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Sony TRV950 / PDX10 Companion
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Old April 26th, 2003, 08:36 AM   #1
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sony trv80

ok...first of all I know this has NOTHING to do with the 900 or 950, but you guys seem to know the most when it comes to camcorders. I have been into digital still photography for sometime now and I got a cheap consumer digital camcorder just to play with. Well now that I have it I use it more than my still camera. I am hooked on digital editing. So I want to go one step up from my 1/4 inch 680k CCD and get a better cam. The $2000 plus GL2,VX2000 is out of the question and I'm always picky about buying things used. So to get to the point...I have narrowed it down to 2 camcorders. The sony TRV80 and the new panasonic dv953. In case you're not familiar...
Sony trv80 has: ONE 1/3.6 2.1 MegaPixel CCD

Panasonic 953 has: THREE 1/6 800 k CCD's

now I know that 3 chippers always perform better...but these are some small chips. I have read a TON of stuff sayin the Sony's TRV80 picture quality is as good if not better than the smaller 3 chip cameras....and its low light is way better cause its chip is almost twice as big and there is only one taking light instead of 3. I also know Sony makes some great products where as panasonic can sometimes be on the questionable side.
one more thing...all I do is skateboarding so I need the low light for night time and a camera with a high shutter speed!
so if u read all this I appreciate it so much and thanks for answering my questions!
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Old April 26th, 2003, 08:53 AM   #2
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Sorry, I don't know anything about these cameras, except what I read here. However the Panasonic DV953 is getting a lot of attention. Evidently it's the same (or similar?) the the MX5000 and MX500. From what I read, it will do real anamorpic 16:9 which might be of interest.

Try typing "953" into the search box and you will get lots of information. Also, somebody just posted a link to this review http://reviews.zdnet.co.uk/review/2/2/2428.html. Looks like a very nice camera to me, but possibly more expensive than you want? B&H lists it for $1,400, although it is out of stock according to their site http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bh2.sph/...ID=F50168327B0
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Old April 26th, 2003, 09:33 AM   #3
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Luke, three CCD's are always better than one. I would take three 1/6th inch chips over a single 1/3rd inch any day. The color reproduction will be much better. Hope this helps,
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Old April 26th, 2003, 10:00 AM   #4
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Go with the TRV80, superb low light performance from all accounts and I 'personally' believe that some 3CCD cams just are'nt worth bothering with as is the case with the one you mentioned, I tried the MX500/pdwhatever when it first came out and its without a doubt the worst of the 3 CCD cams, panasonics recent track record of replacing cams before you get it out of the box will probably mean its about ready for a face lift anyway, possibly 1/8" CCDs this time.
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Old April 26th, 2003, 08:57 PM   #5
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For about $300 more than the Panasonic 953 you could get a Sony TRV950. The Sony has better perforance in low light than the Panny and it has bigger CCDs.

Although I must say I have a couple of Sony TRV50s and there picture quality is superb. I would put them against an older Panny EZ-1 (aka The Tube Cam) any day. I Believe theat the TRV80 uses a different Optic setup and CCD than the TRV50 but ifs its better than the 50 ( Which is what the 80 replaced) It probably has a picture quality that you would find fitting for your needs and price options.
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Old April 26th, 2003, 09:09 PM   #6
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The EZ1 was a tube cam? I used that cam, it was a small 3 CCD cam with a big lens. The CCDs were 1/3".
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Old April 26th, 2003, 09:25 PM   #7
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That was a nick name I gave it because when you folded the view finder flat it gave the camera a elongated tube like apperiance. I didnt mean it literally used tubes for a image sensor.......You know I didnt even think about it that way until just now....

I would never insult that camcorder is was great and ahead of its time. The only thing I didnt like about it was you had to put it on the dock to connect an IEEE 1394 wire

Sorry for the confusion
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Old April 29th, 2003, 12:01 AM   #8
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TRV80's widest aperture is F1.8 whereas Panny is 953 is F1.6.

TRV80 = 1/3.6" at F1.8 2M pixels
953 = 1/6" at F1.6 800K pixels

Less pixels also helps in better low light performance.

I think that both are equal in low light capability but bearing in mind that Sony has better DSP to suppress grain that Panny.

I'm quite sure that TRV80 will have cleaner images than 953.
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Old April 29th, 2003, 02:49 AM   #9
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The TRV70 and TRV80 have just over 1 million video effective pixels on it's 1/3.6" CCD (.277").

The PV-DV953 has 640K X 3 on 3, 1/6" CCDs (.166").

(The MX300 has .25" CCDs; the VX2000, .33" CCDs)

I'll double check these specs shortly---oops, Vincent Chan's site is down.

Anyways, I think the 70/80 has better lux, but I haven't yet seen these new cams. Perhaps I'll drop by a Sony Store tomorrow.
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Old April 29th, 2003, 05:22 AM   #10
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I think, theoretically, 3 CCD cams receives less light for each of its CCD, reason being the primary light is splitted by the prism.

At a glance, a 1/3.6" CCD block that has 2.1 million pixels is definately having smaller pixel size. Such small pixels will also have lesser light reaching them.

It would be logical to deduce that, a 1/4" 380K CCD should be slightly brighter than 1/4" 680K CCD block, having the same lens and aperture size.
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Old April 29th, 2003, 05:33 AM   #11
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Yeah. I tend to agree. I have 2 DVL9500s, and they have a 1/3" CCD with 380K total pixels (360K is video effective). The DVL9800 (one year newer), also has a 1/3" CCD, but with 680 or 690K with 360K video effective pixels. So the DVL9800's pixels are smaller, more spread out or both---not sure. But what I am sure about is that the DVL9500 is better in lower light. So, again, I tend to agree with you, Yik. Also, you're probably right about a 3 CCD cam needing more light.
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Old April 29th, 2003, 06:06 AM   #12
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Once, I had chance to test a friend's TRV 18E. Comparing his cam and mine, TRV950E, the difference in low-light is quite significant - to my surprise, TRV 18 performs better in low-light albeit more chroma noise (this is prob. due to missing of DXP processor).

TRV 18 has 380K 1/4" CCD
TRV 950 has 3 x 690K 1/4.7" CCDs

This too applies to the newer models, TRV22 and TRV33.

TRV22 = 380K 1/4" CCD "No 14-bit DXP"
TRV33 = 690K 1/4.7" CCD "Has 14-bit DXP"

According to Sony, one of the main function of the DXP is noise reduction.

So, eventhough TRV22 is brighter, but the quality of low-light is worse than the cleaner albeit darker TRV33.
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Old April 29th, 2003, 07:54 AM   #13
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I thank all of you for the help. couldn't have found better advice anywhere else. But unfortunately with all the advice you gave me I bought neither cams. I paid less than what I would have paid for the 953 or trv80 and purchased a used GL1. Its in MINT condition w/out a mark and is absolutely amazing compared to my old JVC. again thanks and I'm sure I will have more questions about this newly acquired camcorder.
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