The Official Sony HDR-CX550V Owners thread - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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post #61 of 2288 Old 02-01-2010, 07:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stacy View Post

Ya things are gonna be smaller in general. i have absolutely no use for wide angle except on still shots. I do alot of animal/nature vids---especially at night. Wide angle makes everything painfully smaller. This will not let me get real close to animals that don't let you or want you close to them.


Stacy, I could not agree with you more! I also use my zoom a lot for all my wildlife videos and believe it or not I even bring my teleconverter 1.7x lens with me to use with my CX520V (an my monopod).

I can not also believe that Sony would come out with this nice camera and such a short focal length and only 10x optical zoom & not ofter their Sony G 12x zoom lens as an option??

On the rare occasions I sometimes do put my widefield lens 0.7x lens when it calls for.

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post #62 of 2288 Old 02-01-2010, 07:12 PM
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I just use my 0.7x wide lens when capturing in house family shots which gives me 30mm focal length on my CX520V which is very close to the 29.8mm focal length of the CX550V. This way the camera is much more versatile.

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post #63 of 2288 Old 02-01-2010, 09:57 PM
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The zoom is good enough for me, sample here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i9kKpUnRxy8

Wide angle sample http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=abXxz1QQNZY

If you want more zoom just buy tele lens, i prefer wide angle for landscape(travling) and for indoors or shooting people with scene around them, i dont even use my canon HD camcorder anymore because the lens are not wide enough for my test and i refuse to buy lens
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post #64 of 2288 Old 02-01-2010, 10:09 PM
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I'm sitting on the fence right now between the Sony HDR-CX550V and the Canon Vixia HF S21. I consider the Canon's second SD card slot to be important down the road when the internal storage inevitably will fail (all flash will fail eventually).

We won't know for sure how the two camcorders fare until some reviews of the Sony are in.
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post #65 of 2288 Old 02-02-2010, 12:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheBum View Post

I'm sitting on the fence right now between the Sony HDR-CX550V and the Canon Vixia HF S21. I consider the Canon's second SD card slot to be important down the road when the internal storage inevitably will fail (all flash will fail eventually).

We won't know for sure how the two camcorders fare until some reviews of the Sony are in.

What would be different about using the Sony SD slots?

Rick
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post #66 of 2288 Old 02-02-2010, 12:51 AM
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I think TheBum is under the impression that the CX550V has only internal flash memory or something, which is not the case.

Otherwise, he would be referring to slot failures, which I would very much doubt would be a common failure issue on flash cams (I've never heard of one on either camera or camcorder).
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post #67 of 2288 Old 02-02-2010, 04:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheBum View Post

I'm sitting on the fence right now between the Sony HDR-CX550V and the Canon Vixia HF S21. I consider the Canon's second SD card slot to be important down the road when the internal storage inevitably will fail (all flash will fail eventually).

We won't know for sure how the two camcorders fare until some reviews of the Sony are in.

The Sony should have the internal memory and an external slot which apparently takes either SD or Sony chips. Unless the slot fails (I guess that could happen on any cam) at the same time as the internal (same comment), I'm not sure I get the point. By the time that becomes an issue, the chips you can put in the slot will be so big it will make up for any internal chip loss.

If you're thinking about duty cycle failure (as many writes as the technology supports) vs other failures, hard to believe any of us would keep our cams long enough to have that happen. Unless you film 24/7 and keep overwriting the same chip!
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post #68 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 12:53 AM
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I am from Hong Kong.

I know from the official site in Hong Kong and find the following 2 things:

1. The optical stabiliser needs to be closed when 29.8mm wide is used.

2. Photo shot cannot be taken simultaneously when 24Mb/s is used.

Would anybody advise whether these 2 points are very important disadvantages? I hesistate to preorder one when I see these 2 points on the official site in Hong Kong.
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post #69 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 05:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andysmile View Post

1. The optical stabiliser needs to be closed when 29.8mm wide is used.

Is this piece of info correct? No stabilization at the widest end? That's disastrous!
But if that's true, what I fail to understand is, when can we switch the OIS on? At 30mm??
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post #70 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 07:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheBum View Post

I'm sitting on the fence right now between the Sony HDR-CX550V and the Canon Vixia HF S21. I consider the Canon's second SD card slot to be important down the road when the internal storage inevitably will fail (all flash will fail eventually).

We won't know for sure how the two camcorders fare until some reviews of the Sony are in.

I am not sure if I understand the logic. Coming off of a HDR-HC3 with a failed tape mechanism, I did not go for tape again, or internal hard drive, because in my eyes those will fail much sooner than flash chips. And I find it hard to believe that flash memory will fail very soon.
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post #71 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 08:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Gull View Post

A caveat that AVCHD editing requires more horsepower than the MPEG-2 files I'd bet the HC3 used (I had an HC7). Essentially, it's a form of sticker shock as you look at other HW/SW to get. But you may already be covered.

Otherwise, comparing against my HC7, the Sony CX500V easily outperforms it in almost all categories. I'm hedging there because I'm certain something small must be less attractive about the 500, though I can't name it offhand. The few complaints people had about the 500 seem to have been handled with the 550 series, and I think the lens performance (wide angle vs zoom) might be about the same as the HC3. The new camcorders are significant improvements over the old HC series, in my opinion.

I totally agree. My CX520 is a great improvement on my old HC3. I actually posted a message in the CX500-CX520 forum about this.

Now I need to find a way to get my old miniDVs on my computer since my HC3 tape mechanism is broken. I was looking at Sony's miniDV player (walkman?) on ebay, and it is around $700-$800 range. Just crazy.
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post #72 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 08:29 AM - Thread Starter
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So I've been looking over this direct to external hard drive copy feature. I read the fine print at sony and it says this:

Quote:
Requires USB 2.0 connection via VMC-UAM1 cable (sold separately), AC power for camcorder, and hard drive formatted in FAT-32. Connection via USB-hub not supported. External HHD/USB media should be less than 2TB(Terabytes).

I guess I can't use the 2TB drive I was going to order. Better stick with a 1.5 for now? Well actually a 2 TB drive will end up being 1.9-something so it might be ok?

The more I look into this I see that the camera can only copy to FAT-32 not NTFS. FAT32 only goes up to 2 TB. The Western Digital 2TB drives come formatted in NTFS apparently so i'm screwed
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post #73 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 08:41 AM - Thread Starter
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I guess the Western Digital external drives need some kind of virtual software to be used to access it. So the camera might not be able to see it anyway.

I'm reading the seagate drives have a TON of failures, not interested in that. Don't know what to get now

I think I might get the WD to connect to my laptop and if I find I need another external storage device I'll get one of those tiny portable ones that hold like 250 gig for on the road stuff.
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post #74 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 08:42 AM
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Well a couple good and bad things. I posted in post #45 that I had ordered this camera from Sony's website on 1/1/10 for the MSRP of $1299.00 because it said it was shipping 2/1/10. I was willing to pay MSRP to get it quickly.

As I feared in post #49, the selling of this camera for immediate shipment on 2/1/10 was a "technical error" on the Sony website and they have not received any cameras to ship as of yet. However, this morning my shipping status changed to 2/4/10. So I called Sony again. As expected, they still don't really know what is going on with my specific order and maintain the cameras are coming in in March. They said I am classified as a pre-order in their system and my order will be filled with the pre-orders. Who knows. I was going to cancel citing that I would just order from Amazon but they did however offer match Amazon.com's current price. So I am sticking with my order for now but it does not look like I am going to have any review on the camera by Monday.
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post #75 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 08:54 AM
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http://www.sonystyle.com.hk/ss/produ...r_xr550e_e.jsp

The above address showed that no stabilization at the widest end.

Would anybody have any advice?


Quote:
Originally Posted by noobie2010 View Post

Is this piece of info correct? No stabilization at the widest end? That's disastrous!
But if that's true, what I fail to understand is, when can we switch the OIS on? At 30mm??

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post #76 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 08:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nash123 View Post

I totally agree. My CX520 is a great improvement on my old HC3. I actually posted a message in the CX500-CX520 forum about this.

Now I need to find a way to get my old miniDVs on my computer since my HC3 tape mechanism is broken. I was looking at Sony's miniDV player (walkman?) on ebay, and it is around $700-$800 range. Just crazy.

Rent or borrow from a friend any HDV camcorder to do your tape offloading. Sony content will work on any HDV cam. You could also use a service that would do that, but it'll cost you. Make multiple copies of your precious footage (multiple HDDs, DVD, bluray, etc) and free yourself from the miniDV medium.

I've been writing it for years now (your can check my history), miniDV is not a good long term solution for archiving footage. In 5-7 years timeframe, the HDV miniDV players/cams will be as rare as the betamax, 8-track, and 8mm devices are today, and solutions will be expensive. It doesn't matter that your media can last 20 years if you can't read it because your device failed on you.
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post #77 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andysmile View Post

http://www.sonystyle.com.hk/ss/produ...r_xr550e_e.jsp

The above address showed that no stabilization at the widest end.

Would anybody have any advice?

No one here seems to be bothered about this
Experts, can you please elaborate? What do Sony HK mean by
"Active Mode Off"?
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post #78 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 09:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andysmile View Post

http://www.sonystyle.com.hk/ss/produ...r_xr550e_e.jsp

The above address showed that no stabilization at the widest end.

Would anybody have any advice?

You got it all wrong. Sony's Active OIS system uses an EIS technology, which requires some cropping (which from what I understand is done before the 1080 rescale which is why it doesn't affect perceived resolution). The crop affects the "f Lens" spec. Sony merely wanted to give us the raw "f Lens" spec without the Active OIS turned on to give us the physical/mechanical limit of the lens. In other words, with the Active OIS on, you just won't get as wide of a lens.
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post #79 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 09:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dustindu4 View Post

So I've been looking over this direct to external hard drive copy feature. I read the fine print at sony and it says this:

I guess I can't use the 2TB drive I was going to order. Better stick with a 1.5 for now? Well actually a 2 TB drive will end up being 1.9-something so it might be ok?

The more I look into this I see that the camera can only copy to FAT-32 not NTFS. FAT32 only goes up to 2 TB. The Western Digital 2TB drives come formatted in NTFS apparently so i'm screwed

There are a lot of postings around about how to reformat one of the NTFS drives to FAT32 (very quickly using Quick Format, by the way). The PS3 only reads FAT32 so many people wrestled with it there.

Overall, I decided that for this kind of video playback through a PS3 or Western Digital of other media player, NTFS doesn't seem to have significant advantages. So I took my new HP 1TB drive (WD is the manufacturer) and reformatted it as exFAT to use with the PS3. NTFS and exFAT are what popped up as choices under Windows' reformat menu choice.

Lesson learned - exFAT is not FAT32, it's a newer FAT standard just being licensed by Microsoft, and the PS3 and WD player don't recognize it.

So I then erased everything on the drive and reformatted as FAT32 using an HP utility. I couldn't get the drive to free up all its space after two tries, so I just reformatted it as NTFS and use it with the Western Digital player. I'm sure I could have solved the issue and gotten the whole 1TB under FAT32, I just didn't bother since the WD reads either format.

I'd bet the 2TB mentioned by Sony is the max drive size you can use, not the smallest you can't use.
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post #80 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 09:57 AM
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Thanks ericjut! I was actually wondering, as I suggested in an earlier post, if you have to turn off the OIS at full WA, when do you turn it on? Pretty silly of me! Forgive my naivety.
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post #81 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 10:08 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uwkid View Post

Well a couple good and bad things. I posted in post #45 that I had ordered this camera from Sony's website on 1/1/10 for the MSRP of $1299.00 because it said it was shipping 2/1/10. I was willing to pay MSRP to get it quickly.

As I feared in post #49, the selling of this camera for immediate shipment on 2/1/10 was a "technical error" on the Sony website and they have not received any cameras to ship as of yet. However, this morning my shipping status changed to 2/4/10. So I called Sony again. As expected, they still don't really know what is going on with my specific order and maintain the cameras are coming in in March. They said I am classified as a pre-order in their system and my order will be filled with the pre-orders. Who knows. I was going to cancel citing that I would just order from Amazon but they did however offer match Amazon.com's current price. So I am sticking with my order for now but it does not look like I am going to have any review on the camera by Monday.

that sucks, well at least they matched the amazon price

The Sony Style Hong Kong site lists these dates
Pre-sales Period: 2-28 Feb 2010
Pick-up Period: 2-8 Mar 2010
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post #82 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 10:19 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Gull View Post

I'd bet the 2TB mentioned by Sony is the max drive size you can use, not the smallest you can't use.

good points. I'm going to get that western digital 2TB anyway. I have a 320gb that I can use to bring with me on trips and the 2TB will stay home in the fire proof safe.
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post #83 of 2288 Old 02-03-2010, 10:25 AM - Thread Starter
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has anyone else noticed that the specs say 120X digital zoom? I couldn't figure out how to get the 150x digital zoom to work on my cx500
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post #84 of 2288 Old 02-04-2010, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noobie2010 View Post

Thanks ericjut! I was actually wondering, as I suggested in an earlier post, if you have to turn off the OIS at full WA, when do you turn it on? Pretty silly of me! Forgive my naivety.

The Active OIS works from widest angle to end of the zoom range
plus even if it didn't work (just an assumption for a second)

Active OIS is the "Second" OIS system that Sony use
"The Sony HDR-XR520VE is equipped with two different levels of optical image stabilisation. OIS is common in top-of-the line HD camcorders, but Sony plays its trump card by offering two different levels: Active and Standard. We based our scoring on the best possible stabilisation, which happened to be "Active" mode in both our high-shake and low-shake test. Both levels of stabilisation actually fared better than any of the competition, even the excellent Panasonic HDC-HS300."

http://www.camcorderinfo.co.uk/conte...ng-amp-Use.htm

Also CX550v suppose to have even better OIS than CX520
In short Image stabilization is nothing to worry about when it comes to this Camcorder because it's basically the BEST on the market by FAR

So yeah if you wanted this camcorder then get it however if it lack some features you need then try to look at other camcorders but OIS is not one that's for sure
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post #85 of 2288 Old 02-04-2010, 03:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seph22 View Post

Also CX550v suppose to have even better OIS than CX520
In short Image stabilization is nothing to worry about when it comes to this Camcorder because it's basically the BEST on the market by FAR

So yeah if you wanted this camcorder then get it however if it lack some features you need then try to look at other camcorders but OIS is not one that's for sure

I agree that the stabilization here is best in class at the moment. As far as I know, there's no difference between the quality of the stabilization in the CX series from 2009 vs 2010. It was the XR that didn't have the enhanced EIS in 2009.
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post #86 of 2288 Old 02-05-2010, 07:52 PM
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Sorry, I still do not understand the matter as I am a beginner.
As far as I know, it has three choices for OIS via the menu. "Strong", "Normal" and "Off".
If I choose "Strong" and use the widest angle for part of the recording, does it mean there is no stabilisation until the angle changes to normal by manual zooming and then the stabilisation is back to active. Or the camcorder prohibits the use of the widest angle when OIS is set "Strong".

I am quite confused about this.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ericjut View Post

You got it all wrong. Sony's Active OIS system uses an EIS technology, which requires some cropping (which from what I understand is done before the 1080 rescale which is why it doesn't affect perceived resolution). The crop affects the "f Lens" spec. Sony merely wanted to give us the raw "f Lens" spec without the Active OIS turned on to give us the physical/mechanical limit of the lens. In other words, with the Active OIS on, you just won't get as wide of a lens.

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post #87 of 2288 Old 02-06-2010, 08:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andysmile View Post

Sorry, I still do not understand the matter as I am a beginner.
As far as I know, it has three choices for OIS via the menu. "Strong", "Normal" and "Off".
If I choose "Strong" and use the widest angle for part of the recording, does it mean there is no stabilisation until the angle changes to normal by manual zooming and then the stabilisation is back to active. Or the camcorder prohibits the use of the widest angle when OIS is set "Strong".

I am quite confused about this.

Just like the prior models, all OIS modes works on the all the zoom spectrum.

As I explained, the specs you pointed out, more specifically this:

f (for movie) 29.8mm (16:9 mode, Active Mode off)
f (for still) 26.3mm (4:3 mode, Active Mode off)


really just want to spec out the physical limitation of the lens.

Since the Active mode (or as you called it "Strong") has a software EIS component to it that will crop the image a little bit, and thus effect how wide the resulting image is, they spelled out the lens specification with that mode turned off.

In other words, "Active/Strong" will still work at all wide, but it won't have a lens equivalent of 29.8mm (video) or 26.3mm (photo), it will just be a little less wide.

I can confirm that my XR500V has a slightly less wide image when I run Active mode.
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post #88 of 2288 Old 02-06-2010, 08:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Gull View Post

I agree that the stabilization here is best in class at the moment. As far as I know, there's no difference between the quality of the stabilization in the CX series from 2009 vs 2010. It was the XR that didn't have the enhanced EIS in 2009.

That's incorrect. XR series definitely has an EIS component (that's what the "Active" mode is). The only thing that the 2009 XR line didn't have is the "lateral-roll shake" fix, which is an enhanced version of the EIS algorithm(all software improvements). I have hundreds of shots proving that the XR series is also using EIS in the Active mode if you're interested to see.

In other words:

CX 2009 -> CX 2010 should not have any stabilization improvements.
XR 2009 -> XR 2010 should gain the "lateral-roll shake" improvements it didn't have.
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post #89 of 2288 Old 02-06-2010, 08:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ericjut View Post

That's incorrect. XR series definitely has an EIS component (that's what the "Active" mode is). The only thing that the 2009 XR line didn't have is the "lateral-roll shake" fix, which is an enhanced version of the EIS algorithm(all software improvements). I have hundreds of shots proving that the XR series is also using EIS in the Active mode if you're interested to see.

In other words:

CX 2009 -> CX 2010 should not have any stabilization improvements.
XR 2009 -> XR 2010 should gain the "lateral-roll shake" improvements it didn't have.

So, in general, there will be no stabilization improvement comparing cx2010 and xr2010 vs cx 2009 when NOT zooming, except when zooming.
I thought they added something better in the stabilization in the 2010 models...

Thakn you
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post #90 of 2288 Old 02-06-2010, 08:52 AM
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From what I read, they can say this when compared to the last year's XR line. But I haven't seen them spelling out that it's improved over the CX OIS system. I'm sure they're working on the EIS algorithm to fix bugs, which you could probably count this as improvements. And the lens change, how unpopular it currently is, will bring more stable shots on the wide spectrum of the zoom, since wider lens require less stabilization. But other than that, can you point me to a Sony press announcement that actually spells out that their OIS system will improve over the CX500 model?
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