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DVCPRO25 vs DVCPRO50


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#1 Lars.Erik

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Posted 06 December 2005 - 04:27 PM

Hello friends.

I need some advice. Haven't shot with this cam before. Sony is kinda dominating a lot of the Norwegian market.

I know the difference between the 2 options. 4:2:2 and 4:1:1. But the producers are unsure about shooting DVCPRO 50.

They say that people at home won't know the difference between the two formats.

I have worjed with the XDCam a lot. This has a similar option w/ the IMX 50 setting.

My question: will people at home see the difference between the two setting in the SDX?


Bets regards

Lars E.
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#2 Lars.Erik

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Posted 06 December 2005 - 04:49 PM

Oh, btw, there will only be exterior work. No greenscreen.
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#3 Peter J DeCrescenzo

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Posted 06 December 2005 - 05:13 PM

I may be wrong, but I believe using the DV codec @ 50 megabits/sec. will result in noticeably fewer compression-related artifacts, especially "mosquito" noise in high contrast/detailed areas of the frame compared to DV @ 25 megabits/sec.

This shows up in wide shots of grass, trees, closeups of hair, patterns in fabrics and such.

Also, I believe DVCPRO-50's 4:2:2 color will result in more accurately-reproduced colors compared to 4:1:1, especially in saturated, brightly colored objects in a scene.

However, if I'm mistaken, please advise.

In any event, when I've seen say, DV25 footage and DigiBeta footage, played one after the other on the same monitor, the DB footage looks much better. I don't believe all of the difference is due to variables such as the lens or lighting. Higher datarate formats like DVCPRO-50 and DB simply look better than DV25 to my eyes.

All the best,

- Peter DeCrescenzo

Edited by Peter DeCrescenzo, 06 December 2005 - 05:17 PM.

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#4 Gordon Highland

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Posted 06 December 2005 - 05:18 PM

Yes, you can tell the difference, certainly on a big-screen TV (I have this camera and frequently view on a 55" HD set). As you know already, the chroma sampling is twice as good, and that alone is enough reason. I imagine that it would in fact be similar to IMX50. To me, if this is for broadcast work, DV50 would be a no-brainer. On an industrial, or if you have a really high shooting ratio, maybe cutting your tape costs in half could make more sense in some situations.

All this is assuming you already have the camera and a feeder deck, otherwise those expenses are more suspect and DV25 might make more sense (playable in any DVCPRO deck) or sticking with Sony. Also keep in mind a lot of compression will interfere between you and the viewer (especially with cable and satellite), and starting with the highest-quality image is a good idea.
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#5 David Silverstein

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Posted 06 December 2005 - 10:16 PM

I read that

When projected theres a a noticable change in the quality but when watched on a tv or monitor it looks similar.

The differnece is 25 mb a second and 50 mb a second. 25 is what mini dv. Its basicily how much information is lost when going onto the tape if im not mistaken.
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#6 MatthewG

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Posted 07 December 2005 - 10:01 AM

Noise. There is a big difference that you can see on any monitor/tv and that is noise/detail. if you are shooting for broadcast, shoot in 50. If it is an industrial or a project where youre shooting ratio is crazy (skateboard video, etc) then you might consider 25. Big difference in detail areas.
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#7 Nicolas_Faust

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Posted 23 March 2006 - 06:58 PM

Hi! It might be a good idea to check with the broadcaster, if they accept tp broadcast a 25mb picture. Isn't like shooting in SLP instead of SP!
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#8 Chien Huey

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Posted 24 March 2006 - 09:40 AM

There's somewhat increased difficulties/costs in postproduction for 50.

A short I worked on last week didn't budget for dubbing their DVCPRO50 tapes. They found out it costs $90/tape and they have 12 tapes. Not that you can hook up two miniDV camcorders and dub DVCPRO25 (different codec) - so you'd have to pay something for dubs. But there's probably more 25 deck availability. Yesterday, the director told me that they were only able to find one post house in NYC with two 50 decks.
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#9 Michael Collier

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Posted 24 March 2006 - 03:11 PM

If its at all affordable,50 is almost required. Anyone who has worked with dv25 and dvcpro50 can tell the difference. Its not a huge overt thing, the average audience member wont go 'omg, i cant believe they used dv25 on that!' but there will be a higher percieved value to the picture if it gets shot in 50. Also you will have more latitude if you do any color correction. But the big thing is dv25 is not a broadcast format. It is close, but technically insufficeint (our station has broadcast dv25, but we avoid it if possible) dvcpro50 might cost a bit extra, but its worth it (i mean, camera is only a small portion of production expenses, and you can only shoot the thing once.)
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#10 Simon Wyndham

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Posted 27 March 2006 - 05:02 AM

Also you will have more latitude if you do any color correction.


I have never understood why this should be the case. The 50mbps means that you have less compression artefacts, and the 4:2:2 means higher chroma resolution (on a pixel by pixel basis, but not shades of colour). But an 8-bit recording format, whether 25mbps or 50mbps should give exactly the same latitude for colour correction. Of course I'll eat my words if someone can practically demonstrate to the contrary. :)

Now if we were talking 10-bit Digibeta that would be a different matter.

But the big thing is dv25 is not a broadcast format. It is close, but technically insufficeint


The BBC use DSR500's all the time for ENG and some documentary without issue. The idea that DV25 is automatically like dredging the bottom of the barrel is a bit of a nonsense IMHO. DV25 is used in handycams, but it is also used in higher end cameras such as the 570 and 450. Those cameras obviously produce a vastly superior picture. Nobody watches television from 6" away from the screen, so I think that in most cases it is a bit of a non-issue.
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#11 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 27 March 2006 - 05:34 AM

Hi,

> The 50mbps means that you have less compression artefacts,

...which is why. Colour correction, particularly that which increases contrast or saturation, makes compression artifacts more apparent. If they're less apparent to begin with, you can go further with colour correction.

This confusion arises over the misapplication of the word "latitude" when people really mean "dynamic range" or "color gamut". Of course the dynamic range of the image depends on the camera not the recording format, but in this case "latitude" refers to "how far you can go before it gets nasty."

> The BBC use DSR500's all the time for ENG and some documentary without issue. The idea that DV25 is
> automatically like dredging the bottom of the barrel is a bit of a nonsense IMHO.

Seconded. It's fine for standard-def ENG and documentaries, in circumstances where it won't be colour corrected much. It will certainly be tricky to tell the difference between 25 and 50 before correction. To be honest, the difference between 25 and digibeta is not tremendously apparent on most scenes, assuming you're looking at original camera tapes.

Phil
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#12 Jaan Shenberger

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Posted 27 March 2006 - 06:06 AM

color correcting DV50 is without question better than doing so with DV25. if you do any major or substantial color grading, you will see the apparent blocks of color in DV25. but if you'll only be doing minor color correction, then there won't be much of a quality hit to the DV25.

from the producer's perspective, i can see why they would prefer DV25... cheaper cameras, a well-oiled & simplified post workflow, less expensive decks, etc.

also, as of late, DV25 has become a semi-standard for cable networks' final delivery signal, meaning they are actually pumping out a DV25 signal to the satellite or whatever-- yeah, i know, appalling. and then on top of that, it gets crunched down to horrible mpeg1 or mpeg2 compession by the cable provider or dish company. so your producer may be right. but who knows, you guys might have higher quality standards in europe.

i would say that if it's "reality" tv, then go with the simplified process of DV25, but for dramatic stuff that may need substantial color grading, go for DV50.

hope this helps,
jaan
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#13 Simon Wyndham

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Posted 27 March 2006 - 04:14 PM

...which is why. Colour correction, particularly that which increases contrast or saturation, makes compression artifacts more apparent. If they're less apparent to begin with, you can go further with colour correction.


Hi Phil,

Yes, I can see how this would be the case. Although I'm not totally convinced it really allows DV50 to be pushed a huge amount further because there are still artefacts that will be noticable.

Also, one thing I have never been sure of is quite what kind of colour correction people are doing, or needing to do in order to push footage so far. I would have to deviate quite substantially from the original footage in order to show up such horrendous effects. For most footage, even on a dramatic production, I would be quite suspicious of the original footage quality if it needs so much colour correction. I have created a number of looks in post before in past projects including bleach bypass, reversal film, etc effects. None of which caused much problems due to 1) using a good camera to begin with, and 2) setting the camera up and shooting knowing precisely what sort of look I would be aiming for in post.

Now, if I was adjusting the sky for example for a different look I might come across problems. However I think you need to shoot with the format in mind, ie don't shoot DV25 expecting to do lots of secondary colour corrrection. I'm not a big fan of secondary colour correction anyway. I always feel that it is a crutch for lazy shooting in the first place. If you want a sunset, shoot at sunset. If you want a purple flow, shoot a purple flower. If you want to change the wallpaper colour in a scene, shoot it with the right colour in the first place etc.

Seconded. It's fine for standard-def ENG and documentaries, in circumstances where it won't be colour corrected much. It will certainly be tricky to tell the difference between 25 and 50 before correction. To be honest, the difference between 25 and digibeta is not tremendously apparent on most scenes, assuming you're looking at original camera tapes.


Absolutely. But I would also argue that some pretty good looks can be created with DV25 without any noticeable degredation. Further, you can always transcode DV25 to another format such as Huffy compression etc, and add either a chroma smoothng filter, or even better a chroma interpolator followed by subtle chroma smoothing. Chroma interpolators such as Graeme Nattresses filter work amazingly well.
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