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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 January 22nd, 2007, 06:12 PM   #16
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On my MBP 2 -- I see strong white outlines on the tree and wires.

So I retract my recommendation. At most I would use "8."

I need to check this further.
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Old January 22nd, 2007, 06:44 PM   #17
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Yup, that's what I see too. I don't see it in all scenes, but with things like wires against a sky, it can be seen.
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 12:21 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Ken Ross
Yup, that's what I see too. I don't see it in all scenes, but with things like wires against a sky, it can be seen.
Look like Sony may have defined NORMAL correctly.
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 02:49 AM   #19
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Doesn't anybody notice the oil paint effect on the shot of the church? I also notice a lot of dancing artifacts kind of like noise. I have tried decoding the video with 3 different mpeg2 decoders and I see it with every decoder. I cannot imagine that I would be watching this stuff in the wrong way.

On the village shot I also noticed ringing artifacts on the tree branches. This ringing artifact could make compositing very difficult.

Other then that the shots do look very nice. They look very nice when down converted to SD. The V1 seems to be a darn good camera if the intent is to down convert to DVD.
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 03:37 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas Smet
Doesn't anybody notice the oil paint effect on the shot of the church? I also notice a lot of dancing artifacts kind of like noise. I have tried decoding the video with 3 different mpeg2 decoders and I see it with every decoder. I cannot imagine that I would be watching this stuff in the wrong way.

On the village shot I also noticed ringing artifacts on the tree branches. This ringing artifact could make compositing very difficult.

Other then that the shots do look very nice. They look very nice when down converted to SD. The V1 seems to be a darn good camera if the intent is to down convert to DVD.
Yes Thomas. I've just DLed the Church footage and that dancing noise is consistent with what I saw in 25P. BUT the other scenes look far superior to 25P.

The ringing around the trees is something that disappointed me about the Sony encoder even in 50i. Canon's encoder doesn't seem to do this as much.

Swings and roundabouts...

TT
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 08:12 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas Smet
Doesn't anybody notice the oil paint effect on the shot of the church?
There is no oil paint effect on the church. Look at this jpeg. And open it into Photoshop, don't just view it with your web browser. Inferior scaling both on the computer and with an HD display will add a watercolor effect that doesn't exist in the raw footage.

www.geekstudios.com/demos/church.jpg

As far as the ringing is concerned, it is HDV compressed with highly detailed trees branches moving rapidly in the wind. So it doesn't get much more difficult than that. Whether or not the A1 would handle it better or not is hard to say.

When I view the footage on my Sony LMD-232 it looks quite clean. Sure there are compression artifacts, but nothing that distracts from the image. The edge enhancements aren't bad either. I mean if you're going to watch a 42" display from 16" away, you're going to see something, but at normal viewing distance it isn't noticeable. I actually like a little bit of EE to increase apparent sharpness. To me there is a richness to these images that I don't see with some of the A1 footage I've seen. But to each their own. Both the V1U and A1 can produce outstanding HD images for their price.
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 09:36 AM   #22
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You can't see it in that jpeg image? Now I know it isn't my decoder since you decoded it for me. I have looked at the image in Photoshop, After Effects, Combustion, and Shake and it all shows the same thing. The paint effect isn't as bad but there is clearly something odd there. Yes it may look good on a TV but my whole point here is from a compositing perspective. Image artifacts such as those are a huge no no for compositing and I think it is important for those who plan on doing any level of compositing to know about this.

Clearly something is going on because no other image from any other camera will vary on how it looks based on what tool you use to view it.

As for the ringing, I have never seen this on any other HDV camera. That tree does not have too much detail and the camera is for the most part static. This scene should be very easy to encode.

Just to mention it my wife has a Kodak Easy share camera and it sort of does the same thing. There is an odd filter looking effect on the high resolution images. At a 1:1 ratio the image looks very bad. When printed at a normal 4x6 size it looks perfect. Same sort of thing happening here. The filter acts as some kind of noise filter that can keep details while many noise filters would soften the image. It works for sharpness but not for an acurate natural looking image.

I do agree that both cameras look good but there is clearly something going on here that could cause some issues for compositors. While the A1 may or may not have the same sharpness depending on how and who used the camera it has a very natural clean image with very little to no artifacts in it's F modes. I have never seen any of these artifacts from any other SONY HDV camera and I own a few of them.
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 10:38 AM   #23
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To me the image looks natural. The only potential watercolor effect would be the highlight on the left tower. The sides of the tower look completely natural to me.

That being said. I don't think I'd attempt to composite with HDV in general. It's way too compressed for that. If I was compositing, I'd probably shoot with XDCAM HD or DVCPro HD. The HVX-200 recording to P2 would be a better solution for compositing. However, it's a terrible solution for run and gun or documentary style shooting, which is mostly what I do.

I guess we have two different criteria for judging the picture.
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 10:50 AM   #24
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Thomas

I see it too and I know what I'm looking at.

The compression artefacts are very different in progressive to interlaced. There is a lot more ringing around lines of contrast. It is a product of the Sony progressive encoder. In interlaced mode the quality of compression is quite different and better. There is something going on but it is very subtle compared to the V1E issues. Canon's encoder just seems to do a better job with the same bandwidth but the image just doesn't have the punch of the Sony. Swings and roundabouts!!!

Your observations tally with my own. And it doesn't have anything to do with poor scaling of my display.

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Old January 23rd, 2007, 01:49 PM   #25
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Thanks Tony. At least I know I'm not crazy now. At first I thought maybe I needed new glasses but then I realized that I don't see this on anything else.

Anyways I feel that I did my part and point it out and thats all I care about. If people are ok with this look then great.

As for compositing with HDV it can turn out very well if the right camera is used. I have seen lots of 24F footage from Canon cameras that had very little to no artifacts. I can easily pull a great key from JVC and Canon footage and the edges are clean for rotoscoping as well. HDV can be very good if it is done the correct way. The only time I have seen an issue with keying HDV material is so far with SONY cameras. I love the SONY HDV cameras I have right now but they do not come anywhere close to the results I can get when I rented a Canon HDV camera last year. This is not an attack on SONY at all but just a pointer for those thinking of compositing. Perhaps on my next shoot I will rent a V1 if I can fit it into the budget and use it next to some other HDV cameras and see what results I get in my Bluescreen studio.
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 02:10 PM   #26
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I've looked at the component output from the camera (V1P) prior to the encoder and what you're seeing as artifacts around the wires in my test looked very much like noise. I'd suspect the encoder would have problems with the noise and it ends up looking somewhat different on the tape.
Looking at the side of the tower in shadow there does indeed seem to be something odd there as well, there's a loss of detail where the color becomes blotchy.
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 02:25 PM   #27
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I watched these clips when Brett first posted them before any of the comments about "oil paint effects" were posted and my initial reaction was the first clip was nice, the third clip was really nice but the second clip looked too "video-ish". There was something odd about that clip that I couldn't pin point. The oddness stood out to me just as much as how the third clip stood out as being very good and film-like. That third clip reminds me of what I saw at DV Expo. Also, I do see the lost of detail that the other posters are saying about the church frame grab.
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 09:28 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brett Sherman
There is no oil paint effect on the church. Look at this jpeg. And open it into Photoshop, don't just view it with your web browser. Inferior scaling both on the computer and with an HD display will add a watercolor effect that doesn't exist in the raw footage.

www.geekstudios.com/demos/church.jpg

As far as the ringing is concerned, it is HDV compressed with highly detailed trees branches moving rapidly in the wind. So it doesn't get much more difficult than that. Whether or not the A1 would handle it better or not is hard to say.

When I view the footage on my Sony LMD-232 it looks quite clean. Sure there are compression artifacts, but nothing that distracts from the image. The edge enhancements aren't bad either. I mean if you're going to watch a 42" display from 16" away, you're going to see something, but at normal viewing distance it isn't noticeable. I actually like a little bit of EE to increase apparent sharpness. To me there is a richness to these images that I don't see with some of the A1 footage I've seen. But to each their own. Both the V1U and A1 can produce outstanding HD images for their price.
There is only one way to really check -- use a high-quality HD monitor. The attempt to judge quality on some computer's decoder doesn't make sense to me.

I simply don't see any noise on my own video sent via HDMI using "7."
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Old January 24th, 2007, 05:38 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by Steve Mullen
There is only one way to really check -- use a high-quality HD monitor. The attempt to judge quality on some computer's decoder doesn't make sense to me.

I simply don't see any noise on my own video sent via HDMI using "7."
I'd certainly agree with that if we were talking about moving footage but these are jpegs. And so far on this monitor with the same copy of PS I've not seen anything like what's in those still images.

The tests I did on our V1P were straight from the camera 'head', prior to the encoder, component into a Dell 2407. Just to make certain we weren't viewing monitor artifacts or cable impedance mismatches we replaced the V1P with a Z1. The Z1 was clean as a whistle.
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Old January 24th, 2007, 06:30 AM   #30
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I changed my mind. The V1U is definitely exhibiting the "watercolor" effect in progressive mode. I hooked it up to my studio monitor and switched between Progressive and interlaced. The "watercolor" effect definitely appears in progressive.

Now when I watch the footage I shot in Nicaragua it doesn't seem to be real noticeable. But if I A/B it with a static shot it is definitely there. I'll post some pics later.

Now I wonder if Sony will offer refunds to U.S. customers too. I have to decide what I'm going to do about it.
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