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Asked a Pro on Which Camera?


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#1 John Adolfi

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Posted 23 August 2005 - 08:18 PM

I e-mailed Scott Bilups. He is the author of a digital book that I'm reading and filmmaker. Here is the question and his answer:




Dear Scott,

Reading your book for the 3rd. time. thank you for it. One question
concerning the latest in cameras out there. Of the Prosumer cameras,
should we stay with the popular SD version like the 100DVXa or should step up to the new HDV Cams?
The 3 cameras that seem to be the
ones to choose from are:
1.) Panasonic HVX 200
2.) Sony HVR-Z1
3.) JVC GY-HD100.

What are your thoughts.


Dear John,

It's all marketing hype. They are all 19.4 Mb/sec data rates. Pro imaging starts at 90Mb/sec with DigiBeta and goes up to 2.2Gb/sec with the Viper. Panasonic will be coming out with a nifty little 100Mb/sec palmcorder around the end of the year.

Scott

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#2 Jon Allen

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Posted 24 August 2005 - 11:22 AM

It's all marketing hype. They are all 19.4 Mb/sec data rates. Pro imaging starts at 90Mb/sec with DigiBeta and goes up to 2.2Gb/sec with the Viper. Panasonic will be coming out with a nifty little 100Mb/sec palmcorder around the end of the year.

Scott[/b]

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Is the panasonic cam he's talking about the HVX200? In that case, only JVC and Sony are guilty of marketing hype.
Any word on Canon joining the HDV race?
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#3 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 24 August 2005 - 12:20 PM

Hi,

What's being said here needs qualifying.

> They are all 19.4 Mb/sec data rates.

He's talking about HDV here. MiniDV actually records more data, but the compression is less clever.

> Pro imaging starts at 90Mb/sec with DigiBeta

DVCPRO50, anyone?

> Panasonic will be coming out with a nifty little 100Mb/sec palmcorder around the end
> of the year.

...which is only 40mbps at 24fps. Yes, less than DVCPRO50.

Phil
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#4 Ed Moore

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Posted 24 August 2005 - 03:55 PM

[quote name='Phil Rhodes' date='Aug 24 2005, 05:20 PM']
Hi,

What's being said here needs qualifying.

> They are all 19.4 Mb/sec data rates.

He's talking about HDV here. MiniDV actually records more data, but the compression is less clever.

So HDV is 19.4 and standard DV is 25? Just clarifying for my own warped little mind...
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#5 John Adolfi

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Posted 24 August 2005 - 08:42 PM

Hi,

What's being said here needs qualifying.

> They are all 19.4 Mb/sec data rates.

He's talking about HDV here. MiniDV actually records more data, but the compression is less clever.

> Pro imaging starts at 90Mb/sec with DigiBeta

DVCPRO50, anyone?

> Panasonic will be coming out with a nifty little 100Mb/sec palmcorder around the end
> of the year.

...which is only 40mbps at 24fps. Yes, less than DVCPRO50.

Phil

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Please Phil make your point. I'm very interested but you need to fill your response in.
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#6 Alvin Pingol

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Posted 25 August 2005 - 02:50 AM

>>>Pro imaging starts at 90Mb/sec with DigiBeta
>>DVCPRO50, anyone?

Hah. Perhaps he feels the SDX900 isn't "pro imaging"


>>So HDV is 19.4 and standard DV is 25? Just clarifying for my own warped little
>>mind...

Right. HDV compression, however, works in such a way that previous and future frames can incorporate data from each other, making it much more efficient than DVSD, in which each frame is compressed independently.
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#7 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 25 August 2005 - 07:10 AM

Hi,

I'm not particularly trying to make any particular point, just qualifying some of the statements that've been made.

To be honest I'm becoming more and more convinced that all this junk about data rates is just whitewash. Light it right, compose it right and you're away. Forget the toys.

Phil
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#8 Jason Rodriguez

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Posted 25 August 2005 - 11:16 AM

To be honest I'm becoming more and more convinced that all this junk about data rates is just whitewash. Light it right, compose it right and you're away. Forget the toys.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


That is, until you want to do something with it in post . . . :o
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#9 Jon Allen

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Posted 25 August 2005 - 03:20 PM

Hah. Perhaps he feels the SDX900 isn't "pro imaging"

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Well we also need to qualify if we're talking SD "pro imaging" or HD "pro imaging"
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#10 Alvin Pingol

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Posted 26 August 2005 - 01:28 AM

>>Well we also need to qualify if we're talking SD "pro imaging" or HD "pro
>>imaging"

AFAIK, Digibeta is all standard-def...
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#11 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 26 August 2005 - 07:32 AM

Hi,

> That is, until you want to do something with it in post . . .

Well obviously; but if someone gives me a project to shoot on HDV I'm not going to let it give me heartburn.

And the received knowledge on this is often wrong anyway. You can grade DV, just not much and not as nicely. You can grade HDV...

Phil
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#12 Jon Allen

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Posted 27 August 2005 - 10:05 AM

>>Well we also need to qualify if we're talking SD "pro imaging" or HD "pro
>>imaging"

AFAIK, Digibeta is all standard-def...

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

AFAIK, we're talking about HD...
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#13 Michael Collier

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Posted 14 October 2005 - 08:30 PM

Bottom Line is what does it look like

Viper 2.2Gb/s is uncompressed 4:4:4 obviously takeing 1920x1080 will be a large file
Digibeta 90M/s compressed (I believe) but in an interframe compression method, ie 4:2:2 (though im not sure its exaclty 4:2:2, I have a hard time thinking its less. JPEG might play a role in compression as well, though I'm not that keen on the specs of this camera)

HDV 19.4 M/s yes it is quite a lot less, but it is also an MPEG 2 compression. DVD compression in SD is about 8M/s, which would roughly translate to 24M/s in HD (1920x1080)

You can see that it wont be quite as high quality as DVD but close. and with so many pixels there is a greater likely hood that a pixel will be part of an B frame (high compression) because the gradients change slower when compared to a lower res image of with the same framing.


Bottom line I am working on a new movie in HDV (first time working with HDV, I was anxious at first) but the footage came out beautifully. even when looking extremely closely at a magnafied still I could only barely make out compression artifacts. Blown up on a 50" monitor it still looks good so I have full confidence that a 35mm blowup will look good (though obviously nothing compared to Viper)


I guess the point I am trying to make is that the bit rates cant be directly compared because the compression scemes are totally different. You just got to understand that you get what you pay for. a 6K HDV cam wont compare to a 60k HDCAM footage. but if your saving money from a tight budget you gotta focus on story. HDV will be better than any format you could afford.

remember when everyone was trying to convince us a DV file would look good on filmout? This will be closer to an acceptable 35filmout, though I doubt anyone with experience will ever say it looks better than any other HD format.

If you have the money invest in a grass valley infinity. true 1080p/i, true 24fps, and it only cost 20k. It records to revPro drives that cost about 75 a peice and can be uploaded to a Hard drive to clear them (they are 35Gb and hold aprox 45minutes of footage, aprox 103 M/s)
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#14 Mike Brennan

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Posted 16 October 2005 - 10:40 AM

If you have the money invest in a grass valley infinity. true 1080p/i, true 24fps, and it only cost 20k. It records to revPro drives that cost about 75 a peice and can be uploaded to a Hard drive to clear them (they are 35Gb and hold aprox 45minutes of footage, aprox 103 M/s)


Michael you chose HDV because you can afford it.
The information you give out about the infinity is not sunstantiated.


It will be the first camera let alone camcorder under ?20k that will have a true progressive 1920x1080.
ccd, doesn't seem liely it will.
It is aimed at news and pro who have geared up to 1440x1080 recording from pixel arays of that number or less in the case of Z1!

Quality is pretty subjective, if I was tight on budget I'd go for the IMX 900 progressive camera, cheap as chips and looks good on a 30ft screen... Panavision 900 next.
Compression in general you want as little as possible at the beginning and can afford more for final distribution.


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#15 Mike Brennan

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Posted 16 October 2005 - 11:11 AM

Ticket paying audience expectations are greater for large screen work than small screen.

In general, you stand a greater risk of your film being "off the mark" from the large screen audiences expectations if using a consumer camera format.

But it can be "off the mark" in many other ways of course script editing acting, these are usually the problem!

Your faith/surprise/hope/elation that the picture doesn't look crap on a big screen can't be communicated to the audience who just want to be sucked into the story.

The Director has editing, camera direction, grading and lighting as tools to visually suck the audience into the story.

The technical quality of the picture ie range of tones and colours, sharpness, depth of field, recording quality are important factors that are tied up with what type of camera, lens and recording format you use.

A good producer trades/juggles all of the above to spend the available budget in an effort to meet (all) the audience expectations.


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#16 Michael Most

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Posted 16 October 2005 - 07:59 PM

If you have the money invest in a grass valley infinity. true 1080p/i, true 24fps, and it only cost 20k. It records to revPro drives that cost about 75 a peice and can be uploaded to a Hard drive to clear them (they are 35Gb and hold aprox 45minutes of footage, aprox 103 M/s)


Your facts are incorrect, at least for the planned initial release of the Infinity. It will only support interlaced formats, 1080/50 and 1080/60, 525/60 and 625/50, and progressive 720/50 and 720/60. There is no 24 frame support in the product. That's not to say that there might be by the time it's released, or in a future model, but it's not in the initial release.
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