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Sony HVR-V1 / HDR-FX7
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CMOS HDV camcorder.


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Old October 13th, 2008, 10:47 AM   #76
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Originally Posted by Steve Mullen View Post
WOW. That's exactly how I felt. So good and then, suddenly, in a wide shot so bad.

Does Sony really admit to this problem?

How do you prove it to them?
When I initially spoke to the lady who answered the phone at Sony she told me that they were familiar with the problem and she did state that they "fix them all the time". However, I have never gotten anyone at Sony to admit that it was a universal problem. I don't know what you would have to do to prove it to the point of forcing a factory recall. I have personally had my hands on 2 V1's and an FX7 and they all performed exactly the same. And the backfocus was out on all of them. Mine should be back today or tomorrow. I am anxious to get my hands on it and test it out.
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Old October 14th, 2008, 05:09 AM   #77
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I had my back focus fixed almost a year ago and it is still functioning properly. On shoots where I don't have a monitor I check with VF peaking to be sure.
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Old October 14th, 2008, 03:47 PM   #78
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Guys, consider yourselves lucky with the V1 and Sony's Pro division... I don't know how things work in the US for consumer retail channels, but over here I can't even hope to reach Sony for my FX7 - I bought it through a major retailer chain which ordinarily provide service and extended warranty themselves I believe. Those people can understand when something is plainly broken, but when it's below somebody's quality standards, it's just that: below that person's quality standards.

Luckily enough, there's the work-around Steve mentioned in another thread - only zoom as much as you will really need during the shot, and use Push Auto Focus. Frustrating still, esp. as the manual mentions "Tips for focusing manually: It is easier to focus on the subject when you use the zoom function. Move the power zoom lever towards T (telephoto) to adjust the focus, and then, towards W (wide angle) to adjust the zoom for recording". Haha!
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Old November 2nd, 2008, 05:38 AM   #79
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Originally Posted by Stephan Stryhanyn View Post
Frustrating still, esp. as the manual mentions "Tips for focusing manually: It is easier to focus on the subject when you use the zoom function. Move the power zoom lever towards T (telephoto) to adjust the focus, and then, towards W (wide angle) to adjust the zoom for recording". Haha!
That's like recommending a sniper get up close to the target for better accuracy!
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Old November 2nd, 2008, 12:51 PM   #80
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One thing I discovered early on with my V1:

Macro focus is enabled by default from the factory, or whenever the factory reset is enabled.

Zoom in to manually focus and zoom out to the shot doesn't work with macro focus on, apparently macro changes the backfocus.

Turning off macro focus in the camera menus fixed this problem on my V1. I can now zoom in for manual focus, zoom out to the shot, and it all stays in focus. Probably the same on the FX7...
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Old November 3rd, 2008, 12:25 AM   #81
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Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum View Post
One thing I discovered early on with my V1:

Macro focus is enabled by default from the factory, or whenever the factory reset is enabled.

Zoom in to manually focus and zoom out to the shot doesn't work with macro focus on, apparently macro changes the backfocus.

Turning off macro focus in the camera menus fixed this problem on my V1. I can now zoom in for manual focus, zoom out to the shot, and it all stays in focus. Probably the same on the FX7...
Thanks to the knowledge base of this forum, I had read about that long ago. Turning off macro focus did not cure my back focus issues. Nor did it on a friends V1. I never got to check it on the FX7 I had looked at.
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Old November 3rd, 2008, 02:09 AM   #82
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I've been going around and around for a long while now trying to decide on what camera to buy. Seems my thoughts change depending on the side of the bed I wake up on.

The V1 has been very high on my list of what I ultimately might buy. But the difference between really nice and stunningly gorgeous perfection is sometimes all in the focus (when it is not lighting).

Is the Z1 known to be void of this problem?
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Old November 3rd, 2008, 04:02 AM   #83
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Funny how people like to generalize their experience (especially bad one) up to universal proportions...

It reminds me Porthos – the famous personage from the Dumas’s “Three musketeers”. He (Porthos) believed that all Englishmen were small, bow-legged and had black hair because the only Englishman he met was small, bow-legged and had black hair…

Dear Greg Laves, you “have never gotten anyone at Sony to admit that it (i.e. the V1/FX7 back focus) was a universal problem”, because it is not and never been. I feel your pain, but it is not widespread one. The vast majority of V1/FX7 cams are free from this issue.

And Jeff, you can buy yourself a brand new V1/FX7 without any frightening thoughts about back focus and be completely happy and satisfied with the stunning quality of the footage.
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Old November 3rd, 2008, 10:42 AM   #84
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Arkady, I would like to think my experience is an isolated issue. But as I have stated before, I have had my hands on three (3) camcorders from this family and they all shared the identical problem. I love the cameras picture. Maybe there was a production glitch and all of the cameras I have seen were from the same batch. They were all similar age. I don't know if that could be the case. But I do know that my findings are not totally isolated and I do know that others on this forum have had exactly the same problem. I have owned 7 Sony professional or semi-professional video cameras. My next camera will most likely be a Sony, as well. But they are not always perfect. Would I recommend a V1 or FX7. Absolutely. It is amazing bang for the buck.
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Old November 3rd, 2008, 12:30 PM   #85
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Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum View Post
Turning off macro focus in the camera menus fixed this problem on my V1. I can now zoom in for manual focus, zoom out to the shot, and it all stays in focus. Probably the same on the FX7...
Unfortunately the FX7 does not have a FOCUS MACRO setting or function.
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Old November 3rd, 2008, 02:12 PM   #86
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Originally Posted by Colin Zhang View Post
That's like recommending a sniper get up close to the target for better accuracy!
Nonsense! Zooming in for getting focus is how manual focus is obtained in EVERY camera with a zoom lens. Do you understand WHY you zoom in?

The alternative is to zoom to frame and push AF.

PS: The lack of "contrast" mentioned is one of the best things about the V1. We have grown used to consumer camcorders having way too much contrast to compensate for any real detail. And, too many film makers crush black to get a moody or harsh look. Video guys have followed this practice. Get a good photography book and learn what correctly exposed shots look like. You should see detail in shadows and detail in highlights.
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Old November 3rd, 2008, 04:29 PM   #87
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.... You should see detail in shadows and detail in highlights.
Amen. This is exactly what I notice is a difference between my SR11 and my friends FX7. The FX7 shows this detail better than my SR11.

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Old November 8th, 2008, 05:25 PM   #88
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is there a date set for the re-release of the fx7? (sorry if it has already been mentioned. i guess i missed it...)
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Old November 8th, 2008, 05:30 PM   #89
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Amazon had said November 2, but now both they and B&H are saying it is not yet in stock, with Amazon guessing 1-2 months.
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Old November 8th, 2008, 06:35 PM   #90
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I've wondered for some time if the "re-release" of the FX7 was nothing more than a rumour, although it seemed to check out...

It makes sense at the lower price point to re-release it, and I guess if the V1U is still in production it's not a huge thing to pump them out, just change the color of the goop that goes into the shell molds and load different firmware... and a couple other minor changes.

Personally I thought they should come up with an answer to the tapeless Panasonic HMC150 - basically a smaller FX7 without the tape mech... but who knows?
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