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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 May 10th, 2006, 06:46 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Pryor
Most everything you see on the HD channels is shot with either 35mm film or with high end HD cameras. No 1/3" chip HDV camera or even 1/3" chip HD camera is going to look as sharp as the 2/3" chip ones.
Yea - you're right in that it won't look as good as an expensive film-to-hd movie, or the $100,000 cameras they use for sports games and Star Wars movies. But, you know. It's damned good! In fact, my FX1 can give video that's better then some HDTV programs I've seen, and on par with quite a bit of it.

Then again, neither will DV look as good as the expensive broadcast SD cameras or film-to-SD conversions.

Channels like Discovery and PBS use the FX1/Z1 quite a bit for areas where they need to put a camera in small spots. I've seen them a bunch of times. I've even seen the HDR-HC1 in use on Monster Garage. You can usually tell if the video is being sourced from the FX1 versus their expensive JVC broadcast cameras but you do have to look for it.

I think HDV falls neatly within the "Damned good enough" category for most small shops or hobbyists.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick Swinnea
But there's also the issue of broadcast compression, which could make the FX1/Z1 look better than an HD broadcast
You've absolutely right here. It's not true for every broadcast but many broadcasts are using quite a bit of compression. In fact, before the olympics (when NBC was using a more ruthless compression ratio) it was so bad you would see compression artifacts on Jay Leno and Conan's mouths when they talked! HBO on the other hand does an excellent job with their 30MBit stream.

Satellite HDTV is even more compressed then OTA or cable TV HD, too - they have a lot less bandwidth and they end up not only increasing compression but reducing resolution.

As for HDTV's, I chose a Sharp 45" LCD. In my opinion, they are of the best HDTV's you can get. They will resolve 100% of a 1920x1080i signal. Good colors, good contrast. Not as good on the black levels as a CRT but it's damned good. In fact, if you get the (now discontinued I think, but still very available) LC-45GX6U, the one I ended up getting, you can pump full 1920x1080@60hz progressive by use of a DVI switchbox. I'm actually using it as my computer monitor right now...

If you can't go for a full HDTV, you have options to monitor HD. I have an HP L2335 - it's a 1920x1200 monitor that can input DVI, VGA, Component, S-Video and Composite. It looks great for 1080i video, and you can get one for something like $700 on ebay now.

The last point about which camera to get, if you are happy with the low light performance of the FX1 but aren't ready for HD, you can use it as a fully functional DV camcorder and when you're ready for HDV you can just hit the switch!
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Old May 31st, 2006, 11:02 AM   #17
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EDTV is not HD, it's SD (480p):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EDTV

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Old June 16th, 2006, 10:37 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Pryor
Most everything you see on the HD channels is shot with either 35mm film or with high end HD cameras. No 1/3" chip HDV camera or even 1/3" chip HD camera is going to look as sharp as the 2/3" chip ones.
I would like to know what it is that makes it sharper?

I thought about this and my conclusion is that the 2/3" chip cams just has more resolution beyond what the FX1/Z1 has and what we consider to look "HD" is far beyond just 1280x720p or even a 1920x1080p source. The masters are created with even higher resolutions.

Just as you all say, the Z1 downconverts HD to SD and the SD result is better than SD original.

So this seems to prove that having 1:1 pixel ratio isn't the best.
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Old July 9th, 2006, 08:54 AM   #19
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Spot taped some video of a duck in the water in HDV, then captured and cut it in HDV, then did a digital zoom in on the duck. He then down-converted it to DV (480p, I believe) and put it on tape. The digital zoom in was VERY clean.

He then down-converted the same footage to DV (480p, I believe) from the camera to the NLE and did the same thing and output to DV tape. The digital zoom was pixelated and blocky.

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Old July 9th, 2006, 12:13 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Pryor
Most everything you see on the HD channels is shot with either 35mm film or with high end HD cameras. No 1/3" chip HDV camera or even 1/3" chip HD camera is going to look as sharp as the 2/3" chip ones.
a large chip has nothing todo with your lines of resoluion, vertical or horizontal. The face is HDV compresses the video down to the file size of DV so you loose some quality when its converted to MPEG2, Yes other cameras compress it to like DVCPRO HD, but its not as dramatic as HDV, the MPEG2 compresson isnt that bad though it was good enough for Sony's XDCAM series, which the E! channel bought a ton of to make the switch to HD.
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Old July 9th, 2006, 12:46 PM   #21
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[The face is HDV compresses the video down to the file size of DV so you loose some quality when its converted to MPEG2]

I think, unless I'm confused by your post, that you're saying that HDV is compressed down to DV in mpeg2-ts, which is not accurate. It's compressed to fit on a DV tape, but it is still 1440x1080 or 1280x720.

Unless you mean compressing for an SD DVD.

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Old July 9th, 2006, 12:53 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heath McKnight
[The face is HDV compresses the video down to the file size of DV so you loose some quality when its converted to MPEG2]

I think, unless I'm confused by your post, that you're saying that HDV is compressed down to DV in mpeg2-ts, which is not accurate. It's compressed to fit on a DV tape, but it is still 1440x1080 or 1280x720.

Unless you mean compressing for an SD DVD.

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HDV is an HD compressed down to the file size of DV via MPEG2.
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Old July 9th, 2006, 01:03 PM   #23
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I missed the file size part, sorry. But yes, around 3.5 to 3.6 mbps is what both HDV and DV compress to. Fortunately, HDV looks darn good with mpeg2-ts compression!

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Old July 9th, 2006, 01:21 PM   #24
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I will say that I have been in many situations showcasing my 1080i footage and not once has it been questioned of its HD-ness
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Old July 9th, 2006, 01:29 PM   #25
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Mack,

Ditto here. I throw some HDV footage up (in both native HDV and on an SD DVD) and people are BLOWN away by what they see. And these are your average, non-industry folk who just love a top-quality image.

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