Jump to content


Photo

SD still 'applicable' for digital acquisition?


  • Please log in to reply
16 replies to this topic

#1 Adam R Davis

Adam R Davis

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts
  • Other

Posted 07 September 2007 - 03:04 AM

Greetings everyone. I've been puzzling over something for a while. I have the opportunity to purchase either a really good DV camera or a moderate HDV camera (DXV100b/HDR-FX7 price range). Since I'm one who prefers image control over resolution, I'm perfectly fine with DV. What I want to know is whether it's possible to be taken seriously with DV or if HD is just 'the way it's done now'.
I guess an example would be film festivals and such events. Is DV originated material still widely accepted?
This isn't a question about perceived superiority, just about client/audience/festival/etc acceptance.

Thanks.
  • 0

#2 Freya Black

Freya Black
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4161 posts
  • Other
  • Went over the edge... Central Europe

Posted 07 September 2007 - 04:33 AM

Greetings everyone. I've been puzzling over something for a while. I have the opportunity to purchase either a really good DV camera or a moderate HDV camera (DXV100b/HDR-FX7 price range). Since I'm one who prefers image control over resolution, I'm perfectly fine with DV. What I want to know is whether it's possible to be taken seriously with DV or if HD is just 'the way it's done now'.
I guess an example would be film festivals and such events. Is DV originated material still widely accepted?
This isn't a question about perceived superiority, just about client/audience/festival/etc acceptance.

Thanks.


Mini DV is a preety standard format at most festivals, in fact you might find that HDV isn't, I'm not sure what the standard High Definition formats are at festivals. Until recently Beta SP was preety much the standard festival playout format so things don't move fast in the festival world. I don't think it will be any problem to screen off Mini DV. Preview copies are likely to be wanted on DVD or VHS anyway!

As regards getting taken seriously, I guess you would need to be shooting on film to be taken seriously in that sense but I believe that if the movie is good then no-one will care what it was shot on.

Also with regard being taken seriously the DVX100 is progressive whereas the HDR-FX-7 isn't from what I can tell. You could deinterlace the sony footage but then you are losing resolution, which takes away from the fact it is HiDef (which seems to be your main reason for considering the Sony). People will find progressive images more cinematic and are likely to take them more seriously.

The DVX100 is not just progressive, but has the cine look mode and perhaps most importantly it has real audio inputs. Don't forget that good sound is also very important.

David Lynch recently shot Inland Empire on a horrible old PD-150. The DVX100 is light years ahead of that! Having said that he is David Lynch, and he also declared that he was keen for it to look horrible.

Of the two cameras you list I would go with the DVX. There might br other options from Canon etc tho?

love

Freya

Edited by Freya Black, 07 September 2007 - 04:36 AM.

  • 0

#3 Phil Rhodes

Phil Rhodes
  • Sustaining Members
  • 11944 posts
  • Other

Posted 07 September 2007 - 06:11 AM

'course, if you get the DVX, you can also do this to it, which in my mind at least makes it at least the equal of some of these very low end HDV cameras.

Phil
  • 0

#4 Chris Keth

Chris Keth
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4427 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • Los Angeles

Posted 07 September 2007 - 08:05 PM

I know I still don't have an HD TV yet. I don't think I'm alone.
  • 0

#5 Adam R Davis

Adam R Davis

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts
  • Other

Posted 08 September 2007 - 10:58 AM

Mini DV is a preety standard format at most festivals, in fact you might find that HDV isn't, I'm not sure what the standard High Definition formats are at festivals. Until recently Beta SP was preety much the standard festival playout format so things don't move fast in the festival world. I don't think it will be any problem to screen off Mini DV. Preview copies are likely to be wanted on DVD or VHS anyway!

As regards getting taken seriously, I guess you would need to be shooting on film to be taken seriously in that sense but I believe that if the movie is good then no-one will care what it was shot on.

Also with regard being taken seriously the DVX100 is progressive whereas the HDR-FX-7 isn't from what I can tell. You could deinterlace the sony footage but then you are losing resolution, which takes away from the fact it is HiDef (which seems to be your main reason for considering the Sony). People will find progressive images more cinematic and are likely to take them more seriously.

The DVX100 is not just progressive, but has the cine look mode and perhaps most importantly it has real audio inputs. Don't forget that good sound is also very important.

David Lynch recently shot Inland Empire on a horrible old PD-150. The DVX100 is light years ahead of that! Having said that he is David Lynch, and he also declared that he was keen for it to look horrible.

Of the two cameras you list I would go with the DVX. There might br other options from Canon etc tho?

love

Freya


I've actually considered Canon as well. Seeing how often the XL1s has turned up on ebay for well under $2000, and that some movies that made it to Hollywood (not really my goal) were shot with the XL1 has made me think seriously about picking one up.
I think if I were REALLY trying to get noticed, I'd be renting 35mm equipment for projects. I'll save that for when I can acquire significant funding. For now, I'm just starting out and looking to experiment with some ideas without losing a great deal of money in the process. The reason I ask if DV would be acceptable is that if I were to come up with something that actually worked well, if festivals and such would take it, and it appears the answer is yes.

Thank you.
  • 0

#6 Adam Thompson

Adam Thompson
  • Sustaining Members
  • 161 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 08 September 2007 - 11:29 AM

Trust me on this one, you'd be many times happier with the DVX100A or B than with a Canon 1s for what you are doing. And you can find a DVX100A for $2000 or less easily. (The A and B models can shoot anamorphic where the 100 can not.) The DVX has a certain look to it that is closest to film than any other low-end camera out there. Give someone that knows what they are doing a DVX and some post time with a program like magic bullet, and the footage can fool some pros on a TV screen.
  • 0

#7 Freya Black

Freya Black
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4161 posts
  • Other
  • Went over the edge... Central Europe

Posted 08 September 2007 - 05:10 PM

Trust me on this one, you'd be many times happier with the DVX100A or B than with a Canon 1s for what you are doing. And you can find a DVX100A for $2000 or less easily. (The A and B models can shoot anamorphic where the 100 can not.) The DVX has a certain look to it that is closest to film than any other low-end camera out there. Give someone that knows what they are doing a DVX and some post time with a program like magic bullet, and the footage can fool some pros on a TV screen.


He's right! I don't think it's worth considering the XL1 unless you are planning on using extra lenses or something? It's quite an old camera now and the DVX100 is much more cinematic and suited to what you have in mind. DVX is a good choice. The best choice for what you are doing in S.D. in fact.

Not sure what you mean Adam about the A and B models being able to shoot Anamorphic? The anamorphic lens just attaches to the front of the camera?

The only downside to the DVX series is they aren't natively 16:9, however you can crop in post or in camera.

love

Freya
  • 0

#8 Adam Thompson

Adam Thompson
  • Sustaining Members
  • 161 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 09 September 2007 - 02:03 PM

He's right! I don't think it's worth considering the XL1 unless you are planning on using extra lenses or something? It's quite an old camera now and the DVX100 is much more cinematic and suited to what you have in mind. DVX is a good choice. The best choice for what you are doing in S.D. in fact.

Not sure what you mean Adam about the A and B models being able to shoot Anamorphic? The anamorphic lens just attaches to the front of the camera?

The only downside to the DVX series is they aren't natively 16:9, however you can crop in post or in camera.

love

Freya


Wrong Freya, the DVX100 isn't capable, but the DVX-100A and newer B model does indeed shoot anamorphic video for 16:9. No need to use the adapter as its really a waste of time in the long run (trust me on that too). Just remember to use "thin line detail" when in anamorphic mode to maximize the resolution.
  • 0

#9 Chris Durham

Chris Durham
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 290 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • New York, NY

Posted 11 September 2007 - 10:51 AM

Don't forget the XL2 here folks.

XL2 = Native 16:9, Interchangeable lenses, 24P, CineGamma
DVX = Anamorphic 16:9, Fixed Lens, 24P, CineGamma

You can find the DVX at a lower price of course which could make it more desireable. Plus I know people who just swear by that camera. I hear they're rugged as all get out (and not quite so front-heavy). I like the XL2 myself. Lack of 24P would steer me away from the XL1. Try them both out and see what you think.

As for the applicability of SD: SD shot right looks much better than HD shot poorly. And from what I hear it's easier to shoot good SD than good HD. I don't have an HDTV either. And HD standards are still evolving. SD is perfectly applicable for low-budget indie filmmaking.
  • 0

#10 Adam R Davis

Adam R Davis

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts
  • Other

Posted 16 September 2007 - 08:26 PM

Don't forget the XL2 here folks.

XL2 = Native 16:9, Interchangeable lenses, 24P, CineGamma
DVX = Anamorphic 16:9, Fixed Lens, 24P, CineGamma

You can find the DVX at a lower price of course which could make it more desireable. Plus I know people who just swear by that camera. I hear they're rugged as all get out (and not quite so front-heavy). I like the XL2 myself. Lack of 24P would steer me away from the XL1. Try them both out and see what you think.

As for the applicability of SD: SD shot right looks much better than HD shot poorly. And from what I hear it's easier to shoot good SD than good HD. I don't have an HDTV either. And HD standards are still evolving. SD is perfectly applicable for low-budget indie filmmaking.



At the XL2's price, I'd just as soon go with the XH-A1 and get the option of HD. It's unlikely that I'd ever use anything beyond the stock lens anyway. Plus I really think the XL2 is an ugly camera. If I had to look at a camera for a long period of time, I'd prefer the A1.

Depending on the finances I have to work with, I'll either got with the XH A1 or the DVX100B.
  • 0

#11 Michael Nash

Michael Nash
  • Sustaining Members
  • 3330 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Pasadena, CA

Posted 18 September 2007 - 04:04 PM

I agree the XH-A1 is a strong competitor to the DVX100B, with the option of HD or SD acquisition. I'm partial to Panasonic myself, but there are lots of image controls in the Canon...
  • 0

#12 David Auner aac

David Auner aac
  • Sustaining Members
  • 1117 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 18 September 2007 - 05:44 PM

David Lynch recently shot Inland Empire on a horrible old PD-150. The DVX100 is light years ahead of that!


Hey, Freya, I wouldn't say that so lightly. Having shot on both the DVX100 there are things I hate about either and things I love about either. You can't just say the DVX is light years ahead of the PD150. It's a different kinds of animal IMO.

Cheers, Dave
  • 0

#13 Freya Black

Freya Black
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4161 posts
  • Other
  • Went over the edge... Central Europe

Posted 19 September 2007 - 02:31 PM

Hey, Freya, I wouldn't say that so lightly. Having shot on both the DVX100 there are things I hate about either and things I love about either. You can't just say the DVX is light years ahead of the PD150. It's a different kinds of animal IMO.

Cheers, Dave


Maybe I'm being mean. I just really dislike the footage I have shot with a PD-150. I actually prefer the stuff I shot with my little canon mv700i. It seemed to hold up better on the big screen for some reason. David lynch actually said he liked the pd-150 because it was so nasty. Having said all that I've never had the chance to play with the dvx. It's just that I really like the footage I have seen from it, but camera choices can end up being a really personal thing. Maybe when I finally get to play with one I will hate it. For me having progressive and having cinegamma options are really big pluses for the dvx100. The PD-150 might be a great camera in documentary and other non-narrative situations tho, and also I way preffered the quality of the canon XL-1 over the PD-150, yet I often ended up using the PD150 as the canon xl1 would leave me shaking after using it for a while. Ergonomically the PD150 was a camera way ahead of it's time.

What is it you like about the PD-150? I'm quite curious.

love

Freya
  • 0

#14 David Auner aac

David Auner aac
  • Sustaining Members
  • 1117 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 19 September 2007 - 03:44 PM

What is it you like about the PD-150? I'm quite curious.


Tough question. Ergonomics is one part of the answer. I just hate the ergonomics of the XL1 which was a major reason for me why I got the 150 in the first place (over 6 yrs ago). Then the option to record DVCAM and to have full XLR-inputs (the first XL1 didn't have phantom power). A friend has an XL1 and he loves it. A matter of taste I guess.

And finally the vastly better image than the other cameras available at the time (2000-2001). Especially in low light the 150 beat the XL1 by a large margin. We shot a TV music magazine on these two for about a year and a half, and I never could bring the XL1 to look like the 150. We ended up degrading the Sony's image to match the Canon. Both had problems with very saturated colored light in concerts, but the XL1 even more so. Maybe we were just lucky enough to get a really crappy one that slipped through QA unnoticed! Most of my experience is based on that particular specimen of XL1.

When Canon introduced the XL1s they fixed several of the issues we had with the old version (capturing was a pain, low light sensitivity and the anamorphic viewfinder was hard to deal with too). I guess they had most solved by the XL2 but I never used one. The H1 seemed rather front heavy to me but made a pretty decent picture...

A friend of mine and I have both shot BetacamIMX and SX and used the 150 as a second camera and it held up amazingly well when intercut. It's all about tuning the 150 to bring it to shine. The DVX100 came out a little later and especially the B version seems to be really good. But I didn't like the way it handled, but it seems I got so used to the Sony, that may have been the cause for my trouble.

And I doubt that Lynch specifically used the 150 because he wanted it to be awful. He could have used a number of cams to get worse than that, e.g. VX-1000 or something even further down the price range. Read: single chip! :D

I hope that answers your question, Freya!

Greeting from Vienna, Dave
  • 0

#15 Freya Black

Freya Black
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4161 posts
  • Other
  • Went over the edge... Central Europe

Posted 19 September 2007 - 04:29 PM

AhI yes! I should point out the canon I used was an xl1s! I didn't realise there was an even earlier one. I only used the two cameras in fairly well lit situations too.

Fair enough about the ergonomics of the camera. The PD-150 is amazing in that sense and as I say I ended up ditching the xl1s because it just left me shaking after using it for a while. We had a beahtek adaptor thing but it's obviously not as good as having native XLR's As I remember the camera didn't have XLR's at all let alone phantom!

An intresting idea as to David Lynch using a single chip camera. I actually found that projected on the big screen my footage from the one chip looked much better than the PD-150 stuff. It was in B&W tho whereas the PD-150 footage was colour.

I guess I preety much agree with what you say but for me I really disliked the images I got from the PD-150 and that in itself might be enough to make me look elsewhere in a lot of situations.

So far I've not found my video camera of choice. I like the results I'm getting from some old Sony DXC-325p's and I love an old canon video 8 camcorder I have (great pictures, great in low light, just really low res and terrible sound.) If I find it, I'm sure I will be letting you know tho!

love

Freya

Edited by Freya Black, 19 September 2007 - 04:31 PM.

  • 0

#16 David Auner aac

David Auner aac
  • Sustaining Members
  • 1117 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 20 September 2007 - 01:07 AM

So far I've not found my video camera of choice. I like the results I'm getting from some old Sony DXC-325p's and I love an old canon video 8 camcorder I have (great pictures, great in low light, just really low res and terrible sound.) If I find it, I'm sure I will be letting you know tho!


Hi Freya, did you try some of Sony's shoulder cams? Like the late BetacamSP BVW-600P or the SX DNW-90P? IMO these make a really nice picture. IIRC it's same head as on the DigiBeta DVW-709P.

Cheers, Dave

PS: I prefer to shoot with larger cams nowadays. The viewfinder is so much better than what you get with the 150 and the like!
  • 0

#17 Freya Black

Freya Black
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4161 posts
  • Other
  • Went over the edge... Central Europe

Posted 20 September 2007 - 12:06 PM

Hi Freya, did you try some of Sony's shoulder cams? Like the late BetacamSP BVW-600P or the SX DNW-90P? IMO these make a really nice picture. IIRC it's same head as on the DigiBeta DVW-709P.

Cheers, Dave

PS: I prefer to shoot with larger cams nowadays. The viewfinder is so much better than what you get with the 150 and the like!


Actually the DXC-325p I mentioned is a Sony Shouder cam. It was a dockable thing that normally docked to either betaSP or Hi8 but I think there was some way you could attach a DVcam dock to it too! I only have the studio dock however. It has a Fujinon lens attached with what I assume is the standard bayonet mount.

It's interesting because I find this camera much easier on the sholulder than I ever found the canon XL1s. No shaking there! Whats more the pictures are lovely.

I think it's mostly the lens I dislike on the PD-150, but I suspect theres something else at play too to do with the colour or something when blown up. I can't really put my finger on it and it's rare I see my work on the big screen (soon to be much rarer in fact), but it's mostly that I just don't like that PD-150 lens. The Fujinon seems much, much nicer.

My DXC-325p is unfortunately missing its viewfinder. :( My plan is to connect it to my little canon DV camera. I suspect that will produce great results up to a point, shame it will only be composite video connection. Unfortunately at present I don't have any NP1 batteries or a cable to connect the camera to the battery I have, so it sits with my other pieces of half constructed junk! I fired it up from a very noisy 12volt supply once tho and was really impressed with the picture mostly.

love

Freya
  • 0


Visual Products

CineLab

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Tai Audio

Ritter Battery

Willys Widgets

The Slider

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Abel Cine

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Paralinx LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

CineTape

FJS International, LLC

Glidecam

Technodolly

rebotnix Technologies

Aerial Filmworks

Metropolis Post

Wooden Camera

Opal

Abel Cine

Technodolly

Wooden Camera

Tai Audio

Opal

Visual Products

Rig Wheels Passport

Broadcast Solutions Inc

CineLab

Willys Widgets

CineTape

Glidecam

The Slider

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Aerial Filmworks

Ritter Battery

rebotnix Technologies

FJS International, LLC

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Paralinx LLC

Metropolis Post