Shooting sports with the Z1U at

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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 January 4th, 2006, 01:38 PM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 110
Shooting sports with the Z1U

Hello all,

I'm pretty new to the Z1 (and this forum). This is the first camcorder I've ever owned but I did extensive research before finalizing my decision and purchasing one. I also produced a music video ( NSFW *cough*) which was shot on a Z1 (with an FX-1 as a second cam) and was very pleased with the overall result but this is mostly credit to the D.P. who knew what he was doing.

I have had my Z1 for a week and have been messing with it a lot (and reading a couple books and this forum) and I am starting to become pretty happy with the picture quality I'm getting. I am just about ready to start shooting my first documentary. The subject I have chosen is an underground community of which I am part of that plays various (often extreme) sports on bicycles.

A major portion of the doc will be interviews which I don't forsee any problems as I have experience shooting interviews on a DVX-100/VX1000 in the past. Where I'm concerned I will have problems will be in the action shots. The first cycle-sport I plan to shoot will involve 6 players in a tennis court (fortunately outside and during days hours) moving around about as fast as hockey players and whacking around a ball with mallets.

I have always had trouble making horizontal pans look good on digital camcorders and the same applies to my Z1. Do any of you fine skilled professionals have any quick suggestions on what I can do to get the optimal picture in this type of enviroment? I'll be the first to admit that I am an unlearned no-talent-ass-hack so you can treat me like I know nothing and I will take no offence. I learn fast.
Joe Lumbroso is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 4th, 2006, 02:49 PM   #2
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Toronto, ON, Canada
Posts: 479
Hey Joseph, welcome to the forum. First of all, make sure you take the Steadyshot off as it tries to counteract your pans (which you don't want). Select a higher shutter speed so the image while panning is as sharp as possible. Since iris affects depth of field, you might want to select a lower aperture so you don't have to do as much focusing (you can get away with a low aperture and high shutter speed outside since it's so bright out), although if you're on a side shot of the court I imagine you won't have to do a whole lot of focusing.

HDV doesn't handle motion all that well so I guess we can't really guarantee that it will look amazing, but those are a few things that can improve it. Best of luck!
Mark Utley
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