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Sony NXCAM NEX-FS700 CineAlta
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Old November 30th, 2012, 02:43 PM   #1
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50i or 60i setting help please

Why SONY FS700 has only 25 fps and 50 fps setting option in Europe (PAL 50i)? Every cheap photo camera as Nicon, Canon, atc. have 24, 25, 30, 60 fps possibility even in EU, why not FS700? What is the reason?

What is the difference between 24 nad 25 fps shooting (which is possible only in USA)?
What happenes if I set the camera to 60i (NTSC) in Europe?

I will also appreciate links to more detailed explanation.

Last edited by Petr Volgemut; November 30th, 2012 at 03:23 PM.
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Old November 30th, 2012, 02:54 PM   #2
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

You can switch between European frame rates (25, 50) and NTSC/American frame rates (24, 30 - actually 29.97, and 60 - actually 59.98 or thereabouts).

It's good to have the 'frames per second' and the local supply of electricity match up - so shooting 24 fps in Europe with a 1/48th shutter speed can make some lighting 'pulse' a little.

However, if you're shooting for the web, most (almost all) computers have screens that refresh every 60th of a second, so if you shoot 24, 25 or 50 fps for computer display, it won't be as smooth as shooting 30 or 60 fps. But if you want to take an NTSC production and show it on European TV, 29.97 sucks. 24fps can be tweaked to 25fps with a little work on the audio.

Sony are trying to 'protect the innocent' - don't shoot 25fps in the states, don't think you can get away with 29.97 in France unless you carefully check your lighting. So there's this big MF switch - 'do you want to shoot NTSC or PAL? If you don't know, we'll limit your choices so things don't screw up.'

Yes, you can shoot 29.97 in Europe - I do this a lot, and there's good reason to do so. Maybe more so in the future. You can shoot 25fps in the States, but watch out for fluorescent lighitng, which will pulse. You can shoot 24fps but you must obey the cine rules for camera movement to avoid judder. And so on.

You really can do anything, but you have to jump through those 'are you sure, because it could look crap' hoops.
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Old November 30th, 2012, 03:02 PM   #3
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

Whoah. Just caught a huge issue with your Title - INTERLACED?

You're shooting INTERLACED? Why?

Interlacing is for old-school Cathode Ray Tube monitors - dead dinosaurs of the display world. If you interlace your video, edit it, then output it for use on computers, or dumb video systems, you are in for a truck load of hurt. You should be shooting HD in Progressive mode.

Why?

If you shoot in 1080i50/60 (interlaced), all motion will have each virtual frame split so all the odd lines are from the first part, the even lines from the second part, of your individual frame.

Anything (ANYTHING) that moves will be recorded with godawful mouse-teeth edges that contain so much detail that they will steal bandwidth from your picture quality in order to render the even/odd mismatched lines accurately. If you SCALE that image onto a 720p monitor (or any PC laptop screen quite frankly), those mouseteeth edges get blocky and 'fugly' (google it). Horrible.

So, you have to 'de-interlace' - most screens do this, and simply throw away every other line. So your 1080 HD image is now composed of 540 lines vertically. That's pretty much SD. Or... It does some expensive image processing and loses 25% of the resolution - so your 1080i image is actually displayed at 768 lines, which is so close to 720p that you may as well have shot in 720p in the first place.

Interlace is a hideous nasty cheat that made TV work in its infancy. There are very specific reasons why broadcast HD TV is using 1080i, but material must be shot at 1080psf, and only credit rolls are mandatorily created at 1080i because the broadcast world is moving to 1080p50/60 and there's not quite enough bandwidth on the planet (yet) to make it work. It will be soon.

And if that paragraph didn't make any sense, please - pretty please with sugar on top - shoot progressive. :-)
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Old November 30th, 2012, 03:18 PM   #4
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

thank you very much

Last edited by Petr Volgemut; December 1st, 2012 at 05:47 AM.
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Old December 1st, 2012, 05:46 AM   #5
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

Thank you very much! Not interlaced - there is no reason to lower the quality. 50i or 60i was ment 50hz or 60hz. My question was not about interlaced or progressive but about PAL/NTSC setting and shooting possibilities. DSLR film makers set their cameras to 24 fps in EU but it is not possible on FS700, I also wanted to know the difference
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Davis View Post
Whoah. Just caught a huge issue with your Title - INTERLACED?

You're shooting INTERLACED? Why?

Interlacing is for old-school Cathode Ray Tube monitors - dead dinosaurs of the display world. If you interlace your video, edit it, then output it for use on computers, or dumb video systems, you are in for a truck load of hurt. You should be shooting HD in Progressive mode.

Why?

If you shoot in 1080i50/60 (interlaced), all motion will have each virtual frame split so all the odd lines are from the first part, the even lines from the second part, of your individual frame.

Anything (ANYTHING) that moves will be recorded with godawful mouse-teeth edges that contain so much detail that they will steal bandwidth from your picture quality in order to render the even/odd mismatched lines accurately. If you SCALE that image onto a 720p monitor (or any PC laptop screen quite frankly), those mouseteeth edges get blocky and 'fugly' (google it). Horrible.

So, you have to 'de-interlace' - most screens do this, and simply throw away every other line. So your 1080 HD image is now composed of 540 lines vertically. That's pretty much SD. Or... It does some expensive image processing and loses 25% of the resolution - so your 1080i image is actually displayed at 768 lines, which is so close to 720p that you may as well have shot in 720p in the first place.

Interlace is a hideous nasty cheat that made TV work in its infancy. There are very specific reasons why broadcast HD TV is using 1080i, but material must be shot at 1080psf, and only credit rolls are mandatorily created at 1080i because the broadcast world is moving to 1080p50/60 and there's not quite enough bandwidth on the planet (yet) to make it work. It will be soon.

And if that paragraph didn't make any sense, please - pretty please with sugar on top - shoot progressive. :-)
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Old December 6th, 2012, 09:21 PM   #6
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Davis View Post
Whoah. Just caught a huge issue with your Title - INTERLACED?

You're shooting INTERLACED? Why?
I guess one answer would be is that many networks delivery spec, especially sport, specifies '1920x1080i.' That's what they pay us to deliver that's what we give 'em.

If we shoot 50p for sport it's usually for slo-mo in post but in the program it gets rendered out to good old 'i'

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Old December 7th, 2012, 04:27 AM   #7
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

Quote:
Originally Posted by Petr Volgemut View Post
Thank you very much! Not interlaced - there is no reason to lower the quality. 50i or 60i was ment 50hz or 60hz. My question was not about interlaced or progressive but about PAL/NTSC setting and shooting possibilities. DSLR film makers set their cameras to 24 fps in EU but it is not possible on FS700, I also wanted to know the difference
Petr, I have to say I'm really confused about what your issue with this is. You can shoot 24p on your Fs700E, I do it all the time. You just go into the 'others' menu (the one at the bottom), go to the 50i/60i SEL setting and change it to 60i (then format the card) and voila, you can use 24p.

If your issue is with that last aspect ( having to use different cards for 25p and 24p shooting), then I agree. It's a major pain in the bum. I'd like it to be fixed in the firmware update, by I doubt it will be as I don't believe Sony really listen to everyday users, just the select few who they deem to be 'thought leaders' or whatever the hell the term is.
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Old December 9th, 2012, 03:03 PM   #8
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

thank you!
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Old December 9th, 2012, 03:05 PM   #9
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

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Originally Posted by Colin Elves View Post
Petr, I have to say I'm really confused about what your issue with this is. You can shoot 24p on your Fs700E, I do it all the time. You just go into the 'others' menu (the one at the bottom), go to the 50i/60i SEL setting and change it to 60i (then format the card) and voila, you can use 24p.

If your issue is with that last aspect ( having to use different cards for 25p and 24p shooting), then I agree. It's a major pain in the bum. I'd like it to be fixed in the firmware update, by I doubt it will be as I don't believe Sony really listen to everyday users, just the select few who they deem to be 'thought leaders' or whatever the hell the term is.
Of course, I can set the camera to 60i SEL setting (for NTSC) and use 24fps (and 240 fps in slow mo) but I would like to find out what is going to happen if I live in 50i (PAL) area where it should be set to 50i SEL setting? What problems can I expect?
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Old December 9th, 2012, 04:15 PM   #10
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

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Originally Posted by Colin Elves View Post
(having to use different cards for 25p and 24p shooting), then I agree. It's a major pain in the bum. I'd like it to be fixed in the firmware update, by I doubt it will be as I don't believe Sony really listen to everyday users, just the select few who they deem to be 'thought leaders' or whatever the hell the term is.
Colin, it's a 'feature' of AVCHD. Each card becomes a virtual DVD - and therefore must have, for example, sequential number file names and its special structure. The biggest problem for me wasn't the mix of formats on cards, but the fact that every card you will ever shoot will have a file called 000000.mtf - therefore it's not so good for archiving by filename. But "that's a pipe of a different colour."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Petr Volgemut View Post
Of course, I can set the camera to 60i SEL setting (for NTSC) and use 24fps (and 240 fps in slow mo) but I would like to find out what is going to happen if I live in 50i (PAL) area where it should be set to 50i SEL setting? What problems can I expect?
Choices of shutter speed can be the issue - 1/48th may have issues with 50Hz lighting. But most PAL settings use 1/60th as a valid shutter speed to cope with computer screens which are - by and large - 60Hz (Samsung is a particularly fickle manufacturer here, as they don't hit exactly 60Hz because they can prove that a screen refresh rate that is lock step with lighting can lead to eye strain and head aches, so they offset their refresh rate in such a way that no FS100 or FS700 can quite capture the screen without that 'mark of Cain'.

When I know my audience will be web/computer screen based, I'm beginning to favour 29.97/30 origination even in PAL-land. Just watch those screens and Fluorescents.
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Old December 11th, 2012, 03:06 AM   #11
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

A big part of the reason for the need to switch between PAL and NTSC area is due to playback and monitoring. To playback/monitor 24p (23.976p) the camera needs to be in NTSC area mode as the camera output must operate at 60i or 30p to correctly play back 24p material to the many monitors and TV sets. 24p is normally played back as 30p/60i with "Pull Up" padding frames/fields added to get from 24fps to 30fps. While you can playback/monitor at 24fps without pull-up a lot of devices don't accept this as a standard signal, instead needing 30fps.

As there is no formal standard to play back 24p within the PAL (or more correctly 25fps) system, if you shoot at 24fps to play it back or monitor it you would need to switch the output to NTSC mode to play/monitor your footage with most TV's and monitors, hence the need to set the camera to the correct base frame rate (25fps or 30fps, PAL or NTSC area).

Cheap cameras and DSLR's don't care about proper standards, they just tend to output everything wrapped up in a 60i stream.
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Old December 13th, 2012, 07:25 PM   #12
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Davis View Post
Whoah. Just caught a huge issue with your Title - INTERLACED?

You're shooting INTERLACED? ..........

Interlace is a hideous nasty cheat that made TV work in its infancy. There are very specific reasons why broadcast HD TV is using 1080i, but material must be shot at 1080psf, and only credit rolls are mandatorily created at 1080i ..................
If you're talking about such as drama, and other programmes where "film look motion" is desired, that's true. For sport, news, and similar types of programming with fast action it's totally different - you need 50 images per second to get the smooth motion. If you go for progressive, it means 720 - if you go for 1080, it means interlace.

If you'd looked at a certain large sporting event this summer, you'd have seen a great deal of programming originating as 1080i/25........ :-)

When the recent standards were being set for HD transmission, "50 images per second" meant either 720p/50 (when you got progressive frames) or 1080i/25 (when you got interlaced fields). And one of the reasons for most stations going with 1080i/25 was that it directly gave "smooth motion" for news, sport, but (via psf, as you say) could also carry 1080p/25 for such as drama. If they had gone with 720p/50, it wouldn't have been too bad for such as sport, etc but would have been the worst of all worlds when "film look" was specified - effectively 720p/25.

Yes, 1080p/50 will make increasing sense for acquisition, and can be used to derive equally good 1080i/25 or 1080p/25 as appropriate. Unfortunately it's not in the spec of current home HD receivers, so forget about it for transmission to home for the foreseeable future.
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Old December 14th, 2012, 12:24 PM   #13
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

Thanks all for your soothing words over 50i.

A couple of points I'd like to raise in my defence:

1) BBC has always said that it's the intention to broadcast HD in 1080p50 - but in the interrim, things are being broadcast at 50i to keep compatibility. So, all material is shot in either 1080p50 or 1080psf25 (eww, about to be spanked by the lurkers for not saying 50psf - but you know what I mean), and it's only credit rolls that happen in 1080i50 - because anything else looks rubbish.

My 'mock shock & horror' was only to suggest that if you own an FS100/700, its main party trick is to film in 50p, not 50i. Since the Olympics, I've been on 3 assignments that stipulated 50/60p at 1080 - all of them corporate, BTW.

NB: regarding 1080i/25 (or whatever we call the 25psf output of the new C100), I predict we shall continue to hear tears before bedtime for quite a while yet.
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Old December 14th, 2012, 12:51 PM   #14
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

usually it doesn't ask a lot to switch a camera from ntsc to pal, On some caemra, it is just a matter of flipping a bit in memory.
For some low cost camera, they cut corners by skipping few extra component that would be useless for most users.
But the real reason is probably purely commercial.
Cameras are cheaper on some place (especially in Noth Amerac, than in europe or Australia for example.
So it is a way to cut grey market,
Other camera makers just use serial number to sort region.
Sony plays a strange game, because they often release a camera with 2 models , one for consumer and another for pro market, the only difference being the XLR plugs and the capacity to shoot 24 and 50/60.
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Old December 24th, 2012, 12:33 PM   #15
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Re: 50i or 60i setting help please

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Colin, it's a 'feature' of AVCHD. Each card becomes a virtual DVD - and therefore must have, for example, sequential number file names and its special structure.
I thought it might be something like that. God, AVCHD MTS is such toss isn't it? I'd have much preferred that Sony just stick the h.264 in a simple QuickTime wrapper, all in nice discreet files - like Canon do. Their implementation is such a ball ache. Bloody Sony. The camera has such great features but the usability is so awful.
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