Pro DV advice needed!!! [merged]

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Metatron, Jan 22, 2004.

  1. Metatron macrumors 6502

    Metatron

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2002
    #1
    My church has asked me to start professional recording the services and asked me what it would take. Well of course I told them......1) a PowerMac G5
    2) Final Cut Pro.......and 3) some really good cameras.

    They gave me a $15,000 dollar budget to make it happen. I figured 5 grand for the PowerMac, a grand in softwear....that leaves me with $9000 to buy two awesome cameras. A year ago, I would have just jumped on the Canon XL1s, but now.....with DV50 and its 4:2:2 specs I don't know what to buy. And if you have noticed, alot of commercials and such use the widescreen format because that is what the standard format will be in about 2 years, plus HD tvs are getting cheap, and quick.

    Crap....what a time for them to ask. I need a 4:3/widesceen 3CCD camera that has more than the standard 500 lines resolution like most DV formats....and possibly DV50. I have looked and can not find anything close to what I need at $4500 each.....any ideas guys....
     
  2. krimson macrumors 65816

    krimson

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2003
    Location:
    Democratic People's Republic of Kalifornia
    #2
    Look into the JVC GR-HD1.

    We use 3 of them on steady sticks for our projects.
     
  3. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #3
    I doubt widescreen will be standard in two years and, assuming you know what you are doing, any quality 3 chip camera will give you broadcast quality video. DV50 has been around for a while, mabye as long as DV25 has, so it's nothing new. AFAIK Panasonic, w/it's DVCPro50 format, has been the only company to use it. The choke point for DV is the camera used, not the format itself. Using comparible cameras DV will get you BetaSP quality. The only way BetaSP exceeds DV is for blue/green screen work. You see the "widescreen" look everywhere because it is very invouge right now. $20 says most of the stuff you see was shot 4:3 and the top and bottom of the frame was masked off to make it look like it was shot in widescreen. The transition to HD and widescreen is happening but it's happening very slowly. I bet in 10 years most of the TVs in US homes will still be 4:3. They might have an HD converter box on them or something so they can recieve the HD broadcasts (assuming SD broadcasts are completely off the air by then) but they'll be 4:3 TVs none the less.

    Just an FYI there is no image quality different between DVCAM, MiniDV, DV, or DVCPro. They all use the same compression. DVCAM and DVCPro are Sony's and Panasoinc's, respectively, line of pro DV cameras. The tapes themselves are of better physical quality than MiniDV tapes in order to better handle the rough and tumble professional world. The difference between MiniDV, and DV is just the physical size of the tape. MiniDV is, well, smaller and can only hold up to 60 minutes per tape. DV is larger and can hold up to either 2 or 3 hours per tape. And, unless specified, MiniDV/DV, DVCAM, and DVCPro will not playblack in each others decks/cameras. So if I shooting something in DVCAM, the footage won't play back in a MiniDV camera. DVCPro50 does have superior image quality to DV25, but the cameras are more expensive (low-end starting around 6 grand w/the lens sold seperately).

    Native 16*9 cameras aren't very common yet, and they usually aren't very cheap either. Almost all native 4:3 cameras have some sort of "widescreen" button that mimics 16*9 but that usually comes at a cost of image quality. All though IIRC the "fake" 16*9 on the Canon XL-1s is one of the better fake 16*9 cameras.

    The XL-1 is a tried and true camera. The Sony VX-2000/2100 and PD-150/170 are also very popular pro/prosumer cameras. The VX is MiniDV while the PD is DVCAM, IIRC.

    Just out of curiousity which G5 are you looking to buy? Does the 5g for the G5 cover additional RAM, HDDs, Monitors and speakers? Speaking of monitors, you'll want to have the computer hooked up to a NTSC monitor (AKA a TV) so you can really see what the video looks like. What things look like on a computer monitor and what things look like on a TV are two very different things. Are you going to buy a deck, or just use one of the cameras as the deck? You can get away w/using the camera as a deck but 1. it will be much slower than a deck (in terms of responsiveness of shutting back and forth thru the tape) and 2. it will wear out the transports in the camera much faster because camera transports aren't made to take the "abuse" that transports in a deck are. I would strongly recommend getting a deck. Have you factored in the cost of tape? What about DVD? Would they want things on DVD too? Does the church have a sound/PA system that you can tap into? If not you'll need to buy some mics, most likely wireless, so you can get usable audio. Don't forget about tripods and cases for the cameras. You'll also want to make sure that the camera/deck you choose is compatible w/FCP. A popular choice amoung pros is the Sony DSR-11 (it is DVCAM).


    Lethal
     
  4. Metatron thread starter macrumors 6502

    Metatron

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2002
    #4
    Pro DV advice needed!!!

    Last week, I produced a memorial video for a friend who passed away. A week later, I still having people tell me how great a job I did. Later, my Pastor asked just how good I was with media. I have been doing small dv projects for people for years. I can do anything with FCP 4, so I told him that I was good. Well he then asked me if I would head up producing commerical and filming the services for the Church. I have made the choice to do it but told him that we are in a pickle which is why I need your help. I know that I need FCP 4 and and the almighty G5 but what I cannot pick is the blasted cameras.

    I have given a MAX budget of $15000. 5 grand is for the computer and softwear. 10 grand for the cameras. We plan to start out with 2 cameras now, and plan to add 2 cameras later. Now the problem.....

    I want to buy camera that will be efficent in the future as well as know. Most future TV's will be widescreen, so I need a camera with true widescreen..... but the problem compounds. DV50!!! It has a better picture with a 4:2:2 ratio and I would rather use that than the older and soon to die DV25.

    1 year ago I would have picked the Canon XL1S, but now I cannot choose. I wish Canon would hurry up and release the XL2, which I am sure will have both of these features.

    Oh, and also, I would like more lines of resolutions that the 525 dv has. How can I get around that on $10,000. Help me fellow Mac brothern......please, I must give him a soultion soon.
     
  5. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #5
    Dude I gave you a nice, in-depth reply the first time you posted this question. Why have you started another thread asking the same question?

    Anyway, a DV50 camera alone, no lens just the body, is going to cost you at least 6k. DV25 is a broadcast quality format. Unless you plan on doing a significant amount of chroma keying and/or compositing I fail to see why you are so dead-set against a DV25 format (DV/MiniDV/DVCPro/DVCAM).

    Just incase you forgot about your other thread here is a link to itLink

    I would seriously consider what I wrote in the first thread, especially the last paragraph. There is no point in getting a nice camera if you don't have any money left over to pay for the cost of owning and properly operating it.


    Lethal
     
  6. Metatron thread starter macrumors 6502

    Metatron

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2002
    #6
    3CCD camera of choice?

    First off, I am a loser. I complete was unable to find that tread, I posted it in the wrong section and it was moved, and I have not recieved an email that it was responeded to. Thanks for responding again lethal.

    So what camera would you recommend. I am in love with Canons', but I will use what will better suit the needs of the church and its budget. We have considered using a canon ZR65 as a temporary deck for the two cameras should we go with DV25 and Canon XL1s or a GL2. And as for mics, well it is just mixing the Pastor along with the audience.

    I was looking to by rev. B of the Powermac G5, which I hope maxes out around 2.6, but man is it taking some time for them to come out. That is okay as I am still in the process of building the multimedia room.

    Let me shoot an idea at you Lethal. If I went with the Canon GL2, what would be my quality loss compared with the XL1S. I am not looking to do much lens changing. Plus it would be more cost efficient giving us up to 4 cameras should we price shop. On the other hand, the XL1s has a more professional look, plus it can be sholder mounted for moving around.

    The drama director for the church has some ideas for commercials that will involve alot of blue/green screen, hince the wanting of that 4:2:2 ratio. Can it be done with dv25 well enough?

    I am really good with FCP4 and the editing, but I have always been provided with the film. Now I have to oversee that too. I just do not want to spend the Church's money and kick myself in the butt later for making the wrong purchasing choice. It's not like the Church has and unlimited supply on money. I must buy wisely.

    The JVC GR-HD1 that krimson recommends is great. I am glad to see HD brought to the masses, but I am sure the quaility, HD or not, cannot match the clarity of a 3CCD camera. Correct me if I am wrong.
     
  7. solitarycow macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2004
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
  8. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #8
    Metatron,

    Sorry if I seemed like I was snapping at you in my last post. I thought you were thread spamming. If you ever lose a thread again the "search" feature (the button is in the upper right hand corner of the screen) is very useful.

    Doing a green screen w/DV25 is very doable you just have a smaller margin of error than if you were using a higher res format. The biggest key, on pun intended, is to make sure the footage was shot well. If you google for "green screen" or "chroma keying" you'll find lots of pointers on how to get the best possible footage onto tape. And if you seach "fcp" and "chroma key" you can find pointers/tutorials for how to get the best results in FCP.

    Nothing against anyone here at MR, but some place you might be able to get more informed opinions is over at creativecow.com. That is a great site w/forums for just about anything post/production related. I would probably drop into the "event videography" forum to ask about what you should buy. I'm not up on the latest cameras so I don't feel comfortable recommending specific models, but you are correct that a 3CCD will give a better overall image than a 1CCD camera. The only problems I have w/Canon cameras is their audio clock is not a exactly 48khz (which is the DV standard) so when you capture long videos (lets say anything over 20 or 30 min) onto your computer your a/v synch will start to drift. I've heard that newer canons don't have this issue anymore, and that FCP 4 is better at "catching" the synch drift and correcting it. This canon synch drift might be another Q to ask over at creativecow (they have a FCP forum too).

    I know you earmarked 5k for a G5+FCP but have you added in all the costs? It looks like you are wanting a top of the line G5 which is 3k. FCP is another grand so that is 4k for a stock G5+FCP 4. Will the remaning 1k be enough for speakers, monitors, more RAM and more HDDs?


    Lethal
     
  9. jrv3034 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2002
    #9
    The Panasonic DVX100 is the best camera in it's price range ($3500-$4000). They just came out with the updated version (DVX100A) which has improved image quality and a whole slew of features, plus the ability to shoot in 60i, 30p, 24p and 24pA, all of which FCP4 will handle with ease. It isn't 16x9 native, but it has excellent in-camera letterboxing. And even though it's DV25, you'll be able to buy all the tapes, filters, tripods, zoom controllers, batteries, cables, and audio equipment you need with the money left over.

    Seriously, this camera is impressive. If you can see one in person, by all means do so.

    Another forum full of info on this camera is DVinfo.net. Here's a direct link:

    http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/forumdisplay.php?s=&forumid=47

    Hope this helps!;)
     

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