FX1 on par with Varicam - hands on report inside at DVinfo.net

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Sony HVR-Z1 / HDR-FX1
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CCD HDV camcorder.


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Old October 13th, 2004, 08:19 PM   #1
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FX1 on par with Varicam - hands on report inside

I thought it's interesting because it echoes DSE's assessment at Govt. Expo that new FX1 is on par with varicam...

"FX1 is a Varicam killer"
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Old October 14th, 2004, 08:37 AM   #2
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Impressive....Most impressive.
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Old October 14th, 2004, 12:41 PM   #3
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Looking forward to seeing frame grabs and running footage that support this. The FX1 may well be that good, but an enthusiastic review from an anonymous source doesn't carry a lot of weight for me.
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Old October 14th, 2004, 01:33 PM   #4
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This is DSE's statement from gov expo:

"BTW, I failed to mention in my earlier post that I was allowed quite a bit of time with the new professional HDV cam from Sony while at Government Expo. I was simply blown away. It was sitting next to an HD cam costing several times as much, displaying on same model monitor, shooting same source. While there indeed was some difference, the differences are quite subtle."


Original Source: http://www.dmnforums.com/cgi-bin/dis...0911151408.htm
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Old October 14th, 2004, 03:54 PM   #5
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DSE--whole other ballgame.

Still liking to see some comparison footage though, particularly after it's gone through some processing/rendering/multiple generations etc.
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Old October 14th, 2004, 04:21 PM   #6
 
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I'm quite interested in seeing some footage with fast horizontal motion scans.
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Old October 15th, 2004, 04:40 PM   #7
 
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Charles, I realize it's a whole 'nother ballgame, but the point was...
sitting on a tripod next to a 30K cam, showing on a pair of matched 10K monitors, this looked as good as any sub 50K anything I've ever seen. I tend to see lots of Varicam stuff and wish I had one, but not wishing as hard any longer.
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Old October 15th, 2004, 04:52 PM   #8
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DSE--I tried to find your "Instant Vegas" on your site but couldn't. Could you link up to it? Thanks...
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Old October 15th, 2004, 04:58 PM   #9
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You know what it would take for me to seriously look at the FX1? Interchangeable lenses. While I never had the chance to experiment with my XL1s, I feel very limited by the fixed lense of my GL1. I may not be able to BUY a new lens, but I could rent one...

As it is, this cam made me look twice, when I already knew I wanted the XL2.
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Old October 15th, 2004, 04:59 PM   #10
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Douglas, I think Charles meant that your impression is a whole nother ballgame compared to the anonymous guys posting that started the thread

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Old October 15th, 2004, 05:57 PM   #11
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Thanks, Aaron, that's just exactly what Charles meant. In other words, there's not much credence in ananymous report, but you can take anything that Spot says and put it in the bank, because it's as good as gold.
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Old October 15th, 2004, 07:27 PM   #12
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so waddawedo now?

Make another "Extreme Ops" movie and pull the MX300 and sub the FX1 and...


get Charles to ski the steady?


Lets wait and then rejoice.
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Old October 16th, 2004, 12:48 AM   #13
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Little footage that I've already seen tells me that the price I would've paid for SD camera before the announcement of FX1, for the same price, I'm getting a HD camera[which can do 16:9 natively in SD mode, and in all terms seem to be doing anything which we have SD cameras doing in the same price today(with full manual controls)].

What is the problem there? If you just stop looking at it as a HD cam, you will realize that it gives you the best bang for the buck even in the SD category. Be happy that you are getting a lot for this money.

Yes, the still shots of that highway really look crappy, but that other motion footage simply looked great. Night shots have really left me in the awe, and I'm sure that day shots will be better equally once you get a hang of it....

I cant wait to get my hands on it...

Bye
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Old October 16th, 2004, 02:07 AM   #14
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<<<-- Originally posted by Keith Forman :

As it is, this cam made me look twice, when I already knew I wanted the XL2. -->>>

Keith, those are my sentiments exactly.
I need a small camera for 16:9 broadcast work here in the UK and I was set on the XL2. Even if I don't shoot HDV today (or tomorrow), at least with the FX1 it's available when needed - but a fixed lens? and 12:1?
When are we ever going to see a camera in the price range of the Canon and Sony that's got it all right...

Robin
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Old October 16th, 2004, 07:28 AM   #15
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<<<-- Originally posted by Robin Davies-Rollinson : <<<-- Originally posted by Keith Forman :

As it is, this cam made me look twice, when I already knew I wanted the XL2. -->>> When are we ever going to see a camera in the price range of the Canon and Sony that's got it all right...
-->>>

I’m a big fan of Canon’s digital SLR lineup and as much as I wanted to like the XL2, there were things about it that was hard to ignore.

First, while interchangeable lens is the optimal solution in any cinematographer’s arsenal, the XL2's pickings seem a bit slim. In my opinion, the lenses currently available for the Canon each appear to be hobbled with a particular shortcoming that compromises its full potential.

Second, the XL2 really could have benefited from a true 16:9 CCD. Instead, it gave consumers a pseudo work around cramming more pixels into a smaller CCD real estate. Of course, it works, but at what cost? Limited dynamic range, DOF, light capture or maybe all of the above?

Third, the XL2 suffers heavily from chromatic aberration (purple fringing). At the $5000 price point, this was unacceptable to me. However, this could be a result of the 20x lens.

While the camcorder had more resolution and an arguably better looking picture than the DVX100, ultimately, the camera had too many things going against it (based on my assessment) to bar further consideration.

Not sure what the verdict will be with the FX1, but so far it looks promising. I guess we’ll find out soon enough. Sure, the FX1 has limitations that Sony intentionally placed within the camera, but at this price most cameras are bound to have shortcomings that make it less than perfect.

So what’s the solution?

I guess it comes down to what is important to the individual and what are they willing to make compromises with? For many film makers, the lack of progressive scan and 24p is a serious obstacle. Does the FX1’s true 16:9 CCD and ability to film in HD offset this? Are there acceptable solutions that mitigate these shortcomings? Sometimes, it seems that people get too fixated on 24p and the ever elusive “film look” to objectively consider different alternatives. So much so it seems that they are willing to accept degradation in image quality and resolution (i.e. DVX100 or the XL2) in order to achieve that film look. With the advantages gained in the FX1, coupled with increasingly sophisticated software/hardware solutions in post processing, does having in-camera 24p capability become the “Holy Grail” to film makers as it once was? Honestly, I don’t know.

I guess time will tell.
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