SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking? at DVinfo.net

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Sony 4K Ultra HD Handhelds
Pro and consumer versions including PXW-Z150, PXW-Z100, PXW-X70 / FDR-AX100


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Old August 14th, 2016, 03:57 AM   #1
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SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

In the last days I am wondering the situations that 4K and output is useful in this camera.

The problem is that the camera can’t record in 4K and show the image on LCD while output is enabled. LCD screen switched off when you need to send the signal to SDI/HDMI (even on lower resolutions) while 4K recording is active. So the operator can’t see what he records.

So the only use of this feature that I can think is when you need to use an external field monitor or external recording.

Even if you try to use an external monitor to pass through the signal from monitor in/out you are losing all the display marks (menu/settings/battery level/ recording and remaining time etc).

So in 4K records is useless if you need to use it for broadcasting and live streaming. Also if you need to send image to and external TV/videowall while recording on 4K is useless.

Totally bad design… that probably caused on image processor.

As I search I found a lot of functionality limitations on this camera and I am totally disappointed. The only thing that holds me on looking for that model is the low price. But I am wondering is that worth it or I can wait until Panasonic AG-UX180 release to check the differences.

Last edited by Antony Tsioukas; August 14th, 2016 at 02:36 PM.
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Old August 14th, 2016, 07:06 AM   #2
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

I too am waiting for the AG-UX180. It will have a 20x optical zoom as well as 50/60P recording in UHD.

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Old August 14th, 2016, 07:29 AM   #3
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

I work on live streaming of events/conferences etc. 50/60P doesn’t mean something to me. 20x it’s good, but I never needed more than 12x in my events, so a “digital” zoom (with the help of 4K) is good enough for me.

But output means a lot. With 4K recording limitation on output, I can’t use it at all. This totally disables 4K recording on live streaming (I can use it only for event’s that not streamed live).

I never see (from my experience) any other camcorder to switch off LCD just to have output on recording (if anyone know other model to do that please tell me). It’s totally useless and “STUPID”. How can operate the camera if I can’t see info and image on it?

I think that it would be more fair for Sony to say 4K output is only for playback or to push processor to give a lower resolution output if this is possible. I read it a lot the manual to understand this limitation, first I thought that it was only for 4K output or for Field Monitor (it wasn't clear). They just say 4K output on HDMI, to do what with it, playback? This at least a prosumer camera not a consumer camera for my holidays.

I hope that it’s not too late for this camera hardware and I wish find a way from Sony to fix it with a firmware update. It’s too pity, because for that price it’s a very good camera.
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Old August 15th, 2016, 07:59 AM   #4
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

The FS5 has the same issue. Must be a hardware issue, though they remedied it partially with the raw upgrade, so who knows if this is a marketing/sales or a hardware/software limitation.
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Old August 15th, 2016, 08:24 AM   #5
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

WOW I didn't expect that (from the operation guide it says "A signal cannot be output from the jacks above when recording in 4K mode [XAVC QFHD]). Nice... I was searching on cheaper models like Sony PXW-Z100 that seams that this isn't a problem.

But the question remains, what is the meaning to have output 4K output, exept playback (useless), field monitors and external recording. Maybe it's a marketing limitation, but this is on something basic.

I am one step closer to Panasonic... I hope that they do better job.
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Old August 15th, 2016, 09:16 AM   #6
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

I do not think the PXW-Z100 is cheaper than the X70. It has a more powerful processor than the X70 to encode for 50/60P and does 4K DCI too so a cut above the X70 though it is not as good in low light as its sensor is smaller. I have the FDR-AX1 the prosumer version and compared to my FDR-AX100 with same sensor as the X70 it is only a little bit less performance in low light as the lens differences make up some of the sensor size differences. Both AX1 and the Z100 have 20x zooms and will record 50/60P in UHD. Which is why I am looking at the AG-UX180 as an upgrade.

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Old August 15th, 2016, 09:49 AM   #7
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

I meaning that I was looking in cheaper models than FS5. The only problem on Panasonic is that's not perform good in low light even with bigger sensor (Panasonic AG-DVX200). Sony do better job in that area with same sensor.
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Old August 15th, 2016, 10:27 AM   #8
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Antony Tsioukas View Post
WOW I didn't expect that (from the operation guide it says "A signal cannot be output from the jacks above when recording in 4K mode [XAVC QFHD]). Nice... I was searching on cheaper models like Sony PXW-Z100 that seams that this isn't a problem.

But the question remains, what is the meaning to have output 4K output, exept playback (useless), field monitors and external recording. Maybe it's a marketing limitation, but this is on something basic.

I am one step closer to Panasonic... I hope that they do better job.
Many Sony cameras today are based on similar 4k rendering/scaling chips. So, the limitation that the Z150 has in 4k is the same as all the A7 series, A6300 and X70 cameras. In 1080, there is no limitation.

The cameras can only process so many streams at one time. It seems that two 4k streams is the limit. If recording to the internal CODEC and HDMI is active, they must remove one stream from the cameras LCD monitor. You can still see camera data on it, just not the live sensor video.

Even the FS5 does this too.

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Old August 15th, 2016, 10:28 AM   #9
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

That is why you have to take the lens into consideration. The Z100 and FDR-AX1 start at F1.7 not F2.8 and ramp slower than the DVX200 or even the X70. An example is my FDR-AX1 compared to a X70 I had to demo. Both on automatic pointed at the same scene in my living room. FDR-AX1 F1.7 at 24db, X70 F2.8 24db and both images looked the same for brightness with zebras appearing on the same white areas. By comparison my NX5U 3 chip 1/3" showed F1.7 at 9db.

I want to see what lens the AG-UX180 has to compare etc.

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Old August 15th, 2016, 11:15 AM   #10
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

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Originally Posted by Cliff Totten View Post
t seems that two 4k streams is the limit.
I wouldn't have problem to output an 1080p or the native LCD resolution (720p). It's not the 4K output the problem, no one will broadcast 4K with HDMI (this isn't a professional solution), only with SDI 6G.
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Old August 15th, 2016, 01:17 PM   #11
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

I expect that when we actually get 4k/UHD broadcasts it will be 50/60P SDI 12G anyway to cover all program types. SDI 12G catches up with HDMI 2.0 in some respects.

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Old August 16th, 2016, 02:15 AM   #12
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

I am pretty sure it is a HEAT production issue, that current economical hardware cannot deal with. If you look at the specs for most broadcast gear, you will see a several watt increase in power consumption for LCD and SDI outputs, it takes power to drive those, and power creates heat. Obviously, they could put a fan inside, but a fan blowing hard enough to cool off the economical video chips would be loud enough to cause complaints.

I would LOVE UHD at 60p, with a 20x zoom, but I REQUIRE MPEG-TS live streaming, which the Panasonics do not offer. I need 60p because I shoot for an ABC station, which means we broadcast 60p native.

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Old August 16th, 2016, 03:00 AM   #13
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

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Originally Posted by Paul Anderegg View Post
I am pretty sure it is a HEAT production issue...
Maybe...

Of course Sony mechanics know that better, but at least it’s just “annoying” the way that they said that on manual on page 72.

Recording format XAVC QFHD - 2160/24p
HDMI OUT output signal format : 2160/24p
SDI OUT output signal format : 1080/24p

They don’t put somewhere an asterisk that LCD switched off. If you see in the rest of table, it says the limitations for each situation. They said it only on page 38 on how to choose output.

If a buyer takes a quick look on manual to see specifications, it will not notice that. It will go directly to supported format table, not in how to choose LCD or External Monitor.

On FS5 manual it’s more fair, they said clearly you can’t output on 4K recording (I know that Z150 way it's a little improvement, but useless).

Inside me I hope that they do that for marketing reason that can fixed with a firmware upgrade, but if it’s hardware limitation then ;(

But for me that I need this camera for Live Streaming (and 4K recording for recording) an 720p output, it’s good enough for now (or later 1080p). On live streaming area only with x265 we can make a stable 4K broadcast but it’s far away at this time.
.
So I will wait until I see Panasonic specs even if they don’t have some Sony goodies.
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Old August 16th, 2016, 03:17 AM   #14
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

They do not tell you that 720p live streaming is only available when shooting 30p codecs...........perfect........

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Old August 16th, 2016, 03:27 AM   #15
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Re: SONY PXW-Z150- 4K Recording & OutPut – What they are thinking?

Check on page 88

The streaming function is not available when using the following functions.
– During playback
– During thumbnail display
– In the following formats when the file format is AVCHD: 1080/60p, 1080/50p, 720/60p, 720/50p
– In the following formats when the file format is XAVC QFHD: 2160/30p 100Mbps, 2160/24p 100Mbps, 2160/25p 100Mbps

As I understand you can record on 60Mbps on 4K and stream on 720p, but with Sony you will never be sure ;).

Only an owner that have some time to test it, can clarify the limitations functionality on Streaming and Output.
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