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Old October 14th, 2009, 05:03 PM   #1
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Sanyo VPC-FH1

I am considering buying a Sanyo VPC-FH1 as a third camera. Does anyone have any experience using it with Vegas Pro 8? I also use Cineform NeoScene which converts AVCHD files just fine but I don't know about the H.264 files from the Sanyo camera.
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Old October 20th, 2009, 02:07 PM   #2
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Personally, I would steer clear of any camera that shoots a non-standard format. For the same price (actually a little less) you can buy a Sony CX100 AVCHD camera that edits beautifully in Vegas and also converts well to CineForm. I've got a Sony CX12 and it's a great little camera for the price.

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Old October 20th, 2009, 04:49 PM   #3
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I just finished a a project where I used an HMC150, a Sanyo DH2000 and a few shots with a Sanyo FH1.

My workflow is to copy all the source files to my hard drive for archiving. Then, I use NeoScene's "Folder" option to convert all to Cineform. Worked fine. Sanyo is just H264 format.

BTW, the Sanyo's have an amazing picture quality. Held up real well next to the HMC150 footage. I like the slightly softer look of the 150 for people shots, but otherwise it's almost a toss up. I would get the HD2000 instead of the FH1 simply beacuse it has full manual controls, shoots 600fps slo-mo and has a mic input.
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Old October 20th, 2009, 08:39 PM   #4
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Yes, the Sanyo FH1 / HD2000 camcorders look way better than they should for the price. Functionally, they are identical, both the FH1 and the HD2000 have full manual controls (via menu settings) they both have 240 and 600 fps recording modes (at reduced resolution.) The differences are that the FH1 has a more conventional camcorder shape (it is much smaller than it looks in photos) and the HD2000 has an external microphone input and a headphone jack which the FH1 does not.

An in-depth review of the HD2000 can be seen here:

Sanyo Xacti VPC-HD2000 Camcorder Review - Sanyo
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Old October 20th, 2009, 08:42 PM   #5
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I think the 2000 has a better lens too, or at least bigger. The pistol grip style is tough to get used to. I'm afraid I'll get shot by a copy someday while taking pictures. But it also has it's advantages. Overall, I prefer the FH1's shape.
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 03:30 AM   #6
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Standard, but with issues

I have one of these, the VPC-FH1. The lens is f2.0, versus f1.8 on the VPC-HD2000.. also a bit wider angle than that of the HD2000. Given this is my fourth HD camcorder (well, I did sell the Blu-Ray one... AVCHD has come a long way in a few years), I didn't have a problem with the lack of a mic jack.

AVCHD encapsulates an AVC video stream (Main-Profile@Level-4.0 or High-Profile@Level-4.1, on some models, up to 24Mb/s) and an AC-3 audio stream in an MPEG-2 Transport Stream wrapper. It also builds a Blu-Ray like file structure, which means Blu-Ray players with SDHC memory slots will recognize this as playable video, even with menus, if your camcorder creates them.

Sanyo's file format is based on standards.... think of it as generic MPEG-4. It encapsulates an AVC video stream (Main-Profile@Level-4.2) an an AAC audio stream in an MPEG-4 stream. The average bitrate can be as high as 24Mb/s... I have seen peaks around 28Mb/s (it's variable bitrate).

The issue I have found is that there's something funky with Sanyo's building of the MPEG-4 wrapper. Not sure what, but it seems to crash Vegas Pro 9 pretty much all the time (though some others seem to have it working). There seems to be some negative timecodes at the start of every file... don't know if this is the source of crashing or not. However, if I re-multiplex the bitstream (I use mkvmerge to create a merged Matroska file, then Yamb to mux that back to MP4), it works perfectly in Vegas. That definitely suggests a bug in the Sanyo firmware.

Obviously, not every reader seems to care about this; as mentioned, mkvmerge handles it, and seems to correct for the timecode error. Cineform NeoScene also works with it just dandy.
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 04:46 AM   #7
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Dave,

THANK YOU for the tips and workflow using MKVMERGE and YAMB. I've been trying for a while to find the right combination of tools to correct the timecode issue on the FH1 files. This works great.

John
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