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-   -   Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera? (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/general-hd-720-1080-acquisition/515939-there-any-compact-cameras-recording-like-good-videocamera.html)

Dave Blackhurst May 2nd, 2013 02:29 PM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
4 samples... hmm, OK, that's definitive... or not. I've only had the HX300 a few days, barely enough to "play" with the camera, not seriously shoot with it. I know I found mixed "reviews", many saying they didn't think it was that much better than the 200...

Perhaps their shooting conditions and expectations were different from mine, but CA and jpeg artifacts (stills) were a bit more than I was willing to accept in the 100/200, even though I used them and got some good/great results - not "bad" cameras, but there were things that go with small sensor P&S cameras I don't like in a camera that is right on the edge of being a "full size" camera at a higher end price point.

Overall, I see significantly better STILLS from the 300 than the prior models, and the random times I've pressed the "movie" button looked OK. FWIW, I got some "bad" video results initially with the RX100 as I tried to sort out all the settings... the P&S lines don't have a lot of adjustments, the RX has quite a few!

OH, and it's relatively easy to find out that the HX300 has the same tilting display of the earlier 100/200 - it does, and I don't know fo any reason you'd think it didn't, so I have to chuckle a bit at your "contradicting" when you haven't in all the "research" been able to determine a basic mechanical specification... I know there's often conflicting info out there, so I do understand, but when you're doing "research", you've got to be able to know your sources (thus what you've been told about trusting video "samples" from multiple shooters under varying conditions...). And yes, the tilt screen is VERY handy to shoot overhead, or from lower angles... it's one feature I REALLY find useful.

I would suggest the HX100/200/300 is a more "enthusiast" oriented camera, so I'd expect someone shooting it to have better skills, which MAY accout for the better samples.

Until the HX50 is actually available, no way to know for sure how it will perform. From the specs released, it will have a 30x optical, which is interesting, as that was the same range as the HX200 "superzoom" - if the optics are good, this will be a BIG zoom for a "pocket camera".

I can say from experience with Sony, that even with the same sensors and basic electronics (meaning the cameras may share the same "specs"), you have to evaluate the specific camera, there can be significant difference.... specs aren't the whole story, as you say, and sometimes an earlier model CAN be a bit better than the the "upgrade".

You seem to be primarily concerned with the VIDEO side, and if that's the main focus, you'll probably be happy with the small sensor P&S quality, I find it quite acceptable, as do others here who use them for personal/casual use or for "B cam" footage. If stills are at all a priority, I'd lean towards the RX100, the difference is pretty stark. Then again, I can stick the RX100 in a side pocket of a small bag with an HX300 and still have a small kit that will do most things VERY well... will the HX50 cover both bases... we'll see soon enough!

Bruce Dempsey May 2nd, 2013 05:04 PM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
My god Dave you're on fire...... WAIT you ARE on FIRE, I just switched on the news and your neck of the woods is going up in smoke. Never saw so many chopers with water buckets and bulldozers and fire trucks but they looked helpless against such a fire force. Hope it's far enough away from your house.

Home | PhotographyBLOG is rolling out a review of the HX300 and have previewed some of the shots and a bit of .mts which is quite nice.

Dave Blackhurst May 2nd, 2013 08:21 PM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
For the moment it's all on the other side of the mountains, but it's a heckuva start to fire season, I'm sure we'll have our days before it's done! I"m sure they will have the big DC10 up shortly - that used to be based at the nearby decommissioned airbase, used to get some shots when it went over!

I'm actually impressed so far with the HX300, definitely need to get out a bit with it and see if there are any "gotchas" - really the "defects" in images on the 100 and 200 were not that serious, but they bugged me when comparing to other bigger cameras.

The two reviewsAdriano posted mentioned the artifacting, but so far the 300 looks to handle it better. I find it interesting that there seems to be so much focus on "too many pixels", without regard to the quality of the sensor - I was thinking earlier how many times I read "fewer pixels would have been better" - I know that there is in theory a penalty for cramming too many photosites into the same physical area, but technology moves forward, and sometimes these "internet legends" live on without taking into account the changes in tech! I can say that the sensor in the 300 is significantly better in low light than either the 16 or 18 MPixel predecessors - I actually was rather impressed with how well it does!

Adriano Moroni May 3rd, 2013 01:30 AM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
I would buy a smaller camera than Sony HX50 but only if it will give me better video because I NEED the best image quality from it (smaller is better). Like in the first post I ask it, that is a small camera for good video. But I'm afraid the bigger cameras have better lens and unfortunately (for me) they can give better quality of image in the video. I have checked some shots of Sony RX100 and although the videos are good but not equally good like a Sony HX200 or HX300. Why?

Dave Blackhurst May 3rd, 2013 03:50 AM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
Possibly a couple of factors - first off, the RX100 has extensive manual controls... meaning it's pretty easy to goof it up (experience speaking). Unlike the highly auto P&S cameras, you have a lot of things to tweak, even when in video mode. IOW, even someone who has a farily good idea what they are wanting to do needs to spend some serious time experimenting and learning the RX100 - I've found I can get what I want, but the first attempts were not so hot! That said, the stills are superb, and I'm comfortable enough to shoot casual video with it. The camera is a bit like a racehorse or supercar... it takes a little more (a lot more?) to master, BUT it also has a lot more to give - using it like a P&S would be like driving on an LA freeway at rush hour in a Ferrari... it's still a REALLY impressive P&S, but you're in first gear!

The other possible factor depending on what "image problems" you are seeing can be the fact that larger sensors behave differently than smaller ones - that same shallow Depth of Field look that is craved by large sensor users CAN work against you when you need or want a deep DoF. There can also be more issues with moire and aliasing as well as rolling shutter. You have to have better camera technique and be conscious of how you shoot - while Sony has put the time into autofocus and other auto adjusting, you still need to think more with a large sensor camera... and you should be able get better results in exchange.

There also may be some instances of pushing the camera - it is a LOT more capable in low light, but that also means a user may use it at a point where a smaller sensor cam would be basically "black", and get an image, albeit one that's got more noise and artifacting. I shot some stuff at an amusement park where everyone else with a "small" camera got NO usable results, the RX100 got a bit of usable footage... sort of!

I'll admit I prefer letting the camera do as much work as it can and getting a good result, but also having the option to manually tweak... As another "fer instance", in the HX300 review you linked, they mentioned overexposure - from experience, I know to tap the wheel on the back right under the thumb, and dial back the EV as needed to prevent that problem - again, experience with these cameras makes this a reflex, a reviewer might not know to do it instinctively, and so thinks the camera has a weak point... when it's designed to let the user quickly and easily override and nail the shot. Having used the 100 and 200, the manual override is programmed into my thunb! I noticed the HX50 also has an EV wheel on it, in a similar spot. The RX100 can also do it, but only in some modes, where the 300 always can apply and EV shift.

My general point being that you have to spend some time with any camera to learn how to get the most out of it, no matter what you pick. It's pretty hard to get a really "bad" camera nowadays, so it comes down to what you're needs are...

I don't use a superzoom often, but when I do... I'd prefer the HX300. If I want superior stills and pocketability, the RX100 might be what I grab... if I'm anticipating weather or adverse conditions, I might grab a TX20, and live with the limitations, which are many, but it won't die if it gets dunked! If I'm shooting stills and being paid, I'll drag out the Alphas, but I increasingly don't want to lug them around for "casual" use! Could I take video from any of the cameras I mention and intermix it, and would a typical viewer be able to pick out which was which?? Probably not...

I think we got well off of the Handycams, but they too have their qualities...again we're taling about a different tool. I wouldn't try to take "great" stills with one, but for many video purposes, they are designed to do the job and do it well.

Any way you approach the question, you probably don't NEED to lug a big camera around anymore to get "pretty good" video and still results, it comes down to what best meets your needs and your budget.

Adriano Moroni May 16th, 2013 03:43 AM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
I'm noticing Sony HX50 is a good camera but not as great as we thought. Is it for its small sensor?
I have read cheaper cameras makes better image quality. The first reviews are coming:
Sony Cybershot DSC-HX50 Review
Is it convenient to spend so much money on this Sony HX50?

Mark Rosenzweig May 16th, 2013 11:56 AM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
That same review site that reviewed the Hx50 rated the Panasonic ZS30 (TZ40) higher. I have the ZS30 and I am pleased with the video quality.

Dave Blackhurst May 16th, 2013 12:15 PM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
First reviews... hmmm.... some CA issues, and noise at high ISO's - both to be expected at this price, AKA "normal". Shaky handheld video looks "OK" considering... a pro with a bracket and better stabilizing skills should be able to get better results.

I didn't see the "review" as being terribly comprehensive, typical "consumer oriented review". No review of audio (often a weak point in small cameras), no discussion of menus and depth of controls, and pretty basic.

I'd like to see some side by side with the HX300 - same sensor, but different lenses. I'd sort of expect that the compact lens would suffer more issues just because of being packed into a smaller format (30x is a lot in a small pocket camera, same as last years HX200, a much larger camera!). Physics is what it is, but tech gets better... and I'd expect the HX50 to be slightly more "dialed in", being a later release.

It's a pocket camera with a 30x lens (and apparently a nifty remote control function that if it works with an Android phone would be worth it to me for that feature!). If that's what you need, consider it, I don't think there's any others with that lens range out there. If your needs or expectations are different, look at other cameras. The only "perfect" camera is the one you will take with you and capture the shots you want, not one with newer better specs that will come out next year or whatever.

Adriano Moroni May 16th, 2013 02:14 PM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?

Originally Posted by Dave Blackhurst (Post 1795812)
same as last years HX200, a much larger camera!)

I'm sorry but I don't understand what you mean about Sony HX200. I have viewd some shots of Sony HX200 and I have to tell you the image quality is far better than HX50.

John McCully May 16th, 2013 03:06 PM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
Right on Dave. While that review does report in some detail the photographic abilities and the general handling qualities, as they see them, it is almost useless regarding video capabilities. Here is what they reported:

‘Video - Below is a video recorded in full 1080p HD and the quality is good. The optical zoom is available during recording, an example of which can be seen on the ePHOTOzine Youtube page.’

That’s it! Essentially useless regarding video in my opinion. One could say that about most if not all point and shoot digital cameras that also shoot 1080 50p/60p these days. In any event I would expect the HX50 to be just another point and shoot small travel cam with a very decent list of features and class leading zoom capabilities, which may or may not turn your crank.

However, the HX50 has one unique feature that is of interest to me and that is the ability to add on a ridiculously expensive EVF. I purchased the HX20v and while the video this cam shoots is right up there with most of the best travel cams I found it of very limited value as in broad daylight, which is mostly where I shoot, I can’t really see the screen. No EVF. Just hopeless for me. The HX50v (at a price) solves that problem. OK, not quite so easy to pop in a pocket but just slide off the EVF and pop that in another pocket.

The other not so obvious benefit of an EVF is the improvement in image stabilization this affords. Holding a pocket cam at arm’s length in order to view the screen versus holding the cam firmly against one’s head is chalk and cheese for me when it comes to obtaining smooth video. Now, having said that smooth video may not be important to you.

Based on specifications and Sony’s history with video in small cams the feature set of the HX50v works for me. I see it (expect it to be) as a pocketable slightly improved HX200v. I take note of your input, Adriano, saying otherwise. You may well be correct however the samples I have viewed would suggest the photographs taken with the HX50v will meet my needs not unlike shots captured with the HX200v. Let me add that when it comes to still photographs (not the subject of this thread) when I want to get serious it's the NEX 5n every time. But that's another story.

And down the road apiece in yet another pocket I shall probably carry the upcoming Black Magic Pocket Cam, if and when it becomes available!

Dave Blackhurst May 17th, 2013 02:11 AM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?

Originally Posted by Adriano Moroni (Post 1795835)
I'm sorry but I don't understand what you mean about Sony HX200. I have viewd some shots of Sony HX200 and I have to tell you the image quality is far better than HX50.

The HX200 has a similar 30x lens range, in a substantially physically larger "package". It's quite entirely possible that the larger lens could produce better image quality. The HX50 is a physically smaller camera, obviously to maintain "pocketability", but that potentially may mean some compromises in lens quality.

I know if "noticed" the CA in the HX100 and 200, so far the HX300 seems to be better optically. That's where some side by side testing would be enlightening - how good is the lens in the HX50... usually Sony improves over time...

There are also differences of course in the sensor, and all the samples I've shot so far with the HX300 indicate to my eye that the newer sensor performs better than the one in the HX200. Higher ISOs still fall apart less than gracefully, but lower ones hold up better than the 200 did. Video in low light looks better by a stop or maybe even two. That by itself is actually rather impressive. It's not as capable as a CX/PJ series Handycam, but IS noticeably brighter and cleaner than ANY previous Cybershot I've owned, to the point where I'd chance it in "low light" if I needed the insane zoom.

I still really haven't had the chance to get the HX300 out and do some video comparison shooting, so I really don't want to comment rashly, but I expect it to be pretty good.

Adriano, I realize you want to pull up online samples that may or may not be good representations of what the camera(s) can or can't do under varying conditions... and come to a conclusion... but ultimately you are going to have to put hands on, put a camera through the "tests" that mean the most to YOU, and see if it's a good fit.

While the viewfinder in the HX300 isn't "great", it's included in the price, and the camera isn't THAT big, just not "pocketable" - I can still stick it AND the RX100 in the smallest camera bag I've got and never know I'm carrying it. Would the HX50 "cover" both bases? I might pick one up and see if I spot a used one at the right price, and I can think of some uses for that remote capability!

This thread started with the question of whether a "compact camera" could record "like" a good video camcorder - you've seen that there are a number of options that might meet that request, at least in many respects. It really comes down to budget, and what fits for you... There won't be a "perfect" camera, and in a couple years, we'll probably be debating the qualities of UHD/4K options anyway!

Adriano Moroni May 17th, 2013 03:29 AM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
I don't take an interest about superzoom and I think a normal zoom is more than adequate. .... but if I have to be sincere, I like above all the hot shoe of Sony HX50. I would wait for some other more complete reviews and if the it score will be similar to other cameras I will buy another one and cheaper camera. I'm thinking about Sony HX20 too. It is a good small camera with good tests. I'd like to remain inwardly Sony brand because I have so many Memory sticks Duo I already use with my videocamera..... but if Lumix G6 will be really a very good camera and if it comes up to expectations I will think on it too. ;)
Dear friends: some days ago I had considered Sony HX200 because there are no other cameras so cheap and with so great tests. What I don't like on it is the lack of hot shoe.
In June I have to buy a new camera and I like to remain between Sony HX50 and Sony HX200 size and price.
In that time I hope I will produce some more clear ideas. ;)

Dave Blackhurst May 17th, 2013 03:32 PM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
Keep in mind that all recent Sony cams can use both MS Duo and SD cards... I have a mix of the two types.

It's always "fun" trying to decide which features are the ones most important, sometimes you think "gee, if I designed cameras, it would have THESE features..." But since we don't get to design... we have to find what fits "us" best!

I know I've bought cameras that everyone else raves about and hated them (OK, maybe not hate, but strongly disliked enough to pass them along to someone who WOULD appreciate them...). Other times I read comments about a camera and wonder if they had the same one I did?!

It comes down to use and expectations - I might WANT a sports car, but NEED a van, and maybe end up in a "crossover" trying to find a happy medium, to use an analogy...

Unlike cars, you probably can have a couple cameras for different situations... and still not bust the budget...

The RX100 is a unique little beast, and for a "pocket rocket" it does things other cameras don't, and is FUN to shoot with! Would I add a VF and a longer lens? Probably... and it wouldn't fit in a pocket anymore!

I use a couple TX series cameras for what they do well, and I'll admit a certain fondness for the top of the HX series - I'm used to the way a SLR sits in the hand and the 100/200/300 have that "vibe", without being too big or heavy, plus that superzoom can be FUN... The HX50 feature set is rather interesting, and it carries on a tradition of the midrange compact HX cameras that have been well received - I tried the HX9, didn't "click" for me, don't know exactly why, but it just didn't, I know others loved it, and the successor models (HX20/30).

You pay a price in image quality in ANY small sensor camera, that's just the physics of the matter. There are design compromises in physically small devices. BUT there are offsetting advantages... and in the end it looks like all but the higher end "enthusiast" models may disappear in the very near future, victims of better cell phone camera imaging modules! The CELL PHONE has become the "camera you have with you" for the vast majority of the population, most of whom are not "pixel peepers", and just happy to get SOMETHING when they "point and shoot"...

Adriano Moroni May 18th, 2013 08:31 AM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
FDA-EV1MK electronic viewfinder = 449 euro???? More than Sony camera?
I could never believe it.
I cannot buy it neither HX50 unfortunately. I would have bought HX50 especially because I could use the electronic viewfinder but for that price I will buy Sony HX20.
On this comparative reviews HX20 come out not worse than HX50 almost better .... even if I'm not an expert guy.
Sony Cybershot DSC HX50 vs. Sony Cybershot DSC HX20V - Sensor Comparison
Same size sensor, Max. resolution 5184 x 3888 vs 4896 x 3672 are almost the same but HX20 has more dynamic range.
Now I have clearer ideas and if I had to buy a p&S I will buy HX20. ;)

Dave Blackhurst May 18th, 2013 05:00 PM

Re: Are there any compact cameras recording like a good videocamera?
I have no idea where you get the conclusion on greater dynamic range... you really need to be a bit careful reading random sites and coming to random conclusions... this is especially true if you are "not an expert" - there is a LOT of misinformation in the internet, and a lot of questionable information as well! It's very EASY to read things and get entirely incorrect "conclusions"... I think if I read "too many pixels" one more time I may scream... reminds me of "too many notes", which if you're a musician, you'll get the joke, and it is one...

We are talking about a current generation sensor vs. "last generation"... I don't have equipment other than my eyes to "test", but overall I feel the new 20.4 sensor (HX300/HX50) subjectively looks significantly better than the 18.2 (HX20/30, HX200, TX200, TX66). Low light is definitely better, and if you set the camera right, the images are better, at least in the still department from the comparison shots I have done... Having owned Sonys with the 16.2, the 18.2 and the 20.4 (the sensors are basically the same physical dimensions ot reduce the re-engineering between model years), the 18 was the "weak spot", as under many conditions I got worse results than with the 16 - so far the 20 looks to be better than both prior sensor designs, partially due to the processing.

I've seen others say it's worse, so perhaps they tested under different conditions or with different expectations, or were looking at different things than were on my radar, or they didn't set things the same way I do from years of hands on experience. I see "overexposure" as a complaint, and I think to myself - "tap wheel under thumb, adjust EV to compensate, problem solved", and am happy to have a camera so easy to dial in... I also think "DUH, learn to operate your camera", but that's another topic!

The add on VF was originally for more expensive camera(s) - RX1, a $2700 camera, and the current generation NEX series I believe. It just happens it fits the new shoe Sony is using, including on the HX50. It is possible Sony or a third party could release a less expensive VF (and other accessories for this new shoe) if there is demand... it remains to be seen how this new shoe design will fare - it replaced the old propreitary Konica Minolta shoe, which was much complained about, and I see lots of complaints about the new design (it's a popular internet passtime to criticize "proprietary" designs I think!). Of course if you don't know that the VF was originally for a very expensive camera, it seems a bit shocking... but it adds interesting options to have it "available" for such a small camera.

The HX20/30 are probably available pretty cheap as they are "last years" models, I've seen mostly positive comments about them, why not just find one cheap on close out and see how it goes? You'll save a big chunk over buying the brand new models (although the HX300 price is already softening a "bit"), and you'll have something to start working with to see if you will be happy shooting video with a pocket P&S.

It'll probably be almost as good image wise as a bigger more expensive camera from 5 years ago, to be honest... they really push the engineering on these "consumer" models trying to make them appealing against that "old" cam or the latest cell phone (which also may have a hot rod Sony sensor in it!). Remember the consumer lines are on a one year refresh cycle, and so often have the very latest "tech" and tweaks (though sometimes I've seen steps "backwards"!). They also are most likely to have new features that they hope will cause a buyer to buy... thus why guys here who might have an HX20 or another older model are looking at the 50 <wink>!

Worst case you buy last years model on closeout and decide you want this years model feature wise... now you have a "backup" camera <wink>! And the "new one" has probably dropped a bit in price <wink, wink>.

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