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Sony TRV950 / PDX10 Companion
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Old August 14th, 2005, 04:50 AM   #1
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PDX10 image vs. PD150/170, DVX100...

Hi,

I am shooting a documentary, with my PDX10. There are going to be some cases where I"ll want two cameras and I"m thinking of getting the second camera to be something with no verticle smear and better low light (don't get me wrong, I love th PDX10). This documentary is for broadcast, but may be blown up on film. I'd ideally like the footage to match, which camera will do that? Will I get similar results compared to a DXV100 if I set the white balance and color to be similar?

opinions?
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Old August 14th, 2005, 05:05 AM   #2
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I'd consider the FX1 or Z1...
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Old August 14th, 2005, 03:15 PM   #3
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because they are better cameras or because they are the best match for the PDX10's image?

I would love to use those....maybe I will.... just they are kind conscpicous, haha
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Old August 14th, 2005, 03:51 PM   #4
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Well I was just responding to your statement "I'd ideally like the footage to match, which camera will do that?". I haven't actually edited any of my PDX-10 footage in the same project as my HVR-Z1, but my general impression is that if you shoot in DV mode they're pretty similar (the Z1 is certainly a little sharper and better in low light though). The Z1 (and FX1 for that matter) have a lot more image controls than the PDX-10, so it shouldn't be too hard to tune it to match.

Of course it has the other advantage of opening the door to HD for you after your project is done too. Yes, it's quite a bit larger than a PDX-10 and the DVX-100 is probably about halfway between them in size. But it isn't huge, and it's black...
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Old August 15th, 2005, 09:29 AM   #5
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Well, both the PD10 and the Z1 shoot native 16:9. I'm guessing your documentary is going to be a 16:9 final product.
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Old August 15th, 2005, 09:53 AM   #6
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The PDX-10 has megapixel chips, so even though thy're a bit smaller than the FX/Z1 chips (I believe), this should help the shot matching with the also-megapixel FX/Z1 in DV mode... somewhat.
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Old August 15th, 2005, 04:58 PM   #7
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The PDX-10 chips are significantly smaller than the Z1. PDX-10 uses close to a 1/5" (nominal) CCD, the Z1 is 1/3". The gap is even wider though, because the Z1 chips are native 16:9 so the full area is being used. On the PDX-10 you have native 4:3 chips so when shooting in 16:9 mode there's an unused section above and below the active image area:

http://www.greenmist.com/dv/16x9/10.JPG

But don't get me wrong - the PDX-10 does a great job within its limits. Just finished editiing a project I shot a year ago with it, and it looks really nice.
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Old August 18th, 2005, 08:33 AM   #8
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Hi Boyd

Now IŽm really confused.

I thought that the real strenght of the PDX was that it had a native/true 16.9 chip and used the full chip to geat true widescreen (16:9)

I have missed something, but what?

Cheers

Hans
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Old August 18th, 2005, 09:06 AM   #9
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Look at the link I posted above, I think it explains. We are probably just into semantics about the meaning of "true" and "native." The PDX-10 chips are physically shaped in the 4:3 aspect ratio, but they have a lot more pixels than the 4:3 chips in the PD-150 for example. These extra pixels make it possible to extract a 16:9 image from the letterboxed center section of the chip. The real issue is that there are more than 480 scan lines when shooting in 16:9 mode. On the PD-150 you only have 360 lines in 16:9 mode.

However on the FX1 and Z1, the physical chips are in the 16:9 aspect ratio, so their entire surface is used to capture a widescreen image. So my point is that the Z1 uses the entire area of a 1/3" CCD as compared the the PDX-10 which uses only the center area of a 1/5" chip. Of course the prices of these cameras also reflects the quality difference.

This isn't a put-down on the PDX-10 by any means. It does a remarkable job of 16:9. Right now I'm watching as I'm outputting an opera I shot on the PDX-10 to my DVD recorder. It looks damn good on my 22" Samsung widescreen LCD! It also holds its own nicely on my 37" Panasonic plasma screen :-)
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Old August 18th, 2005, 09:20 AM   #10
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Aha

Now I understand.

I did not look at the link at first.

Thanks and cheers

Hans
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Old August 18th, 2005, 09:41 AM   #11
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I found a pdf of the PDX10's specs. The way the image is mapped is on p2.

http://www.mannlib.cornell.edu/compu...uals/PDX10.pdf

The PDX10 does do *standard definition* native 16:9 on the chip.

The basic premise here is that the PD-150/170...etc. would basically crop the image being created on the chip, therefore you now lose vertical resolution by going 16:9. Also, since the image is simply being cropped, you really don't get a "wider" shot...you get a "shorter" one.

The physical size difference of the chips makes a difference in several respects. 1. Larger chips create a more defined depth of field and; 2. Larger chips *typically* yield better low light performance. (Don't get number 2 confused with things like camera gain and super low light enhancement modes in the camera BTW)

The PDX10 may have the closest number of pixels on its chips to hi-def cameras actually since very few SD cameras ever had megapixel chips (the DigiBeta camera that I'm familiar with has 520K). However, it doesn't use all the pixels in any mode (as Boyd mentions) to create the image. (Though you can take a still at full res).
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Old August 18th, 2005, 01:24 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Kolb
Also, since the image is simply being cropped, you really don't get a "wider" shot...you get a "shorter" one.
This is something which we've kicked around in this forum before. It's true that when you switch to 16:9 mode on the PDX-10 the field of view widens while it doesn't on the PD-150. However, that 's really just a design (or possibly marketing?) decision on how they implemented the widescreen mode. They chose not to use the full width of the PDX-10 chips in 4:3 mode for some reason. They could have - probably should have - used the full chip for 4:3 since that's its native size. If you want to shoot 4:3 video then this is a bit of a handicap on the PDX-10. See the tests I did comparing it with the VX-2000. The VX has a little nicer 4:3 image:

http://www.greenmist.com/dv/16x9/
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Old August 19th, 2005, 08:24 AM   #13
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Hi again and thanks.

YouŽd think that by learning more the easier it would be to decide which camera to buy.
However to me it seems that the more I learn the harder it get to decide which camera I should buy

Strange....!!!


Hans
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Old September 5th, 2005, 08:03 AM   #14
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Maybe it comes down not to SD or HD, but to aspect ratio. If you can afford it the FX1 (or Z1) is your target, because it does all things so well. If you want 16:9 SD, then the PDX10 is the way to go. If you want much greater versatility but only 4:3, then the VX/PD will be perfect.

tom.
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Old September 8th, 2005, 02:03 PM   #15
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FX1 in 4:3

This thread has been helpful. However, I do have one question that hopefully someone might be able to answer. It is clear that the FX1 does great in 16:9 ration, but how does it rate in 4:3? Anyone have any thoughts in this regards?
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