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Sony ENG / EFP Shoulder Mounts
Sony PDW-F800, PDW-700, PDW-850, PXW-X500 (XDCAM HD) and PMW-400, PMW-320 (XDCAM EX).


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Old June 22nd, 2006, 02:54 PM   #16
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Symon or Alister,

I have set up some shots where I feel I should be able to see the effect of flipping on DCC. However, I am not seeing any highlight reduction or any indication by the camera that DCC is on. To be fair, the manual doesn't mention any indicator of DCC engaged but I was wondering if one of you could check yours to make sure I don't have a defective toggle switch.

regards,

-gb-
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Old June 22nd, 2006, 03:19 PM   #17
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Greg.

I have tried the DCC with some trees out of a window. I definitely se a reduction in blown out highlights.
Actually some leaves on the trees outside, that was blown completely out with the DCC of, came to light with it on.

Are you sure you havenít set the EZ mode to on, as this function turns every manual settings of?

I have been thinking, why not leave it on all the time?

Another ting about highlights, the gamma setting cine4 also helps on blown out highlights.
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Old June 22nd, 2006, 03:49 PM   #18
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I found Cine 2 to give by far the most dynamic range capture. This is confirmed by the gamma curve diagrams Sony sent me. I tried it on a sunny day from inside a room with a blind that covered half the window. I exposed the interior to give a realistic reproduction of the light levels in the room. STD gamma etc blew out the view outside the window. Cine 2 however brought almost everything back into view. The other Cine curves also blew out the window to some degree. You get a flatter image though and it will need post work. Maximum outut on cine 2 doesn't reach 100ire. All the others go up to 110 and beyond. STD gamma doesn't roll off at all. Instead it is a gentle curve all the way to maximum output and gives 100% output at 100% input.

Cine gamma 2 gives 100% output at 460% input. I would like to get one of the cameras tested by a good engineer to see if it is possible to cram a full 600% range using black stretch etc into the picture with this camera. It should be possible to achieve a very wide range with good adjustment I think. Trouble is, setting it up isn't helped by the fact that there is no test SAW output option. Theoretically the others should give a wide range. Although the only way is for someone to try and and then grade to see how much info there is in the highlights. Even then it isn't usually a good idea to try and retrieve information from the highlights like that due to banding issues. So I would say that Cine gamma 2 will give you highlights at the level that you want, while also capturing shadow detail and a very smooth curve all the way through the ranges.

This is all said with the caviet that I am no expert. Just my observation from info I have collected, and much trial and error. Try it and see. Just remember that the cinegamma curves are not meant to be used out of the box. They need grading for the most part. Also don't forget that the cameras also have a Cine matrix setting to go with the curves.

DCC is an odd one. Sometimes it works well, other times not so well. You need to try it on a shot by shot basis as it may not give the best result every time. I have stopped using it.

What DCC does is take the knee point that is set in the PAINT menu and then adds multiple knees above that point up to the white clip, or maximum output if you have white clip turned off. These knee points vary continuously as you move the camera. The problem with this is of course similar to having autofocus turned on. Sometimes you can see it adjusting mid-shot. I have also found that DCC can be too harsh and highlights suffer more blow out because it is working to the electronic ideal of what is the maximum highlight information, and not necceserily what actually looks best.

So DCC doesn't reduce highlights. All it does it attempt to cram as much information above the knee point as possible. I doubt DCC would give you much more useful information than just using Cine 2 with DCC turned off.
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Old June 22nd, 2006, 04:32 PM   #19
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Just what I was afraid of Simon. DCC also has a dark side!!!
Funny, every automatic function, that is designed to make our life easier, ends op kicking us in the a..

What you are saying about the cine settings, is extremely useful.
I have noticed that some of the settings gives a flat picture, thatís why I like cine 4 it helps to some degree to the highlights and the picture is still nice.

I know what the terms means and what knee and gamma is but I would really like Sony to produce some graphic diagrams, shoving what happens with the curves, when you make an adjustment!

What I am also missing is some literature that in deep explain the pros and cons of fiddling around with the settings.

Until I find that.


This forum is the holy grail.
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Old June 22nd, 2006, 06:04 PM   #20
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Thanks Brian, but no I didn't have ez mode on. I am running it in standard config on STD gamma and matrix.

The manual makes DCC out to be akin to a 'back light' setting on a still camera but I can see Symon's point about it changing and adjusting in mid shot. I have a bird feeder that hangs in the shadow of the tree limb it's attached to and wanted to expose for the plumage of the birds without blowing the sky detail out.

Brian there is a link on Symon's website to a PDF by Sony called Camera Technology Basics. It was written by a Sony employee to put several concepts into layman's terms as much as possible. About 76 pages and well worth it. Including everything you wanted to know about DCC.

-gb-
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Old June 22nd, 2006, 06:16 PM   #21
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Ok, I just found the answer. I went into the paint menu and found that Knee was set to OFF. I verified that with it ON I see the effect of DCC, with it set to OFF, the DCC switch has no effect on the image.

I guess it's hard to adjust the knee point dynamically when it's not on in the first place...doh!

-gb-
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 02:29 AM   #22
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Visual Impact in the UK have some ex G4 challenge F350's and F330's at well discounted prices. Ask for Tim in sales.
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 03:24 AM   #23
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LOL Greg! Yep, if the knee is off DCC won't work. Puzzled as to why it was turned off on your camera though.
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 09:05 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon Wyndham
LOL Greg! Yep, if the knee is off DCC won't work. Puzzled as to why it was turned off on your camera though.
I bought Mike Devlin's F-350. He moved up to the HDC1500 to get as much image lattitude as possible. So to answer your question, I didn't get it new in the box. I went ahead and loaded a standard scene file into the camera so that everything will be in default mode(no more gotchas) and I can tweak from there.

It's a quantum leap from the XL-2 but not beyond my technical comprehension. BTW, thanks for that link to the Basic Camera Technology document by Sony. I downloaded and read it all in order to get in sync with Sony's camera feature terminology.

-gb-
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Old June 24th, 2006, 05:58 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Boston
Brian there is a link on Symon's website to a PDF by Sony called Camera Technology Basics. It was written by a Sony employee to put several concepts into layman's terms as much as possible. About 76 pages and well worth it. Including everything you wanted to know about DCC.

-gb-
I canīt find it please post the link!
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Old June 24th, 2006, 06:49 AM   #26
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http://www.sonybiz.net/images/editor...logyBasics.pdf

Might make another good sticky.
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Old August 7th, 2006, 08:26 AM   #27
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Low light Performance

I'm thinking of getting a PDW-350. It seems to have all the features I'm looking for (except optical image stabilization, but I can live without that.) And the XDCAM HD workflow beats P2 and tape hands down. $40,000 is a lot of money, but if this camera lasts 8-10 years then it's worth it.

However, I'm curious about the low-light performance. Much of what I shoot is documentary-style, unlighted footage. Will this camera render a good indoor picture without additional lights?
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Old August 7th, 2006, 09:26 AM   #28
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The new XDCAM HD's are not hugely sensitive. They aren't terrible, but it is one of the cameras weaknesses. With the losw shutter enabled you can get incredible low light performance out of it, but at the expense of framerate. It depends on how low light you are talking about?
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Old August 7th, 2006, 01:41 PM   #29
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Low Light Performance

I'm currently comfortable using a DVX-100 without gain at 1/30th of a second. That generally covers what I need it to. How is the gain on the PDW-350? Does it make the image unusable or is it viable solution to low light situations?
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Old August 7th, 2006, 02:45 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brett Sherman
I'm currently comfortable using a DVX-100 without gain at 1/30th of a second. That generally covers what I need it to. How is the gain on the PDW-350? Does it make the image unusable or is it viable solution to low light situations?
You would see an increase as I did over the XL2. Another good thing is that the Sony has no vertical smear on bright lights at night.

Brett, optical image stabilization is generally never done in camera. That's a lens function. Both Canon and Fujinon offer OIS devices that go between the camera body and lens so you can use the lens of your choice and get the benefits of OIS.

-gb-
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