Dim Light and Nighttime Video Performance: Examples - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 05:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Many posters appear to be particularly interested in the dim light performance from camcorders. How do they do at night, in dim locations?

Reviews often at best show us static shots of test charts, but one really needs to see actual videos. Here are four videos focused on night shots and dim-light shots:

Canon EOS M:

https://vimeo.com/73061460

From dark movie-theater corridors, to underground eateries, down in the subway, and night trains, to stores outside late at night. Manual audio (there is natural audio - people talking; trains arriving; train horns, announcements and bells; cars whooshing by; and a trumpet - like in life. No music sound track).

The Canon has a big sensor, so with a fast lens it is ideal for dim light, in theory.


Sony GW77V:

https://vimeo.com/52187549

Street scenes, fountains, TV, the Loop, lights, and flaming baton twirling, all at night in Chicago.

The GW77V has a fast lens, and tiny sensor.


Sony CX760V:

https://vimeo.com/55581986

Outdoor holiday religious and traditional symbols at Christmas, and carol singing at night in an urban setting.

The CX760V has a fast lens, and small sensor.


Pepster return's (abridged) fireworks video shot with the EOS M:

https://vimeo.com/72700792

At night, with great sound.


So how do you judge: how are the colors? how much visible noise? how are the blacks (the dominant night color)? resolution? motion artifacts (due to cheating by using a slow shutter)?

Anyone else have good examples of their own?
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post #2 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 06:45 AM
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These are done with my Canon HF M50 :

This one was of the Full moon rising on the horizon and zoomed in quite abit . The towers with the red blinking lights are approx. 1 mile away and in a rather dark neighborhood .

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NgzaPHpL6bs

This one is another moon rising zoomed in much more than the first one and I was lucky to catch a small plane cross in front of the moon .

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EdqJgch_M_g

This one was taken at SeaWorld in SanAntonio Texas . Starting with the ELMO Show which was inside and after the show was getting after the sun was down up until the Fireworks . The Fireworks show I had the camera pointed in the air so no foreground scene can be seen and the time was around 10pm so the sky was plenty dark .

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mPvxjajCNME


Alll the examples above you posted are really great but given they were in bright city lights and in well lite areas I would be disappointed if they were not as bright as they are . Also on the test it really depends what settings the person used and what editing they did cause editing is half the work of any video .
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post #3 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 07:57 AM
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I will upload a much higher quality version to Vimeo soon
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post #4 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 07:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pepster returns View Post

I will upload a much higher quality version to Vimeo soon

Great. I'll substitute the link in my post too when it is ready.
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post #5 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 08:49 AM
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could you do a quick comparison of the panasonic ts5 vs the zs30? i have the ts5 and the low light is non existent on it, im hoping the zs30 is better
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post #6 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 09:02 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishywishy View Post

could you do a quick comparison of the panasonic ts5 vs the zs30? i have the ts5 and the low light is non existent on it, im hoping the zs30 is better

Unfortunately, neither the TS5 nor the ZS30 are good in low light - the f3.5 lens and small sensor just cannot be overcome. When I travel with the ZS30 I bring the LX7, which, with its f1.4 lens and bigger sensor, is great in dim light. Two small cameras give me good indoors and good long reach capability outdoors. Then there is the EOM M, which with, say, two lenses gives me the same thing.
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post #7 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 09:34 AM
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is the zs30 at least an improvement over the ts5?
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post #8 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 10:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishywishy View Post

is the zs30 at least an improvement over the ts5?

it has the same sensor and the same processor as the TS5 and the same slow aperture. Why would you think it's better in low light? It's just physics - small opening to light and small sensors.
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post #9 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 12:37 PM
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Hey Mark, what are the steps to posting a video from Vimeo?
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post #10 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 12:45 PM - Thread Starter
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To upload your video to Vimeo: Assuming you have an account, go your home page in Vimeo. Choose 'Upload', which is the sixth tab to the right on the top. Then on the next screen select "Choose a video to upload", then browse to your video and select it and click 'Open'. That's it, except you can then give the video a title. You do not need to process your video (assuming you shot progressive (60p, 30p, 24p)) especially for Vimeo.
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post #11 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 01:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markr041 View Post

it has the same sensor and the same processor as the TS5 and the same slow aperture. Why would you think it's better in low light? It's just physics - small opening to light and small sensors.

because they have different optics, f-stops, focal lengths, possibly sensor (16mp vs 18mp, no 720p 120 fps on ts5)
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post #12 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 02:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishywishy View Post

because they have different optics, f-stops, focal lengths, possibly sensor (16mp vs 18mp, no 720p 120 fps on ts5)

They also have a different color, different weight, and different name! What they have in common is mediocre low light video performance, because they both have small sensors, way too many megapixels, and slow lenses (same f-stops at widest), which is all that matters given they also have the same processor for what they do when there is little light.
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post #13 of 13 Old 08-25-2013, 04:27 PM
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I just uploaded a few seconds of my EOSM fireworks video to Vimeo as 32bit uncompressed - only few seconds worth, as the Vimeo free account only allows 500MB upload per week.

http://vimeo.com/73098895

however, it still looks soft, as Vimeo has recompressed this to 720P - you need a 'pro' account to have 1080P playback



A few seconds of the EOSM fireworks vid uploaded as 32bit RAW to my Zen site @ 1080P
http://arcoonastudios.zenfolio.com/p835026398/h6777ad90#h6777ad90

probably looks better than vimeo. even with my 'pro' account, I can still only upload 2GB @ a time to Zenfolio.

This video looks great on my PC - crispy clear, and inky blacks
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