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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
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Old November 29th, 2008, 11:56 PM   #1
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EX1 slow focus

I am proud owner of a Wonderful EX1 , and I only I have one major concern.

I feel that it focuses to slow.

I have had two FX1,s that focused extremely fast! I also owned a Canon XH-A1 which focused real fast!!

Why does the EX1 seem to focus so slow??
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Old November 30th, 2008, 03:12 AM   #2
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There have been quite a few comments about the EX1 autofocus being slow, but remember that:

- it is a pro camera and intended for users who are likely to want to control the focus themselves most of the time

- faster autofocus is not necessarily better; if the subject is momentarily out of centre frame, do you want the focus to visibly shift (with hunting) to the background and then back? Focus speed is a design decision.

Having said that, the sutofocus seems better with firmware v1.11.

Nick
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Old November 30th, 2008, 08:43 AM   #3
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Eddie,
Do you have software version 1.11.
If not, get it. The autofocus is improved.
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Old November 30th, 2008, 09:16 AM   #4
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I remember on the Vortex DVD a mention that slow focus allows for better tracking of objects that pass behind other objects and he shows an example of people walking behind/past a tree. This might be a value at a sporting event if you're tracking something/someone which is periodically moving behind other objects (race car, ball carrier, etc.).
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Old December 2nd, 2008, 04:54 AM   #5
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Hmmm. Sounds like post rationalisation to me. I can't see enough value in slow auto focus to justify it at the expense of faster autofocus, maybe as an alternative buried in some menu, but not as the only option. In a pro camera it is much more useful to have a snappy autofocus which could be called by a momentary manual focus override button. I expect there is some fundamental limitation in the auto focus implementation, it is better with 1.11 but still quite poor. Fortunately, manual focus is very good on this camera though.

M
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Old December 2nd, 2008, 06:58 AM   #6
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The reality is not many here could care if the AF worked at all.
I've never had much luck with AF on ANY camera, some better - some worse.
Auto focus can't read your mind and will grab whatever it can.

It's a "point and shoot" feature found on consumer grade cameras.

For the AF to work best, use interlace, not progressive.
It's a day and night difference. In fact, mines works well shooting interlace using v1.11
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Old December 2nd, 2008, 08:18 AM   #7
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I must say that the AF of the EX1 does really a bad job (I have not update the Firware, yet)... in 95% I'm not working with AF, but last shooting I did, and the results got really bad. HD makes the filming much more complicated compared to SD... my PD-170 looks also with AF most times in focus, but sure at HD you see a not correct focus directly when you watch the footage on a big HD-screen.

Steven,

you wrote "For the AF to work best, use interlace, not progressive.". That's new to me.
I though the CMOS of the EX1 works allways progressiv. Every format is Up/Downscale or interlaced inside the camcorder hardware. So I thought it doesn't matter for the focus which format you use? I shot allways progressive, so I have not tested interlaced a lot.
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Old December 2nd, 2008, 10:47 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Swen Goebbels View Post
Steven,

you wrote "For the AF to work best, use interlace, not progressive.". That's new to me.
I though the CMOS of the EX1 works allways progressiv.
You're in for a surprise then.
Iterlace works far better for AF.

Also, there's is an improvement with AF in version 1.11

Also, the peaking function appears to be approved with 1.11

It far more sensitive.
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Old December 2nd, 2008, 06:08 PM   #9
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Thank you Steven!

I'll try the new Firmware, soon.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 02:43 PM   #10
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Use manual focus and buy a hood pro, it makes focusing quick and easy. Website is Hood-Pro Professional Hoods and Loupes Fantastic add-on.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 11:24 PM   #11
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Yes! This cam is incredible when in focus!!

I have owned two Sony VX2000's and a PD170 and i actually like those cams better!
However they are not HD, but they performed better in their time!

How do i know what Firmware my EX1 has???
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