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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 March 21st, 2013, 10:23 PM   #1
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Location: Gympie Australia
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New guy. Looking for wisdom and knowledge.

Hi Guys. In the last few weeks I purchased a Z1U and now have been trawling this forum, seeking knowledge and hoping to acquire some wisdom. I've had a Sony 330E since new on '01 (still using the original battery) and also got a 530E a few months ago. It wasn't until after that purchase that I found the Z1U. I got it mainly to tape trains and the results so far are encouraging.
What I'm seeking at present is the best way to set up the camera to give me good results. Hopefully I'll get that soon.
I hope to be able to contribute to this forum.
John
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Old May 2nd, 2013, 09:08 PM   #2
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Re: New guy. Looking for wisdom and knowledge.

John: one thing that tripped me up for quite a while is what the camera does when not totally in the manual mode for all the settings.

If you don't manually set the iris, the shutter and the gain switches (and maybe white balance and one other I'm forgetting) then the camera will do it for you in the background. this means that even if you have the iris on manual, if the camera thinks it needs more light, it will automatically shift into a higher gain level, which can introduce extra grain into the video....or ramp the shutter speed up and down

Although to be fair, it's a really clean camera, for what it is.
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Old May 3rd, 2013, 12:59 AM   #3
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Re: New guy. Looking for wisdom and knowledge.

Hi Bill. Thanks for your interest. At first I did one or two shoots with everything set as it was when it arrived. I blew every highlight out the window, so did a few changes. Apart from setting the iris at f/4 and the shutter on 1/50, the rest is on manual. I watch to see what the camera tells me at the time of shooting. So far the only thing has been to set the ND until it stops flashing me. What I've done looks OK on a 40" LED TV.
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Old May 4th, 2013, 10:07 AM   #4
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Re: New guy. Looking for wisdom and knowledge.

it's a nice little camera. The lens performs best when it's in the middle to lower end of the f-stop range, so try to avoid f11-16 at all costs. You may also find that shooting beaches and sunsets will still push your f-stop way too high, so if you do much of that, investing in a matte box and some neutral density filters/polarizers may help.

Alternately, a circular polarizer or especially a variable ND filter you can screw directly onto the front of the lens can really help keep the f-stop lower in high light situations.

Speaking of which, you should also always have a clear filter on the front of the camera to protect the main lens element. It's a lot easier to clean this filter from dirt or salt spray.
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Old May 23rd, 2013, 04:34 PM   #5
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Re: New guy. Looking for wisdom and knowledge.

+1 on protecting the front glass. If you scratch it you are in trouble because Sony only sells that lens complete. The Z1 is a great camera, good luck and have fun with it.
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