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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 July 1st, 2006, 10:47 AM   #1
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Shooting in DV or HDV 4:3 wih FX1?

I've been searching through old posts to see if I can shoot in standard 4:3 in either HDV or DV so that it will more easily match with my PD170 and other cams as I get used to this one. I've read on here in old posts that you can shoot in 4:3 on the FX1, however I cannot find out how to actually make that switch. Can anybody tell me what menu it is located in? I see a TV out option, but I thought that would be more of a post-recording option.

Secondly, whether I can actually shoot in 4:3 or not, is it possible to shoot in HDV 16:9, then downconvert while importing to DV 16:9, and then throw that on a 4:3 timelines and mix in PD170 and VX2100 footage and just letterbox it? I'm using FCP if it makes a difference.

Thanks for the help.
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Old July 1st, 2006, 02:07 PM   #2
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I have the Z1, which is just a little different, but yes you can shoot regular 4:3 DV on the FX1. Go to the IN/OUT REC menu and choose REC FORMAT > DV. Then you should have a DV WIDE REC menu item which you can turn off for 4:3. This will let you record directly in DV mode 4:3.

Another option is shooting HDV (note that all HD is widescreen; there is no such thing as 4:3 HDV) and downconverting to DV on playback using the camera. Here's where I believe the Z1 is different from the FX1. On the IN/OUT REC menu there is a DOWNCONVERT item. The Z1 offers 3 options: SQUEEZE (anamorphic 16:9 DV), LETTERBOX (4:3 DV with letterboxed 16:9) and EDGE CROP (chops off the left and right side to give you 4:3 DV). IIRC, the FX1 doesn't have the EDGE CROP option but does allow LETTERBOX and SQUEEZE.

So you could shoot HDV and import as 16:9 DV using SQUEEZE, then drop that into a 4:3 timeline to get letterboxed 4:3 if that's what you're asking. It would probably require rendering on your NLE software though. Alternatively, you could choose LETTERBOX and import directly as letterboxed 16:9, saving the render.

Caveat: someone else should confirm that the FX1 actually has the LETTERBOX option since I have only used the Z1.
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Old July 1st, 2006, 02:10 PM   #3
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Correct, the FX1 will deliver downconverted 16:9 HDV material as letterboxed.

Robin
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Old July 1st, 2006, 02:10 PM   #4
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In menu setup for camera ( the first itemwhen you press menu), press again and scroll down the list to 'DV wide and set to OFF'. Set record format to DV and the FX1 will record in 4x3 DV at whatever speed you have set to record DV ( Sp or LP). You can set TVpe to control how picture is formatted for the TV ( Most important for 16x9 on 4x3 TV if you want letterbox or panand scan( clippedd image). Yes you can shoot in HDv and downconvert to DV ( this will be 16x9).
This is all in the manual!!!!

Ron Evans
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Old July 1st, 2006, 04:35 PM   #5
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To sum up, because you've got an Fx1 the easiest way for you to get 4:3 dv to match your 170 and 2100 you'll want to shoot in standard 4:3 sp dv. Because the fx1 doesnt have the edge crop option for its hdv this is the easiest way of doing things.
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Old July 1st, 2006, 04:50 PM   #6
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True, but Patrick also asked, "Secondly, whether I can actually shoot in 4:3 or not, is it possible to shoot in HDV 16:9, then downconvert while importing to DV 16:9, and then throw that on a 4:3 timelines and mix in PD170 and VX2100 footage and just letterbox it?"

So if he wants to have letterboxed 4:3 then it would be easiest and give the best quality to shoot HDV and downconvert in-camera to letterboxed DV.
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Old July 1st, 2006, 05:13 PM   #7
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Yup, that is the other option if your happy with letterbox.
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Old July 1st, 2006, 10:36 PM   #8
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Thanks for all the responses.

I guess I should clarify, now that I know it is possible, I am not necessarily looking for the easiest option available. Ideally, I would like to shoot and edit the highlights in HD and use those same shots in the larger wedding video as 4:3 letterboxed. So far it looks like the best route would be to shoot HDV, then import as is once (for highlights), then import as 4:3 letterboxed to mix in with the rest of the footage.

The last thing to figure out is how easy it is to export the HDV highlights into regular SD to put onto their wedding DVD. I'm hoping compressor can handle something like that.

Thanks again for the help, I was sure to check the manual first but wanted to make sure I was clear on everything.
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Old July 2nd, 2006, 07:25 PM   #9
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I am a PC user so do not know about FCP but with most of the PC NLE's I would import and edit in HDV and then export to MPEG2 for DVD use. IF you want at this time you could crop ( with keyframes) for 4x3 output or export as letterbox. I use Canopus Edius and Vegas most for HDV from my FX1 and have produced both 16x9 and 4x3 cropped from the HDV files on the timeline.

Ron Evans
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