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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 25th, 2004, 04:44 PM   #1
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24p or 60i

Aloha,

I am in preproduction on a feature and we are thinking of using the HDR-FX1. We have lots of experience with video (60i and DVX-100 24p). For this feature we know the odds of use making a 35mm print are slim to none, but we are wondering about the best frame rate to master to, 24p or 60i? We will send the movie to festivals and are already talking to distributors about DVD distribution.

As soon as we can get an HDR-FX1 we are going to do a ton of tests, but I thought it would be smart to ask people with experience.

Should we shoot 60i and master to 60i. The straight forward and simple solution. 60i to 24p can be done, but it doesn't seem as smart as 25p to 24p.

or

Should we shoot 25p/50i, convert to and master to 24p? We have never done 25p/50i to 24p, but it sounds fairly easy. It seems smart. We have years of computer and post experience, so we aren't too worried about the technical challenges. 25p/50i should give us better image quality on tape. 20% less frames in the same 25Mbit stream. We can make a 24p dvd, which uses less space, meaning more data on the disc. From a 24p master we can convert to any other format we need.

Plus by being able to tell distributors we have a 1080 24p D5 master that was orginally shoot at 1080, and not just DV uprezzed, I think we can get more money. Distributors seems to take HD movies more serious than DV movies.

Thanks for your input.
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Old October 25th, 2004, 04:58 PM   #2
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If your production vaules look like it was shot on HD becasuse it was uprezzed why tell them it was shot on DV.
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Old October 25th, 2004, 05:29 PM   #3
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Gary,

That was just some marketing hype stuff I put in that has nothing to do with my question.

I want to know peoples opinions about:

1. Should we shoot 1080/25p/50i, convert to and master to 1080/24p?

2. or should not take the extra hassle and just shoot and master to 1080/60i since we will only ever be on DVD anyway?

We start shooting the second week of Jan 2005, so I am not even sure we would be able to get a 50hz version of the camera by then. That makes the solution easy. Hopefully the 60hz version will be out before then, otherwise we shoot on DVX-100a.
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Old October 25th, 2004, 06:46 PM   #4
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can you delay? It might be worth the wait.

Dustin, the fake cineframe 24 mode on the camera (FX1) has already been deemed to be somewhat "lacking" in terms of suitability for film-out or even simulating the "film look."

I've worked with the 60i footage over the last couple of days and in testing in Sony Vegas 5b I've observed that the resultant re-sampling from downconverting the 1080i HDV mpeg2 to NTSC mini-DV 720x480 very closely emulates a film look. Somehow, the Vegas algorithm in rendering is doing something to the footage that gives it a slight pull-down effect.

The pro version of the cam coming in the spring might be SO worth the wait - good luck getting any cam - my boss at our t.v. station saw the camera at Sony Canada headquarters (the FX1 consumer model) on Friday and they told him that every model allocated for Canada till the end of this calendar year is already sold-out via the Sonystyle.ca website - dealers in Canada have hardly gotten any! There is already a big back-order situation!

You can research around to see what the pro version might/might not be offering - you might feel "dumb" if you're shooting in the new year with the consumer model and suddenly Sony announces the pro one in March has true 24p or whatever that would make you "whet your whistle"

Good luck!

P.S. I too have a DVX - if it were me after seeing HDV, I'd delay the shoot and wait to get the new cam - it is THAT much better - even when you downsample to regular SD DVD - it looks so much sharper, better, etc.!
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Old October 25th, 2004, 07:04 PM   #5
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Mark,

Thanks.

I know the 24p mode is lacking and have NO plan of using it.

We have already delayed this shoot a couple times and need to get it done. If we can't get two FX1's before the first week of Jan, then we are shooting on DVX-100.

I am VERY interested in the Pro version, but I can see Sony holding releasing it until NAB. Why release it in Feb, when they can wait two months and have the biggest hit at NAB. We have other movies to shoot and hopefully the Pro version will be out when we do.

I am wondering if it would be worth using an HDR-FX1E (50hz version) and converting that to 24p? Play 25p one frame slower (~4%) and you have 24p. Change the pitch on the audio and your done. 24p converts easily to all other formats.
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