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HV20 image quality

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HV20 image quality
on Jun 11, 2007 at 4:41:53 pm

I'm interested in the HV20, the price is nice, as far as I can tell it's the cheapest camera that will shoot 24p. I like that it's 1920x1080, but I'm concerned about the single C-MOS chip. I know the C-MOS chips in canon's SLR's produce great images, but I'm curious as to how the image compares to a 3CCD camera. I know the 3chip should look better color wise, but how much better? And how much does the HDV aspect effect the image, i.e. is it sharper than say a DVX100 because it is HD, or does the compression really effect the image and all I would be gaining is 1920x1080 vs SD res? I watched the videos on Canon's website but they're H.264 compression on top of HDV so it's not really a good way to analyze image quality. Also how well does the manual focus work? Thanks for your help.

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Todd at Fantastic Plastic
Re: HV20 image quality
on Jun 11, 2007 at 6:12:17 pm

In a hurry here, but will answer just a few of your questions quickly. Have had an HV20 only a couple of weeks, have yet to really play with it a lot...

[Mattdawgpro] "how the image compares to a 3CCD camera"

In short, CMOS rocks. Has really won me over. I would say the image is very comparable to the CCDs that are in our primary camera, the XLH1.

[Mattdawgpro] "should look better color wise"

Yeah it should... but I can't tell that it does. Does a great job.

[Mattdawgpro] "how well does the manual focus work"

Fair. Not great, not good, but servicable. 'Bout like you would expect from any camcorder that doesn't have a lens focus ring. The little focus wheel is very small and takes a little getting used to.

As I have said before here, this is NOT a professional camera... it is very definitely a "home movies palmcorder" type deal, that just happens to put out an incredible picture. I'd never use it as a primary camera, but as a "B" or "C" camera or as a crashcam, it can't be beat... especially considering its throwaway $1000 pricetag.


Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.

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Re: HV20 image quality
on Aug 27, 2007 at 10:26:49 pm

We've had the camcorder for a month and have been very pleased with it for the price and size. We opted to try it since it's more portable than a larger 3CCD camcorder would have been. It really does great. We tested it against our "old" Canon Optura xi and found the colors, clarity, and the sensitivity of the light meter were excellent. We looked at the footage on a 50" plasma screen against our friends' professional tapes made with a VERY expensive HD Sony, and found it really a great match...considering we paid a LOT less. The small size might also be a problem since the buttons are small and possibly difficult for men to use, but we've gotten used to it. The sound quality is also better than the Optura.
We're happy with it.

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