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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 November 22nd, 2005, 05:29 AM   #16
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if you need an xlr why not the A1

if the xlr is a need, then why not the A1? Im sure that the A1 has about the similar menu as the fx1? but with xlr ports

btw can any tell me what the z1 has over the a1 over function and menus?
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Old November 22nd, 2005, 08:22 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shannon Rawls
All the hoops I gotta jump through in post kinda sucks to get 24p.
Shannon, Have you tried CineForm Connect HD? It will convert the 60i CF24 to true 24p during capture (correctly removing Sony's pulldown) and the results are outstanding. No post processing; you end up with 23.976 fps AVI file. Download the 15-day trial and try it out. I think you’ll like it.

Oh, and to answer the original question: My only regret in buying the Z1 is that I didn’t have enough money to buy 2! ;-) I LOVE this camera.

~jr
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Old November 22nd, 2005, 09:58 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jemore Santos
btw can any tell me what the z1 has over the a1 over function and menus?
I haven't used an A1 and can't give you a full list, but there are a lot of differences especially in the area of manual controls like the iris wheel, nice zoom and focus rings, white balance and gain switches, picture profiles, shot transition, etc. I also believe the viewfinder and LCD panel are higher resolution.

One other big difference is that the Z1 can shoot both PAL and NTSC and give you 480/60i, 576/50i, 1080/60i and 1080/50i.
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Old November 22nd, 2005, 10:12 AM   #19
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Where I work we have at least 12 of the Z1's and have been using them for about 10 months now. Going from the DSR 390's to the Z1's has been a big change especially in picture quality and easy transporting. There are just a few things I can think of which we miss from the DSR's, low light capabilities, clear scan, 16 to 20 by lens, capability to use LCD in black and white, and shooting the large DVcam tapes, and having a choice of decks to buy, and thats it. What we have gained from the Z1 is to numerous to list but here are a few; battery life, cost efficient, this forum, picture profiles, vari-zoom capabilities, budget friendly steadycam, expanded focus, etc, etc,...... But I feel the biggest improvement with having the Z1's is keeping cutting edge and having a sense that this video thing we all do is here to stay and growing daily in other words we will never learn it all we just have to work hard to keep up and that way we will never get bored or lazy. Can't wait to see whats next with this camera hopefully a 20x lens and goodbye to minidv tapes.
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Old November 26th, 2005, 08:55 PM   #20
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I have had the Z1 for 6 months and am glad I finally broke down and bought the unit I always wanted with XLR inputs. I did not do this on my vx1000. I did not do this on my vx2000. And, using adapters, and cables, etc. is just a pain. I can so quickly set my Z1 up for single or dual XLR mics that it was worth every penny. You also get a battery charger which makes it great not having to mess with the camera to charge.

I also have a HC1 which I use as my tape transport for inputting into the computers. And tape to tape copy with the Z1.

I cant stand to spend money, weighed the options, and have NO regrets I just got what I always wanted!!

Dave
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Old November 28th, 2005, 12:07 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Rofrano
Shannon, Have you tried CineForm Connect HD? It will convert the 60i CF24 to true 24p during capture (correctly removing Sony's pulldown) and the results are outstanding.
Not to nitpick but isn't it NOT true 24p when you used CineForm Connect HD, or any other post-processing de-interlacing tool? Reason being, doesn't the camera discard every other field in-camera?

Yes it may look fine and be just as nice as true SD 24p and so on but I'm just trying to make sure I understand this better.
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Old November 28th, 2005, 12:15 PM   #22
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I also love to be able to output my video from my Z1 in DV, cropped format in real time.

Dave
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Old November 28th, 2005, 08:22 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Porter
Not to nitpick but isn't it NOT true 24p when you used CineForm Connect HD, or any other post-processing de-interlacing tool?.
By true 24p I mean that the file that you get out of Cineform is 23.976fps. It removes the pulldown. There are 24 progressive frames per second in the file.

~jr
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Old December 2nd, 2005, 02:40 AM   #24
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Also the capability of recording DVcam in SD mode is another advantage as DVcam delivers a more robust signal. So for some situations where the producer wants DVcam, there you have it.

With just the NTSC and PAL capability is like having 2 cameras in 1 with the Z1. Also all the controls you have in the audio section which you do not have in the FX-1 such as audio gain +3, +6db and attenuator -3, -6, 12db. plus the limiter, phantom power, etc. etc. In addition to picture gain +36db (although grainy) for situations where the camera can see better than your own eyes.

The Z1 comes from the professional department which has more stringent standards for picture and audio quality and issues. So if you have a bad pixel for instance at 12db, Sony Professional is more likely to replace the CCD block if under the 2 year warranty (CCDs are warranted for 2 years if I am not mistaken for Sony professional products) than if you had a bad pixel in the FX-1 which Sony Consumer Division may find it under specs if it just shows in gain.





Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Mullen
I see five Z1 advantages:

1) Black Streatch

2) Center Cut to SD function

3) Focus Assist

4) XLR without an extra box

5) AE Response

6) Audio Limiter possible on Manual control

7) Simutaneous VF and LCD

8) Dual Formats

Now if you divide the delta in cost by 8 -- or the number you need -- you can see the approximate cost of each feature. Plus the Pro Warrantee and support.
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Old December 31st, 2005, 02:15 PM   #25
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We've owned two Z1's since April, shooting mostly weddings and rock concerts, with some corporate stuff as well. They are great value for money, but there are limitations. Personally I find that the viewfinder is very poor, making it hard to manually focus. Fortunately the autofocus is very good 95% of the time, but the other 5% is a problem. for weddings especially it is very difficult to hand-hold for any length of time, and the Sony shoulder grip is useless, but a monopod comes in very handy. There are other smaller things that irk me: the menu design for example - you scroll through all the options, only to have scroll all the way back up to exit the sub menu - why couldn't they have a 'Return' option at the bottom as well? Also, why can't you use the zoom lever and the ring together - you could on the DSR250. Grrr.

If my Z1's were stolen I'd look hard at the JVC before rushing to the nearest Sony dealer, as it is they will do me for years to come.
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Old December 31st, 2005, 05:13 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Rofrano
Shannon, Have you tried CineForm Connect HD? It will convert the 60i CF24 to true 24p during capture (correctly removing Sony's pulldown) and the results are outstanding. No post processing; you end up with 23.976 fps AVI file. Download the 15-day trial and try it out. I think you’ll like it.

Oh, and to answer the original question: My only regret in buying the Z1 is that I didn’t have enough money to buy 2! ;-) I LOVE this camera.

~jr
John is right (hey, John, Happy New Year!) about the pulldown removal.

I like the Z1 because it has so many options, and for the person asking about the A1, the A1 has one button assignment and the Z1 has 6; the A1 has one CMOS (great for no smear), the Z1 has 3 1/3 in. ccds; the A1 can only do 60i (or 50i in the A1e version), the Z1 can do both.

After some use with the HD100, I like it except for one big problem: the split-screen issue.

The XL H1 is nice, but I need to check it out first. And for the price of one, I can get two Z1s or nearly 3 FX1s. Or 4 1/2 HC1s.

heath
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Old January 4th, 2006, 04:51 PM   #27
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A mixed bag, that Z1...

I bought it for a doc job in South Africa, so that 1080i/50 PAL setting came in handy. Love the underexposure lattitude, love the detail. I dislike the interlacing and especially the color artifacts...the camera seemed to lose half its resolution in areas of primary colors, especially red (such as auto taillights). However, in non-primary colors it reproduced colors with suprising subtlety. In areas of desaturated color (like a group of gray pigeons) it looked stunning. For a documentary shooter, the inability to use the focus assist while rolling was a serious problem. The HDV-on-DV-tape system gave us a few nasty .5-1.5 sec dropouts...definitely recommend shelling out the extra bread for the "HDV" tapes, or the absolute best quality you can afford.

Bottom line is, it's a glorious, but flawed tool. I'd be delighted to use it again for certain types of jobs - and would stay away from it for others.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 05:29 PM   #28
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Hey, JOHN MCCLOSKY...Do you think the video quality you're getting from the Z1's is as good as your DSR390s?
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Old January 4th, 2006, 06:16 PM   #29
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If you get a drop out on an I frame, the 14 other "referencing" (P/B) frames will drop out. In HDV, where the I frame is the whole image and the P/B frames reference back the majority of the I frame (unless things drastically change in the shot), a single I frame drop out will last around a 1/2 second.

heath
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Old January 4th, 2006, 06:19 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Pryor
Hey, JOHN MCCLOSKY...Do you think the video quality you're getting from the Z1's is as good as your DSR390s?
Put a nice lens on, it looks good, but at 480 lines of resolution vs. 1080, I'm not sure. But I like a removable lens option.

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