FX1 Versus Canon GL2 (Canon XM2) 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 December 16th, 2005, 06:52 AM   #1
New Boot
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 9
FX1 Versus Canon GL2 (Canon XM2)

Hi everyone, hope I'm posting this thread in the right place.

Okay, I have a Canon XM2, (GL2 in the States) and have an opportunity to upgrade to the HDR-FX1. Now I know that the XM2 is SD video, whilst the FX1 is HD and SD. But I have a few questions that I'm struggling to find answers to:

1. If recording in HD mode using the HDR-FX1 and downconverting to SD, is the resultant SD video quality better than that recorded off the Canon XM2?
2. Is the picture quality better if I get the FX1 camcorder to do the downconvertion (which I believe it can???), or capture in HD mode and get Sony Vegas 6.0c to do the downconvertion.

There are a lot of links comparing various HD camcorders but, can't find any that compare 3CCD SD camcorders versus HD 3CCD camcorders that have had the video downconverted to SD. I want to change to HD because I have no doubt that is where the future is. If I record in HD, at least I'll be able to create HD DVDs when that technology is readily available. In the interim, I hope to still create high quality SD video using HD camcorders...but have the original footage saved to tape in HD format ready for editing when technology permits DVD burning in this format.

If anyone has any other experience on the benefits of changing from a XM2 to HD1, I'd be grateful for the feedback. Many thanks.
Sean Gallagher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 16th, 2005, 07:17 AM   #2
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 302
Wait later in the day and you'll probably get more knowledgable responses, but I can say this: I was recently at a confrence where someone did a demonstration of SD shot with an SD camera, and SD that was shot with an HD camera and then downconverted in the NLE (which I think was probably Vegas, but I can't be sure) and the difference was remarkable. I was a skeptic going into that, but now I'm trying to figure out how long I have to wait to avoid my boss saying, "But we just got new cameras it's too soon to upgrade."
Kris Holodak is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 16th, 2005, 09:59 AM   #3
Trustee
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Gwaelod-y-garth, Cardiff, CYMRU/WALES
Posts: 1,215
Sean,
I have the XM2 as well as the Sony FX1.
In 4:3 mode (only SD of course) the Canon I think has the edge on the Sony.
However, if you shoot 16:9, then the differences are overwhelming. The XM2 uses a crop-and-stretch technique to give a full-height anamorphic output, whereas the FX1 with it's native 16:9 chips will give an excellent widescreen image.
If you downconvert HDV to SD with the FX1, you'll get a letterboxed image within a 4:3 frame so it's hard to really compare the two. However, the Z1 will export a 4:3 downconverted image that is full-frame.(it chops the centre out of the widescreen image.) I haven't tried it yet with that particular camera, but hopefully another member of this forum might get back with an opinion.

Robin
Robin Davies-Rollinson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 16th, 2005, 11:54 AM   #4
New Boot
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 9
Hi guys and thanks for the feedback. I guess it'll be interesting to experiment and see what results can be achieved. I don't intend to shoot any more footage in 4:3 and will use 16:9 for all future recordings.

I also wonder when HD DVD Players/Recorders and respective DVD media will become readily available in the UK. At the moment, I believe you can only view HDV material via playback on a HD camcorder direct to HDTV. Anyway, thanks again for your input.
Sean Gallagher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 16th, 2005, 12:42 PM   #5
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 2,488
I have both the GL2 and the FX1 and the latter clearly has a superior image in most circumstances, with a possible exception in low light situations (but the FX1 image is cleaner so you can use more gain). The native widescreen mode on the FX1 is a pleasure to work with and is definitely a step up for creating widescreen output. The FX1 also yields a better depth of field look which is hard to describe until you've seen it, but it puts the GL2 to shame in that regard. And the FX1 gives you the choice of shooting either regular DV or high-definition HDV, so you gain the HD option without losing anything in the process. The FX1 also has more elaborate and professional controls and looks like a more professional camera in terms of both size and general apperance. And the FX1 will also run pretty much all day on one charge of the larger-size battery available for the camera, unlike the largest battery for the GL2 (from which I only get about two hours).

In short, if you have an opportunity you can afford to upgrade from the GL2 to the FX1, do it! The image quality difference is amazing in HDV mode and still better in SD mode, and I can promise you you'll never look back.

As far as viewing HD footage is concerned, you can either output to widescreen SD DVDs or encode to compressed HD formats (e.g. Windows Media) for playback on a computer, or you can buy something like the Avel Linkplayer2 for connecting to your HDTV. Starting next year we should see more options with the introduction of mainstream HD DVD players.
Kevin Shaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 16th, 2005, 07:47 PM   #6
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Katoomba NSW Australia
Posts: 635
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Gallagher
I also wonder when HD DVD Players/Recorders and respective DVD media will become readily available in the UK. At the moment, I believe you can only view HDV material via playback on a HD camcorder direct to HDTV. Anyway, thanks again for your input.
There's the X-Box360...

The only bummer appears to be that you must have Windows Media Centre Edition as your OS to be able to stream video files to it.

Apart from that it's a 'designed from the ground up' HD media player, with a DVD drive that'll play DVDs encoded with various HD format material. I'm assuming WMV9 HD will play natively from the 360's DVD drive.

BTW, If you are thinking of any HD capable network media player... be sure to use hardwire!! Wireless is not capable of HD data throughput.
Steve Crisdale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 16th, 2005, 10:52 PM   #7
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 2,488
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Crisdale
BTW, If you are thinking of any HD capable network media player... be sure to use hardwire!! Wireless is not capable of HD data throughput.
Theoretically, modern wireless networks might be able to support compressed HD formats, but maintaining consistent throughput would be the limiting factor. Anyone actually try it?
Kevin Shaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17th, 2005, 03:49 AM   #8
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Katoomba NSW Australia
Posts: 635
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Shaw
Theoretically, modern wireless networks might be able to support compressed HD formats, but maintaining consistent throughput would be the limiting factor. Anyone actually try it?
Theory is theoretically a wonderful thing. Reality is often it's worst enemy however.

Many, many folks have tried wireless networking of their HD material (not to mention DVD rips) with their Roku HD1000 Photobridges and Avel Linkplayer 2's. The forums for the Roku HD1000 is littered with posts announcing their failure, along with the responses from engineers warning that HD functionality is not guaranteed when using wireless connection. (a cute way of saying "don't blame us if you go ahead and try something we've told you is bound to fail")

I'm sure Microsoft was well aware of the current "real-world" performance of wireless with any HD stream, when they devised their recomendations for HD media streaming to the X-Box360. They quite clearly state that 10/100 hardwire network is required for HD network streaming capability to the 360.

I wouldn't even attempt it with my Roku as it'd just be a waste of money to even try. Maybe the next generation of wireless will be up to it in "real-world" conditions, but that would require another new set of hardware. Until then; if you want to be certain of decent network playback of streamed HD video, 10/100 hardwire is the only currently workable solution.
Steve Crisdale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 26th, 2005, 11:09 AM   #9
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 45
I can only speak on behalf of the FX1 but from what i've worked with, downconverting via the NLE produces a picture much much better than if you downconverted to SD through the FX1 itself.

Also, the Xbox 360 does not yet allow (if ever?) you to play media burned onto a dvd unless it is audio.

The Avel Link Player 2 works out fine though for playing back DIVX HD though.
Christopher Cruz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 27th, 2005, 08:25 AM   #10
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Katoomba NSW Australia
Posts: 635
Quote:
Originally Posted by Christopher Cruz
Also, the Xbox 360 does not yet allow (if ever?) you to play media burned onto a dvd unless it is audio.
So you are saying that Microsofts' Xbox 360 specification sheet is incorrect? Have you tried any standard DVD disks in the 360 DVD drive... like a rental commercial DVD for instance. What about a DVD-/+R with wmv9 written to disk using Windows Movie Maker app?

If what you say is indeed the case, Microsoft has basically just shot themselves in the foot.

How are gamers supposed to load games onto the external hard drive? How are they even expected to play any game, as they'd be using the drive to be able to do so?

Even the old Xbox played DVDs!! The newer one can't? Unbelievable...

Yet it plays DVD-A... that's beyond strange. It can play a format very few DVD players support -except for real expensive ones, but it can't handle DVD formats older drive units can play without any difficulty at all. You sure this isn't some sort of April fool's joke a few months too early?
Steve Crisdale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 27th, 2005, 09:53 PM   #11
New Boot
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Chesapeake, VA
Posts: 16
The XBox (first one) does play burned DVD's. Me and my friends made a short film project burned it onto a DVD and then watched it on an XBox. So why wouldn't the 360 play a burned DVD?
Daniel Nunez 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 08:20 PM.


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