My first thoughts on the Z5 - Page 6 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 11th, 2009, 08:08 PM   #76
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Ken, just think of the 4x3 and 16x9 as the same height to start with. 16x9 is just wider. So the 4x3 crop is just cutting off the sides. 16x9 isn't a letterbox 4x3 which is what you are thinking. Its a wider 4x3. In DV they are both 720x480 its just the pixels have a different aspect ratio. They are not square pixels. 4x3 is roughly 0.9 ratio and 16x9 is 1.2, a rectangle. The downconvert crops and changes the pixel aspect to the new form. For HDV the pixel aspect ratio is 1.333 so the crop also downconverts to .9 DV pixel ratio when a 4x3 SD output is selected. From the camera its normally a centre crop but of course in software the crop can be anywhere in the 16x9 frame and with motion controls in Vegas or ADOBE and Layout control in Edius the SD crop can pan and even zoom within the HDV frame. A few times I have created what looked like a multicam shoot from just my FX1 HDV file. Focus is VERY critical and zoom cannot go beyond the native resolution( you can zoom into about a quarter of the HDV frame going to 4x3 SD, if focus is on the mark!!!)

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Old January 11th, 2009, 08:31 PM   #77
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I still don't see how this can be done without enlarging that same central portion. If you think of the original 16:9 frame fitted to a 4:3 screen, how can you fill the screen by lopping off the left & right panels without also enlarging that central portion. How else can you avoid top & bottom panels? I must have a mental block on this!
Ken, sweetie, just do my sugar cube illustration.
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Old January 11th, 2009, 09:12 PM   #78
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Pedanes, Ron & Adam, thanks, I think I've got it. But Adam, I've got to admit, I have no sugar cubes. :)

So Ron, this brings up the question as to whether the conversion in Edius (my editing software) can produce a 4:3 image from an HDV original, that looks as good as the on-the-fly downconversion of the Z5?
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Old January 11th, 2009, 09:46 PM   #79
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Ken, I don't have a Z5 to compare and the downconversion of the FX1 stays in 16x9 ( no crop available). Do you have Edius 5 or 4.6? The difference is really a fixed crop in layout for 4.6 and a keyframe control for layout in V5. You should try a test. Start a 4x3 DV project and place a HDV 16x9 on the timeline, apply Layout and you will see that the 16x9 image now is much bigger than the output window. You can zoom and crop to fix the crop for the output( keyframed in V5). Lay it back out to the Z5 ( set in DV 4x3 mode, I assume it still does 4x3 DV?) )to see how it looks. I have only just upgraded to Edius V5 so all my earlier crop and downconvert were done in Vegas because of the keyframe control and the ease in understanding the available pixels represented by the before and after preview screens, then going to final 4x3 DV file. I have stopped doing 4x3 now so all projects are shot in 16x9 and SD is also 16x9. I do not see that downconvert and crop would be any different than a straight downconvert to 16x9 which is what I do all the time now. Though to be fair my downconvert only happens converting to MPEG2 for DVD creation not to go to a DV SD tape. In other words I do all my projects in HDV ( and AVCHD ) create a finished 1440x1080 final output that is used for Bluray and also as file input for conversion to MPEG2 for SD DVD creation in my case TMPGenc 4 Xpress really does the downconversion!!!!

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Old January 11th, 2009, 10:00 PM   #80
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I own 2 Z7u's and I was thinking about buying either an FX1000 or Z5 as a backup. I love the Z7 in low light and from what I hear, both of the newer cameras do a great job. When I am at full zoom with the Z7, I get a f2.0. Do we know what full zoom on the FX1000 and Z5 is? Are the only differences between the two cameras XLR's and direct connection of the memory card drive?
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Old January 12th, 2009, 01:35 AM   #81
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F3.4 at full zoom
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Old January 12th, 2009, 02:27 AM   #82
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Yes, f/3.4 on full zoom with the Z5, but then it has a much longer zoom than the Z7's Zeiss.
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Old January 12th, 2009, 07:53 AM   #83
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Ken, I don't have a Z5 to compare and the downconversion of the FX1 stays in 16x9 ( no crop available). Do you have Edius 5 or 4.6? Ron Evans
Ron, thanks for the ideas. I've got both 4.6 and 5.01. My main editing computer has 4.6 and my 'testing' computer has 5.01. I always load new versions on something other than my main computer for that old 'just in case things go south'.

In actuality I have neither the FX1000 or the Z5 and I'm trying to decide between the two. I know some of the obvious advantages of the Z5, but at this point I have no real call for HD productions at the corporate level. So this becomes more of a new 'toy' that I can also use as my workhorse camera.

I know common sense would tell me to stay with the VX2100, but I'd like to move on and be prepared...just in case.
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Old January 12th, 2009, 08:02 AM   #84
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Ken, if I were in your position I would wait awhile. Look at the new stuff coming out. The new JVCs, for example. Just a thought.
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Old January 14th, 2009, 07:47 AM   #85
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From the camera its normally a centre crop but of course in software the crop can be anywhere in the 16x9 frame and with motion controls in Vegas or ADOBE and Layout control in Edius the SD crop can pan and even zoom within the HDV frame.
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Ron, I tried the layout control in Edius using a 16:9 HDV clip. What I was trying to create was a 4:3 SD clip from the HDV, but I met with little success. The end result was always a very small frame, even though it may have been close to the 4:3 AR I was seeking.

When I tried doing a downconvert in Edius by right clicking on the HDV clip and choosing 'convert', it didn't look good at all as much of the sharpness was lost (even relative to the SD world). My best result was exporting the HDV clip as a DVD file. Aside from the letterboxing top & bottom (which is what I'm trying to avoid for corporate work), the result looked very good and quite normal for 'DVD'.

Any ideas how to get Edius to create a nice 4:3 SD project from an HDV timeline?
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Old January 14th, 2009, 07:49 AM   #86
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Ken, if I were in your position I would wait awhile. Look at the new stuff coming out. The new JVCs, for example. Just a thought.
Thanks Jeff, but I've never been a big fan of JVC cameras.
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Old January 14th, 2009, 09:16 AM   #87
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Ken you really need to use the layout control. Start a 4x3 project NOT 16x9. Bring in your 16x9 clip. Apply Layout control, double click the layout icon in the information box and the layout controls will now appear. On the left you will see the 16x9 clip and on the right will also be 16x9 but with a 4x3 box in blue indicating what will be cropped. In the preset control ( right in the middle of the control box) the dropdowns have several choices. "Fit Height" will keep the height the same and allow you to crop by moving the red circle in the left window. This will give the best quality crop and should be just like from the camera. The "Fit Width" preset will give you a letterbox output. "Original size" will match resolution ie grab a 720x480 from the 1440x1080. This too can be moved around by the red circle in the left preview screen. This is the max zoom one can sensibly use though I would also apply about 25 sharpness to this AND the HDV had better be pin sharp focus.
Edius 4.6 and V5 work much the same way and V5 has keyframe control too so the crop can be moved like a pan, zoom and scan control.
Once you have this layout applied you can output to any form you want from the timeline.

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Old January 14th, 2009, 09:31 AM   #88
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Thanks Ron, I'll give it a shot. Maybe that's where I went wrong using the layout control...I started an HDV 16:9 project thinking that the downcoversion would take place on export.
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Old January 14th, 2009, 12:48 PM   #89
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Well Ron, although these tests were with the HV20, I would think they'd still apply to the FX1000 too.

I found that shooting in normal DV mode with the HV20, yielded better results than shooting in HDV and then converting in Edius using the procedure you mentioned. I started with a 4:3 project and imported the HDV, full rez clip. I then used the layout tool and cropped as you mentioned, keeping the height constant from the dropdown. The results weren't bad, but the native DV clip of the same subject looked sharper.

It's hard to believe the FX1000 in this same test would have reversed results. Now it's quite possible that for whatever reason the FX1000 is not as good a native DV shooter as the HV20, but I doubt that explains it since the Edius converted clip from the HV20 should have been as sharp as the native DV clip from the same cam.

This leads me to believe that a sharper product would be achieved by shooting native DV with a typical HDV camera. The exception might be shooting in HDV with the Z5 and converting on the fly with side crop option.
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Old January 14th, 2009, 01:02 PM   #90
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Ken,
How did you compare the two. Did you export both back to tape from the Edius timeline? In other words did you also run the DV from the HV20 through the Edius timeline and back out to tape as well as the downconverted HDV. I have seen the opposite with my FX1. However you need to compare like for like. HDV edited on the timeline then export and DV edited on the timeline and export. Do the same for a MPEG2 output.

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