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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 March 29th, 2008, 02:29 AM   #46
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Leonard,
the charts were ordinary starburst charts (Siemens Star). I used this one: http://www.striemerfilm.com/archiv/p...emensstern.pdf and printed it to plain paper - I wanted to avoid any glossy surfaces.
I checked everything on a full HD monitor and also on my 23" cinema display in full 1920x1080 resolution. I sat only inches in front of it to make sure I do not miss anything. Also turned the focus back to 0.8 meters as this was the method I originally found out that I have a problem. Now it gets out of focus when I turn the focus to the 0.8 meter stop, which is another clear indication that it works now. I really am very very picky when testing the backfocus in the meantime - so believe me - it really fixed my camera. I have posted some before and after images on another thread here - so you can check it out:
http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...108433&page=46
There is also a split screen image showing all 3 ND settings side by side. Check it out!

all the best,
Gerald
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Old March 29th, 2008, 10:03 AM   #47
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Gerald, it's quite apparent that focus was fixed on your camera, and your loaner.

Thanks for providing this information.

Now that you had success doing this on software versions 1.03 and 1.05, it makes me wonder what software 1.05 offers?

Sony should provide a CSF (Control Summary Form) to their customers.
The Japanese based camera company I work for provides this information.

In the past, I'm not sure why others did not have any success with this adjustment. Although I can speculate:

Since the EX1 uses an auto calibration, the setup conditions must be correct.
On my JVC HD100, when performing a BF adjustment manually and when viewing the target wide, you are able to make a correct focus judgement on your target regardless of the surroundings.

Since the EX1 is using an auto BF correction, I imagine it's important to not have anything in the field of view from the tele end to full wide other than the focus targets. It's relying on the target signal peak detection from full zoom to full wide and makes it's back focus correction to ensure the focal image plane does not fall off of the sensor. Having other objects in the field of view when going wide could confuse the adjustment and cause a bad BF correction.
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Old March 29th, 2008, 12:43 PM   #48
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I was so pleased with the guys at Sony last week, but if Gerald's method works on my buddy's camera I'm going to be left with nothing but irritation at the entire company's incompetence.

Part of me hopes it doesn't work just to feel like I didn't waste my time packing & shipping my camera away for a week. At least they got the shipping.

Lenny
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Old March 29th, 2008, 12:58 PM   #49
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I know you are frustrated, but DVINFO won't tolerate derogatory remarks towards companies or individuals. We should be applauding Gerald for his 'thinking outside the box' which led him to success.

Keep that in mind for future postings.

-gb-
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Old March 29th, 2008, 02:22 PM   #50
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Greg, not to pick a fight, and I respect the policy of DVinfo, but don't you think it's a bit abnormal that a user can fix a problem that wasn't fixed after he sent it to the manufacturer, who had the job to get it fixed and couldn't...?

Isn't it normal and legitimate that we, as customers, complain about that?
Or is it that the case of Gerald could be isolated and we shouldn't say anything about Sony because we don't know the details? (Although there have been more reports of user getting their camera's back after service, without it being fixed)
Or because DVinfo thinks this isn't productive?

BTW: I'm just curious, not trying to pick a fight or stirr things up. It's a fine line, and I'm just interested in where to draw it exactly. For me and other users in the future.
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Old March 29th, 2008, 03:07 PM   #51
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Greg, Sorry if I crossed a line there, but i have been more than positive regarding the experience I had with Sony over this matter on this board.

I also haven't raged about the fact that they seem to have sent cameras out across the globe with such an obvious malfunction and haven't issued a report to their vendors about it let alone issuing a general notice or recall. Back focus is a very serious matter. I've had to keep my own vendor in the loop.

Maybe incompetence is a strong word if it turns out that Gerald just made a brilliant stroke that seems to have completely eluded their huge staff of engineers. It would be less than inspiring though, and I don't think I warranted so strong a rebuke. Maybe just a mild hand slap would have been appropriate. I guess they are a sponsor though so we should tread lightly. it is a hell of a camera right.


Note though that I am not yet convinced from enough reports or personal experience that Gerald's fix works.That's not to doubt Gerald either i'm hoping it will prove to be the fix.

Leonard Levy
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Old March 29th, 2008, 03:15 PM   #52
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Sony isn't a sponsor of this site. Some resellers, like BHPhotoVideo are sponsors.
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Old March 29th, 2008, 03:32 PM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathieu Ghekiere View Post
I'm just curious, not trying to pick a fight or stirr things up. It's a fine line, and I'm just interested in where to draw it exactly.
That goes for me just the same.

"Incompetence" may be inadequate - but pointing out and (respectfully) complaining about the fact that professional units have been shipped (and maybe still are!) lacking proper quality control, that doesn't interfere with this board's policy, or does it?
(Greg, Chris, please let us know if we're completely wrong here.)
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Old March 29th, 2008, 05:41 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leonard Levy View Post
Maybe incompetence is a strong word if it turns out that Gerald just made a brilliant stroke that seems to have completely eluded their huge staff of engineers. It would be less than inspiring though, and I don't think I warranted so strong a rebuke. Maybe just a mild hand slap would have been appropriate. I guess they are a sponsor though so we should tread lightly. it is a hell of a camera right.
Leonard, I do understand your frustration. But yeah, 'incompetence' was a bit strong and my caution had nothing to do with sponsorship (Sony is not). As Mathieu stated, it's a fine line. Of course it's great that the forum exists for members to solve issues and compare notes in a collaborative effort. But throwing out some terms is unproductive. And believe me, it wouldn't be the first time someone like Gerald approached a problem from a different angle and had success vs. a team of engineers. Perhaps the issue is still at the service level and hasn't been elevated back to Japan. We strive to maintain an air of professionalism here without resorting to labels like incompetent.

The goal of course, is to have a working camera, no matter who discovers the fix.

-gb-
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Old March 29th, 2008, 09:36 PM   #55
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Without further comment, I report the following facts:

1. My FX-1's backfocus was faulty in the same way that other's have reported backfocus error. When zoomed in and focused at a bush 85 feet away with razor sharp focus, and when then pulled back to full wide, all was soft - the bush was totally out of focus. Still at widest view, the bush came into sharp focus when the lens was set to a distance of four feet. As I have reported elsewhere, this was the second EX-1 I purchased, with the same result. Parenthetically I will indicate that I spent many hours over three days testing these cameras, and subsequently running the Auto FB Adjust - I used only one chart against a blank wall.

2. On Friday morning at 11:51 AM I called the service number often posted here and at other forums, 1-800-883-6817, and after waiting only 11 minutes a person came on, listened to my description of the issue, and told me to ship the camera to San Jose. He also indicated, "you can expect a call after they examine it." He gave me the exact address, and then said, "send the camera insured". When I inquired, he told me, no, Sony would not pay the expense of this. He then went on to express the thought that this was not an attractive arrangement - in order not to malign or offend anyone, I will not quote his exact words.

3. I called the number he gave me at 1:46 PM (since I am in Texas, it was 11:46 AM in California), and was greeted with a recording indicating that "the party" at that extension was not available. I then left a brief message indicating my name, my telephone number, and the nature of the problem. I requested a call back confirming shipping address and any other conditions to be met in shipping the camera back.

4. Having heard nothing by 4:45 PM, and wanting to be certain the camera went out by UPS that day, and having then previously confirmed the San Jose address on the Internet, I shipped the camera - the cost was $239.78.

5. The camera is due to arrive in San Jose on Wednesday.

6. I have intentions about other actions to take in regard to this camera. If the back focus does not work when I receive the camera, I certainly intend to utilize Gerald's procedure - I have already printed twelve charts.

Those are the facts. As a matter of personal reaction, I wish to express my gratitude to Gerald for his wonderful persistance and ingenious solution. If I have positive results from either the manufacturer of this otherwise exceptional camera, or from attempting Gerald's solution, I will report it here!
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Old March 29th, 2008, 10:03 PM   #56
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For those who didn't catch it the first time, Sony does *not* support or sponsor this site.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathieu Ghekiere View Post
Isn't it normal and legitimate that we, as customers, complain about that?
Complain about it all you want, on *your* web site. Not this one.

Quote:
...because DVinfo thinks this isn't productive?
Bingo.

Here I go with some strong words...

If you want to bitch about it, then by all means, go start a blog and bitch about it.

However, DV Info Net will *not* be used for that purpose, which I contend to be counterproductive at best and libelous at worst. That decision is final, I'm not interested in hearing differing opinions, and the matter is not up for debate.

If you feel the need to vent anger, express frustration, or fly whatever emotion you're feeling, then you're in luck because it's a big internet and starting your own blog / site / forum / whatever is dead easy these days, and I wholeheartedly encourage you to express your freedom of speech by self-publishing and letting it all hang out (and no I will not link to it here).

This site is a technical library, not a complaint department. Keep the comments in check. Non-owners need to stay out of the replies. Don't post here unless you have something meaningful and significant to contribute, such as William Urschel's excellent post above. Maintain a thoroughly professional vibe or get the boot -- hope that's finally clear,
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Old March 30th, 2008, 12:09 AM   #57
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Originally Posted by William Urschel View Post
4. Having heard nothing by 4:45 PM, and wanting to be certain the camera went out by UPS that day, and having then previously confirmed the San Jose address on the Internet, I shipped the camera - the cost was $239.78.
Let me get this straight-- your camera is under warranty and you paid shipping??
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Old March 30th, 2008, 12:33 AM   #58
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Standard procedure with most manufacturers is that the customer pays shipping going out and the company pays shipping going back. This is a good reason why it's preferable to buy from a local dealer, so they can be directly involved in the return process. With most all reputable dealers, in an issue involving a return for service, you just walk the camera in to the same counter where you bought it and they shepherd it on from there... a good way for the customer to avoid the shipping expense. That doesn't happen with a box house. This is a big advantage of buying locally via retail.
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