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Sony HVR-A1 and HDR-HC Series
Sony's latest single-CMOS additions to their HDV camcorder line.


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Old August 19th, 2005, 07:12 AM   #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sergio Perez
Boyd, any idea if this bar graph is on the A1?
Sorry, I've never seen an A1. On the PDX-10 perhaps "bar graph" was not a good term to use. It's a horizontal rectangle with a little square in it the moves from left to right, just like the zoom indicator on a PD-150. There is no calibration or marking, however once you get used to it you can judge where the gain is applied pretty easily by its position relative to the text just above it.
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Old September 16th, 2005, 07:42 AM   #62
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Question for Douglas Spotted Eagle

Hi Douglas. I am curious about the quality of the zoom control on the A1U. In my opinion, Sony has really missed the boat generally with their weak rocker controls on their newer models. I have an old TRV-7, which was quite an expensive "consumer" camera 8 years ago, and one of the great things about it is the high quality of the zoom rocker control, which allows for very slow crawling zooms. I find that with the newer Sony models, including the HC1 (which I demo-ed at Circuit City), I can't get the level of zoom control that I want, which is in large part why I haven't upgraded the camera in 8 years! I would willingly pay the extra $ for a high quality hand-held camcorder, but every model that I demo from Sony comes up short in that area.

So, can you give me any insight into whether the A1U's zoom controls are any better?

Thanks for the help!
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Old September 16th, 2005, 09:47 AM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn Seale
Hi Douglas. I am curious about the quality of the zoom control on the A1U. In my opinion, Sony has really missed the boat generally with their weak rocker controls on their newer models. I have an old TRV-7, which was quite an expensive "consumer" camera 8 years ago, and one of the great things about it is the high quality of the zoom rocker control, which allows for very slow crawling zooms. I find that with the newer Sony models, including the HC1 (which I demo-ed at Circuit City), I can't get the level of zoom control that I want, which is in large part why I haven't upgraded the camera in 8 years! I would willingly pay the extra $ for a high quality hand-held camcorder, but every model that I demo from Sony comes up short in that area.

So, can you give me any insight into whether the A1U's zoom controls are any better?

Thanks for the help!
FWIW: The zoom rocker on my new HC90 works perfecto! Very easy to zoom from SLOWWWWW to FASTTTTT.

Perhaps the newer Sonys are all like this. ???

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JohnG
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Old September 16th, 2005, 01:12 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn Seale
Hi Douglas. I am curious about the quality of the zoom control on the A1U. In my opinion, Sony has really missed the boat generally with their weak rocker controls on their newer models. I have an old TRV-7, which was quite an expensive "consumer" camera 8 years ago, and one of the great things about it is the high quality of the zoom rocker control, which allows for very slow crawling zooms. I find that with the newer Sony models, including the HC1 (which I demo-ed at Circuit City), I can't get the level of zoom control that I want, which is in large part why I haven't upgraded the camera in 8 years! I would willingly pay the extra $ for a high quality hand-held camcorder, but every model that I demo from Sony comes up short in that area.

So, can you give me any insight into whether the A1U's zoom controls are any better?

Thanks for the help!
Shawn i can help here.
No.1 : i totally agree about the zoom on the HC1. It's WAY too fast, even at slowest-zoom achievable. The slowest continuous zoom end-to-end is 10second zoom. However one of the first people to get a production A1 did a test and he managed to achieve a 29-second zoom. So, a small allowance for mis-timing, the zoom on A1 is at least 3times slower than the HC1. It may be even slower than that (hard if you're not used to Sony toggle to achieve and hold slowest rate).

However, if you really want a top Sony camera with a very slow crawler zoom, then get hold of a HC1000. I have one and i can achieve a continous 84-second (ish) end-to-end. That is so slow that it's almost imperceptible, and it looks very pro.
HC1000 is now discontinued, but you may be able to get one from a store that still has stock. If not, then try getting hold of one 2nd-hand or from ebay. There should be quite a few people i would think selling HC1000's simply cos they want the latest HD camera. Now obviously if you definitely want HDV, then you'll have to go for HC1 or A1, but the HC1000 is about as good as it gets in SD camcorders. it's 3CCD too.

Hope this helps.
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Old September 16th, 2005, 01:40 PM   #65
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Do the HC1 and A1 have a LANC jack? If so then get a zoom controller. I have the same problem on my PDX-10 with a hair trigger rocker switch. I use a Varizoom Pro-L which lets you dial in the desired speed and hold it constant.

However, even when set to the absolute minimum speed there is often (but not always) a noticeable bump at the beginning. This can't be avoided since there's a bottom limit to the zoom speed setting. So even if you select the lowest speed you go from 0 to that speed when first activating the control.
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Old September 16th, 2005, 01:58 PM   #66
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Hi Boyd

Yes, both HC1 and A1 have LANC facility.

Users have used variable-speed-zoom LANC controller on HC1 and they managed to achieve an end-to-end slowest zoom of 24seconds, a substantial improvement on the 'native' 10seconds.

A1's are just starting to be delivered and i note that someone natively achieved approx. 30secs. end-to-end slowest zoom, but no idea of what adding a LANC-controller to the A1 would do. Maybe 75secs ??
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Old September 16th, 2005, 02:18 PM   #67
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Not all Lanc controllers were able to increase the zoom speed on the HC1. The maximum acquired was 24 secs. with the Canon lanc.

However, the A1 has a default zoom speed of up to 29 secs. I don't know why there is such a drastic difference. I guess SONY is trying to create another factor of product differentiation. Kinda lame in my opinion.
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Old September 17th, 2005, 11:01 AM   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexander Karol
Not all Lanc controllers were able to increase the zoom speed on the HC1. The maximum acquired was 24 secs. with the Canon lanc.

However, the A1 has a default zoom speed of up to 29 secs. I don't know why there is such a drastic difference. I guess SONY is trying to create another factor of product differentiation. Kinda lame in my opinion.
Just checked my HC90 and slow zoom is at least 30 seconds. Seems like the HC1 should be similar. ???

JohnG
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Old September 17th, 2005, 11:57 AM   #69
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It should be similar, but it isn't. The greatest zoom speed possible with the HC1 is 10 secs. Like I said before, I think it's SONY way of attaining another factor in product differentiation between the HC1 and it's big brother, the A1 (which has a zoom speed of 29 secs).
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Old September 20th, 2005, 09:59 PM   #70
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"The bottom-load tape mechanism is challenging for those who would use this camcorder with a tripod. There are stand-off devices, but this could have been better thought out."

Anybody know what are some of these stand-off devices DSE mentioned in the review and where I might be able to get them?

thanks
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Old September 21st, 2005, 02:55 AM   #71
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Originally Posted by Min Lee
Anybody know what are some of these stand-off devices DSE mentioned in the review and where I might be able to get them?
I don't know what he ment but I am using a quick-connection. They come with a lot of tripods but can also be purchased seperately. Something like this http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...goryNavigation

The plate connected to the camera is quite easliy screwed on and off.
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Old September 21st, 2005, 04:35 PM   #72
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2 questions...

1 blackstretch - Can this be done in post? Basically color / gama correction or something else? Is there info the A1 captures that the HC1 doesn't in low light?

2 Just reiterating a former post, I, too, am looking for an offset device to allow easy HC1 mounting on a tripod, preferably Sachtler.
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Old September 25th, 2005, 04:03 PM   #73
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Originally Posted by Fredrik-Larsson
I don't know what he ment but I am using a quick-connection. They come with a lot of tripods but can also be purchased seperately. Something like this http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...goryNavigation
I've seen these plates but I think most if not all still obstructs the tape loading door. Does anyone have one that doesn't obstruct the door?

I was thinking about getting a cheap tripod with a plastic plate and cut away at it so it allows the door to open while hopefully still be sturdy enough to stay in place. Or make a metal bracket to offset the tripod mount. If there are similar devices out there already, please let me know. Thanks.
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Old September 25th, 2005, 04:11 PM   #74
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Yes, it blocks the tapedoor but these quickmounts allow you to take the camera of the tripod fast and unscrewing the plate attached to the camera is done in a couple of seconds. I think it's the best way at the moment.
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Old September 25th, 2005, 07:30 PM   #75
 
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The one I've got doesn't block the tape door, but I've also tried to find these for other people, and can't find one. This is older, probably 6-7 years old from back when tape bottom loads were more common. It looks like a letter "U" turned on its side, and the top of the "U" is the bottom of the cam, just barely missing the door, and the bottom of the "U" is the mount for the sled.
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