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Sony HVR-A1 and HDR-HC Series
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Old July 29th, 2006, 08:57 PM   #1
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SONY HC3 * How to Control GAIN & Aperture

I just got an HC3 for family trips and comming from the FX1 is a big change (DRAG) does anyone have a clue if it is possible to control this in any way shape or form?

I am using manual exposure and using my experience to avoid the grain but is hard to tell while recording.

Thanks!
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Old July 30th, 2006, 04:36 AM   #2
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I just got HC3 myself and have read somewhere about how to find out GAIN & Aperture values using HC1, which was to switch to manual exposure mode then to record a short clip going from lowest (left) point of the exposure bar to highest (right), after that playing the clip with Data Code enabled, noticing GAIN, Aperture and Shutter values. That's what I got with mine:

Exposure Aperture Gain
"notch"
1_______Closed___0dB
2_______f11______0dB
3_______f9.6_____0dB
4_______f8_______0dB
5_______f6.8_____0dB
6_______f5.6_____0dB
7_______f4.8_____0dB
8_______f4_______0dB
9_______f4_______0dB
10______f4_______0dB
11______f4_______0dB
12______f4_______0dB
13______f4_______0dB
14______f4_______0dB
15______f3.4_____0dB
16______f2.8_____0dB
17______f2_______0dB
18______f1.8_____0dB
19______f1.8_____3dB
20______f1.8_____6dB
21______f1.8_____9dB
22______f1.8_____12dB
23______f1.8_____15dB
24______f1.8_____18dB

So 6 notches from right will have the camera at f1.8 No Gain.

Also I've noticed that shutter speed is locked together with aperture, and does not change when you adjust exposure in manual mode. That means that you can control shutter as well, to get low speeds of 1/50s(or 1/60s NTSC), for example, while in AUTO mode close the lens with your hand blocking the light, while doing that switch to manual mode. To get faster speeds point the camera to a bright object and then switch to manual mode. I know its lame, but better than nothing.
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Old July 30th, 2006, 10:59 AM   #3
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Thanks Yuri, I'll try that.

This is what I love about this forum!!!
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Old October 31st, 2006, 08:44 AM   #4
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The exposure table Yuri posted is very useful. On a sunny day with ordinary scene reflectance (not sand or snow), which exposure notch will the camera select in auto mode at 1/60 shutter speed?

If one wanted to hold notch #18 to achieve shallow depth of field, how strong an ND filter would be needed on a sunny day to avoid overexposure? Or is it more advisable to just go to faster shutter speed? I don't own an A1 yet, so I don't have a good feel for these workarounds to overcome the lack of full manual controls.
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Old February 14th, 2007, 09:34 PM   #5
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I experimented with the HC7. 8 stops from the FARTHEST right gives you F1.8, 1/60th and 3 DB of gain. 9 stops from the far right gives you F1.8, 1/60th and 0DB of gain.

Far right is 1/30th, F1.8 and 18 DB of gain.

If you want 1/30th, F1.8 and 0DB gain you would click the manual exposure 9 stops from the far right, then set the manual shutter to 1/30th.

All in all you can get the f-stop and shutterspeed you want for the most part, with the gain level you want for most situations using manual exposure in conjunction with manual shutter.

Last edited by Roger Uzun; February 14th, 2007 at 10:32 PM.
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Old February 18th, 2007, 12:07 PM   #6
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Is the HC3 chart you have given the same for the HC1?
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