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AF 100 verses Sony EX camera

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Mike Thomas
AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 15, 2011 at 9:24:27 pm

How would the AF100 stack up against the Sony EX1/EX3...besides not needing a 35mm adapter with the Panasonic? I realize that the Panny has a sensor A LOT bigger than the Sony but is it really that important? I just watched that new movie, Monsters, which was shot on a Sony EX3 and all things considered I thought the footage looked great. So the question is: all external things being equal which camera would you choose to shoot a feature film for DVD only viewing?


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Uli Plank
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 15, 2011 at 10:41:26 pm

Both are great – but in different ways. If you need the controlled focus of the AF100 and a huge choice of lenses, go for it. If you are into run-n-gun style and don't need a wide rage of glass, take the Sony.

Director of the Institute of Media Research (IMF) at Braunschweig University of Arts


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Mike Thomas
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 15, 2011 at 11:15:20 pm

Speaking strictly about their sensors for a moment...is there really any benefit to using the AF100's much much larger sensor when the footage is only going to DVD as an end product?


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Noah Kadner
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 16, 2011 at 2:29:49 am

Absolutely- you can achieve far shallower depth of field which is a look many folks eye's equate to better production values with a bigger sensor.

Noah

Unlock the secrets of 24p, HD and Final Cut Studio with Call Box Training. Featuring the Canon 5D Mark II and 7D.


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Rafael Amador
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 16, 2011 at 5:33:21 am

As Noah points you can get a better picture and as Uli points, if you control the situation.
In the end the F-100 (as the SLRs) is like shooting 35mm; If you have a crew and you can control action, lighting, etc, great.
If not, you may wish you chose an EX. DOF, the same that can makes awesome pictures can make your shooting miserable.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Uli Plank
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 16, 2011 at 8:02:29 am

You need to understand that the larger sensor is not about resolution, it's about aesthetics.

HD has a maximum of 1920 x 1080, which both cameras cover very well, and DVD has far less than that. Heck, you can shoot great pictures for DVD with a Canon Legria or the like – if you are into guerilla style.

Don't get an AF100 if you can't afford a focus puller!

Director of the Institute of Media Research (IMF) at Braunschweig University of Arts


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Mike Thomas
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 16, 2011 at 11:18:50 am

I understand DOF and all that. The comparison I'm trying to make is between the af100 and the Sony w/ a DOF adapter. So what you're saying is that there really isn't an advantage to the 100's larger sensor other than I woundn't have to buy a DOF adapter? This is where I'm confused.


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Arthur Aldrich
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 16, 2011 at 1:54:34 pm

More glass in front of the sensor means less light is transmitted through it.

Not sure about the adapters for the EX cameras, but a Pro35 adapter on a B4 mount will loose 2 stops. Now I need more light to make the same picture.

A bigger sensor also requires less light to make a picture, so combining a large sensor and no adapter will make the AF100 more sensitive (needing less light) than a camera with a smaller sensor and a 35mm adapter on the front.

-
Art Aldrich
OTEK TV
Leader, NJFCPUG
http://www.njfcpug.org
http://www.P2Pro.com


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Guy McLoughlin
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 16, 2011 at 2:32:57 pm

Drawbacks to using a professional DOF Adapter:

1) 1-2 F-Stops of light lost to DOF adapter

2) Total weight 3-5 times heavier than using AF-100 with equivalent lens

3) Total length of the camera package 2-3 times longer than AF-100 equivalent

4) You must be very careful to always check back-focus when setting up DOF adapter or risk soft or out-of-focus shots

...Personally I would never want to use a DOF adapter, as there are just too many disadvantages to it.


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Rafael Amador
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 17, 2011 at 2:05:14 am

I think soon will be many DOF adaptors on e-Bay.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Noah Kadner
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 17, 2011 at 4:10:41 pm

"I think soon will be many DOF adaptors on e-Bay.
rafael"

Ha I think that's been happening for the past couple of years already. I'll go one further- it's nuts to get a bolt-on DOF adapter in 2011. You can already get a better image easier with a sub-$1,000 DSLR. Times have changed.

Noah

Unlock the secrets of 24p, HD and Final Cut Studio with Call Box Training. Featuring the Canon 5D Mark II and 7D.


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Uli Plank
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 17, 2011 at 4:13:32 pm

Yep, in particular the Panasonic GH-2 – well, not really a DSLR, but EVIL. I like that acronym ;-)

Director of the Institute of Media Research (IMF) at Braunschweig University of Arts


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Peter Hall
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 17, 2011 at 12:32:05 pm

Running and gunning with the AF 101 - use a B4 2/3″ to mFT adapter - plenty of great 2/3" glass out there, including 16mm cine glass: http://www.hdwarrior.co.uk/2011/02/17/bve-show-london-day-two/

Peter Hall


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Rafael Amador
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 17, 2011 at 2:17:15 pm

WOW!!.
That looks amazing Peter.
The Ninja looks great too; the only think I don't like is that is only HDMI.
I hate it for run-n-gun.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Uli Plank
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 17, 2011 at 3:43:40 pm

Instead of vignetting you loose light – no f1.9 any more…

Director of the Institute of Media Research (IMF) at Braunschweig University of Arts


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Mike Thomas
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 17, 2011 at 9:23:03 pm

So in conclusion you're saying if I had two HD cameras, one with a small sensor (with a DOF adapter) and one with a large sensor, there would be no difference in picture quality (assuming everything else is the same, codec, processor, etc)? So really the main advantage of using a AF100 over a Sony EX3 is that no DOF adapter is needed...and the larger sensor will perform better in low light. As far as the sensor issue goes am I correct in my thinking? Are there any other pros/cons to the big/little sensor topic?

One other thought: How does the viewfinder on the AF100 compare to the Sony EX3's viewfinder? The EX3 is the only camera I've ever used and I absolutely loved the viewfinder. The one on the Panny is positioned different and looks inconvenient.


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Guy McLoughlin
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 17, 2011 at 9:55:29 pm

If you are concerned about the AF-100 viewfinder, then I would consider buying the Cineroid EVF to add on to your AF-100 camera. It's about $800 to buy.

Cineroid EVF-review


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Rafael Amador
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 18, 2011 at 2:12:15 am

[Mike Thomas] " So really the main advantage of using a AF100 over a Sony EX3 is that no DOF adapter is needed..."
The main advantage is that you are not putting nothing between the lens and the CMOS.
The DOF adapter is stealing a lot of light that you need to compensate on your scene.

[Mike Thomas] "Are there any other pros/cons to the big/little sensor topic?"
Bigger sensors need more powerful processors. You need to crunch all these pixels to 1920x1080 on the fly.
IMO this is one of the main shortcoming of DSLRs. They have not a processor optimized for video.
This is what some times makes horrible thing when shooting geometric patterns (roofs, tiles, etc).
Supposedly, the new "big-captor" video cameras has a processor optimized for the task.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Guy McLoughlin
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 18, 2011 at 4:19:14 am

[Rafael Amador] "This is what some times makes horrible thing when shooting geometric patterns (roofs, tiles, etc).

...Just to clarify things, it's the imaging sensor and how it's data is processed that has to be optimized for video in order to eliminate aliasing and moire problems in the final HD image.

Canon DSLRs have problems because of how Canon chose to reduce the sensor resolution from 18 Mpixel ( Canon 7D / 60D / T2i ) or from 21 Mpixel ( Canon 5D MK2 ) down to 1080 HD resolution which is only 2 Mpixel.

The Panasonic AF-100 and Panasonic GH-2 both use optimized solutions to properly down rez the image to 1080 HD, so they effectively have little or no aliasing and moire problems.

...My guess is that the Canon 5D MK3 will also have a proper 1080 HD solution to get rid of aliasing and moire.


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Rafael Amador
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 18, 2011 at 12:52:20 pm

Hi Guy,
Alister Chapman made some interesting tests.
I can not find the original article.
This one miss the pictures where he shows the aliasing issues, but I think contains the full text:

http://www.hdwarrior.co.uk/2010/03/12/alister-chapman-dips-his-toe-in-the-m...

rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Guy McLoughlin
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 18, 2011 at 3:12:16 pm

Thanks for the link. I expect Canon will fix all of it's video problems with the next generation. 5D MK3 looks like it will be the first with new Canon tech, I just don't understand why Canon is taking so long to fix this. ( I recently sold all my Canon gear and switched to the GH-2 )


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Uli Plank
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Mar 16, 2011 at 3:15:56 pm

Good idea! How much does it cost you to adapt PL-mount to GH2 vs. Canon 5D ?

Director of the Institute of Media Research (IMF) at Braunschweig University of Arts


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Jan Crittenden Livingston
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Feb 26, 2011 at 12:20:19 pm

[Mike Thomas] "So in conclusion you're saying if I had two HD cameras, one with a small sensor (with a DOF adapter) and one with a large sensor, there would be no difference in picture quality (assuming everything else is the same, codec, processor, etc)?"

Hi, Sorry for coming in late on this, but putting aside the sensor, there is a huge difference in the codecs between these two cameras. The EX camera uses MPEG2 and the AF100 uses MPEG4, H.264. This last is a little confusing as there are many acquisition implementations and not all are perfect for acquisition. That said, the AF100 uses a very robust implementation designed for professional work. Check out this article which compares the codecs. http://www.dvxuser.com/articles/article.php/25

Best,

Jan

Jan Crittenden Livingston
Product Manager, AVCCAM, AG-3DA1, AG-AF100
Panasonic Broadcast & TV Systems



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Uli Plank
Re: AF 100 verses Sony EX camera
on Mar 16, 2011 at 3:29:06 pm

I second this, the AVCHD encoding in the AF-10X is far ahead of amateur camcorders, don't judge it from the name only. BUT:

You won't see the difference in many situations. Both codecs still fall apart pretty soon when color grading. Unfortunately Panasonic decided to spit out 8 bit only via SDI, while Sony is giving you 10 bit. So, with the Sony you getter better footage for grading with an external recorder.

The EX-1 ist still a very tough competition for the AF-10X. Among it's advantages is the fact that the sensor is optimized for HD, while the sensor in the AF-10X is a photographic sensor. Admitted, Panasonic is doing a much better job scaling it to HD than any current DSLR. You will normally see a minor difference in resolution and aliasing in favor of the Sony only on charts. But sensitivity could be better on the large sensor if it were optimized for video. I've not yet tested the F3, but it has a large HD-res sensor and the values Sony claims for sensitivity are excellent. It comes at a price, then…

The main advantages of the AF-10X over the EX-1/3 are the large sensor and the much wider range of optics too choose from, not only µFT, but traditional photographic glass and PL-mount are easily adapted. And it's definitely a DSLR-killer – just like the GH2.

Regards,

Director of the Institute of Media Research (IMF) at Braunschweig University of Arts


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