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Sony NXCAM NEX-FS100 CineAlta
An interchangeable lens AVCHD camcorder using E-Mount lenses.


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Old May 3rd, 2011, 09:20 AM   #31
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

The sensor in the FS100 is an Exmor sensor, so it probably has 2 stages of noise reduction occurring on board. The first is an analog CDS (Correlated Double Sampling) noise reduction circuit that samples the output of the individual pixel during it's dark or shuttered period and compares it with the exposed signal and subtracts the dark noise from the exposed signal. The analog signal is then passed to a digital to analog converter that then performs a second CDS noise reduction to reduce noise generated during the A to D process. These stages have little effect on image quality beyond reducing noise.

Then the digital signal is passed from the sensor chip to the DSP (digital signal processor) where further noise reduction probably takes place. This may use a mix of temporal noise reduction and spacial reduction. Temporal NR takes the signal over two of three frames and looks for differences that may be noise and then reduces or removes them by subtraction or blending. Spacial NR looks at adjacent groups of pixels looking for anything that might be noise and reduces it by subtraction or blending. There may be other processes in use, but things like that are kept very secret.

Both spacial and temporal NR can soften or blur the image and there have been some cameras in recent years that have used a lot of temporal NR leading to image lag and blurring of fast action. Most CMOS and many CCD cameras have high levels of noise reduction occurring. I think it's one of the reasons why XDCAM EX pictures can look sometimes lack detail in subtle textures. Even high end cameras like the PDW-700 use noise reduction.
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 09:45 AM   #32
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

Hi Mark

The thing about processors is that they have several data paths, and also registers (the short-term pigeon-holes where they store data that's being worked on), all of which can have different bit-lengths. So on the same processor you might find a 256-bit register and somewhere else a 64-bit data path.

The processor being referred to might have an 8-bit output, or something like that, but I will eat my chair if the calculations are all done internally at 8-bit.

Dave Shapton
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 09:59 AM   #33
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

Hi Dave

Got some salt n pepper? No just kidding. All I can say is that both Phil Bloom and the creative video site have said the processor is 8 bit. I've also seen it other places. Whatever the truth I'm sure it will out at some point.

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Old May 3rd, 2011, 01:47 PM   #34
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

And therein lies one of the flaws of the internet, both good and bad information spreads with equal vigour and is taken as fact without question.

Now I can't categorically say it isn't an 8 bit DSP, but in this day and age 8 bit video DSP's in quality cameras are pretty unusual.
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 03:57 PM   #35
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

Alistar

Notes On Video: Sony Chat on the NEX-FS100

This is what Kanta Yamamoto from sony said
: HDMI could support 10-bit, same as SDI. On the other hand, the internal processor decided the output bit depth.

Whether that is right or not is still not proved but Creative video must have got their info from somewhere and are a professional company. Also Phil Bloom would'nt have just said it again he must have got his info too.

I think its erring on the side that the internal processor is 8bit and probably is so in order to keep it cool as it can also record 60p in 1920x1080 instead of 720p.

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Old May 3rd, 2011, 04:23 PM   #36
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

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Originally Posted by Mark David Williams View Post
On the other hand, the internal processor decided the output bit depth.
Note he's talking about the processors output bit depth which we all know to be 8bit, not the processing bit depth. Maybe the DSP is only 10 bit which would restrict your output to less than 10 bits.

Anyway no point in debating it any further, it's not getting anyone anywhere. I'm going to have to borrow the camera again to do some more shooting.
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 04:28 PM   #37
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

Be good if you could!
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Old May 4th, 2011, 12:54 AM   #38
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

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Originally Posted by Mark David Williams View Post
Steve

Why can't you focus using an external monitor? The first thing that would go for me would be any on board auto focus. I know some cameras you can program focusing or follow a target or rack focus but all these things can and usually done anyway with a follow focus and for the price who cares. Peaking would be nice though.
You can use an external monitor, but while I had the VG10 the Sony monitor had only been announced. Moreover, the whole point of an inexpensive camera with a hi-rez LCD and is a good VF is not need to buy anything MORE in order to focus.

Have you noticed how many gizmos seem to be needed to good results from the VG10 and FS100?

With the 3X cheaper NEX-5 I get Focus Assist. I simply don't understand that when Sony re-packaged the NEX-5 parts into a camcorder body -- how or why did they leave-out a CRITICAL existing function?

Likewise, the wonderful 'press Shutter and you get One-Touch AF-driven focus' function only works in AF MODE!!! You get nothing to help focus in MF MODE.

And, to switch from AF to MF you cannot simply press the AF/MF button. The button takes you into the menu system where you must manually select AF or MF and the press the Select button. Crazy!

There are so many odd aspects to the VG10 it is either a market test -- which failed because it was so flawed -- or it was crippled because of the need to sell FS100 or it was the first version with a much improved version mode to arrive mid-2011.

Still no word from Sony on the new firmware, but the re-spin of the NEX-3 is now out with its 16MP APS-C chip. The expected NEX-5 re-spin should be soon. The open question is, will the re-spin of the VG10 be not much more than the current model with a 16MP chip. I had been hoping for a 4K2K model, but looking at how little money Sony spent on the re-spin of the NEX-3 I begin to think Sony will let JVC have the 4K2K market for another year. If new firmware provides peaking for the VG10, eBay may be a good place to find a VG10 from those selling to buy the FS100. Buy cheap and w/o the 18200 lens. Forget the A-mount adaptor too.

PS: in AF mode, there is a critical need for the 'press Shutter and you get One-Touch AF-driven focus' function. Contrast focus way too often totally blows it and gets stuck out of focus. By pressing the shutter button you force the AF mode to try again.
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Old May 4th, 2011, 03:36 AM   #39
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

Thanks Steve will keep a look out!

If I was making a film I really would want a decent 24" monitor and a smaller one I'd also have a focus puller and prefer to have a Camera operator DP and assistant and that would be with the F3 or the AF101.

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Old May 4th, 2011, 05:34 AM   #40
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

If I had the budget for a film -- one that could make me a profit -- I would skip ALL these cameras and get a RED. It's not the camera itself! The folks at RED understand the technology needed to obtain electronic images that rival film. When I read their website, I understand WHY a RED works the way it does. Every engineering decision makes sense to me.

All the other cameras use marketing to gloss over what the camera lacks. The exception, of course, is Sony's F65. But, even then Sony's marketing is BS. Of course, their new sensor beats a 4K camera, But, RED is now selling a 5K camera.

Read Larry Thorpe's discussion of how much work it took him to introduce the idea of "progressive" into a company where no video engineer had any experience with anything but "interlaced video." And therein lies the fundamental problem. The Japanese companies have few if any engineers who are film-photography engineers. These 25-year old engineers have never seen or used a Bolex or Arri.

In the `90s I remember meeting with a team of Sony engineers and asking them about brands of CD players. They confessed they bought from the company store. They had never heard a CD player from anybody but Sony. Their job was to use Sony semiconductors in a way they met marketing needs. Listening played no role in their job.

And, remember when Toyota took a car to Lotus in the UK for a suspension tune. Of course, the engineers in Japan couldn't do this because very few engineers even own a car.

American's need to realize that experiences we take for granted -- shooting 8mm film as a teenager, for example, simply does not apply to most countries other than Europe. The great Japanese photo companies built wonderful products by copying AND IMPROVING already great European products. But, that expertise was lost as these folks have retired. Japanese ELECTRONICS executives did not grow-up shooting film with European built cameras. They are now busy planning our 3D future. Sir Howard has even stated that it is 3D that will "save" Sony.

IMHO, either buy the best cheap camera HD-DSLR or buy a RED if you want to make films. Everything in between is a money and time waster.
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Old May 4th, 2011, 06:26 AM   #41
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

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Originally Posted by Steve Mullen View Post
IMHO, either buy the best cheap camera HD-DSLR or buy a RED if you want to make films. Everything in between is a money and time waster.
Steve,

You surely remember I used to agree with you on most subjects, ever since I joined this Forum back in 2006. But if you really mean the above, I must say it's b...t (take no offense, please).

Piotr
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Old May 4th, 2011, 06:30 AM   #42
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

Well depending on the films budget at this moment in time I would go for an EX1 with Letus for low budget only because I own one.

For a better budget then the F3 or Alexia rented

For a better than better budget 35mm film

3D will fail IMHO Its a novelty that will sink.

The future should lie in 70mm films being made as TV resolution gets better then so too should cinema. and the potential for films to have even better defination.

Why 70MM is not being developed I don't know. About time Kodak and Fuji got their finger out.
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Old May 4th, 2011, 06:36 AM   #43
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

They're going for 4k cinemas to remove the need for film prints. That's why RED is pushing the 4k resolution of the Epic (as against the pixel count).
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Old May 4th, 2011, 06:57 AM   #44
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

Red is not a 4k or 5k camera. It is a camera that has 4k or 5k (MX) pixels horizontally across the sensor. As people on these forums keep reminding us, a 4k or 5k pixel wide bayer sensor will not give 4k or 5k resolution.

So who's marketing is BS?

Answer: Just about every company that operates in a competitive market, Red, Sony, Pana, JVC etc etc, they will all manipulate terms, specifications etc to make their product sound more attractive than the next. That's what marketing is all about.

Does it matter whether or not an electronics engineer has used a film camera? Many of the best designed new products come from people with no knowledge of previous products or concepts as they approach the design with fresh, unbiased ideas. Kids that have never used film cameras are producing great movies using video cameras. I used to shoot day in and day out with Super16, do I want to go back? No thank you. I do miss the discipline that film brings to a shoot, but not all the aggravation.
Don't forget that there was a huge input from potential end users on the design of the FS100, that's one of the reasons for it's quirky design and looks. It's what I and others asked for, a modular compact camera. It's a bold design that may or may not catch on, but at least they are not afraid to try new ideas. Is it perfect, no, of course not, it's built down to a price and compromises have been made to get to that price. But is it good value and could you make a good looking movie with it? In my opinion it is a great big yes to both.
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Old May 4th, 2011, 07:16 AM   #45
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Re: FS100 and F3, Alister's Video

I doubt that the average cinema goer in a typical cinema would notice the difference between HD, 2k and 4k.
I struggle to see the difference and I remember being completely underwhelmed a couple of years ago at the big 4k demo event in the 4k big screen theater. I struggled to see any real difference between the 2k and 4k films that were shown. If you can't persuade the audience that they are going to be getting something appreciably better than what they have now, then how will cinemas justify the extra expense of 4k or higher projection?

We've debated already on these forums over whether people at home sitting at average viewing distances etc can see the difference between 720 and 1080. The conclusion was generally that 1080 was better, but not by much. There are still many, many people that don't see the benefit of HD over SD here in Europe where our SD was pretty good to start with. Rather than an increase in resolution I would much rather see big improvements in contrast. I can't wait for the day when I can get an OLED TV and then have material to view that uses wider gamuts than currently broadcast. A higher contrast image can easily appear sharper than a low contrast one. Resolution is nice to have, but I believe there are other things to be improved first that will have a much more profound effect on perceived image quality, in particular display and presentation brightness and contrast.
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