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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 May 23rd, 2007, 02:31 PM   #1
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drawbacks shooting in HDV format

This is my first time using the Sony HVR-A1U camera. Is it best to shoot in the HDV format, even though I don't know at this point if I will output the tape to HDV? The work that I am shooting may end up on the web, or on MiniDV, but obviously I'd like to take advantage of the better-quality HDV format, if it will indeed result in a better quality image on the web or MiniDV. Does anyone have a suggestion?

The other issue is playback. I am used to shooting with the Panasonic AG-DVX100A, which I used with an NTSC field monitor. Could anyone recommend an affordable (!) HD field monitor to use with the Sony HVR? Can I use my NTSC monitor with the Sony DVR-A1U if I shoot in the DV format?
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Old May 23rd, 2007, 02:48 PM   #2
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I shoot everything in HDV with the A1U. You have the option to have it down convert to regular DV in camera to you computer, no brainer.
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Old May 23rd, 2007, 03:43 PM   #3
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Yeah, I'd do everything in HDV until it's time to burn the DVD.

I think you should be able to use an NTSC monitor no matter how you record... using the a/v outputs with either composite or component cables, the cam should downconvert for you even if you shoot in HDV. You may have to adjust the TV TYPE in the menus to play correctly in 4:3.

I'm basing this on the HC3 manual, though, so your pro features may vary.

Edit: Page 35 of your A1 manual has all the details.

http://media.sonyhdvinfo.com/media/p...HVR-A1U-US.pdf

Last edited by Adam Gold; May 23rd, 2007 at 03:51 PM. Reason: Found the A1U manual
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Old May 23rd, 2007, 04:16 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cindy Konits View Post
This is my first time using the Sony HVR-A1U camera. Is it best to shoot in the HDV format, even though I don't know at this point if I will output the tape to HDV? The work that I am shooting may end up on the web, or on MiniDV, but obviously I'd like to take advantage of the better-quality HDV format, if it will indeed result in a better quality image on the web or MiniDV. Does anyone have a suggestion?
I have a comment. I thought of the same thing. I need my footage for the web... but who knows may be i will want it in HDV later.

So I shot in HDV...

Edited in HDV in PPro 2. Now I cant get it out of PPro 2.

When I use Adobe media encoder.... images come out wasshed out and out of focus.

So I decided to use QuickTime Pro. So I exported to DV(SD) avi from Adobe.

The file looked really bad. Bad focus ... washed out...

So now I do not know what to do...

If it was in SD I could have just exported it in SD .. then used Quicktime Pro to do the rest... So now I have the edited timeline in HD and no clue how to get it out....


My only last resort is to do the down convert in camcorder......

rrrrrrrrrrrr frustrating... should have went with FCP
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Old May 23rd, 2007, 07:34 PM   #5
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drawbacks shooting in HDV format

Thanks for the responses! I assume I have to Down Convert in camera before capturing in Final Cut Pro? I'm looking on Pg. 61 in the manual and it's not obvious to me how to capture...

Also, I'm not sure if the A1U can do 24 frame progressive like the Panasonic...

I appreciate everyone's help in the transition!
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Old May 23rd, 2007, 07:40 PM   #6
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yes - you will have to downconvert in camera. There is a setting for HDV to DV. Be sure to plug in your firewire AFTER that setting change. In your NLE make sure the project is DV 16:9, unless you pillboxed it in camera.

No the A1U will NOT do 24fps. For 24p, your best bet is to shoot 60i and convert with a piece of software. You'll find days of reading on that topic.
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Old May 26th, 2007, 05:28 AM   #7
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FCP 5.1.2 - HDV capture

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Originally Posted by Marco Wagner View Post
yes - you will have to downconvert in camera.
I'm using FCP 5.1.2 and it can capture HDV 1080i. You need to set this up in "capture settings" (under Audio/Video Settings). Make sure you have set "Device Control Preset" (same dialogue, under "summary") to match or Log and Capture won't work.

You can then use FCP to downconvert later. However, unless your loaded up with slick processors, downconversion WILL take quite a while. Quad Core Intel Mac with fast internal drives takes roughly twice as long as the footage lasts in realtime to squish it down.

(If anyone knows any tricks to improve on this please let me know!)

I'm blessed with an HD display, though. If you're still fully SD in your suite and your output is to be SD (or lower for web), you might still want to downconvert in camera to save a bit of time later on.

Downconverted some footage from HDV 1080i50 to DV PAL last weekend using FCP. Local news was happy enough to broadcast it in their bulletin.

BBC reckons downconverted HDV footage looks better than DVCAM shot stuff - but only markedly so if you have access to expensive downconversion hardware, not the in-built options on the camera.

Interesting (but ageing) post here on the same topic:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...ghlight=Z1+BBC

Happy converting!

John
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Old May 26th, 2007, 04:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Todorov View Post
Now I cant get it out of PPro 2.

When I use Adobe media encoder.... images come out wasshed out and out of focus.

So now I do not know what to do...
So now I have the edited timeline in HD and no clue how to get it out....


My only last resort is to do the down convert in camcorder......
Here's something you can try, if PPro 2 is like 1.5: Export to tape, but don't do anything with the file on the tape. Prior to transfer to the camera, Premiere will create an m2t file. You can author your DVD directly from this and it comes out MUCH better than if you let Adobe Media Encoder do the downconversion.

And it would come out better still if you do recapture the tape, down-converting in camera, as a DV project, and then burn from there. But you don't have to do this.

This is just based on my experiments with Premiere.
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Old May 27th, 2007, 12:00 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Wallace View Post
I'm using FCP 5.1.2 and it can capture HDV 1080i. You need to set this up in "capture settings" (under Audio/Video Settings). Make sure you have set "Device Control Preset" (same dialogue, under "summary") to match or Log and Capture won't work.

You can then use FCP to downconvert later. However, unless your loaded up with slick processors, downconversion WILL take quite a while. Quad Core Intel Mac with fast internal drives takes roughly twice as long as the footage lasts in realtime to squish it down.

(If anyone knows any tricks to improve on this please let me know!)

I'm blessed with an HD display, though. If you're still fully SD in your suite and your output is to be SD (or lower for web), you might still want to downconvert in camera to save a bit of time later on.

Downconverted some footage from HDV 1080i50 to DV PAL last weekend using FCP. Local news was happy enough to broadcast it in their bulletin.

BBC reckons downconverted HDV footage looks better than DVCAM shot stuff - but only markedly so if you have access to expensive downconversion hardware, not the in-built options on the camera.

Interesting (but ageing) post here on the same topic:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...ghlight=Z1+BBC

Happy converting!

John
Thanks for this...
So the quality is the same if the footage is down-converted in camera vs. FCP? If the issue is only time, it seems far more advantageous to down-convert in FCP...

By the way, if the output is to SD, is the quality still better if shot in HD and down-converted rather than shot in SD to start with?

Please tell me about your HD display. This component is really important, but I'm bracing myself to hear the cost!

Cindy
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Old June 4th, 2007, 12:36 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Wallace View Post
I'm using FCP 5.1.2 and it can capture HDV 1080i. You need to set this up in "capture settings" (under Audio/Video Settings). Make sure you have set "Device Control Preset" (same dialogue, under "summary") to match or Log and Capture won't work.

You can then use FCP to downconvert later. However, unless your loaded up with slick processors, downconversion WILL take quite a while. Quad Core Intel Mac with fast internal drives takes roughly twice as long as the footage lasts in realtime to squish it down.

(If anyone knows any tricks to improve on this please let me know!)

I'm blessed with an HD display, though. If you're still fully SD in your suite and your output is to be SD (or lower for web), you might still want to downconvert in camera to save a bit of time later on.

Downconverted some footage from HDV 1080i50 to DV PAL last weekend using FCP. Local news was happy enough to broadcast it in their bulletin.

BBC reckons downconverted HDV footage looks better than DVCAM shot stuff - but only markedly so if you have access to expensive downconversion hardware, not the in-built options on the camera.

Interesting (but ageing) post here on the same topic:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...ghlight=Z1+BBC

Happy converting!

John
I have Sequence Preset set to HDV-1080i60, Capture Preset set to HDV, Device Control Preset set to HDV FireWire Basic, but I Final Cut Pro still isn't recognizing the HDV tape in the camcorder (connected by firewire) for capture! What audio/video settings did you use?
Cindy
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