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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
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Old July 16th, 2008, 03:38 PM   #1
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Blurry, hazy video in bright sunlight.

Hi guys. My camera records very well indoors, but as soon as I take it into the sunlight outside, it records blury, hazy video. I have adjusted the white balance, the iris, manual focus and auto focus, and it still records the same crap. I would think it was a problem with the camera, but the images it records indoors are perfect. Anyone have some ideas?
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Old July 16th, 2008, 03:40 PM   #2
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Hi guys. My camera records very well indoors, but as soon as I take it into the sunlight outside, it records blury, hazy video. I have adjusted the white balance, the iris, manual focus and auto focus, and it still records the same crap. I would think it was a problem with the camera, but the images it records indoors are perfect. Anyone have some ideas?
Yes, start using the cameras ND-filters and avoid opening up beyond F8-F11. There is a thread on the forum about this that you could search for.
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Old July 16th, 2008, 04:01 PM   #3
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Yes, start using the cameras ND-filters and avoid opening up beyond F8-F11.
I avoid anything over f6.7 (ie f8 to f16) the Fujinon lens is VERY soft at small iris settings.
It's one of the compromises we have to make for the stunning quality we get otherwise.

Of course, indoors, your iris will be wider open - where the lens is sharp.

Learn to live with it, and enjoy the quality!
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Old July 16th, 2008, 04:46 PM   #4
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That worked. Is there a setting that is generally ideal for full sunlight? i.e. Nd 1 at 5.6?
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Old July 16th, 2008, 05:04 PM   #5
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That worked. Is there a setting that is generally ideal for full sunlight? i.e. Nd 1 at 5.6?
No, just don't stop down more than f8.
Selecting aperture is not only for exposure, but also for selecting depth of field for focus.

Depending on how your composing a shot, you may want a smaller DOF where the main object is in focus and the background is out. Open up the aperture as much as possible (f1.9). Depending on the available light, you will need to turn the ND to 1 or 2 on.
Also, DOF is largest at full wide so you will need to move away from your subject and zoom in. This is great for portrait. Since you're zoomed in, you will want to be on a tripod.

I made this shot with the EX1 (stock, no adapter) a while ago using just what I wrote above:
http://www.aerialsfilm.com/stevet/vlcsnap-76842.png

I'd like to thank Maxim from Aerialsfilm for hosting this image.
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Old July 16th, 2008, 05:05 PM   #6
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That worked. Is there a setting that is generally ideal for full sunlight? i.e. Nd 1 at 5.6?
It's all tradeoffs. But I'd try to shoot between f2.8 and f5.6. Depending on brightness outside, and the subject you're going to have to manipulate things as best you can.
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Old July 16th, 2008, 05:09 PM   #7
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Steve, that is a gorgeous shot. Was it for a wedding?
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Old July 16th, 2008, 05:17 PM   #8
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Thanks, Actually it was at the renaissance festival in Apache Junction Arizona.
Here's a link to where that frame was captured:
http://www.aerialsfilm.com/stevet/Ren_AZ_EX1_SAMPLE.m2t

BTW, I'd like to thank Maxim from Aerialsfilm for hosting this clip
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Old July 17th, 2008, 04:15 AM   #9
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I would also add that the built in hood on the EX1 isn't that good at stopping flare, especially if you are stopped down. I've had a situation outside with some really bizzare patterning which i eventually put down to the angle of the sun producing an unusual looking flare. Originally i thought i'd toasted the sensor somehow, but it was fine afterwards.

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Old July 17th, 2008, 04:51 AM   #10
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I would also add that the built in hood on the EX1 isn't that good at stopping flare, especially if you are stopped down.
The purpose of the hood or matte box is to stop the sun (or other light source) striking the lens. This is the only way it reduces flare. Once the sun strikes the front element then whatever flare you get is determined by the lens, not the matte box. To stop this you need a larger matte box with french flag etc. I'd assume this is obvious, but perhaps not.
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Old July 17th, 2008, 05:32 AM   #11
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The purpose of the hood or matte box is to stop the sun (or other light source) striking the lens. This is the only way it reduces flare. Once the sun strikes the front element then whatever flare you get is determined by the lens, not the matte box. To stop this you need a larger matte box with french flag etc. I'd assume this is obvious, but perhaps not.
Im well aware of what the mattebox does, unfortunately my nice petroff box (or an old formatt box) doesn't fit my EX1 so until i get another one im stuck with the lens hood!

It's really the flags that stop the flare though, usually not the matte box itself which is more for holding filters.

It was an observation because the type of flare i got i'd never seen before (big hexagonal soft area of varying exposure that didn't look like it moved with the camera but was fixed). I really did think i'd fritzed the sensor! But worked out it was an unusual angle and being stopped down more than i should have been.

I've also encountered some very bizzare flaring with a screwon B+W polariser (again, couldn't use my 4x4 filters so grabbed one from my SLR collection). I would not recommend anyone use screw in filters at all.

I just think the EX lens is quite prone to flare in it's default configuration.

cheers
paul
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Old July 20th, 2008, 11:44 PM   #12
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Gain to -3dB

Hey Spencer,

As the others have said keep your iris setting between 2.8 and 5.6. This was actually an old rule from the Betacam days and now with HD it is very apparent. Also set your camera's gain to -3 dB. Not only will this let in less light to the sensor it will also give you even cleaner video (i.e. less noise).
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Old July 21st, 2008, 02:18 AM   #13
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Hey Spencer,

As the others have said keep your iris setting between 2.8 and 5.6. This was actually an old rule from the Betacam days and now with HD it is very apparent. Also set your camera's gain to -3 dB. Not only will this let in less light to the sensor it will also give you even cleaner video (i.e. less noise).
But it will decrease dynamic range, or am I wrong?

Dennis
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Old July 21st, 2008, 02:29 AM   #14
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Also set your camera's gain to -3 dB. Not only will this let in less light to the sensor it will also give you even cleaner video (i.e. less noise).
I set my low gain to -3 dB and my medium gain to +3 dB then I use either setting (with -3 as my "default") in conjunction with the ND filters to help me keep the iris setting to f6.7 or lower.

I never go over f6.7 if I can possibly help it.
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Old July 21st, 2008, 08:33 AM   #15
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But it will decrease dynamic range, or am I wrong?

Dennis
Iris and gain have nothing to do with dynamic range. They merely move the point at which dynamic range is centered.
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