My first thoughts on the Z5 - Page 4 at DVinfo.net

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Sony HVR-Z5 / HDR-FX1000
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CMOS HDV camcorder.


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Old January 9th, 2009, 04:15 PM   #46
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Wow hd

Whilst I have bagged out the FX in other posts today on a positive I viewed some footage taken in HD of a wedding with the FX and was totally blown away.

Never in my mind was HD going to be this much better than SD.

What I noticed first was the detail of everything. I mean everything is seen, so with that in mind I am starting to think about just how much my shooting style will have to adjust in order to fit in with what the camera captures.

In the not so long ago old days of 4:3 and SD it was like the cameraman had to "try harder" to make a scene look good.

Now we have 16:9 and it really is frame up and record. Throw in HD and everything is there, everything comes to light, everything is alive. The viewing experience has improved 10 fold.

Jeff, so with that in mind have a good think about the close ups. My wedding friend (who calls himself MR Video here in OZ & has filmed 400+ weddings) was saying how close ups in HD show up everything and he's right.

He's talking now about backing off from so many extreme close up as they maybe show up too much detail. You have to ask yourself do people want to see their nose hairs?

So do we now need all those ultra close up, well so many of them? Do we now take the foot off of the pedal & not try so hard & take a more realxed just capture it approach. Do we need to get ultra close ups of wrinkles and every bit of detail on a person's face?

Maybe the lens barelling issue won't end up being that much of a problem if you are not doing so many?

Hey I am saying all this without viewing your end product but just throwing it out there for discussion.

Great forum everybody and yeah maybe the VX's were a little over the top in contrast.
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Old January 9th, 2009, 04:21 PM   #47
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Good point Martin, I actually had to add a little blur to some of the close ups of the last wedding.
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Old January 9th, 2009, 04:24 PM   #48
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Martin, thanks for the food for thought. That being said, I never show unflattering shots in my videos. I advertise that on my website. "Nothing unflattering will ever appear in your video". Even with my old cam if the bride had a bad face, teeth, anything, I avoided unflattering shots. I do not shoot them just for the sake of shooting them.

I have been watching TV more closely, and indeed they are still using extreme closeups same as always.


But I agree with your comment about the images, the cam puts out some very nice images. I'm going to post my favorites of a dining hall in a mansion here in a day or two, I'll let everyone know.
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Old January 10th, 2009, 10:50 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by Ken Ross View Post
Chris, what specifically are you not impressed with regarding the Z5?
Contrast/saturation seems too high. Image is dull / blurred. Everything looks fuzzy. Seems the Z5 image is more green/yellow in color compared to VX2100.

The little music box looks so much better on the VX2100 image. In the Z5 sample you are easily distracted by the popping, fuzzy and washed out background. The Box pops much less.

Of course i am very interested what it looks like in HD, but it seems like VX2100 is still the winner in SD area. However, i am really looking forward to more tests. Thanks again to William for his time.
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Old January 10th, 2009, 11:32 PM   #50
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I guess we'd have to ask Billy which rendition was more accurate. But it's interesting one comment was the Z5 was lacking contrast and you felt it was too contrasty. Tough crowd to please! :)
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Old January 11th, 2009, 01:00 AM   #51
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BTW Ken, I finished editing a video shot with my 2100 and a PD150 and I saw the noisiness mentioned.

After you get used to watching the FX1000 fotage it becomes much more apparent.

I really regret shooting my last wedding with the FX1000 in non-HD. Even though the images are quite nice (and I used 16:9 settings) I suspect the end product comes out better when shot in HD and downconverted in post.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 04:30 AM   #52
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My immediate thoughts on seeing the clip on the screen were that there was a little more saturation and contrast with the VX2100, which I liked actually. Besides the 16:9 format that I went to HDV for, the initial result of the Z5 clip didn't impress me.

The settings I used to get a bright enough picture was a shutter speed of 25fps on some of the close ups - I had obviously used loads of zoom and lost a f/stop or two. I also used up to 6db of gain on some close ups.
The light was really low, and this is pushing the Z5 against the VX2100's greatest asset, whilst stripping the Z5 of its major asset, HDV!

I haven't looked into setting of white balance yet on the Z5. Maybe the VX2100 is just better at doing this on its own.
I did another side by side comparison in SD in exploring the focal length of each cam - the Z5 has loads more wide angle but only a bit of extra full zoom.

I can't do new comparisons for the two, as Ebay has grabbed my VX2100. I'm posting it tomorrow, but I've got loads of footage that I've recorded with it. When the weather warms to over 1c I'll do a few more outside shots in full HD, and hopefully allow my Z5 to get its own back.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 07:38 AM   #53
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I suspect the end product comes out better when shot in HD and downconverted in post.
No doubt about it in my mind Jeff.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 10:00 AM   #54
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BTW Ken, I finished editing a video shot with my 2100 and a PD150 and I saw the noisiness mentioned.

After you get used to watching the FX1000 fotage it becomes much more apparent.

I really regret shooting my last wedding with the FX1000 in non-HD. Even though the images are quite nice (and I used 16:9 settings) I suspect the end product comes out better when shot in HD and downconverted in post.
Jeff, when shooting in HD and then downcoverting to SD, wouldn't you get letterboxing for customers still using a 4:3 TV? If so, you'd have to prepare them for that in advance. Some people get really nutsy about letterboxing.

But's it's good that you're now aware of the cleaner image of the FX1000. That's important to know.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 10:35 AM   #55
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I'm not talking aspect ratios. Only resolution.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 11:36 AM   #56
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I'm not talking aspect ratios. Only resolution.
No, I know that, but you'd still need to be aware of the letterboxing that would occur while shooting in HD if you plan on delivering an SD product. Some people might not have a problem at all with letterboxing, but others might ask "Why is the picture not filling up my screen?".

You still see some people get upset with this when watching DVDs on a 4:3 screen. Have you compared shooting with the FX1000 in SD 4:3 mode with the VX2100? If I use the FX1000 for corporate work, I'd be pretty much forced to do that since many corporate clients won't be happy with letterboxing.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 01:09 PM   #57
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If I need to shoot 4:3 I still have a PD150. Virtually all of my wedding customers have 16:9 sets, or they will in the next year so. I'm not planning on delivering anything but 16:9 for weddings. I'm not concerned about those few who have 4:3. Maybe I should be, but I'm not.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 01:48 PM   #58
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You can shoot in HD 16 x 9 and still not aggravate customers who might object to letterboxing on their 4 x 3 movie. It actually depends on how you downconvert on whether the image is letter boxed. You can edge crop on your downconversion process to 4 x 3 and there won't be any letterboxing at all. Just a normal 4 x 3 image. You will loose whatever was on the edge of the screen when you shot it, however. I have a car dealership I shoot for regularly. I shoot on 16 x 9 HD but deliver the footage to the ad agency in 4 x 3 SD, non-letterboxed. They have their own editor. Ironically, they wind up putting a letterbox mask over the 4 x 3 SD image in post.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 03:10 PM   #59
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If I need to shoot 4:3 I still have a PD150. Virtually all of my wedding customers have 16:9 sets, or they will in the next year so. I'm not planning on delivering anything but 16:9 for weddings. I'm not concerned about those few who have 4:3. Maybe I should be, but I'm not.

Jeff, I was just curious how the 1000 would do SD 4:3 compared to the 150/2100. I would also say if all your customers have 16:9, you should be doing nothing but HD.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 03:13 PM   #60
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You can shoot in HD 16 x 9 and still not aggravate customers who might object to letterboxing on their 4 x 3 movie. It actually depends on how you downconvert on whether the image is letter boxed. You can edge crop on your downconversion process to 4 x 3 and there won't be any letterboxing at all. Just a normal 4 x 3 image. You will loose whatever was on the edge of the screen when you shot it, however. I have a car dealership I shoot for regularly. I shoot on 16 x 9 HD but deliver the footage to the ad agency in 4 x 3 SD, non-letterboxed. They have their own editor. Ironically, they wind up putting a letterbox mask over the 4 x 3 SD image in post.
Greg, if you edge crop top & bottom, doesn't this require that you zoom on the center image losing come clarity?
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