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MXF support (specifically, DVCPRO50/HD MXF support) was not added until the 3.1 update; XDCAM MXF support was added in 3.2. Go to Help > Updates and install the updates.
I thought XDCAM used the .mp4 extension rather than .mxf. No?
Well, we're both right :) My bad for not clarifying...
XDCAM EX (card-based acquisition) uses MP4. XDCAM HD (disc-based acquisition) uses MXF. Leave it to Sony to come up with multiple ways to accomplish the same thing.
>XDCAM EX (card-based acquisition) uses MP4. XDCAM HD (disc-based acquisition) uses MXF. Leave it to Sony to come up with multiple ways to accomplish the same thing.
And Sony Clip Browser rewraps EXx/MP4 to .mxf for editing, so they're essentially the same. Leave it to Sony and their format-of-the-month club...but hey, it works for me.
How is the EX-1 with fast motion? Most of the stuff I shoot is sports, so I theoretically prefer MPEG4 to MPEG2.
Some people have issues with the cmos skew, so I'd definitely test it for your tastes and tolerance level. For what I do, it's not an issue. I've yet to break the codec with fast motion.
> I've yet to break the codec with fast motion.
That's promising. Thanks.
Thanks, Colin. It's the original encoding that concerns me. Sony can wrap it in whatever they want, but it's still macroblock-limited.
It's a shame, but I'm really loathe to ever own anything made by Sony any more. For me to buy a Sony product, the output from an EXx would have to be so superior to anything else under 10 grand that I could tell the difference blindfolded (well, maybe not blindfolded...but you get the idea).
The codec and the storage medium for the EXx cameras are two big strikes against them. The XDCAM EX codec's performance in CS4 mitigates that somewhat. But the fact that the cost of even the older EX1 is almost twice as much as an HMC150 may well be the called third strike.
I'll actually be cutting my first XDCAM EX project this coming week; footage will be shot with an EX3. I've been using CS4, and frankly haven't been too pleased with the general user experience, even with DV and DVCPROHD (my usual formats). It could be my computer--a dual-dual Xeon HP xw6400, now sporting 6GB of RAM and Vista 64--but I'm a bit concerned that that's not the only reason. It sounds like you're suggesting that XDCAM will, at least, not be any worse than DVCPROHD... that's what I'm hoping anyway.
Anyway, what was this thread about? :)
Colin, you should not have problems editing XDCAM with your system (then again, you shouldn't be having them with DV or DVCPRO either).
And Jeff, what do you see as a problem with the EX1 storage medium? SDHC cards are cheap enough to be considered expendables. The HMC150 looks interesting, too. I'd like to compare what it can do with 21Mbps vs 35Mbps. Could the AVCHD codec be that efficient?
>And Jeff, what do you see as a problem with the EX1 storage medium? SDHC cards are cheap enough to be considered expendables.
Doesn't the EX1 use some funky SxS or KxK or whatever kind of card? Unless you buy a special adapter from a guy in Australia, you can't use SDHC cards in an EX1. Did I miss an important EXx update?
>I'd like to compare what it can do with 21Mbps vs 35Mbps. Could the AVCHD codec be that efficient?
Sony's white paper acknowledged the efficiency of the AVC-In ter frame compression scheme. It was AVC-Int ra that was significantly less efficient (requiring more overhead) than MPEG2 Long GOP. At least that's how I read it.
> Unless you buy a special adapter from a guy in Australia, you can't use SDHC cards in an EX1. Did I miss an important EXx update?
That is definitely one option, the other option is to buy a Kensington card from Dell or numerous other outlets. Also Delkin has an older model that is compatible.
It boils down to buying a 16 GB SxS card for around $ 750, or to buy a Kengington adapter plus a 16 GB Sandisk UltraII SDHC card for around $ 75, with each additional SDHC card around $ 40 for an additional 55 minutes recording time in HQ.
I have 4 of those Kensington adapters here and they are still readily available at numerous shops. I don't foresee any trouble getting a couple of those. UltraII cards are available at every street corner in 16 G capacity and prices are still dropping, so that makes the EX series an economically attractive option despite the long GOP recording method.
The HMC151 as an alternative is blown away by the Sony HDR-FX1000, which in turn is blown away by the EX series. The EX is head and shoulder above the HMC151 and FX1000, leaving them in the dust. As one reviewer once remarked, you would be hard pressed to see the difference between the EX3 and PDW700. Also remember that the EX series has a "Silver" status for Discovery channel. That is telling.
Thanks for the info, Harm. "Head and shoulder...leaving them in the dust". Those imply a picture quality difference that is *easily* discernible and so different that it comfortably justifies an almost $3000 price difference. Under what conditions and using what display chain and using what footage were those comparisons made?
>It boils down to buying a 16 GB SxS card for around $ 750, or to buy a Kensington adapter plus a 16 GB Sandisk UltraII SDHC card for around $ 75
But you can't close the door for the card slot with Kensington adapter, can you?
I'm sorry - at over 6 grand (8 grand for the EX3) for the camera, I can't see showing up for a shoot or anywhere else with a cheap, slapped-on adapter hanging out of the side of the camera, and maybe held in place with duck tape. And the adapter doesn't talk to the camera except via USB, which severely limits overcranking, which is one of the nice, high-end features of the camera that helps make the cost difference between the EX1 and the HMC150 more palatable. And USB-only communication is a drawback of even the Australian guy's adapter.
Sony has set things up so that if you want the most out of their camera, you have to buy their media. Now that's telling. :)
Here's what one guy wrote in another forum;
>"ON THE SONY 6 foot plasma - the HVX200a stood out with apparently nicer colors, a more filmic look in general with it's 24p motion characteristics that have made it famous, and no artifacting that I could see. Again this was on the 6 foot Sony plasma. The EX1, while looking stunningly sharper than the hvx200a at first glance, is a mess of a camera with all sorts of issues that I really don't understand how anyone deals with. Perhaps I am a complete nut job or I had a broken EX1. I thought people were being overbearing and overexagerated with the rolling shutter, long GOP, and jellovision stories that I have read online, but it really is a serious problem. Now at first glance - on slow cuts and pans - the EX1 image seems to slam dunk the HVX except for some strange look of resolution loss or detail loss that appears to happen right after you start moving the camera for the pan - but the EX1 is so sharp that when it losses its detail (perhaps the codec lowering detail to avoid artifacts...although that of itself IS an artifact) it looks more similar to the HVX200a footage, but on fast whips and very fast handheld stuff I saw all sorts of issues and weird skews and slants that there is no way I could deal with. Philip Bloom may have some amazing images but they are all locked down and I don't do locked all the time down so this camera is out."
It's good to get a different opinion.
Here's more from me: the AVCHD footage that I'm currently editing works great as long as there are no corrupted frames in the clips. Once corruption or drops occur, it becomes a mess really quickly. Out of the 30 or so clips that I have for testing, so far 6 have been corrupted enough to be unusable at all, sometimes hanging the ImporterProcessServer for as much as an hour (60 minutes) before control returns to Pr. But control finally does return, and the corrupt clips play and edit normally after that. But only for the current session.
For clips with no corrupt or dropped frames, the editing has gone quite nicely from start to finish.
But it makes me wonder - these clips are just file transfers from the recorded solid-state media. If the recording process corrupts frames this easily and often, maybe it's best to stay away from AVCHD for now. Add that to reports of quality problems like Jim posted in #15, and I'm not so sure that DVCPROHD isn't still the way to go until the more advanced codecs become more reliable.
Harm, I was intrigued by your comment re: Discovery's "silver rating" of that camera.
I had a wander around their site but couldn't find any info.
I'm just curious to see how they perceive the various cameras to stack up. Can you direct me to more info on that?
But then again Bill, Doug openly admits in the intro to his DVD on using the ex1 that he is hired by Sony for various promo-jobs,- and as such he in some way is obliged not to...
And Jeff. You must have been misled to some extent at least. There's no "funky" K&S adapters "hanging out " of the ex1 or ex1. Just as Harm states - these adapters work flawlessly - at a fractional cost compared to Sony's proprietary S&S solution.
I'm no expert - nor do I make my living from this - but actually the ex1 blows everything away as I've experienced it. And that includes sony a1e, fony fx1, sony fx7, sony pd170, canon xl2. They're left in --- yes you guessed it -- in the dust! ;-)