Advice sought, re: DVCAM info on website at

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Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
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Old June 9th, 2003, 09:44 AM   #1
Obstreperous Rex
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Advice sought, re: DVCAM info on website

On my VX2000 / PD150 Companion site, I'm stating a Sony blurb that reads:

"*PD150: According to Sony, when recording in DV (SP mode only), you may not be able to get clean, seamless recording. In order to acheive a more reliable and higher quality image, Sony recommends using the DVCAM cassette and recording in DVCAM mode."

If enough PD150 owners feel that this is just Sony being overly cautious, I'll remove it. Is there any merit to that statement at all? Many thanks,

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Old June 9th, 2003, 01:00 PM   #2
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I shoot a lot of DV and DVCam. This is with a variety of cameras in my inventory. At the local community college, we also shoot VX-1000's, 900's and PD-1's (first miniature Sony DVCam, no longer produced).

I cannot think of one time where we had problems with 'seamless' recording using any of these cameras in any mode whatsoever.

I sometimes record DVCam on my PD150's when the client is just hiring me as a shooter. I've shot it a few times for my own purposes when I need to intermix its footage with my DSR-300 and need to use timecode to keep track of which tape was recorded in which camera.

Never have I seen any image quality, including 'seamlessness,' problem in DV. Maybe, just maybe, audio from non-Sony DV cameras will have problems because of the manner in which the audio is recorded. But even that can be corrected with a change in setup for editing programs.

If I thought DVCam were in any way a realistic improvement over DV, I'd shoot excusively in that physical format.

Even Sony personnel at trade shows will privately agree with me that DVCam has no value over DV in a NLE environment. The recorded physical format of DVCam, which is different from the recorded physical format of DV is more reliable but that reliability is only necessary when using a Linear editing system.

If I were jumping out of airplanes, running around in a dune buggy, riding a motorcycle, or riding in a jolting tank in Iraq, then I might want the extra security of the format. Physically shocking a DV camera might generate data recording errors that the wider DVCam tape track, even in the same camera (PD150) would avoid. But I don't use DVCam for normal business use if I have the choice of using DV.

I probably have 250 hours of original DV footage and another 100 hours of big-tape DVCam footage in my archives. None of them have any 'seamless' problems.

There is one problem that I can remember seeing with my footage that might be associated with the difference between DV and DVCam. I'm checking it as I write this.

Nope, the transition, clip-to-clip on both DV- and DVCam-format tape is clean. It may be, and I don't have time to check this, that transitions on USED tape might not be as clean. I do remember something like that on DV tapes I reuse for the college. I cannot recall, on the odd times that I recorded in DVCam, whether that very minor problem was present or not.
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