Two questions: DV Quality and Canon camcorders

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by gangst, Oct 16, 2005.

  1. gangst macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    Hi there,

    I have two questions.

    Firstly is DV video good enough quality to be broadcast by a TV station? If not is there anything you can do to it to make it 'up to scratch'.

    Secondly, does anyone have an opinion on Canon MVX25i or a link to a review page.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Applespider macrumors G4

    Applespider

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    #2
    First one probably depends on which TV station, who shot the video and what lighting conditions etc were used. The smaller DVcameras don't have the large sensors etc that broadcast cameras have for better shooting under more conditions or the 3CCD sensors to allow for more accurate colours. I doubt you'd make BBC1 primetime with it but you might manage a video diary with it.

    The Canon MVX25i is an Optura 40 in other parts of the world so you might be able to find a review of that on Camcorderinfo.com (not v Safari friendly) or the french MagazineVideo.com site. IIRC, the Optura 60 is better regarded than the 40 since it has optical stabilisation and more accurate colours.
     
  3. robx2 macrumors member

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    #3
    We've had miniDV footage used on NBC Nightly News and on CNN. For news footage, they'd probably use if it was something they needed or wanted. For a produced show, forget it... unless it's reality TV, I think a lot of that is shot on miniDV.
     
  4. gangst thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    Thanks for your help, well I was planning to use the Canon MVX25i for a television station on Sky called Channel U.
    A few friends of mine make music and they want me and my friend to produce them a video for a small fee. We don't have the money for the new Sony HD DV cam or the Canon XM1 but we figured it was mid to high range and should be suitable for production of a music video, I' still in two minds if it is capable and up to scratch at the moment. But if anyone has seen Channel U they would probably have seen that the videos on there are often low budget/home produced so I am hoping that good editing will make it shine and the video quality will suffice.
     
  5. gangst thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    What are the specs for both DV video and standard definition video. An what is the Canon Optura 60 referred to as in the UK.

    Thanks again
     
  6. Applespider macrumors G4

    Applespider

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    #6
    I think the Optura 60 is the Canon mvx45? I just recall that it had jumped way out of my price range and stopped looking. I bought a Sony HC90 which I'm very happy with so far... You can see my first attempt at filming something here - bear in mind that it's pretty compressed. It looks pretty good to me on my TV.

    Not sure what you mean by specs? DVcams shoot at standard PAL or NTSC resolutions. It's the quality of the components; sensors, lenses etc that make the difference.
     
  7. gangst thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    Sorry if I didn't make it clear, by specs I meant the size of the video I know HD is 1280 x 720 or 1920 x 1080, but I wanted the video sizes for DV video and Standard definition.

    Thanks for the help so far theses forums are great.
     
  8. Applespider macrumors G4

    Applespider

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    #8
    PAL DVcams are 720 x 576 which is what you'll want in the UK
     
  9. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #9
    DV, as a format, yes it is. It's comparable to BetaSP (which has been the b'cast standard for around 20 years). *BUT* don't expect a $1000 consumer DV camera to perform like a $5000 prosumer DV camera. And don't expect a $5000 prosumer DV camera to perform like a $25,000 professional DV camera.

    Long story short, DV, as a format, is good enough for broadcast. But the DV camera you want to use might not be.


    Lethal
     
  10. Sdashiki macrumors 68040

    Sdashiki

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    #10
    Please send me a link of any reality show, shot on miniDV.

    As far as I know, if they arent using the usual DVCAMs, they are using (like fearfactor I know does) an MPEG2 camcorder, which has a gives a nice image for a cheaper cost.
     
  11. robx2 macrumors member

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    #11
    My friend shot for a few reality shows like Married for America and shot on PD-150s and XL1s. Granted it was more of the "behind the scenes" type stuff, but shot on prosumer cams nonetheless.
     
  12. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #12
    Lots of reality shows use DV (be it MiniDV, DVCAM, or DVCPro25). Some times it's a $4000 prosumer camera and sometimes it's $25,000 full sized pro camera (many times both). Of course higher budget shows like The Apprentice or Survivor will probably use higher end gear, but those are the exceptions. Cable is bursting w/reality shows that are dirt cheap to make (which is why there are so many of them).

    What camera are you referring to that FF uses?


    Lethal
     
  13. OutThere macrumors 603

    OutThere

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    #13
    In addition to the basic quality of the film, what is as or even more important in making it look 'pro' is the lighting, camera work and editing. The camera will give you images, but you have to light things well and keep the camera steady (or intentionally jouncy, which is hard to do nicely) to get it to look good. Depending on the specific film, it can be argued that good sound is even more important than good video. Basically, someone who wants to take the time to do something well on a $400 consumer camera can make something infinitely better than someone who does a rush job with the best equipment money can buy.

    Lecturing aside, most midrange cameras will, in good balanced lighting, give you good enough image quality for some broadcast TV, but you cannot get the same look and feel as, say, NBC nightly news with pretty much any MiniDV camera.
     
  14. Sdashiki macrumors 68040

    Sdashiki

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    #14
    I doubt anyone uses miniDV for broadcast.

    but DV yes of course DVCAM etc is nice and a good bitrate.

    But miniDV, I doubt it.

    Anyway, I wish I could google "fear factor shoots with what camcorder" but all you get is a buncha of people with "the fear factor of buying a new camcorder"

    I believe I read this over at Creative Cow, and when you watch the show u can sometimes see the camera, so I confirmed it that way. But I know they use some sort of mid level pro camera that shoots in MPEG2 for direct broadcast. I think.
     
  15. aloofman macrumors 68020

    aloofman

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    #15
    The only difference between DV and miniDV is the size of the cassette. The tape inside is the exact same specs. DVCAM is also the same tape, except it's recorded at a higher speed/rate to reduce dropouts.
     
  16. aloofman macrumors 68020

    aloofman

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    #16
    As the others mentioned, "broadcast quality" is not a precise term. Many news programs accept footage shot on DV and sometimes it's the only footage available. It's really a matter of whether the footage looks and sounds good enough to show to the audience. Some cruddy amateur footage is still used if the content is compelling, for example the home videos of the witnesses to the asian tsunami last year. And numerous lower-budget shows (like reality TV) are shot on DV, but not because the footage is equal to the other formats. It's because it's cheaper, and also because some of these shows are intentionally trying to look "gritty" or "real" and are therefore avoiding an image that looks too polished. DV cameras are smaller and more portable, so more of them can be positioned in smaller areas to capture events that seem more candid.

    All other things being equal, DV is NOT as good to Betacam SP or Digibeta or some of the other common broadcast formats. The compression especially limits color resolution in ways that can be very noticeable. (For example, the compressed color information makes it very difficult to shoot DV with a green screen. So many bits are dropped out that the borders tend to be sketchy.)

    DV is a prosumer format whose big advantages are an all-digital workflow, portability and cost. There are times when the quality difference is so large that DV isn't suitable for broadcast. But in skilled hands and for some purposes, it can be close enough.
     
  17. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #17
    The company I currently work for, among other things, shoots and edits behind the scenes specials for major films that are b'cast (Sci-Fi Channel and HBO most commonly) and we use prosumer MiniDV & DVCAM cameras extensively as b-cameras.

    Here is a link to a thread mentioning two shows on HGTV that are shot on MiniDV or DVCAM. Link

    Also many, many documentaries are shot on DV25.


    aloofman,
    Both DV and DVCAM have large and small sized tapes and, like you said, the only differences between the formats are relatively minor (DVCAM supports locked audio, records at a higher tape speed, and uses higher quality tape). All other things being equal, though, DV and BetaSP are comparable formats in terms of image quality. Link


    Lethal
     
  18. aloofman macrumors 68020

    aloofman

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    #18
    I'm familiar with the comparisons. As a video producer, I mix DV and BetaSP footage all the time. For cost, portability, and all-digital editing, DV wins. But for certain things like chroma key and non-ideal field conditions, BetaSP is still better. Having said that, we still shoot and master many projects on BetaSP only because the clients demand it. If we could pocket the savings by doing it all on DV, then we would.
     

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