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Need advice for best Green Screen Camera

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Ray Kiernan
Need advice for best Green Screen Camera
on Apr 1, 2011 at 9:44:07 pm

Hello
We are a church with a small studio doing green screen and wanting to produce a TV magazine type show. We are using the Adobe Premiere Ultra virtual sets to do this and then final editing in Adobe Premiere.
We are looking to upgrade our camera from a canon xl1s to an HD camera. We have about a 3000 to 5000 dollar budget for the camera.
I have been looking at a used panasonic hpx 170 or a sony ex1 as possible cameras for greenscreen production.
Are there other cameras that would be better for greenscreen in this price range, what would be best for us. Also would going out the sdi output and getting capture equipment be a route we should take.
Thanks for all your help


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Noah Kadner
Re: Need advice for best Green Screen Camera
on Apr 2, 2011 at 4:29:18 am

Sure both the EX1 and HVX200 are more than capable of shooting good green screen. Personally I'd lean toward the HVX because it arguably has a less compressed signal. Have you considered something like this- makes getting good composite shots much much simpler.

http://www.reflecmedia.com

Because the next thing I was going to say is any decent camera can shoot good green screen, the real trick is setting up and lighting good green screen.

Noah

Unlock the secrets of 24p, HD and Final Cut Studio with Call Box Training. Featuring the Panasonic GH2 and Canon 7D.


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Chris Tompkins
Re: Need advice for best Green Screen Camera
on Apr 2, 2011 at 1:38:08 pm

You'll love the HPX170 for you price range. It's a real bargain.

Chris Tompkins
Video Atlanta LLC


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Matthew Sonnenfeld
Re: Need advice for best Green Screen Camera
on Apr 2, 2011 at 4:48:04 pm

I would second the HPX170. The chroma resolution of both the HPX170 and the HVX200 is twice that of the EX1 so that will give you greater control green screening and they're both plenty sharp. But between the two, if you aren't planning on shooting tape (and with the lowered cost of P2), the HPX170 is a more feature packed camera. Serious bang for your buck.

Panasonic HPX170 P
2008 Unibody Macbook Pro 15 inch, 2.8 Ghz, 4GB RAM
CalDigit VR
Final Cut Pro Studio 3
Avid Media Composer
The College of WIlliam and Mary


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Ray Kiernan
Re: Need advice for best Green Screen Camera
on Apr 3, 2011 at 1:23:45 am

Hello Everyone
Thanks so much for all your input
Will the regular ouput of the HPX 170 which I think is 4:2:0 give me a good green screen or
I have read in different threads that: The HD-SDI output of the HPX170 is 4:2:2 and uncompressed.
Is this what I should be doing the keying in?
And what is the most cost effective method to do this what are the best capture options


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Matthew Sonnenfeld
Re: Need advice for best Green Screen Camera
on Apr 3, 2011 at 2:03:55 am

You may be confusing the HPX170 with the EX1. The HPX170 shoots in DVCPRO HD, which is always 4:2:2, to P2 cards in camera. If you are planning on shooting SD, then the HPX170 will also shoot DVCPRO 50 which is also always 4:2:2. The EX1 however is what records 4:2:0 in camera and will only shoot 4:2:2 through SDI out to an external recorder such as the KiPro or KiPro Mini. Yes, the SDI out in the HPX170 will give you higher quality as it can be recorded at higher bit rates and using any compression you choose, but you do not need that to get 4:2:2 and effective chroma keying.

Having said that, I have seen quality keying off of the EX1 from in camera recordings. But I personally trust P2 over SxS, I like the Panasonic look over a Sony, the 5 year warranty on P2 products is excellent, and the ergonomics of the HPX170 destroy the EX1.

Both cameras will give you good results but if your question is simply which camera will give you better green screen results, then at least on paper, the HPX170 is probably the way to go. You will have the greater chroma resolution in both HD and SD, you will be saving money, and have the stability of P2.

Panasonic HPX170 P
2008 Unibody Macbook Pro 15 inch, 2.8 Ghz, 4GB RAM
CalDigit VR
Final Cut Pro Studio 3
Avid Media Composer
The College of WIlliam and Mary


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Adrian Jans
Re: Need advice for best Green Screen Camera
on Apr 4, 2011 at 4:38:33 pm

I would go with an HPX170 over an HVX200(a) in this situation because of the HPX170's built in waveform monitor, which will make it a lot easier to measure how even and bright your lighting is. Plus its just an all around great camera (picked one up recently myself).


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Nate Stephens
Re: Need advice for best Green Screen Camera
on Apr 4, 2011 at 7:00:57 pm

Take a look. SDI and the HPX500 has made green screen chroma key a bunch easier. No matched RGB cables, no trying to pull a key from a composite. And yes it would be nice to have all LightPanels LED lighting. No extra plugins or extras just SDI to AJa to Final Cut. To view the larger version visit http://www.Laughter-Rx.com. Leave a note for Traci, booking her next gig or commenting on her clip.

Tvsv-TraciP-AWIB-2011-iPh



HPX500 SDI into Aja Kona LHi that is in my Mac Pro using just Apple Final Cut Pro. All this is shot in our green screen 10'x22' insert stage using 5 gelled 150 watt hanging yard lamps and six "tuff Spun" wrapped balanced fluorescent grow lights.

I have a walk-in, flip the switch Final Cut Pro Key stage. Any church should be able to build the Unistrut Light grid, hang some Ebay green screen and the grow lights. A good used HPX170 using the SDI would be perfect considering its' wider lens.

FCP, Mac Pro, Mac Book Pro, HPX500, HVX200, Betacam, Dvcam
Write for the Edit, Shoot for the Edit, Edit.....KISS Principle


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