Small interchangeable-lens, large sensor 108060p camcorder (Sony NEX-5N) - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 09-13-2011, 07:16 PM - Thread Starter
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It's the SONY NEX-5N. And it not only shoots at 108060p, 28 Mbps, but it has all manual controls in video mode: aperture priority, shutter-priority, full manual (including shutter, aperture and ISO). It's smaller than many consumer camcorders with it's kit zoom lens.

It has a gigantic sensor compared to all consumer camcorders (APS-C), so it should blow even the Canon G10 out of the water in low light. And you can add an OLED, moveable viewfinder (90 degrees), in addition to having a moveable LCD touch screen.

Interchangeable, optical-stabilized lenses. No power zooms, though, and no audio inputs.

Here's a video, taken the first day I had the camera in my hands:

http://vimeo.com/29018746


I used aperture priority mode at 1/60th and an ND filter, everything else auto. It was bright and sunny and 80 degrees fahrenheit and humid.

The results:

1. No overexposure. This is the first consumer video camera I have used that does not overexpose badly in bright light - I never had to dial down exposure from the auto setting. This is not true for the Panasonic TM900, the Sony Hx9v or the Sony TD10.

2. The colors are great (everything at factory settings for contrast, color and sharpness and NR)

3. It was relatively easy to see the LCD touchscreen and focus in bright light. I used both peaking and magnification when I used manual focus, but found the latter more useful.

Here is the link to the video. To maintain the quality, I edited the video in Sony PMB - trimmed and combined. That program does not transcode and thus does not reduce the quality. You can not only view the video, but you can download the original - the same file that was uploaded and was never converted from the original AVCHD clips from the camera - no tweaks, no conversion. Straight from the camera.

I purposely did not color grade, use transitions or other niceties so people can see what the camera produces, not what some hot shot can do with video.
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post #2 of 16 Old 09-14-2011, 07:47 AM
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Mark, is there a chance that you could upload the file somewhere else, apart from Vimeo? Unfortunately Vimeo is blocked in China

Could you share your impressions regarding the quality as compared to other camcorders/hybrids that you have used? Can you shoot a low light video?

Thanks in advance!
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post #3 of 16 Old 09-14-2011, 09:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Youtube is blocked also, right?

I have uploaded the original file to Megaupload, so you can download it. If that is also blocked, complain to your local Chinese government offical .

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=I5JE8MXR

The Panasonic TM900, the best camcorder I have used, is sharper. But the NEX-5N has much better dynamic range in bright light and does not overexpose.

I will try a low-light comparison. It will be boring video, but hopefully informative.
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post #4 of 16 Old 09-14-2011, 06:07 PM
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Well, I still cannot access it...
I read your notes re the impression on DP - and understand your NEX5N does not have the infamous clicking problem which many owners complain about.

How would you compare the video quality of NEX5N with that of HX9V? Do you see a significant difference in terms of DR and sharpness? How about the stabilization - is the one on NEX5N - or rather in lenses - equally effective as the one on HX9V? Do you think it is worth upgrading to NEX5N for video only (from what I understand NEX is definitively much better still camera)?

I'd like to say I'm eagerly looking for your low light test, but being unable to access it takes away all hope...
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post #5 of 16 Old 09-14-2011, 06:16 PM - Thread Starter
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1. The NEX-5N has better DR than the Hx9v and does not overexpose like the Hx9v in good light.

2. The NEX-5N is much better in low-light: more color, less smearing and less noise.

3. The stabilzation on the Hx9v is better - it needs to be as you have a 300mm+ lens. There is no difference in the range of the NEX-5N kit lens, except if you like to walk and shoot (a bad idea).

4. The audio on the NEX-5N is much better than that of the Hx9v. Both have no manual control, but the latter pumps up the sound aggressively, meaning you get a lot of ambient noise in quiet areas and pumping - no dynamic range. The NEX-5N has AGC also, but it is not nearly as aggressive, so the sound is more natural. There is also one option external mic; no option for the Hx9v.

5. The power zoom and deep DOF on the Hx9v means it is much better for action video or sports.

6. The NEX-5N shallow DOF produces some gorgeous video, but also means focus is more critical.
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post #6 of 16 Old 09-14-2011, 06:49 PM
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Mark,

Thanks a lot for the comparison, very interesting. If shot in identical conditions and identical settings, is there a difference - apart from those you mentioned: DR, stabilization, etc. - between both? What about sharpness? Do you find NEX sharper, with more details, compared to HX9V?
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post #7 of 16 Old 01-23-2012, 09:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Here is another video taken with the NEX-5N, at a beach. It illustrates the good color, and lack of overexposure that almost all other camera/camcorders exhibit in bright light. And a beach with bright sand reflecting the sun can also lead to underexpsoure. But exposure seems spot on (when I wanted it to be). Also, tracking autofocus works well - following a gull and dogs retrieving a ball or stick, walking beachcombers, etc.

A 108060p video with the 18-200mm lens (27-300mm 35mm equivalent), and ND filter. Shutter priority mode at 1/60th.

http://vimeo.com/35550839
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post #8 of 16 Old 01-24-2012, 09:45 AM
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too bad you cant attach an external microphone and eliminate wind noise
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post #9 of 16 Old 01-24-2012, 11:51 AM - Thread Starter
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"too bad you cant attach an external microphone and eliminate wind noise."

Actually, you can:

http://store.sony.com/webapp/wcs/sto...ab=featuresTab

and cover it with a dead cat.

Wind noise, however, here, is part of the point: wind, surf are part of the audio-visual scene.
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post #10 of 16 Old 01-24-2012, 12:01 PM
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My old HDC-SD1 did not blow up the whites, as well as all my Canon camorders, especially in Cinema mode. Some Panasonic camcorders are known to overdrive exposure. The HDC-SD9 is particularly crappy in this regard: blown out whites and wrong auto white balance. I am glad that Sony got it right with the NEX-5N.
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post #11 of 16 Old 01-24-2012, 04:53 PM - Thread Starter
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The Sony Hx9v and TD10 and the Panasonic TM900 overexpose in bright light and almost always need exposure adjustment to not only avoid hotspots but to avoid washed out color.
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post #12 of 16 Old 03-07-2012, 01:27 PM
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Mark- Not sure you are following this thread these days but I just ordered a NEX 5N kit with two lenses ( 18-55 and 16mm) and ext microphone. My primary interest is in using it for panoramas both still and video. Have you done any panorama 3D video yet? I should have it by Friday.
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post #13 of 16 Old 03-07-2012, 04:38 PM - Thread Starter
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The NEX-5N takes great 2D panoramas, and 3D panoramas, using the tried and true old technology of getting different views by sweeping the camera across the scene. It takes advantage of a really powerful processor to create the 3D panorama in a second from the sweep. Great!

I do not see, however, how one can take 3D videos with the camera, panorama or not. It is a particularly good low-light 2D video camera.
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post #14 of 16 Old 03-08-2012, 02:30 AM
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Quote:


The NEX-5N takes great 2D panoramas, and 3D panoramas,

I do not see, however, how one can take 3D videos with the camera, panorama or not.

Mark- could you explain these two statements, They sound contradictory.

I do understand the 3D method of processing the images in the sweep, however. According to the Sony description, it snaps two pictures then two more, then two more, in other words, snaps them in rapid fire pairs, for left and right. Then instead of stitching them together in straight even sequence for 2D panorama, it first pairs the images for 3D and then stitches the paired 3D images for the panorama. Or for non panorama, conventional full frame 3D it would look like a normal pan. To my knowledge you can't do 3D unless you sweep the camera left to right. Both panorama and 3D require this movement.

My plan for my video is to use the 3D panorama in the lower strip across the bottom of the 16x9 frame and then shoot the same scene with the twin TD-10s to fill the upper part of the frame as an approximate 2.35 AR cropped for a closer look at the panorama.

The one thing I was unclear of from the specs, is what format is the 3D Panorama video in? I'm hoping it will be compatible with Vegas file formats.
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post #15 of 16 Old 03-08-2012, 06:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Landis View Post

...Mark- could you explain these two statements, They sound contradictory....

I'm not Mark and will never own and understand as many cameras as he does, but I might be able to answer. Assuming the 3D panorama produced by the NEX 5n is similar to how Sony does it in a HX9V, the sweep is a still photo that can be viewed on the camera or on a 3D TV, especially a Sony TV. I think it pairs adjacent frames as if they were taken with two lenses. It is not a video.

Bill
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post #16 of 16 Old 03-09-2012, 10:42 AM
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Thanks- Don't expect to see Mark in here much as I'm sure he is busy with his latest new camera. Yes, he got another, although I think I have him beat. He did get a new Panasonic Z10000 which is going to elevate him into the prosumer level of equipment. It's really a nice 3D package.

Your description is what Sony said. Anyway, I expect to have my NEX 5N today so I should be able to begin the learning curve soon.
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