2007 August 6th, 20:40
As a followup to my first post "Digital Betacam" I would like to provide you with a film clip using Betacam.
The following clips were ORIGINALLY shot using 16mm Betacam (Not Betacam SP as indicated at the website).
After arriving at the site click on any or all of the following titles:
"Diver Pokes Great White Shark Swimming By Mannequin With Pole"
"Great White Shark Swims By Mannequin And Diver With Pole"
"Great White Shark Swims Toward Rov"
"Diver Takes Mannequin Out Of Shark Cage For Great White Research"
"Diver Outside Shark Cage Pokes At Great White Swimming By"
My question for all of you is simple; in terms of picture quality, what do you think of the above film clips? Do you feel the Canon HV20 could capture the scenes just as good or even better? The clips, to me, seem very high in quality, almost film-like in their appearance.
The video clips are raw footage from an NBC mini-series aired in 1985.
Thanks everyone for your feedback!
2007 August 6th, 20:51
Personally I don't see why not. But it's real hard to make a determination with the footage being so small. I wish we could see a more higher resolution footage without registering on that site.
Edit: Underwater though the HV20 might have problems seeing...being that it's low-light performance is probably nowhere near as good as that cam. But if you are talking about general resolution...I can't tell from the small videos.
Last edited by Ian-T; 2007 August 6th at 20:58.
2007 August 6th, 21:55
'16mm Betacam' does not exist. It's either Betacam, which is Video, or 16mm film. The website you quoted clearly states that the source was 16mm film, but was remastered (i.e. copied) to Betacam video (Betacam SP is slightly better than Betacam only). And comparing film with a <10'000$ videocamera is almost impossible.
I've been working a bit with Betacam SP (mainly digitizing and converting for archiving), plus I do some work at the local tv station, which used Betacam SP in the past. I've seen a lot of footage and I must say, even though I like the 'rough' analog look of Betacam footage, the system clearly shows its age today. The lenses used are definetely more professional, but they were made for standard definition use. Betacam is standard definition. The HV20 actually has got quite a good lens (many experts say it's even better, though smaller and not so wide, than the XH-A1's one, which has a problem with chromatic aberrations). Where the HV20 may have worse low light capability, the Betacam footage has got more overall noise, even in good lighting, being an analog tape recording.
Finally I'd say: in many situations, the HV20 will outperform a Betacam. After all it's comparing SD to HD. You just need more time to tweak the settings on the HV20, as it doesn't offer a nearly as professional control as a Betacam. And you have to know the HV20's drawbacks (which, IMHO, are just a few):
- no focus ring -> rack focus almost impossible
- CMOS rolling shutter
- no 'easy' (I know there are workarounds) individual control of aperture/shutter/gain
- HDV compression