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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PMW-300, PXW-X200, PXW-X180 (back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.


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Old September 20th, 2007, 11:01 PM   #1
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About the HD-SDI...

Does it have embedded audio and timecode? Also, is the live, raw signal actual 4:2:2, or is it 4:2:0 MPEG2 spit out as 4:2:2 SDI? (isn't this what the XCDAM 330 and 350 do?)
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Old September 20th, 2007, 11:13 PM   #2
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Yes the SDI output on this camera has embedded TC and audio. Not sure about the rest.
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Old September 20th, 2007, 11:19 PM   #3
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Excellent. If it does have actual 4:2:2 I think the Convergent Design XDR box might make a spiffy companion to the EX1.

I can't wait to check out this cam.
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Old September 21st, 2007, 06:31 AM   #4
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Has anyobody seen the difference between a camera's recorded compressed footage comapred to the camera's 4:2:2 output?

I mean an A-B comparison?

Does the 4:2:2 have a "Wow" effect or is it just better?

How about after the 4:2:0 footage was color corrected, how close can the 4:2:0 get to looking like the 4:2:2?

Thanks
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Old September 21st, 2007, 10:50 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barlow Elton View Post
Also, is the live, raw signal actual 4:2:2, or is it 4:2:0 MPEG2 spit out as 4:2:2 SDI? (isn't this what the XCDAM 330 and 350 do?)
Early on, I was led to believe that the original F330/F350 only scanned 4:2:0 at the camera head. I learned directly from Sony that this isn't true. The camera head indeed operates at 4:2:2 and subsamples/compresses for storage.

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Old September 21st, 2007, 10:59 AM   #6
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I tend to agree with Greg.
It would be hard to believe they would offer SDI after the MPEG compression.
Especially since the "others" offer 4:2:2 pre compression via SDI.
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Old September 21st, 2007, 01:03 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Tim Polster View Post
Has anyobody seen the difference between a camera's recorded compressed footage comapred to the camera's 4:2:2 output?
I've done this with the XL-H1 by simultaenously recording HDV to tape and live SDI to disk via a lossless 4:2:2 codec, (Sheer) FCP and a Kona card. I then took frame grabs from clips with matching timecode and A-B'd 'em.

Quote:
Does the 4:2:2 have a "Wow" effect or is it just better?
Not so much "Wow" at first blush...at least to the human eye. The perceptual loss of color in 4:2:0 is extremely subtle.

Quote:
How about after the 4:2:0 footage was color corrected, how close can the 4:2:0 get to looking like the 4:2:2?
It can basically look nearly identical with good chroma sharpening in post...BUT...4:2:2 with less compression can be pushed much further in post without running into serious artifacting problems. The added chroma resolution and lower compression can make a real difference when the image needs to be pushed hard.

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Originally Posted by Greg Boston View Post
Early on, I was led to believe that the original F330/F350 only scanned 4:2:0 at the camera head. I learned directly from Sony that this isn't true. The camera head indeed operates at 4:2:2 and subsamples/compresses for storage.
That's very good news. It always seemed strange to me that the live SDI would be post-MPEG2 compression with these cameras.
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Old September 21st, 2007, 02:02 PM   #8
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so then it could be used with an HDSDI Switcher

I am thinking that this could be used with a switcher as well, something like the Panasonic AV-HS300. With the audio being embedded over this connection as well, this could ba a big plus for event video, being able to immediately hand a client a copy of their event at the end.
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Old September 21st, 2007, 02:52 PM   #9
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this could ba a big plus for event video
That's the market this camera is aimed at... wedding/event folks while upping the ante for a camera of this form factor.

That's not to say the camera won't be successful in other aspects of video production.

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Old September 21st, 2007, 04:01 PM   #10
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Thanks Barlow.

So one could say that in normal shooting where the footage might need a little correction, but nothing major, 4:2:2 could be considered overkill?

This makes me think of Canopus' Edius.

It makes DV look so good because all footage is edited in 4:2:2. So color correcting really adds a lot.

I am assuming the same will be case for 4:2:0 footage.

This can save a lot of money.
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Old September 29th, 2007, 11:21 PM   #11
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One thing I would love to find out is if the DSP and HD-SDI are pumping out 10 bit video or if it is limited to 8 bit video like every other camera in this class or even twice the cost.

I strictly live in a 8 bit world which I love but I can see how that would make this camera killer for certain people.

I have always thought though that 10 bits was going to be restricted to the highend market. Although with Red and Silicon Imaging beating down the door and Cineform and Apple Pro-res being 10 bit it almost seems that any day now the dam is going to break and the powers that be are going to finally let it all come down the pipes to us little folk.
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Old September 30th, 2007, 12:57 AM   #12
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Good point, Thomas. I've wondered the same thing. I've had many occasions where a true 10bit image might've made a difference in my SDI footage. Less banding in problem areas for sure.

I'm not counting on the EX1 having true 10 bit imagery via DSP and HD-SDI. It'll probably be 8 bit quantized the like the XL-H1, with 2 bits set to zero for standards compliance.
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Old September 30th, 2007, 10:22 PM   #13
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When 4:2:2 matters

None of the video codecs you see on these cameras are going to "look bad" to your eye, especially not on set conditions. They are designed to look decent after all.

In post, if you are doing news work, or just laying titles, maybe doing a simple primary color correction 4:2:2 is a luxury.

Its when you have to do composites and more involved color correction that 4:2:2 starts to matter- indeed it is often not enough. You may also find color space a concern if your work is going to be projected on a big screen or in some other demanding venue.

Trying to do a key and spill suppression on improperly green screened wind blown hair is a nightmare- even when you have 16 bit Cineon data from an ARRI Laser from 35mm or uncompressed 4K footage from a Viper or RED.

The question to ask is what type of post work you do, and will color matter in your "realm?" For the vast majority of camera operators the answer is a clear and resolute NO.
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Old October 3rd, 2007, 06:39 PM   #14
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4:2:2 off chip block - piped out HD-SDI?

Hi Greg,

It's nice that details can be sorted from non-confirmed pseudo-information.

Given that the F350 is sampling 4:2:2 at the chip block, is the HD-SDI output from the camera 4:2:2 as well? Compression?

The Flash XDR would definitely be a wecome addition if 4:2:2 is the feed.

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Old October 3rd, 2007, 06:44 PM   #15
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Tourist?

I ain't no stinkin' tourist.

May be FNG, but no tourist.

Chris, if you're out there,we haven't talked since DV Expo in NYC 2003.

I'd be honorerd to wear the "FNG" under my name, but tourista?

Last edited by Arthur Smith; October 3rd, 2007 at 06:44 PM. Reason: sp
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