FX1: Pal vs. NTSC model - superior image quality? 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 December 5th, 2004, 10:33 PM   #1
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FX1: Pal vs. NTSC model - superior image quality?

Folks, now wondering since cam is shipping - anyone in States/North America who got Pal model - can you do test shoot vs. NTSC model (like go down to your local Target or something... :) (or rent one or find a Pal *laughs* who has an NTSC cam...

Because theoretcally, 50i means 10 less interlaced fields per second than 60i so that means less compression of 1080i image for the PAL - is this difference significant?

Some other sites are posting FX1-E pal clips and I have to admit, they strike me as being superior to the NTSC-type footage...

Surely we could resolve this?
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Old December 6th, 2004, 08:06 AM   #2
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Hi Mark,

Which sites are posting these clips of the pal version?


Many thanks

Jonathan
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Old December 6th, 2004, 02:08 PM   #3
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if PAL is so much better and available for 400$ more and almost every NLE is as capable to edit PAL as NTSC ...why does'nt just everybody buy PAL only....where can you go wrong in the NLE world?


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Old December 6th, 2004, 02:38 PM   #4
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If I remember correctly, it's not so easy to convert PAL to NTSC. You have to tweak the footage or something so your audio doesn't get messed up and cause a delay. But I don't know, this issue may not be relevant since new versions of software have come out since I heard about this.
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Old December 6th, 2004, 02:56 PM   #5
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You should be able to convert to NTSC using DVFilm's Atlantis.

http://www.dvfilm.com/atlantis/index.htm

If you're making a film for exhibition at Film Festivals, I'm sure they can play NTSC and PAL, so if PAL looks better, I don't see any reason not to shoot PAL.

But we'll have to see. The whole HDV format is a whole new thing. Luckily the Z1 will allow you to shoot in either NTSC or PAL so atleast you'll be able to find a place to rent it in the states.
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Old December 6th, 2004, 04:20 PM   #6
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DSE has Pal footage

The footage DSE has at his VASST site is from the pal version of the cam - it is avail. elsewhere as well...

hope someone can do this. any ideas? Who will be at DVExpo - for god's sake if there's a real Z1 there, get them to switch between PAL and NTSC on the spot and look for a difference.

Anyone going to DVExpo who owns an FX1? Bring a tape, record at the show (*oh, comeon - of course they're going to let you!!! Just explain you're a member here at dvinfo - say you know Health McKnight and give the secret wink - that will put you in the clear!*)

then go home and post the results.

Aha, who will accept this Mission Improbable?
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Old December 6th, 2004, 05:13 PM   #7
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Well of course there'd be a difference between NTSC and PAL -- they're two completely incompatible television standards. And PAL converted to NTSC isn't going to hold up as well as "native" NTSC in the first place.

The most interesting aspect about the Z1 is the prospect of shooting HDV in CineFrame 25 at mostly full high-def resolution, and then in post converting that to a 24fps pulldown-introduced 60i version. The frames should be identical (i.e., suffer no rescaling or color sampling artifacts as is inherent in a PAL/NTSC conversion). So CineFrame 25 to telecine'd 24fps could look great from the Z1.
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Old December 6th, 2004, 10:38 PM   #8
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but Barry...

unlike in the mini-dv debate where the differing screen resolutions of PAL and NTSC cancelled out the advantage gained by PAL over NTSC in terms of 32 bit x 50i vs. 32 bit x 60i, here with HDV, both screen resolutions are the same - you know, the famous debate going around about number of pixels if you calculate frame dimensions and multiply by number of interlaced frames to get number of pixels visible... etc.

It would seem in this case there's a real advantage to PAL, no? All else being equal?

With all these "visually perfect" codecs floating around too nowadays, you'd scarcely notice generation loss in rendering PAL down to NTSC...

look, can't someone just try it? One thing I know for sure - cf25 works, cf24 "doesn't"!
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Old December 6th, 2004, 10:43 PM   #9
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Re: but Barry...

<<<-- Originally posted by Mark Kubat : One thing I know for sure - cf25 works, cf24 "doesn't"! -->>>

This is the main reason I want a Z1 at the moment, even though the price tag is significantly higher. I should probably just get a PAL FX1 if CF25 lives up to my expectations, but I'd like to still be able to shoot NTSC. I wish I could just stop reading these damn forums (you know who you are) for like 6 months so that a great deal of this is sorted out.
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Old December 6th, 2004, 11:19 PM   #10
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Re: but Barry...

<<<-- Originally posted by Mark Kubat :
With all these "visually perfect" codecs floating around too nowadays, you'd scarcely notice generation loss in rendering PAL down to NTSC...

look, can't someone just try it? One thing I know for sure - cf25 works, cf24 "doesn't"! -->>>

Okay, I see where you're coming from. When you said PAL and NTSC, I was assuming you were talking about standard-def DV-resolution, PAL and NTSC... HDV 50i and 60i aren't PAL nor NTSC, they're HD.

Taking 1080/50i down to 24P and then up to 1080/60i is a much more interesting consideration than taking PAL to NTSC. Yes it could look good. Don't know if it will, but it could. But it depends on how you're releasing the footage -- 25-mbit MPEG-2 is pretty darn lossy, and if you want to run the footage through the compression algorithm twice, that might really add up.

Somebody's got to try it. Don't know when/where we'll find a testable Z1, but when we do, hopefully we'll get a chance to try it!
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