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Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
Topics also include Sony's TRV950, VX2000, PD150 & DSR250 family.


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Old September 18th, 2002, 02:21 PM   #31
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Chris,

Thanks for the title. :)

Presently I'm amazed at the amount of optomism and excitement generated by the DVX100. While I'm all for a 24p camera (or any camera that can shoot in a progressive scan mode above 15fps . . . darn you Sony!) the amount of hype and enthusiasm surrounding this camera to me seems a bit out of hand. I almost wonder if it's more of a gimmick than a feature.

Perhaps the board members at Panasonic got together one day and said "You know, the XL-1 has gotten a ton of mileage out of it's removable lens system. Many users point to that sole feature and call it THE independent film makers camera of choice. I bet if we add a 24p shooting mode on one of our cameras we could steal that business!"

Maybe I'm just cynical; but to my understanding the 24p mode has to be converted (which causes resolution loss) so a normal editing station can handle it (at least until native 24p editing systems are widely available). So why are people lining up to buy this camera with 4:3 CCDs, a shooting mode that is not widely supported by video editing software, and calling it a film makers dream?

To my mind a 24p camera with native 16:9 (or, if such a thing existed 1.33:1) CCDs would be much closer to a true indie film makers dream. To my understanding throwing a 24p mode on a camera, then converting it so the edititing station can handle it, then letterboxing it (at additional resolution loss), then spitting it back out to tape isn't necessarily going to give you a look closer to film.

Admittedly I'm not expert on the subject, so any feedback on my statements are welcome. If someone could explain to me how the 24p footage will look more film-like after going through the process of editing and letter boxing I'd be very appreciative. :)

-Dan
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Old September 18th, 2002, 06:57 PM   #32
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I think you are correct, Dan.

Furthermore, the current generation of young folk have grown up on crisp, clear, no flicker video images. I am in constant contact with late-teens, early-twenties video makers through the cinema classes at the local community college who shun film as too expensive, too poor an image quality!, and not enough feedback and not enough feedback fast enough.

I personally think that we will continue to 60 fps and probably a 720P or 1081i scan. It would fit right in with high-def consumer video and our computer screen resolution and not cost an arm and a leg. Why go backwards to 24 fps when we've paid so much to go high-quality on our computer screens and are now doing this for our TV screens?

It think we all want Kodachrome image quality (that is, great, high-res color and great luminance graduation) and no flicker.

24 fps is an anachronism for the majority of the younger generation.

Remember, you heard it here first. Wrong or not.
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Old October 12th, 2002, 11:39 PM   #33
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Wouldn't using the 16:9 method only matter if the camera in question recorded a true 16:9 signal, meaning that the CCD is capable of capturing all the line resolution and then formating it to a 16:9 ratio?

Since the PD150 "16:9" is fake, it just stretches or squishes the image electronically, would the "Hard Matte" be an equal solution to using the "16:9" mode? It should be the same number of lines being recorded on the dvd, shouldn't it?

Ian
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Old October 12th, 2002, 11:55 PM   #34
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combatvideo,

When using a 16:9 adapter on your camera, the image it records WILL appear "squished" in the viewfinder. To see it correctly your field monitor needs to be 16:9 switchable.

Ian
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Old October 16th, 2002, 01:10 PM   #35
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More info

Tokyo, JP - Reports from CEATEC Japan, the Image, Information and Communications trade show held near Tokyo, say JVC is displaying a new consumer camcorder capable of recording high definition (HD) signals.

The camcorder is reported to record high definition 720 x 480 progressive scan mode in a 16:9 aspect ratio (480p) and 1280 x 720 progressive in a 16:9 aspect ratio (720p), as well as standard 720 x 480 mini-DV interlaced video (480i). The new camcorder records the video as MPEG-2 onto new, special mini-DV tapes, it is described.

The camcorder uses a 1 1/3" megapixel CCD, and includes a special high definition lens as well as optical image stabilization. The lens has both zoom and focus rings, but apparently no markings are available, as it is a fully automatic lens, like the Sony VX2000 and many others.

The camcorder has a hand grip that rotates, allowing the body of the camcorder to be positioned for low- and high-angle shots easily; however the camcorder itself is a standard horizontal format, similar in shape and size to the Sony VX2000 or the Canon GL2.

The camcorder can transfer the digital video to a computer, although it was not specified if this was done through a standard FireWire port. The camcorder does have an SD card slot, often used for digital stills and Web movies.

Reports cite the manufacturer as saying the camcorder will be available next year, for 200,000 - 300,000 yen or approximately $1,623.38 to $2,435.06 dollars.

For more information, visit
www.ceatec.com
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Old October 16th, 2002, 05:00 PM   #36
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Whatever the next format is, I think it is likely that it will still use magnetic tape. It's compact, and holds lots of data.

The new Hitachi cam that writes to a regular DVD-R is cool, but who really wants to edit anything in the camera?
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Old October 17th, 2002, 07:55 PM   #37
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Interesting thread

Here's my 2 zorkmids worth...

I foresee an Mpeg4 or DIVX type compression scheme which is native AVI and therefore editable with current crop of NLE (similar to the JVC prosumer HDCAM).

My calculations show that full band DVD quality but at HDCAM image proportions/size would be possible if variable bit encoding was used and it would fit inside a 4.0 meg/s data stream, which is very similar to DVstream (3.65 meg/s).

1394 firewire would still be used so the current connectors and capture devices would not be made obsolete. Furthermore at 4meg/s hard disk requirements could remain as they are for DV. Also current computer based NLE would be compatible.

Most likely disc based DVD-RW type or mini variant as tape is expensive requiring high quality control costs (have you noticed not much DV tape is produced outside of Japan).

The stumbling block is that variable bit rate encoding at this image size is processor or DSP intensive and would have a cooling penalty. This might bring about a reversal in the camcorder concept back to a camera section and over the shoulder recording device concept. But these devices will be slim and light plus they will allow fullsize 18GB DVD-RW - about one hours worth HDCAM

My best guess is two years to market - however they may be working on this as we speak

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Old October 18th, 2002, 07:38 AM   #38
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yeah...
souns nice, but:
using variable bitrate in handheld cameras can be really hard. VBR looks for changes in picture, if they are small, it reduces bitrate. If you shoot handheld like most people do, there are ALWAYS big changes. So it will use max bitrate all of the time. And camera will need huge amount of cache memory for VBR.
MPEG is a exellent choice for delivering end product, but it's very bad for editing (excl. I-frame only MPEG, which has bitrates comparable to same quality JPEG).

gimme 2 zorkmids:)

regards, Margus
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Old October 18th, 2002, 01:05 PM   #39
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Someone enlighten me on the 3CCD vs. 1 CCD issue here:

I've heard it said that a good 1CCD camera will have better low-light performance than a good 3CCD one. I assume this is because most 1 CCD cameras are using bigger chips (more surface area) but I'm not a techie so I don't know. If JVC is releasing a HDTV, 24p camera why are they only releasing a 1 CCD version? Any ideas on this one? Why not just add another $1000 or so to the price and make a 3CCD model?

-Dan Ballmer
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Old October 20th, 2002, 02:48 PM   #40
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We can only hope they'll use the Foveon chip

Foveon chip is kind of like 3-in-1, and resolves finer detail.

Let's petition Sony to come out w/an HD vx2000 replacement!! (oh, sure)
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Old October 20th, 2002, 05:28 PM   #41
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If they are not using a Fovean, it may be that JVC may not support be able to support the data rate that a 3-CCD system would require.
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Old October 21st, 2002, 03:56 AM   #42
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Dan,
I think that light sensitivity differnce is more because in 3CCD cameras all incoming light is divided into three rays by some kind of filtering mirrors (not sure what they use for that). So every CCD receives only 1/3 or less of light coming through optics. 1CCD cameras have usually only IR filter, if any.

regards, Margus
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Old October 21st, 2002, 12:22 PM   #43
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Margus,

I believe they use a prism. You're probably right though, it would seem to make sense.

-Dan
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Old October 21st, 2002, 08:50 PM   #44
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The Foveon has it's own set of problems. It is not necessarily of any higher resolution than a CCD sensor.

The optical block in a 3CCD camera uses a beamsplitter that is usually some variation of a prism. The prism directs the R, G, & B light to individual CCDs. So a white pixel has had the relevant pixels on the R, G, & B CCDs illuminated with the same level of light. The light loss is in the beam splitter.

In a single chip camera, the R, G, & B elements that form one pixel are physically adjacent to each other. They are made sensitive to one color of light with a filter that is placed over them.

I don't think there are any single chip cameras now available that are more sensitive than the 2000/150
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Old October 24th, 2002, 03:48 AM   #45
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Greater colour depth

You can have HD frame sizes, and uncompressed (or low compression) data, but so long as the video is 8 bit you will always get colour banding in areas that should show smooth gradation.

What I look forward to is a 10 or 12 bit format first. Give me that and I could tolerate SD and 5:1 compression for a bit longer.

Just my 2p worth,

Regards,

Julian
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