So...Am I the first one with a Z1U???? *smile* - Page 2 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 January 30th, 2005, 08:19 AM   #16
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Good reporting, Shannon

Thanks for your detailed reports, Shannon, although I really have to take issue with your first post regarding low-light capability - well, it's true the Z1/FX1 doesn't do a job anywhere near what the "night-vision" cams do, it's amazing how "low you can go" and never get any pixel noise. This effect is accentuated when you color-correct, use Magic Bullet etc.

We shot a few clips in a dark room after sundown with only a 6 watt fluorescent bulb from an emergency flashlight as the sole light source - it looked very much like those shots from John Carpenter's The Thing where the only thing lighting the set is one single dangling light bulb... We would look around the room, think we were crazy for trying to shoot in such "darkness" and then look in our LCD and be pleasantly surprised we were getting a very good image... this image holds when you downconvert to SD DVD, unlike low-light mini-dv footage which sometimes seems to get "worse" when you do your mpeg...

I think it's fair to say Sony continues its tradition here of being the king of low-light. Wedding videographers and Industrial shooters will love this camera. We got useful stuff with the Z1 during our test shoot that would have yielded a muddy, fuzzy pixelated mess with the DVX100A... you have to basically go to hypergain settings to introduce noise - the usefulness of hypergain as a viable feature is questionable to me...

I guess everyone has different criteria for what they expect for "low-light capability" - I for one am very happy with it - we feel in fact we could very easily pull off a "Collateral" type film with this camera - it's that "good" in low light...

Cheers!
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Old January 30th, 2005, 08:38 AM   #17
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That sounds better Mark. They way Shannon made it sound the Z1 would only work outside at high noon!! Lets us know more about the Z1,,,
So how will the Z1 footage look on TV, DVD, etc? Shannon said the sound is awesome
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Old January 30th, 2005, 01:10 PM   #18
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Hey Shannon, I've tried like 5 times in the last 24 hours to download those clips you posted. They're not working...did you delete them??
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Old January 30th, 2005, 01:26 PM   #19
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No...My 802.11b connection crapped out on me when I left it to upload yesterday.

I moved the files to my ethernet computer and will upload them today. Sorry bud. *sad face*

- ShannonRawls.com
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Old January 30th, 2005, 04:07 PM   #20
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Shannon,

Try the camera in gain. I know that sounds weird but this camera at 18db gain is AMAZINGLY clean. People are complaining about it's low light but that is because they are afraid of going to gain like with a DVX100. That camera is BAD in gain but this one is VERY CLEAN. Actually I have an FX1 but I assume it would be the same. At first I thought it was bad too, until I started to use it in gain...once I saw how clean gain looked I no longer worry about using it.
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Old January 30th, 2005, 04:14 PM   #21
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I beleive you. Actually, with the gain setting 0db - 18db, you can't really see ANY grain in HDV mode.

My thing was, the camera can't really "See that well" in darkness, period. Gain or not.

I may have over reacted in my assesment of the cameras low light capabilities. I am just used to the PD-150 great eyeball. And this camera isn't as good, that's all.

But yes, the GAIN is allmost unoticable.

- Shannon W. Rawls
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Old January 30th, 2005, 04:40 PM   #22
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That's really strange because, by definition, gain is adding digital noise. I'm really curious to see footage...even though I'll have mine soon enough. I can't wait..
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Old January 30th, 2005, 10:16 PM   #23
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Anyone else dying for the links to the clips to start working? ;)
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Old January 30th, 2005, 10:54 PM   #24
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Got my vote. Shannon! What's up with the links man!? =D
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Old January 31st, 2005, 07:27 AM   #25
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Christopher C. Murphy wrote:
>That's really strange because, by definition, gain is adding digital noise.


Well, yes it is. But if you start with a less noisy picture in the beginning, then it doesn't add up that much, as with other noisier cameras like the DVX. FX1 has a very clean picture.
One day I was just shooting my old school, and just walking around with the FX1. I accidentally had left the gain up to 12dB. It was kind of sunny, so I thought all this light coming to the camera must be normal. So I just put on both the NDs and got a normally exposed picture. Well, after some half an hour of shooting and walking, I noticed the 12dB on the screen. Oops! But, when I reviewed the material on one big TV, there was some noise there, but I wouldn't have noticed it if I hadn't known.
So, I'd say FX1s low light cababilities have been some what "underexaggerated" - or how do you say that in english.
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Old January 31st, 2005, 07:44 AM   #26
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The way I look at it - anything is better than the horrible 35 lux rating the HD10U had. That camera really stunk in low-light...just horrible. So, any improvement is good...and this one 2 lux and I ain't going to complain to bad.
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Old February 1st, 2005, 05:28 AM   #27
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what kind of viewer do I need to view the clips??
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Old February 1st, 2005, 03:35 PM   #28
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Watched the clips, and I liked the low light at 18. That came out fairly nice imho. Hypergain is just about useless unlesss your tryign to go for a specific effect.

The other outside clip had a lot of interlaced issues. Was any post done to that clip? It almost looks like it was processed with lower fields instead of upper fields.
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Old February 1st, 2005, 04:03 PM   #29
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Saw the clips, thanks a ton Shannon!

Any chance to get some 'normal' footage up like steady outside stuff?

I know you were testing the limits of the camera in these clips, but I'd sure love to see some footage in a more controlled situation.

Thanks again!
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Old February 1st, 2005, 05:30 PM   #30
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<<<-- Originally posted by Rishard Chapoteau : Watched the clips, and I liked the low light at 18. That came out fairly nice imho. Hypergain is just about useless unlesss your tryign to go for a specific effect.

The other outside clip had a lot of interlaced issues. Was any post done to that clip? It almost looks like it was processed with lower fields instead of upper fields. -->>>

Nope...didn't touch that file at all. Went straight from cameras firewire to CapDVHS to Web server. Camera was on full automatic, the way it comes out the box. No Picture Profile or anything.

<<<-- Originally posted by Bryan McCullough : Any chance to get some 'normal' footage up like steady outside stuff?
-->>>

Not yet Bryan. We are shooting a Range Rover Spec commercial this weekend with the DVX100a. However, we may change that to the Z1U. Me and the director are discussing it, because we were going to rent a Mini35 package, but if we go hidef, we wont. So we'll see.

- Shannon W. Rawls
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