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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 March 28th, 2007, 10:10 PM   #1
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Hvr-v1 opinions

Hey, I guess I'm just looking for your opinions on this camera so far, for those of you who have one or got to play with one. I can't seem to find a shop around here that has one. Been wanting to get one for a while. Ive only found a limited number of sample clips but that wouldn't be the deciding factor. Just looking for general input I suppose.

Thanks a lot.

Dan
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Old March 31st, 2007, 09:59 AM   #2
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In case you didn't see this, it's worth a look: http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=90234

BTW, the V1's a great little cam. If you do lots of run 'n gun stuff, you'll love it.
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Old March 31st, 2007, 11:09 AM   #3
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It would be perfect with one stop more low light sensitivity. With that said, I am quite pleased with mine.
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Old March 31st, 2007, 11:14 AM   #4
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As someone who quite extensively tested both the Canon A1 and the Sony V1, I'd add that - in spite of Adam Wilt measurements in favour of the A1 - I don't find the Sony any worse low-light performer. I must admit I never had both at the same time, but have plenty of test shoots of exactly the same scenery to compare.
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Old March 31st, 2007, 11:55 AM   #5
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I'll add my 0.02c worth about low light use of the V1;

I'm currently shotting a documentary about a bodybuilder preparing for a competition in several months. This has meant shooting literally hours of footage inside a not-very-well lit gymnasium at 24P. I'll post some of the footage on my web site soon, but I must confess to being pleasantly surprised by the results. Sure, it's a tad grainy in a few places, but absolutely usable. The only problem I've encountered with a low light situation where the results were borderline has been when shooting in a dimly lit restaurant. In retrospect I probably should have shot with DV and uprez'd it.

Overall, the results from the cam have been excellent, and the DR60 is a lifesaver. I wouldn't hesitate to get a second device for backup.

Greg
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Old March 31st, 2007, 12:39 PM   #6
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Thanks for the responces. Ive been wanting another camera (have hc1) for a while now. The other day when I posted this I decided to buy the camera. Too bad B&H didn't ship it to me yet :( Looks like they are going on a 10 day break for easter too.

Thanks again.
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Old March 31st, 2007, 09:48 PM   #7
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Greg -
Can't the v1 gain be boosted up a little more then the a1 and still create a usable image? Will that equal out the difference in low light perf between these 2 cams?
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Old April 2nd, 2007, 02:35 AM   #8
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Joe,

Both cameras show significant noise when gain is boosted above 6 or 9 db. For the Canon A1 it is the nature of CCDs and High definition video as the S/N ratio suffers as the resolution increases. For the Sony V1 it is the tiny 1/4 inch chips. It would have been nice if Sony put in 3, 1/3rd inch CMOS sensors, and then I think the low light sensitivity would have been to most everyone's liking. But looking at the two in low light, I don't see much difference from one or the other. The canon is maybe a bit noisier, but also shows a sharper image in my opinion. I suspect that's because of Canon's near full HD CCDs.

PS - In the past CMOS chips were noiser than CCDs. That is no longer true. With the new technology, CMOS sensors are less noisy than CCDs in high definition. That is why they are starting to show up not only in consumer camcorders but also professional camcorders. Also, with the new technology CMOS low light performance is similar to CCDs. That is when comparing similar size sensors. Thus, in my opinion, it is best to look for a high definition camcorder with CMOS sensors.
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Old April 2nd, 2007, 02:47 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Bullerman View Post
Looks like they are going on a 10 day break for easter too.
It's called Passover.
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Old April 2nd, 2007, 08:19 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Stair View Post
Greg -
Can't the v1 gain be boosted up a little more then the a1 and still create a usable image? Will that equal out the difference in low light perf between these 2 cams?
What John said, plus my own experience is that the fast-to-set "hypergain" setting provides unusably grainy results in a real low light setting like the one I described. At 12 db, you better had a good reason for shooting it (like an alien landing on the white house lawn) for the grain to be acceptable.
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Old April 2nd, 2007, 08:58 AM   #11
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True - I find gain at 6dB almost unnoticeable, at 9dB - acceptable; anything above you need special reasons to tolerate.
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Old April 3rd, 2007, 12:16 AM   #12
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Thanks ya'll for the input. Low light performance is the only thing that was giving me a headacke trying to decide what to buy. I'm leaning toward the v1 and think it will do ok in available light at church. For receptions I can always add light.
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Old April 3rd, 2007, 01:33 PM   #13
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V1 is a nice little camera, good in form factor, smart placement of some buttons.
It is also a marketing example of our days: don't make a product too good, leave room for improvement - in the next model and keep on selling...:)

V1 would be really great with:

- larger lens
- more wide angle
- bigger sensors
- more light sensitivity
- no debatable picture quality (PAL version)
- more dedicated (or assignable) controls
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Old April 3rd, 2007, 01:39 PM   #14
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For $2,000 more....
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Old April 3rd, 2007, 03:48 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee Berger View Post
It would be perfect with one stop more low light sensitivity. With that said, I am quite pleased with mine.
I agree 100% Lee..but like with every camera..there are tradeoffs.

we keep searching for that perfect cam......
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