Having recently started providing performance analysis for a rugby club, I now want to upgrade my sony camcorder that I use. I was thinking of a price around £500/600 would suffice but looking at some semi-pro cameras (Sony HXR / HVR and canon xa20 for example) they are coming in over £1000. Is there a mid-range video camera that would do the job admirably??
I need an audio input for a wireless mic for the ref but other than that, I just want to place on the tripod and shoot. Not too bothered about the tech-y bits other than the audio and then to be able to download it into my analysis software.
Is £600 unreasonable ?
Any advice would be greatly received as I have little experience on the technical sides of camera work.
I would go with the HC-V750 too. You also have a slow motion feature designed for sports analysis in the spec. The camera is a good performer and has a 20x optical plus 50x intelligent zoom (perfect picture) which should cover a rugby field without problem. The OIS is good too but you may not need that with a decent tripod.
A word about the mic input on the Panasonic cameras. They have a stereo input so, for a wireless receiver, you will need a mono to stereo adapter. The cameras do not like heavy combinations of plugs and adapters plugged straight into the camera as the socket is mounted on a circuit board and the bending moment can cause connection problems. I have bought a short (0.5m) extension lead which I use with the mono/stereo adapter one end and the plug into the camera taped to my tripod to carry the weight.
I do not know much about this area and my information is probably dated,
I read for sports that TV broadcasts were often using 60p 720. (Or 50p ? in countries with 50 Hz electrical power). That may be dated information as things tend to improve in resolution.
Anyhow, look into this issue and in any case get 60progressive fps. With 60p fps you have a frame every 1/60 second and can display better quality stop action single frames of what is going on.
I do not know but would expect that 60interlaced fps would display a single frame with less resolution - a field of interlaced video with half the horizontal lines. ? Search: interlaced progressive video Stay away from interlaced.
It is nice for stop-action single-frame to have a fast shutter speed so that the motion blur is minimized. On the other hand, it is considered more natural appearing playing videos to have a slower shutter speed. Some motion blur makes videos look 'more natural'. Give this some thought as you may want to be able to control shutter speed especially to minimize motion blur and show single frames.
Outdoor direct sunlight has very roughly 100X the light levels of indoor locations. With outdoor light levels you have many options and the camera's automatic exposure control may select a very fast shutter speed. Indoors it is difficult to avoid motion blur even with manual exposure control. But manual exposure control is probably going to produce a video with minimal motion blur for the given lighting.
This frame, from a low resolution high speed video, has small motion blur so that the important things can be seen. The shutter speed was minimized for the existing light levels.
Consider if the video camera has manual exposure control so that the shutter speed can be set as fast as possible to minimize motion blur.
What has changed is deinterlacing. Displays aren't stupid CRTs any more. A typical progressive display will deinterlace using information from three or more previous deinterlaced frames and will use the next field only as information to how to alter the next frame. They have gotten extremely intelligent and it's next to impossible to notice any interlacing artifacts these days.
Additionally, motion with shutter speeds for 60 frames per second for video induce a lot of motion blur so there is actually little information retained in these areas. You can freeze a frame but you'll still see blur in either video format.
NEXT: someone else's post on AVS Forum.
I have an AIPTEK Action HD camera (purchased 2008) that has an automatic exposure control that was optimized to minimize motion blur. It was advertized for sports action. It does a nice job videoing a tennis match. I especially like the fact that the stop action has little motion blur and allows some 60 fps stroke analysis. Now many cameras and smartphones have fast shutters in high light levels.
Frame from AIPTEK, 60p fps 720. (There is more motion blur in side views of serves.)
AIPTEK side view of a backhand close up.
Racket head bending after impact is from Jello Effect distortion.
For single frame on Vimeo hold SHIFT KEY & use right or left ARROW KEYS.
The shutter speed that an automatic exposure control selects will depend on the speed of the lens. Therefore the setting of the zoom lens will have a direct affect on shutter speed. The OP should consider this factor, as close-ups using telephoto will have more motion blur than when using wide angle zoom settings. Is he on the sidelines or in the stands? etc.
I like fast shutter speeds for single frame analysis or slowed playback. But if the OP's priority is mostly for playback at 30 fps he may prefer the amount of motion blur usually recommended for 30 fps playback. The OP should have a 60p fps capability and research how the shutter speed is set for cameras that he is considering. Find Youtube and Vimeo videos that display the motion blur in direct sunlight, skylight and indoors.
Last edited by Chas Tennis; 06-12-2014 at 09:33 AM.
There is a range of shutter speeds which will acceptably reproduce motion. For 60 fps 1/60th will work but some feel that's too blurry so they prefer 1/100-1/120th.
If the shutter speed is too fast, you end up with choppy strobing motion which will look like an old cartoon. You may find this acceptable but it's not in television broadcasting and it will bother most people. High shutter speeds are sometimes used as a special effect in short action sequences to make them more disturbing.
You can see what kind of blur is typically found by simply stepping through the frames of any television broadcast with motion, progressive, interlaced, it doesn't matter. You'll see that every frame has a lot of motion blur because that reproduces motion the best..
NEXT: someone else's post on AVS Forum.
They have relatively large sensors for god low lights, amazing OIS stabilization, a LANC port, mic input shoot at 60p or a high speed low res buffer mode as well.
I am a soccer coach and record all our games with the CX430v (smaller sensor) and the 710v. They do great.
here are some examples of my sports analysis and highlights
|Gear in this thread|