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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 April 23rd, 2010, 12:34 PM   #1
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motion blur on EX1r

Man, I love my new ex1r. The pictures are stunning. But I'm getting unacceptable motion blur and jerkiness every time I do so much as a simple pan! I'm automatically attributing it to operator error but I'm hoping someone who has had the same problem will come to my rescue. I've been shooting primarily in 1/50 shutter speed and shooting routine stuff -- not fast-motion sports by any stretch. I've been shooting 1920 X 1080p using various picture profiles I've stumbled across here and other professional sites. Plu leeze help!
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Old April 23rd, 2010, 03:06 PM   #2
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Hi Charles,

There can be several reasons why youíre getting unwanted motion blur, but you havenít given enough information for anyone to really pinpoint the cause. You say that youíre shooting 1920x1080, but that doesnít provide any clues. Thatís just a frame size. Itís the frame-rate that matters most. Are you shooting 24P, 30P, 25P, 60i, or 50i? The recommended shutter speed will vary depending on your frame rate.

24P: 1/48
30P: 1/60
25P: 1/50
60i: 1/30
50i: 1/50

Notice that the recommended shutter speed is always Ĺ of the frame rate. You can vary a little bit from those numbers, but if the shutter speed is too slow youíll get excessive motion blur and if it is too fast youíll get strobing. On the EX1, EX1R, and EX3 I shoot almost exclusively 1080/30P @ 1/60th and I have never had a problem with unwanted motion blur. Keep in mind that some motion blur is absolutely necessary if you want your video to look good.

Hereís a few random thoughts that might help you solve your problem:

1) Is the shutter switch on the front of the camera (under the lens) turned on? If the switch is not turned on, then the shutter speed will be too slow.

2) Progressive looks different than interlaced (thatís why we like it!!) and it takes some people a little time to get used to it.

3) If youíve spent too long shooting at shutter speeds that are too fast, youíll have to adjust your eyes to the look of using 1/60 or 1/50.

4) Are you judging the motion blur by what you see on your viewfinder? Donít.

5) Are you judging the motion blur by what you see on your computer monitor? Donít.

6) You can only tell what things really look like if you use a proper HD video monitor.

7) Changing your Picture Profile settings wonít make any difference with motion blur so donít waste your time going down that path.

One or more of the things Iíve mentioned must be the culprit because the camera handles motion beautifully. I guarantee it. Check your settings, make sure youíre judging the video on a decent monitor, and Iím sure youíll figure it out.

(My vote is that you don't have the shutter switch turned on.)
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Old April 25th, 2010, 12:43 PM   #3
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Old April 25th, 2010, 01:02 PM   #4
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I bet you come from a non-progressive background and you are just shocked by the natural jerkiness of shooting 24p or 25p, there's probably nothing wrong with your camera or your settings... maybe you could upload a sample for us to judge?
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Old April 27th, 2010, 08:20 AM   #5
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Are you judging your footage from what you see with XDCam Transfer Tool? Donīt.
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Old April 27th, 2010, 05:30 PM   #6
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How does your footage look in 720p60 ? Also, are you using the optical image stabilizer ?

Host a sample somewhere.
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Old April 27th, 2010, 06:25 PM   #7
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I am a bit compelled to argue with folk on this one.


All of the small cameras and some larger ones are marvellous contrivances which do amazing things and record to small media packages. However nothing comes from nothing. There is no free lunch.

With compression to enable a lot of visual information to be jampacked into recording media, something has to give. Whole motion across the entirity of the image is a very severe test. A compression scheme which takes a keyframe every fifteen frames or whatever the builder has chosen to use, obviously cannot create an entirely new image for each frame.

Fortunately, movement also tricks our eyes with the same artifact, motion blur and the clever little guys in R&D allow the camera to toss away some resolution in favour of a smooth frame rate and mostly with success, hide it in the normal motion vision defects of our own natural eyesight.

So. Point a modern consumer/prosumer video camera mounted on a fixed tripod at a siemens chart fully framed. Look at the pattern. Sharp isn't it. Move the camera ever so slightly and watch what happens to the centre of the pattern. The centre blurs out wider momentarily as the the system makes decisions to preserve smooth motion, then sharpens as the camera settles.

The cameras do what they do, mostly brilliantly. It is up to us to learn to live within their means, a craft film cameramen have already evolved to a high science over nearly a century.

Last edited by Bob Hart; April 27th, 2010 at 06:28 PM. Reason: error
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Old April 28th, 2010, 11:35 AM   #8
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Doug,

I'm curious as to why you'd suggest shooting 60i at 1/30 rather than 1/60 or 1/120 depending on lighting conditions?

Thanks,
Garrett
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Old April 28th, 2010, 12:12 PM   #9
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Oops!!! That was a typo. Sorry. I'd edit it if I could . . . but there's no "edit" button on that post anymore.
It should be 1/60 for 60i. I'm sorry for any confusion that may have caused.
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Old April 30th, 2010, 12:10 AM   #10
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Thank you Doug... We love ya!
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