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Sony TRV950 / PDX10 Companion
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Old June 29th, 2004, 04:11 AM   #1
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Why Bad to Shoot High Shutter/Speed?

I have now been shooting beach shots with the PDX10 for quite some time and have tried many different ways of shooting, What I have found is that I clearly get my best results when shooting at very high shutter speeds. I've heard that this is bad to do with the PDX10 I was just wondering why?
I am shooting surfing/bodyboarding (very fast moving objects with alot happening in the frame) so it would be considered sports, which in still photography would need a high shutter speed to prevent blur.
I can also control exposure far more easily at high shutter speeds as in the bright conditions there are no more stops at slow speeds. When shooting at high, exposure bar is in the middle.
I would like to hear everyones thoughts and reccommendations from expierience or knowledge.

Thanks
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Old June 29th, 2004, 08:38 AM   #2
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If you like it then there's no reason to change. Personally I don't like the stroboscopic sort of effect that high shutter speeds give. In fact, more often than not I run my footage through DVFilm Maker to create pseudo-30p which creates even more motion blur (as though shooting at 1/30 sec) which is more like film.

When you shoot at high shutter shutter speeds there isn't any motion blur and you perceive more of a sucession of flashing still images, but I know that some people like that effect for sports. If you want to convert any of your footage to slow motion I think you'll get very choppy results unless you shoot at 1/60 sec, or at least that's been my experience.

If your goal is to control the light, then pickup a couple different ND filters, they're cheap in the 37mm size. Now maybe Tom will chime in here, but his thesis is that high shutter speeds create more of a vertical smear problem with the PDX-10's small high resolution chips. I'll take his word on this, maybe he can explain the tech details.

But we all have our own styles, likes and dislikes. If you're happy with the look that the high shutter speed gives then go for it!
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Old June 29th, 2004, 11:07 AM   #3
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Steve,
In broad daylight, I like the "mid-high" shutter speeds like 1/250 or 1/500 because they allow a greater iris aperture than regular 1/60, thus permitting slightly narrower depth-of-field and a little better resolution than apertures of f8 or f11. I'm not bothered by the strobing effect when the playback is made at normal 60 fields/second (30 fps).
I always use the "Portrait" AE program on my cheap cam: it selects the shutter speed according to available light and turns the edge enhancement down for a cleaner picture.
I don't like the "Sports" mode because it pushes the shutter too high (1/5000) and forces the gain up if the light is not very strong.
A good ND and/or polarizing filter is a must for beach and surf shooting.
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Old June 29th, 2004, 11:22 AM   #4
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I too am a fan of high shutter speeds, but have, as Boyd has pointed out, found them to be dangerous in any kind of high contrast situation that I can't control. The faster the speed, the more severe the smear.
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Old June 29th, 2004, 04:35 PM   #5
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Norm: a lot of people are using ND's to allow the lens to open
futher to get a shallow DOF. At least that's what I'm doing on
my XL1S. I'm assuming you can tag on an ND filter on the PDX10
as well?
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Old June 29th, 2004, 05:11 PM   #6
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Yep Rob, I do it all the time. And as I mentioned it takes 37mm filters which are cheap.
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Old June 29th, 2004, 05:12 PM   #7
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I missed that line, Boyd. Sorry, it's late overhere <g> Thanks
for pointing it out!
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Old June 30th, 2004, 08:45 AM   #8
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I'd give strong warnings to anyone about to use high shutter speeds on the TRV950/PDX10 as anything above 1/50th sec will increase the CCD smear in direct proportion to the selected shutter speed. You don't have to have the characteristic light source in frame either - even a piece of white paper on a dark table will smear on the CCD at 1/500th sec. But hey Steve - if your cam is exempt or you're unfazed by the effect, keep on with your settings.

Norm's dead right in that using wide apertures gives much sharper results than using f8 or f11 on cams with such tiny chips, but that's precicely why the designers of the PDX have forced you to use the in-built NDs and to stay at f4.8. When it gets really bright the shutter speed will rise because the firmware conceeds that CCD smear is more acceptable than soft focus, but the real answer is to use more ND unless (as Shawn points out) you can control the contrast of the scene.

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Old July 1st, 2004, 09:23 AM   #9
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Tom,
my cheap'ol Sony cam has one low-res 1/4" CCD (345kp).
I've never seen smear on it. The more I read about smaller newer cams with MegaPixel features and all, the more I hold onto my big old one.
I've already posted it many times but if I told you again which model I have, you'd laugh at me!
It just goes to confirm what I've come to think after 4 years reading these forums: everything is a compromise!
(This also I've posted many times now) :)
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Old July 3rd, 2004, 10:40 AM   #10
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It may be Norm that some people simply don't see the smear. Living happily in ignorant bliss does have its advantages. I know a lot of the general public wouldn't know what a lens hood was if it thwacked them about the head and shoulders. These people live quite happily with film that shows the thumb print every time they zoom to wideangle, film that silhouettes everything when they pan across the lake, film that shows great gobs of flare whenever the sun is even slightly ahead of them.

I'm sure CCD smear is accepted as 'part of the deal' these days. Mini DV camcorders have never been so small, sharp, light and above all cheap. And the ability to shoot pretty high quality stills to memory apparently makes the photographic disadvantages worth it.

Each to his own I say.

tom.
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