Sony v. XL2 - SD Shooting at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Sony XAVC / XDCAM / NXCAM / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Sony HDV and DV Camera Systems > Sony HVR-Z1 / HDR-FX1

Sony HVR-Z1 / HDR-FX1
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CCD HDV camcorder.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old October 16th, 2005, 11:44 AM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Litchfield Park, AZ (W/of Phoenix)
Posts: 502
Sony v. XL2 - SD Shooting

OK I know that this group might sway towards the obvious, however I just sold one of my GL2 units to purchase a new XL2 for my event work and the salesperson I spoke to threw me for a loop with an idea.

I wasn't planning on going HD anytime soon since you can't distribute HD wedding video to someone unless they're going to play it on their PC with Windows Media Player. What I never thought of until the payment came was to get the Sony and just shoot my events in SD 16:9 and when I want to shoot something personal shoot HD to playback at home while the rest of the world catches up to HD.

With that said, suggestion, is the Sony a "great' SD camera when compared to the Canon XL2, has anyone matched up SD Canon and Sony video, again 16:9 30p. Finally, what version of the Sony should I be looking at? The FX or the Z1? Are they both really the same with a few pro features such as XLR in's being the main diff?

Thanks in adavnce,
ML
__________________
Miguel Lombana
http://www.miguellombana.com & http://www.phoenixhamradio.com
Miguel Lombana is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 16th, 2005, 01:05 PM   #2
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Mays Landing, NJ
Posts: 11,542
For an FX1 vs Z1 comparision see the following:

http://www.hdvinfo.net/articles/sonyhdrfx1/compare.php

I chose the Z1 because I needed to shoot PAL DV as well as NTSC. So far I've only used my camera for SD, but will soon make the jump to HDV by upgrading to FCP 5 (have been too busy with several projects to make a big software transition).

I think you're overlooking one of the most compelling arguments for the FX1 and Z1 however. You can shoot everything in HDV, then capture as DV using the camera's firewire downconversion which yields excellent results - a bit better than shooting in SD mode. This will give you HDV master tapes for future use if they're ever needed.

Regarding an XL2 vs Z1 comparison, I haven't made one and have never even used an XL2, but my gut feeling is that the XL2 may yield a bit nicer results for SD. I know it has more image control parameters (although the Z1 certainly offers more control than earlier Sony cameras like the PD-170). The XL2 has the progressive modes (24p and 30p) which are lacking on the Z1 (although it has 24f and 30f "pseudoprogressive" modes). But shooting 30p should yield higher resolution than the Z1's 60i. The Z1 can actually output true 576/25p and 480/30p via component video HDV downconversion, but the "gotcha" is that it is only available on the component outputs and not via firewire so you'd need a capture card.

The other possible advantage of the XL2 would be the removable lens of course. OTOH, I prefer the all-in-one "handycam" form factor most of the time.
Boyd Ostroff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 16th, 2005, 01:56 PM   #3
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Johannesburg
Posts: 107
I tried both the XL2 and the FX1 when I purchased my camera. I'd say they both give excellent results in SD and I would not be able to say which is better.

But I have found HDV useful in SD delivery because it effectively gives you 48x lens magnification. You can also crop pictures better because you have more space to work with and there is a vague improvement in picture quality when downconverting from HD.

The progressive issue doesnt bother me in the least, because in reality it does not make any difference to the quality of the picture and it's a very subjective choice. But if p is what you want, then this is what the Canon has that the Sony does not.
John Poore is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17th, 2005, 01:13 PM   #4
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
Posts: 320
I own the FX1 and when I first got it I shot most things in HDV (except for weddings) for the extra options in post. While it was fun and occasionally helpful to do this, it certainly added to any kind of render time in post. And if you are planning on doing a multi-cam shoot with one HD and the other SD, don't. It is not a good idea unless you plan to downconvert in-camera (sounds obvious now).

In terms of the difference b/w the Z1U and the FX1, one big diff. for me is the abiltiy of the Z1U to center crop (crop the widescreen to 4:3) during capture. Combined with the 4:3 guides on the Z1U, this could be a very usefull feature to some.

Now I save the HDV for home videos (future friendly) and more important work (commercials, film-making). It is nice to have the extra resolution when you need it, and looks great going from HDV direct to DVD (bypassing the 4:1:1 DV compression). I, as well, appreciate the Handycam nature.
Chad Terpstra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17th, 2005, 04:02 PM   #5
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: san francisco california
Posts: 145
The picture quality is no so vague when downcoverting from HD. It can be significant.

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Poore
and there is a vague improvement in picture quality when downconverting from HD.
Augusto Manuel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 18th, 2005, 06:05 AM   #6
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Johannesburg
Posts: 107
It may well be, Augusto.
John Poore is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 18th, 2005, 07:55 AM   #7
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 2,488
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miguel Lombana
I wasn't planning on going HD anytime soon since you can't distribute HD wedding video to someone unless they're going to play it on their PC with Windows Media Player.
Or you can encode to Windows Media or Divx HD on standard DVDs which will play in reasonably priced players like the Avel and Buffalo models. Some people are already using this solution to distribute HD wedding videos successfully.
Kevin Shaw is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Sony XAVC / XDCAM / NXCAM / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Sony HDV and DV Camera Systems > Sony HVR-Z1 / HDR-FX1

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:13 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network