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Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
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Old August 19th, 2003, 01:56 PM   #346
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How many times have you used this tape? What tape/s are you using? Cheap tape? Are you mixing tape types/brands? Is the Sony cleaner "wet?" How many times have you played back the same tape? I notice drop-outs after playing back a tape 5 - 7 times.
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Old August 19th, 2003, 04:52 PM   #347
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Frank,

This is a new tape, and I am playing it back for the first time. I bought the camera used and used a Panasonic tape (before I was aware of this site and all of the advice and knowledge!). I then switched to Sony, this being the second Sony tape (the first one dropped out too). The Sony cleaner tape is the DVM-12CLD. Thanks for your questions.

Marcello
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Old August 19th, 2003, 06:47 PM   #348
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Frank,

Sony miniDV cleaning tapes are dry.

Marcello, if you followed the cleaning instructions as posted here http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?s=&threadid=13350

Run the cleaner for 5 seconds, then let the heads cool for a minute and repeat if necessary, and you still have problems, you could clean the heads manually. But by the nature of your question, I don't think you've done it before. Might be time to find a compentent repair person in the neighborhood and see if they will manually clean the heads for you. Otherwise, I think you're going to have to send it in for a factory cleaning if you are lucky, a head replacement if you are not.

This is a problem you are experiencing when you play the tape back on the camera, right? And if you transfer the video to another device, the sound is still breaking up?
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Old September 11th, 2003, 06:26 AM   #349
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VX2000 Rack Focusing

I was wondering if anyone had a good technique for obtaining consistent rack focusing results on the VX2000. A lot of the time I find myself going past focus when I focus on the second object in the frame which of course destroys the effect.
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Old September 11th, 2003, 09:41 AM   #350
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very difficult. You'll have noticed that if you focus too slowly the camera will *never* focus, so asking to pull focus accurately is asking for trouble. Best way I've found is to make sure the latter object occupies most of the frame, that way you can be in manual focus on the former object and just push 'Push Auto' to let the VX automatcally pull it for you.

tom.
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Old September 12th, 2003, 01:45 PM   #351
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BBC VX2000 Manual

This is a more specific site for the manual:

http://www.bbctraining.co.uk/pdfs/dv...x2000Guide.pdf
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Old September 15th, 2003, 05:39 PM   #352
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Few questions from a VX2000 Newbie

Hi,
This is my first port here, so please be nice :)

First just some background. I am a 15 year old, aspiring film-director. A few months ago, a school project for Drama required us to film our own 5-7 minute short film. My group and I used a typical, lets-film-the-soccer-game camera from Panasonic, very amatuer, but the results were still good. We have decided to go out, in around 2 or 3 weeks, during holidays, and film another film, this time for potential entry into the Australian Tropfest film festival. As a result, we want the highest-quality kit we can get.

I looked around at a few rental places and the VX2000 was supposedly the best camera for our budget (at max around $200 a day) so that was all well and good.

But I was extremely happy when I found out a few days ago that my school libary owned a VX2000e (if the "e" makes a difference), so we are going to be using that to film over the holidays.

I have a few questions:

1. Our editing platform for our last movie was a Mac G4 and iMovie 2. This time, we are looking at using Premiere Pro, which I have a copy of, on a 2.4GHZ AMD Athlon PC, with 512mb RAM and a 128MB Geforce 4 Graphics Card and a 120GB HDD. What is the better editing platform? The PC or G4 Mac?

2. We want to film in widescreen. Is the built-in 16:9 mode good enough or should we convert to 16:9 during post?

3. What is the picture quality like when compared to a fairly standard Panasonic or Sony amateur handy-cam and is it significantly noticable?

4. Are there any features on the VX2000 that can improve the picture and/or audio quality of the finished product?

5. Do the miniDV tapes make a difference in terms of quality and, if so, what brand is the best?

6. Tropfest requires, if we make it to the finals, that a SP Betacam tape be handed in. How do I do this on the VX2000? Are there shops in Sydney, Australia, that will convert it from miniDV to SP Betacam?

Thanks in advance
Ed Dowling
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Old September 15th, 2003, 06:05 PM   #353
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Re: Few questions from a VX2000 Newbie

But I was extremely happy when I found out a few days ago that my school libary owned a VX2000e (if the "e" makes a difference), so we are going to be using that to film over the holidays.

The e version is PAL so you are in luck.

I have a few questions:

1. Our editing platform for our last movie was a Mac G4 and iMovie 2. This time, we are looking at using Premiere Pro, which I have a copy of, on a 2.4GHZ AMD Athlon PC, with 512mb RAM and a 128MB Geforce 4 Graphics Card and a 120GB HDD. What is the better editing platform? The PC or G4 Mac?

Whichever you prefer. Either editing system is OK. iMovie is much simpler than Premiere Pro so the learning curve will slow you down.

2. We want to film in widescreen. Is the built-in 16:9 mode good enough or should we convert to 16:9 during post?

Shoot for widescreen but shoot 4:3 then mask the video in POST

3. What is the picture quality like when compared to a fairly standard Panasonic or Sony amateur handy-cam and is it significantly noticable?

Yes, very except in really good shooting conditions.

4. Are there any features on the VX2000 that can improve the picture and/or audio quality of the finished product?


Grin . . . the tripod socket. Use of a an external microphone for all work.

5. Do the miniDV tapes make a difference in terms of quality and, if so, what brand is the best?

No but you should not switch brands from what has been used in the camera. If you don't know, then clean the heads with 2 applications of the cleaning tape for 5 seconds separated by 60 seconds. Don't overdo the duration or you can 'bake' the crud onto the heads.

6. Tropfest requires, if we make it to the finals, that a SP Betacam tape be handed in. How do I do this on the VX2000? Are there shops in Sydney, Australia, that will convert it from miniDV to SP Betacam?

Conversion to BetaSP is a piece of cake. Expensive cake if you cannot find someone to do it for you free. I'd expect to spend $100 or more plus the cost of the tape here in the U.S. for a transfer.

Make certain you use the built-in video monitoring tools in Premiere Pro to insure your video is in spec. Also make certain that your video doesn't peak above -6 dB. That way you will get a good transfer with quite good quality.


Thanks in advance
Ed Dowling -->>>
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Old September 15th, 2003, 06:57 PM   #354
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Thank you very much for your help. The use of a tripod is a bit of a given. The difference that a tripod makes is very significant, as I found out in my last project.

Right now Premiere is looking like the system of choice, as we have access to that during the holidays and do not have access to the Macs at the same time.

Thanks heaps again.
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Old September 15th, 2003, 07:02 PM   #355
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Re: Few questions from a VX2000 Newbie

<<<-- Originally posted by Ed Dowling 2. We want to film in widescreen. Is the built-in 16:9 mode good enough or should we convert to 16:9 during post? -->>>

I did some tests that show better results when cropping in post. Compression mangles the built-in 16:9 a bit... search around the forum a bit, this has been discussed before. You can also use a memory stick matte, see http://www.streamovie.com/vx2000.htm which I think also gives better results than the built-in.
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Old September 16th, 2003, 04:19 PM   #356
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Question about VX2000 and on-set monitors

Hi,
Another question. Is it possible, using USB or Firewire from a VX2000e, to establish an on-set monitor by plugging it into a laptop computer?

Thanks,
Ed Dowling
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Old September 16th, 2003, 06:45 PM   #357
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yes but the picture is not going to as good a quality as you get with a NTSC monitor.

If you have software that has a vectorscope and Waveform monitor option, you might see if they will read the incoming signal. Probably not but it would be interesting for everyone to try.

Should be very helpful for checking framing and focus though.
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Old September 16th, 2003, 07:07 PM   #358
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If you've got a Mac then check out BTV Pro It's very nice and has the advantage that you can set any size image that you want. So you can properly display anamorphic 16:9, or even 2.35:1 if you use the "double 16:9 technique". It shows full frame which is helpful since the VX-2000 LCD overscans (as do most prosumer camcorders). You can use firewire, plus it has a lot of other features I haven't tried, like USB and other forms of capture.

It will also capture to your hard drive for tapeless recording and will do time lapse. Very nice for a $45 shareware program. But like Mike says, don't expect to see accurate colors. Everything looks a little dark on the Powerbook screen. You can compensate somewhat by making a custom color profile in the monitors control panel though.
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Old September 18th, 2003, 04:21 PM   #359
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Only for Mac, though?

Thats the exact program I want, just need a PC version :)

Thanks again guys, this forum is great.
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Old September 19th, 2003, 03:41 AM   #360
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Mike R answered your questions exactly as I would have done Ed. The only thing I would add to 4) is that you should avoid the auto settings, especially the auto exposure. Lock down the white balance, the shutter speed (auto shutter to 'off' in the menu), the focus (once the automation has found it for you), the audio level and the aperture.

Remember that the sharpest aperture is f4 +/- half a stop and to avoid f11 like the plague. Use the NDs lots to keep the apertures wide and the DOF shallow.

tom.
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