Mikamuro However, shooting HD in order to future proof rushes and down converting the edit meantime to SD is becoming a popular compromise workflow throughout the transition period to HD. Environmental Parameters Min Operating Temperature. Had the DSR launched 2 years ago, HD would have not affected a purchase decision but now it does, whether we like it or not. DJI Osmo Pocket is a supersmart, fully stabilized point-and-shoot camera. Skin Dse Detail can check color and contrast in three parameters for special shooting requirements.
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The model number progression from the old DSR to the new DSR initially causes confusion by going numerically backwards and being closer to the model number of the non widescreen version, the DSR, which is a more logically numbered replacement for the DSR The improvements include an increase in the signal to noise ratio from 61dB to 63dB and smear being improved from dB to dB. Low light performance remains the same with sensitivity quoted as F11 at lux.
It is disappointing to see the same 1. This line viewfinder is acceptable for filming, however in , the letterbox blanking area reduces the number of effective horizontal lines in the picture area making focusing more difficult. The information displayed whilst toggled in the status display mode is similar to that found on the backlit LCD on the side of the old DSR Like the viewfinder, the LCD is also aspect, which results in recordings being letterboxed, again making the effective picture area very small and low resolution.
The flip out panel initially looks a good physical size, but at least an inch of width is wasted by four buttons, which could have been relocated to the actual body, making way for a larger widescreen LCD in place of the unit.
As you would expect, focus and aperture adjustments cannot be accurately judged on a colour LCD of this size with low pixel resolution. Audio The supplied microphone is the same as before with the same mounting arrangements except that the front XLR socket is now located lower down on the camera body thus necessitating a slightly longer XLR cable when fitting your own microphone.
Sound recording controls and switches are similar to before. I checked the new menu system on the DSR to see if Sony had added input sensitivity settings like Panasonic have on their comparable model cameras. Panasonic allow you to set the inputs at 40db, 50db and 60db, Sony still do not have such a feature and is missing from the DSR menu. This lens from Canons professional range is a well matched weight balance for the DSR body.
Fitting my own Canon J17ex7. The YJ19 picture looks slightly softer when interchanging with my J17 lens between test shots, and of course has less angle of view at the wide angle end. Flaring is good on both lenses. The only quality issue that I have experienced is chromatic aberration, this is a normal limitation of zoom lens technology and produces a blue fringe on high contrast edges under certain conditions on both lenses.
Having been used to the J17 for the last 2 years, the zoom servo speed on the YJ19 seems very slow in comparison. The V mount Sony batteries are not stackable however, that is of little concern with batteries of enormous 95Wh capacity, which incidentally is near the maximum Lithium Ion capacity available that complies with IATA International Air Transport Association transport regulations for regular aircraft transportation.
The new chassis build quality of the DSR is very solid and robust. It feels bulkier than the DSR with the camera body being wider, particularly at the back end. The handle has a chunky rubberised feel in comparison to the traditional hard metal feel. Tapes now load from the top direct into the camera body, unlike the DSR where the tape drawer hinged out from the side of the camera body which sometimes interfered with audio or monitor cables.
Shoulder Pad The shoulder pad is smaller than before and now has almost 1 inches travel backwards and forwards to suit the operators comfort. The pad is moveable by a simple clip that does not require tools to operate. The shoulder pad material is now a harder foam type material in comparison to the previous full-length excellent softer air cushioned rubber. For me the previous pad feels more comfortable but I personally did not find any notable comfort issues having operated the DSR for several hours at a time on four different shoots.
An SDI output is available from the camera via an optional board. A Firewire connector exists as before and offers the final output option. The headphone socket has been relocated from the higher handle position on the DSR to a more convenient lower position near the back of the operator side of the DSR Memory Settings A Sony Memory Stick slot is a new addition which allows quick transfer of user customised menu settings, particularly useful in multi camera or multi operator situations given that the new menu system has more options of customisation than before, now totalling a seemingly never ending 79 pages!
Accessing the standard user menu starts by bringing up 9 pages with the most commonly used items listed such as changing from to , dial in white balance settings and so on. The remaining 70 pages are accessed from the advanced menu by holding the menu wheel button at the same time as flicking the menu switch. The advanced menu gives options to customise the existing standard user menu pages and a further 11 blank pages so you can arrange the menu items as you wish.
A further 59 advanced pages and the standard 20 user pages are accessed all under one menu option or under sub menu options named: Operation, Paint, Maintenance, File and Diagnosis. The level of customisation really is quite incredible. Some of the new menu options include adjustment of Gamma curves, Knee points and slopes, Dynamic Contrast Control, Edge detail and a more advanced 3-point skin detail system to list just a few. With knowledge of how these settings work there is more scope than before to preserve detail in shadows and highlights to increase the video dynamic range.
New Progressive 25P Shooting Mode Another new feature to the DSR is 25P progressive recording which adds to the realism of simulating a cinematic film look when combined with the various scene file adjustments. Sony has released an excellent white paper, which explains a number of camera technical terms in an easy to read and understand manner. A copy is available at: www. The DSR now has a new electronic daylight colour correction system, which is engaged by a push button separate to the filter wheel.
There is now a much finer and more accurate incremental adjustment to white balance settings which go up or down in as low as tiny 4K steps compared to jumping in K to K steps at a time as is the case with the older DSR depending on filter wheel position and WB range. The ability still exists to go into the menu and change indoor and outdoor white balance preset by dialling in the user-determined setting.
The level of control is more precise due to the smaller incremental steps available. The white balance temperature in degrees Kelvin now displays permanently in the viewfinder even when auto white balance is set or when setting a custom white balance to memory, the temperature will display as the camera hunts to lock onto a reading.
The side panel near the back of the operator side of the camera houses a similar range of physical switches to that of the DSR The improved ergonomics and better weight balance towards the back of the camera makes the DSR handling and operation slightly more comfortable than its predecessor. I must admit my eyes could not see any obvious difference comparing the DSR picture quality with that of the DSR The pictures were stunning and very clean with low noise but then again so are the pictures from the DSR Whilst I do not doubt the improvements to the paper specification that Sony claim, I would have required more time with the camera before it was required to go to IBC.
I did find myself pushing up the white balance to slightly warmer in between settings than the standard K setting I normally use for direct sunlight and K setting for overcast conditions.
Tweaking up to K or K or any exact setting in between is a breeze with the DSR and its increased WB control allows you to get colours spot on or tweak them in a particular direction to achieve a deliberate creative effect. The white balance capabilities are the best I have seen on any camera and gives the operator maximum control and assurance always seeing what the camera is giving you.
The colour LCD is a very handy aid for doing a rough check on your white balance when you do not have an external monitor on location. I say rough because being LCD and 2. Naturally the LCD is less useful outdoors where it is more difficult to see in bright daylight conditions. The LCD and viewfinder both being models is the biggest disappointment with the package given this camera is otherwise designed for optimum performance in After letterboxing the viewfinder and LCD to display , the image is really too small to judge focus in difficult conditions.
Users would not expect to be able to set focus or exposure accurately based on the image on the small low resolution colour LCD screen, however users would always expect to do so with the supplied high resolution black and white viewfinder. Setting exposure does not cause any difficulty particularly when using zebra. It is setting focus that can be challenging when shooting in widescreen.
I quickly adopted a work around when I first got my DSR by forcing the viewfinder to display in full height anamorphic regardless of recording in widescreen. This has the effect of making the picture appear vertically stretched which is not ideal but does make the image fill the whole viewfinder. This is a temporary distortion that you learn to live with by compensating for the distortion in your head. Strangely, this option is not available in the new and otherwise improved menu system found on the DSR The new menu setting that controls the viewfinder aspect now only has 2 options: and Auto.
The option that previously existed on the DSR is now gone making the work-a-round technique impossible. Another feature missing from the DSR is a switch that toggles the timecode display in the viewfinder from total record duration to scene record duration. Scene duration is handy for timing individual shots when you know the minimum shot durations typically required for editing.
There is a common tendency on a shoot when stress levels are running high for the camera operator to speed up which results in shots not being held long enough.
With so much buzz about High Definition within the industry and all the manufacturers trying to sell us their new HD product lines, surely Sony expected the question to be asked. Sony set a new benchmark in feature set for the money when they launched the HVR-Z1E, which not only brought native widescreen to an affordable price level but also delivered HDV for not much more than the cost of a PD However, shooting HD in order to future proof rushes and down converting the edit meantime to SD is becoming a popular compromise workflow throughout the transition period to HD.
Had the DSR launched 2 years ago, HD would have not affected a purchase decision but now it does, whether we like it or not. With the amount of depreciation on equipment there is in this industry, buyers want to get the maximum number of years out of their kit to get a healthy return on their investment.
Buying an SD only camera in this day and age would hardly seem like future proofing your investment when who knows what is just around the corner whether from Sony or another camera manufacturer.
The DSR is a good step forward with improvements made to; ergonomics, white balance, picture performance, ND filters, a new highly advanced image control and new features such as the flip out colour LCD panel and 25P, however not everything is forward progress, there are some steps backwards from the DSR feature set to consider.
Output options are also restricted with S output being missing from the new chassis design. The loss of the timecode scene duration display is relatively minor but is an unnecessary omission all the same. The viewfinder remains the biggest personal disappointment of mine, the letterboxed image is really smaller than is ideal for focusing in difficult circumstances. Not being able to force full height anamorphic on the viewfinder to display more picture lines to aid focusing is a step backwards from being able to do this on the DSR This could likely be corrected by a software upgrade to the menu system or better still if Sony offered the option of supplying a viewfinder without pushing up the price significantly.
With all the fuss about high definition and the increasing number of low cost HD equipped camcorders entering the marketplace it is unfortunate timing that Sony launched this SD camera amongst all this HD frenzy. However, such decisions are no doubt inevitably based on marketing, political and environmental factors rather than technical issues.
All Sony representatives will commit to saying at this moment in time is they have no concrete plans to develop a full size HDV camcorder at present. For new buyers the decision comes down to the kind of work you do and how you view HD will impact on your clients and projects needs over the next few years.
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