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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 February 20th, 2005, 08:02 PM   #16
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Racing!

I was out at Second Creek Raceway the first weekend I had my FX1. All I can say is the action looks GREAT! If you pause the high action frames they are not as clear as when stopped BUT that is the same with ANY camera which uses a data limit on compression (i.e. 99% of the market)

Here's the thing tho, when you watch the footage full motion the way you suppose to watch it (after all we are trying to capture a moving image right?) the footage looks just as good as anything I've seen. If we are talking about capturing action it's far and away better than even 35mm film because of 60i. Anyways I'm getting sidetracked.

I had an awesome time at the track and I can't find anything wrong with the footage. It was my own test after hearing all of this about blurring and blockiness. I have NO sign of either and I shot every kind of shot imaginable including strapping the Cam onto a Formula Mazda that hits 215mph with even the short gears installed. I would also like to say that sony sure has AWESOME stabilization on this cam.

One last thing, I was in a local new station last week and guess what they were using to go shoot an interview? None other than a VX1000, the shot looked just great. Pretty amazing since it was released 10 YEARS ago!

My 2$,
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Old February 20th, 2005, 11:22 PM   #17
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Eric, thanks for your real-life insight on the motion issue. The biggest problem with discussion boards - not this one specifically -is that it only takes one piece of well-worded disinformation for an opinion on a specific characteristic to begin to grow into a "fact". I think the idea that motion is not handle well comes from conjecture and opinions voiced by naysayers BEFORE the FX1 was released, based on their experience with motion in HDTV broadcast. When the camera was released, somebody did a few whip-pans with it, and wrote an authoritative-sounding "test" up, confirming these suspicions - no good for motion of any sort. The camp who then pushed this pseudo-information to the hilt where the 720P supporters, as to them anything 1080i has got to be crap.

The reality is of course different, as your first-hand experiences show. The solution for doubters is simple, as usual. Test the FX1/Z1 for your specific requirements. If you're happy with the results, use it. If not, choose another tool which you are happy with.
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Old February 20th, 2005, 11:40 PM   #18
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<< it only takes one piece of well-worded disinformation for an opinion on a specific characteristic to begin to grow into a "fact" >>

This is something we're very conscious of around here, and we take great pains to avoid it, to the extent that I have had the unfortunate but requisite duty of permanently booting the (thankfully rare) individuals who have rudely insisted that their horribly misguided opinions actually constituted facts. You can still find these clowns elsewhere on the web, and while they seem to enjoy talking trash about me personally just as much they enjoy spreading opinionated misinformation, the point is that they're no longer posting *here,* which is all I really care about.

Opinions are fine, but factual information is much better, and we place a significantly higher value on that here at DV Info Net.
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Old February 21st, 2005, 05:34 AM   #19
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You need to be very careful about making assumptions about how a person has arrived at a different opinion than someone else has however....

The simple 'fact' is that a 'fact' isn't one just because the majority agree it is so. The majority used to believe the 'fact' that the Earth was flat. And many a different interpreter of the 'facts' paid with their lives for speaking otherwise.

Freedom of speech demands that there is a degree of moral fortitude in believing strongly enough in the value of the 'facts' as you see them, while accepting a different interpretation by others.

If people feel threatened by 'facts' that challenge the strength of an individuals' or groups' belief in their version of the 'facts', it may be time to look much harder in the mirror.....

Tough things these damned Democracies!!!
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Old February 21st, 2005, 08:13 AM   #20
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If I'm not mistaken, 35mm cameras shouldn't do fast pans, either.

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Old February 21st, 2005, 09:06 AM   #21
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I hear ya Steve, but we're not concerned with faith-shaking matters of cosmos and theology, but rather specifications in a product brochure. Around here, differences of opinion are tolerated much easier when they're expressed in an amiable fashion, and that's my original point, I guess. Since we're not concerned with witch hunts (we don't burn them -- we just ostracize them), we generally ask our heretics to please be as equally well mannered and easy going.

That said, we are very careful.

The right to Freedom of Speech guarantees that as the owner of this board, I may run it however I see fit. I may choose to delete some, none, or all of the content here and be well within my rights to do that. Of course I would never do such a thing, but it's important sometimes to point out where one's rights end and another's begin.

But this is all dreadfully off-topic now, so let's please return to the subject at hand. Thanks,
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Old February 21st, 2005, 09:24 AM   #22
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Thanks, Chris.

The only time I ever saw a "quick" camera update was the DVX100A, but that came out nearly 2 years after the initial announcement. And the A had more features added to it, to DP's specifications, etc.

So unless Sony does something like that with the Z1 or FX1, I doubt we'll see a major update for a while.

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Old February 21st, 2005, 09:32 AM   #23
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Agreed, Heath -- although I wouldn't be surprised if Sony did a shoulder-mount version of the Z1 pretty soon, like they have with previous product lines, as in the VX2000 -- PD150 -- DSR250.
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Old February 21st, 2005, 10:36 AM   #24
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If JVC's rumored 3-chip 24p sub-$5000 camera comes out and kicks butt, Sony may have to release a competiting 24p camera. It's funny, these cameras have a huge shelf life for 6 months to a year, then the next one comes out with better features and BOOM, it's all over for the previous model. Though I doubt the Z1/FX1 will be buried any time soon, like the HD10 and HD1.

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Old February 21st, 2005, 10:47 AM   #25
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24p isn't part of the HDV specification, right?
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Old February 21st, 2005, 10:52 AM   #26
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I think the shelf life for the Z1 will be 3 years at least. It's basically got all the features needed to be relevant for at least 3 more years. The software out there hasn't even caught up to it yet, so that's a sign that it's ahead of its time!

If we look at history we can look at HDV like DV, and I think all these new cameras (including the Z1) will be relevant for quite a while. The next generation of HDV cameras (in my opinion) won't really show up until around 2007. We still haven't even gotten the first round from most companies! It won't be until 2008 if HDV takes off...they'll milk this batch until then.
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Old February 21st, 2005, 10:56 AM   #27
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no, but it looks like JVC is gonna make it. JVC isn't happy about the FX1, because it kicks the HD1's butt, same with the Z1 and the HD10.

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Old February 21st, 2005, 11:30 AM   #28
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<<<-- Originally posted by Hans ter Lingen : I have seen some stills of the footage of a basket ball game and I could not even read the name on the shirt!!!! Maybe the guy did not know yet how to operate the fx1. So what you are saying is that it is suitable for sports events but also the kids playing around even at fairly low lighting conditions???? -->>>

Absolutely! Without a doubt! I'm telling you the footage my friend shot was just stunning. Crystal clear with facial expressions of the kids clearly visible from across the gym floor in wide angle.
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Old February 21st, 2005, 11:36 AM   #29
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<<<-- Originally posted by Hans ter Lingen : Where I live the Z1 is not available yet and the fx1 is not in stock anymore so I can not do a test in the store. So maybe you guys can do a simple test for me. I want to know if it is possible to make a 180 degrees panning shot starting from left (focus infinity) and going to the right (again focus infinity) in 2 seconds. In between (thus at 90 degrees) the focus point should be about 10 m. Do you get a footage with no artifacts and in focus direct out of the Fx1/Z1 (so no conversions) on to a plasma screen or HD monitor???? -->>>

Probably the best way to answer this is to simply say that I've seen no difference in panning (at a reasonably sane rate) and artifacting between the FX1 and the Sony VX2000. If you're familar with that camera (VX2000, PD150), you've got your answer.

However, I couldn't agree with Chris more about the "2 second pan". No camera (film or video) will present such a pan in a cleary resolved manner.
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Old February 21st, 2005, 11:38 AM   #30
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Gents, I'm not sure why the notion keeps coming up of 35mm cameras not being "capable" of fast pans. I assume this is based on the well-documented concept that at a certain speed, strobing becomes an issue due to the 24 fps capture. What is less discussed (and also applicable to 24p digital shooting) is that strobing is not simply a threshold, it is a window and thus it is possible to avoid it by panning faster as well as slower than given range of pan speeds. A good example of this would be many of Scorsese's films, where the camera will pan quickly from one character to the next, but yet are not truly whip pans in speed.

Finally, if we are to compare 60i shooting as apples to apples (i.e. shooting film at 60 fps), there is no strobing issue and all speeds of pan are now acceptable in the film medium (as well as other digital formats), but if understand correctly, still an issue with HDV?
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