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Sony TRV950 / PDX10 Companion
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Old September 9th, 2003, 01:19 PM   #1
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PDX10 "Film Look"

I have been looking for a cam for quite some time now, and for some time the only right choice seemed to be the DVX100. Then I came across the cheaper Sony PDX10, and that raised a lot of questions that I could not find any existing answers to.

1) I'm looking for a really clear and natural image, that tends to be cold. If you compare the PDX10 directly to the DVX100, ignoring the price difference, which one offers the most natural and cold image?

2) I will only be shooting for film purposes, and therefore I'm quite interrested in the 24p mode of the DVX100, but is there anyway that I can simulate this in preproduction with the DVX10?

Camera cost is not that important, so if the answers could be given presuming that these two devices are of same pricerange.

Hope some of you can answer my questions, thank you :0)
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Old September 9th, 2003, 05:15 PM   #2
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PDx10 is interlaced image.. instead of progressive.. there are plenty of topics discussing this. It is not an easy task simulating the interlaced image 60i to look like cinema. There is a product named Majic Bullet .. Havent used it but others who have tout it as a good program.. I think If your really that interested in the film look you will be alot better off with the DVX100 it is a great camera..

The PDx10 is a very neat lil unit.. It has issues with low light ability.. abysmal as its been described.. I have seen posts on the net of comparison frames.. It really is bad at low light.. I mean unusable.. So there is something for you to mull over.. If it were me I would go DVX 100 and Vegas video to edit in 24 P.. i bought a DVC 80 the equivilant of the DVX100 without the 24p.. It is a great camera.. I whole heartedly recommend it.. Although by some standards im a novice by others an expert.. lol

Try searching around I dont remember where but I read some extensive posts on another site about this same discussion.. many chimed in with real world experience and came to the conclusion I bring to you.. Good Luck
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Old September 9th, 2003, 05:23 PM   #3
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I guess I'll have to do some tests with the Magic Bullet on my current cam, to see if that is adequate(maybe even good!). I also saw a few tests on the low light, and yes it seemed like the PDX10 had major problems. But on the other hand, film would allow for good lighting possibilities...

But the 16:9 capabilities really are tempting, well thank you very much for you answers :0)
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Old September 10th, 2003, 02:01 AM   #4
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This is very like a thought I had recently. I'm wondering if there is a certain combination of softwares that will, in post, yield comparable results to what one could obtain with the dvx100, i.e., deinterlaced 60i, gamma controls, etc. I shoot with a PDX10, and may, over time want cams still other than the dvx100 for whatever reason, but, would love to, with the right, reasonably affordable concoction, create that film motion, with any cam. I'll stop here and continue this thought in our Film Look chapter.
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Old September 10th, 2003, 11:37 AM   #5
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DVFilm Maker

There is a software called Maker, by a company called DVFilm which claims to convert intelaced video to non-intelaced with good results. I have not tried it yet. There is a free demo on the web site. http://www.dvfilm.com/atlantis/index.htm

They also have Atlantis, a tool for converting 24fps interlaced PAL to 29.97fps non-interlaced so in NTSC land we can use the better resolution PAL cameras. Sound like a very good idea.

Both tools are available for both PC an Mac platforms.
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Old September 10th, 2003, 11:51 AM   #6
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'cold'?

Dennis,

I do not know exactly what you mean by 'cold'. But you can use the PDX10's custom setup to lower 'color', shift the white balance, modify 'sharpness' and shift AE. I use the camera with slightly less sharpness, the AE a little lower, white balance one or two points less red and chroma up one or two points. The result looks very nice. Further gamma processing and color processing, which I have used in Final Cut Pro let's you acheive a 'film' look which, as Adam Wilt would say: is "so film-like that real film looks like video by comparison" :-)

I have read that the 'curves' function in Adobe After Effects is good for this sort of thing, but I have not tried it out personally.

It seems that what is nice about 'film' look is some kind of contrast enhancement in the midtones. I presume you can acheive this through carefull exposure and post processing. Just a thought. I have more investigation to do on this subject.
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Old September 10th, 2003, 01:20 PM   #7
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Hello,

I use a plug-in called FilmFx, works in various Editing software on the PC and After Effects.. (not sure about Mac) it does a reasonably good job at mimicing film.. One nice thing it has is lots of presets to match your footge to all types of film stocks and speeds.. pretty cool program..
Link to their website is

www.bigfx.com

Mike
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Old September 10th, 2003, 02:54 PM   #8
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>Ignacio Rodriguez

When I said cold, I meant an image that projects the cold world as it is, and doesn't turn pale colors into unnatural colors. I saw a few examples from Canon cams, and these seemed to do that. I simply want as raw an image as possible from the shots, then I can always modify the colors manually in pre.

Its good to hear that you can actually achieve filmlook in pre, if you have some good shots to work with :0)
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Old September 10th, 2003, 04:30 PM   #9
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Color up/down

Ok, so you would do the inverse of what I did, that is: use the custom preset to set down chroma a few points. Also use the 'sharpness' control to diminish edge enhancment
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Old September 10th, 2003, 06:29 PM   #10
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Fim Look through After Affects

Here are the links for the article about getting a 'film look' by Daniel Broadway.

http://www.dvinfo.net/articles/filmlook/broadway1.php
http://www.dvinfo.net/articles/filmlook/broadway2.php

It is directed to After Effects users, however the technique described might be possible through the use of other tools.

I think the important concept is in this paragraph:

"Digital video camcorders by default have their CCDs set to a flat gamma curve. What this means is that there is a gradual fading from white, to midtone, to black. This makes the image look rather flat. On the other hand, 35mm motion picture Film and HD Cinema cameras use a slight S-curve as a gamma curve. This makes blacks deeper, and highlights more soft. This also makes the midtones have more saturated colors and a pleasant contrast. This is one of the most crutical steps in making video look like film. "

Enjoy.
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Old September 15th, 2003, 02:53 PM   #11
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I'm working on a film look filter for Final Cut Pro - I also use a PDX10.

Some movies demonstrating the effect are on my website at www.nattress.com

The end result - especially when you watch it on the TV looks wonderful.

DV Film Maker just does de-interlacing. It's a good de-interlacer, but so are some very cheap plugins for FCP. DV Film maker doesn't make your video look like 24p - it makes it look like 30p, which is not the same!

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Old February 2nd, 2004, 11:09 AM   #12
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This is a topic I have played around with a lot, as I make short films and getting rid of that "video" look is crucial. I have shot some footage with a GL2, which has "Frame Mode." From what I understand, this attempts to de-interlace the video into discrete frames as it is recorded - sort of a pseudo-progressive effect. In After Effects, I adjust the curves to give a little darker tone in the shadows and more detail in the highlights. It's slight, but does improve the look. Once I letterbox it, the resulting image doesn't look exactly like film, but is quite close. Converting to 24 fps is also possible in After Effects, but I find that makes the footage look a little too choppy.

I am considering the PDX10 and it does lack any sort of "movie" or "frame" mode. However, I'm not sure this worries me. With the newer 3CCD cameras the quality of the image is pristine enough where it no longer looking like cheap video - it resembles clean, broadcast video instead of film. This isn't bad, and I bet I can get a decent result by adjusting the curves without de-interlacing, etc. Also, with the GL2 I haven't noticed that much of a difference between "frame mode" and standard. There is one, but they both look quite good.
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Old February 2nd, 2004, 03:47 PM   #13
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The PDX10 produces a brilliant, beautiful (16:9) image. Deinterlace if you like, but you will not be disappointed.
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Old February 2nd, 2004, 04:36 PM   #14
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<<<-- Originally posted by Shawn Mielke : The PDX10 produces a brilliant, beautiful (16:9) image. Deinterlace if you like, but you will not be disappointed. -->>>

Is the 4:3 image also good?
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Old February 2nd, 2004, 04:42 PM   #15
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I think it looks good in both 4:3 and 16:9, but if 16:9 isn't a top priority then the PDX-10 may not be as attractive as some other cameras in its price range. I think I prefer the 4:3 image on my VX-2000, but there's really no comparison when it comes to 16:9.
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