resolution and clean video. My wife uses the AX100 for closeups and I track the main action with the NX5U with the AX53 as fixed unattended full stage camera. I set it with gain limit ( depending on the lighting but normally at 18db ), set focus with touch focus and AE shift at - 0.5 or - 0.7 depending on lighting. All on tripods of course. I too am impressed with the AX53 for its price. I use it as the family camera now too replacing the NX30U and in full auto it works great with the balanced optical stabilizer looks like it is stabilized more professionally. If you are into wanting full manual control its not the camera for you but as Paul says it is the results that count. There are plenty of ways to make the auto exposure do what you want. I do not use the lens ring for focus, touch focus is far faster and more accurate. Ring is assigned to AE shift. I do not use the UHD as I like faster frame rates than 30P so for me it is just a HD cam replacing the other small Sony's I have used.

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Old November 14th, 2016, 06:10 PM   #110
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

thanks ron and paul.
my cx550 autofocus which id never use on my ex is really good, except if its dark on stage and its hunting, id assume the autofocus on the 53 is much improved since its so much newer than the 550. im gonna get one.
also may shoot some interview with 4k since i can make it an 2 cam shot with cropping. the footage i saw on utube of it in 4k and hd was unbelievable. id probably use the focus ring for iris control
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Old November 14th, 2016, 07:24 PM   #111
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

Using touch focus the camera is actually in manual focus. I just make a point of focusing when the light is good enough to get a good fix. It then stays there of course. I only use it in auto focus for family stuff with grandkids running around all the time. I assume Paul like myself sets shutter so it doesn't move and you can choose how you set gain limit so whether you use iris control ( and let the camera choose gain ) or as I do and use AE shift ( camera can choose combination of gain and iris ) one can constrain the limits the camera can move exposure. Not really manual control but pretty close. One thing I have noticed compared to the CX700 and NX30U is the AX53 manages a dark stage with spotlight or lights in just one area with an actor or set, very well for a totally unattended camera. Doesn't seem to overshoot as much when lights come up either. Very good as a full stage unattended camera.

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Old November 14th, 2016, 11:43 PM   #112
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

Agreed Ron, setting the touch focus does not create the "hunting" that we are used to with autofocus at all, once set it stays put.

I've also noticed the highlight capability of the 53.

I wonder if this is related to scene selection? This is something that you cannot turn off, only have in auto or a scene: maybe it's the backlight setting? which I noticed is "on" I must test this out, however, whatever it is, it works really well.

Does anyone have the XLR K2M adapter on either the 100 or the 53? working in studios I need XLR and phantom - my question is: Does using this adapter remove the audio AGC and make it switchable? as the manual states clearly that the AGC is always on, regardless of settings.

I see the XLR K2M has "auto" and "manual" settings so it must allow this.

Paul :-)
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Old November 15th, 2016, 06:04 AM   #113
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

Don't know about the XLR K2M but as far as the highlight response I think you are correct in that the iAuto is detecting a scene and correcting for it. In my case I wonder if it thinks it is spotlight mode and will alter knee etc. Whatever it does it works !!!

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Old November 15th, 2016, 06:44 PM   #114
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

I use the XLR K2M on both my 53. ( bulky) and my 100. This attachment overrides any,internal audio settings. Great attachment albeit expensive but I can use it on both units. Unlike my X70 , there is no handle. ��

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Originally Posted by Paul Newman View Post
Agreed Ron, setting the touch focus does not create the "hunting" that we are used to with autofocus at all, once set it stays put.

I've also noticed the highlight capability of the 53.

I wonder if this is related to scene selection? This is something that you cannot turn off, only have in auto or a scene: maybe it's the backlight setting? which I noticed is "on" I must test this out, however, whatever it is, it works really well.

Does anyone have the XLR K2M adapter on either the 100 or the 53? working in studios I need XLR and phantom - my question is: Does using this adapter remove the audio AGC and make it switchable? as the manual states clearly that the AGC is always on, regardless of settings.

I see the XLR K2M has "auto" and "manual" settings so it must allow this.

Paul :-)
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Old November 16th, 2016, 03:46 AM   #115
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

Thanks Lou, good to know

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Old November 19th, 2016, 10:40 PM   #116
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

Ron, Paul,
can i use an external monitor via hdmi when shooting in hd or 4k?also, 4k in 30p, its pretty much any movement other than just a basic interview shoot, going to be bad visual wise?
input welcome, id like to be able to shoot more in 4k and use as a 2 cam shot, with croppin in editing
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Old November 20th, 2016, 05:59 AM   #117
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

If you shoot 30P UHD and try and mix back a camera shooting 60P you will see the difference. That is why I wiew the AX53 as a really good HD camera shooting XAVC-S. I will try looking at the HDMI output to my BM Video Assist later today and report back but I am sure it works just fine. If you really want to crop and pan into the UHD image and mix with another second camera shooting HD 60P ( my application too ) you will need to shoot 60P UHD in my opinion. That means currently the HC-X100 from Panasonic or much the same FDR-AX1 that I have. Not to good in low light as I assume they both use the same Sony sensor. I am going to look at the Panasonic HC-X1 or AG-UX180 when they come out next month. They should do the trick and will likely be a lot better than the EX1 as well.

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Old November 20th, 2016, 11:56 AM   #118
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

Ron,
I have no desire to buy the fs7 that shoots 60p.too much money, im done with big cameras. i was saying shoot with the 53, medium shot and lay that on 2nd timeline and when i want to crop in tight,ill do that and treat it as a 2 cam shoot. i just wasnt sure if any kind of movement looks bad in 30p or only abrupt or alot of fast
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Old November 20th, 2016, 12:37 PM   #119
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

It doesn't matter whether you use the whole frame or crop, the movement is still 30P. Shoot some 30P and see if you like the movement when cut with 60i or 60P as that is what you will get. I do not like 24 or 30 and see the judder immediately so not something I would do myself. There are lots of 30P stuff on YouTube If you are happy then it will be fine. I think you may see the difference immediately if you cut with a 60i or 60P main camera though. 30P will be missing half the movement information of 60i or 60P and to my eyes noticeable. Not just a little bit but half the information. For me 60P is the answer and then you have the option of staying with 60P for smooth motion or editing down on a 30P timeline. Best of both worlds if you want the choice. If you shoot in 30P that is all your going to get. If there is little or no movement of course it will be fine at 30P.

The AX53 will not output over HDMI when recording 4K by the way, though in standby will monitor output and the moment switch to record output goes dead. It is fine at 1920 x1080 output.

You may want to wait also to see what the Panasonic GH5 is like early next year if you are not in a hurry.

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Old November 20th, 2016, 02:20 PM   #120
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Re: New Sony AX-53 Testing

The first week in January is right around the corner and typically that is when Sony releases some of their new models. Come that date it will be three years since the AX100 was released so what do you think? A new model with a 1” ExmoR CMOS sensor? To heck with “visions of sugar plums”, that’s what I’m thinking about!

Kit: X3000, AX53, and the AX100 replacement.
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