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Sony PMW 500

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Alan Grattan
Sony PMW 500
on Jul 27, 2012 at 7:51:59 pm

Hi, can any one offer any advice in regard to the scene settings of this camera. I have dialed in Alan Robert's settings (BBC), and not happy with results. I have settled on hyper-gamma 3 in an attempt to leave the footage where it needs a basic grade. Strangely though on a shoot yesterday i got a horrible red/brown cast from the camera, which colour corrected ok but with a lot of hassle... overcast sky gave me a 5.4k white balance, but cannot explain the weird colour results. I am using a Fuji HA 13x4.5. Any advice and or opinions would be great. Thanks


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Robin Probyn
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Jul 28, 2012 at 3:39:36 am

I have the same camera and have used the BBC settings.. but now looking at the hyper gamma,s.. I have been using a Panasonic camera with film rec before the 500.

From what I can tell,according to Sony anyway.. HG3 is for low light situations where you want the mid tone levels to be brought up.. and HG4 is for general max dynamic range use.. both are 109% ..white.

HG1/2 doing the same as 3/4 but 100% white..

Don't know if the HG3 would give you a red/brown cast though even in a non low light level situation .. I wouldn't think so.. what were you shooting when you got that color shift.. or it was the whole day..? how does it look on the little side monitor..

Or its a camera fault.. does it happen all the time on all settings..



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Alan Grattan
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Jul 29, 2012 at 8:32:41 pm

Hi sorry for tardy reply.

Just double checked the camera settings for that shoot and the camera was indeed set to standard gamma R709. I just dont have the time or expertise to be grading the pictures.
I have used hyper gammas before and they also have produce a slight red cast at times. The camera produced excellent images on interior shoots but seems to be very sensitive to exterior conditions.

I have read before that sonys need much tweaking before a "nice" picture can be produced.

I was shooting interviews when this issue arose and to be honest don't use the cameras monitor for judging white balances. I have the audio levels displayed on that. Perhaps I should check it more often!!
That particular morning started of with gvs and there seemed to be a very slight red cast over all the pics. Later the same morning I shot a couple of interviews and the red cast was worse.
I did redo a white balance before the interviews.

re hyper gammas... I was filming today and used HG 3, and was much happier with the results. The strange thing is that I did nothing different... ie white balanced and shot away. I have shot on digibeta for years and never had this weird issue...

This is a helpful guide to hyoer gammas --- http://www.sony.co.uk/biz/content/id/1219237429204/section/broadcast?articl...

I was in email contact with a cameraman from the states re the pmw 500, and he did mention shading the camera to the lens as very important. I have looked this up on utube and yea it does make a lot of sense. I am looking for someone who can carry out this procedure for me here in Ireland. I would imagine that it may rectify the issue. I suppose I was looking for a quick fix!

Any other suggestions?


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Robin Probyn
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Jul 30, 2012 at 12:45:25 am

There is an auto black shading function in the maintenance menu under Lens..

I usually just us the preset white, 3200.. 5,600 and only do a white balance if there is sodium light etc around.. don't know if the original WB you did that day gave the pic a red look.. ? why don't you try preset white and see what happens.. or just reset all your settings and start again.. incase something got set wrong along the line..

I guess there are no rules but HG3 is supposedly for low light conditions.. I heard from one guy who says he shoots HG4 outside and HG3 for interiors..

Thanks for the link



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Alan Grattan
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Jul 30, 2012 at 1:05:20 am

I have executed the auto black shading and it has not helped. I too have tried using the preset 5600 and while the preset 3200 is fine, the 5600 look terrible. I know the preset can be adjusted and am currently testing that. I was very used to using the digi betas 6300 preset .. it always produced exactly what your eye would see regardless of time of day temp changes. my lack of understanding of how shading works is not helping the situation, but from my limited research it involves using waveforms/vector scopes to adjust the cameras green/red/blue channels to compensate for different lens characteristics ... I'm not sure if this is the answer but if not I may have as you suggested, a faulty camera! if I learn anymore, I will post details.


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Robin Probyn
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Jul 30, 2012 at 4:47:26 am

There are some scary settings for off setting the whire balance for each ND filter !! can't think why anyone would use them but they must as its in the menu.. could one of these settings have been adjusted by mistake..

If your used to 6300K then the 5600K should actually be bluer than you are used to.. or what ever you are looking at the footage on is not set right..

What about another lens.. same problem.. that would take out the shading aspect..



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Alan Grattan
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Jul 30, 2012 at 7:03:23 am

thanks for all the suggestions ...
i have reset the camera on a many occasions as went wrong in my settings challange.... tried different lens and strangly got slghtly different results, one offering slightly less red cast but not natural enough... again my lack of knowledge and understanding leads me here... ... what your suggesting re bluer pics is correct however preset on my 500 offers a slightly green cast!!! ... I found this out to my utter horror on its maidan voyage a while back! if you not having an issue with preset 5600, it starting to sound that my camera needs its channels properly setup....

have just organized with another cameraman who reciently purchased a 500 to take it for a few hours today to double check settings ... will let you know.


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Robin Probyn
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Jul 30, 2012 at 7:58:37 am

Ok yes please let me know how it goes..

I don't know much on the techie side either.. only thing I knew was that Sony camera,s tended to more amber and more saturated colors than Pana. but like you I loved my digibeta and was always being told I had a great set up but actually i hadn't changed any of the color settings and always shot preset WB..

I used 3 500,s so far.. and no problems reported about colors being off.. 99% of shots on preset 3200 ,4300 or 5600 I just bought my own in May.. so far have just put the detail setting to minus 10.. and black gamma minus 10 mid high.. but might crank that up a bit with a good monitor on hand.. and using HG4.. which automatically disables all the Knee stuff..and step gamma.. and some interiors HG3..

But yes would be interested to see what someone else does with your camera.. I wonder as the CC is electric ,,if there is something wrong with your camera..because you shouldn't be having these cloud problems in preset.. and menu,s all reset.. doesn't make sense..

Good luck



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Alan Grattan
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Aug 29, 2012 at 12:49:47 pm

Hi Robin,

Very sorry for tardy response.. Since I last posted, the camera has gone back to Sony (under their Prime Support) for checking. I am still waiting on their reply.

I have tested the lens with other cameras, and had it checked out by a lens repair company, and can be 100 percent sure the lens is not the cause of the weird colours. I did read somewhere (cannot find that particular post now) that one of the ccds could have developed a leak, resulting in many errors, one being a colour shift.

I will be sure to revert when Sony have offered the results of their testing.


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Robin Probyn
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Aug 29, 2012 at 1:39:14 pm

Hi Alan

Thanks for your reply sir.. yes would be interested to know what the final outcome..

Thanks again

Robin



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Alan Grattan
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Sep 6, 2012 at 6:25:31 pm

hi Robin,
I received a call from a Sony engineer explaining the delay in me receiving back the camera. he told me that he is replacing the chip block and is awaiting the part. his English was poor enough but what I understud was he could not get the camera within spec using the preset white balances. I will report more when I recieve the camera back and hopefully along with a report. on the bright side, he also told me it was the first 500 he has recieved into service with a fault.
Alan


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Robin Probyn
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Sep 6, 2012 at 10:14:05 pm

wow so your camera went all the way back to Japan ? glad to hear its the only one !! but a pain for you !!

Thanks for getting back to me

Robin



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Alan Grattan
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Sep 17, 2012 at 9:04:19 pm

Hi Robin,

Your not going to believe the hassle I've been having with Sony Prime Support. The were late by one week picking up the camera, supposedly due to courier error. I initially received a call from an engineer stating the chip block needed to be replaced, and I would have the camera back within a few days.

This was followed up a week days later with another call (after many messages demanding an explanation for the delay) from a different engineer stating that the chip block was not being replaced, and the camera was still receiving bench testing!

And today another call from the assistant manager stating that the camera had failed its final check and was due for more bench testing. After pressing him for an explanation, I was pretty much dismissed, and am still waiting a call back from the manager. He had no response to me when I explained the costs being incurred with camera hire.

I called the retailer from whom I purchased the camera and he is express couriering a replacement camera to me as I type. He too was shocked by Sonys treatment of this case...

I will keep you updated if you wish... bit of a mess and absolutely no confidence in with sony equipment or after sales...


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Robin Probyn
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Sep 17, 2012 at 10:14:24 pm

wow sounds a bit of a nightmare.. did the camera get sent back to Japan.. or is this all in the UK /US..

sounds like they cant find the fault and no body knows what to do.. no good for you of course.. yes let me know how it goes.. sounds like you have been unlucky..good luck !!



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Robin Probyn
Re: Sony PMW 500
on Aug 24, 2012 at 12:26:34 am

Alan.. any news on your camera set up..?



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