Why no Panny HDC-SD1 talk? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 175 Old 04-02-2007, 08:58 AM - Thread Starter
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I was just wondering why there is no discussion regarding the Panasonic HD camcorder? All the discussion seems to be focused on the Canon at this point. Isn't the Panny smaller, 3CCD, better OIS, better lowlight ? The biggest downside right now appears to be editing AVCHD. There is a video on the web somewhere (sorry I can't remember where I dl'd it) that compares the HV20 to the HDC-SD1 and the panasonic is clearly better.

By the way, I am not trolling. I just happen to be shopping for a camera right now. I have used the info here on AVSforum to help me with a number of hometheater purchases.

Cameras I am looking at:

HV20
HDC-SD1
Sanyo HD2
Canon TX1
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post #2 of 175 Old 04-02-2007, 09:26 AM
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I am sure that the HDC-SD1 is a nice camcorder, and I haven't seen the comparison video that you are talking about. But I did see two comparison videos of the HV20 to the HDC-SD1 at these links that sure made the HV20 look nicer to me.

http://media.pana3ccduser.com/media/...D1_flowers.m2t

http://media.pana3ccduser.com/media/..._SD1_night.m2t

I do know for me personally that I do NOT like the HDC-SD1 recording to SD cards because that means that I MUST deal with archiving onto another medium right away to be reasonably safe (have had hard drives crash so dumping to a 250GB or 500GB hard drive doesn't cut it either). I prefer to have the miniDV tapes as my "master" archive copies available as soon as I am done shooting. They are cheap, seem to be proven as reliable in terms of degradation if handled properly (I already know people that had burned DVDs "quit working" for whatever reason). I can always further archive to another medium such as DVD if I WANT to, but I like not having to spend the time right away and feel the pressure that I must as I would with an SD card or hard drive based camcorder.

That is why having choices is so great I guess
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post #3 of 175 Old 04-02-2007, 08:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Hmm, to me the panasonic looks better with the video of the flowers. There is less mosquito noise. It does look overly sharp however. The dark scene demonstrates macrobocking for the panny and once again masquito noise for the Canon.

At least that's my less-than-well-educated-about-camcorders impression.
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post #4 of 175 Old 04-02-2007, 09:03 PM
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Wow! I surely thought the Canon was sharper. The Panny looked softer with the flowers and much softer in the night scene. The guy who posted those clips said he saw exactly the same thing.

I'm also not sure why you think Panasonic has better OIS. The OIS we take for granted was basically developed by Canon.

I also agree with bcatwilly regarding the pros and cons of the different storage approaches. IMO you simply can't beat tape for reliability, archiving, editing, performance and price. Not bad for the cheapest medium out there.
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post #5 of 175 Old 04-03-2007, 03:36 PM
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Hi guys, my first post to your forum, hope everyone is well here. I just bought the HDC-SD1 two weeks ago from CC after they lowered it to $1100 on a web special and I just wanted to say that I'm more than happy with this unit, even after looking at footage from the HV10 and the SR1. In regards to the tape archival topic, I do believe the inherent advantages to having a tape backup but am confused why people think that MiniDV will still be around in 5-10 years. Especially when you can back up a 4gb SDHC chip on your computer in 5 minutes and store the footage on an external 500 gig hard drive that now costs only $120. Thanks all for letting me participate and learn.

Lewis
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post #6 of 175 Old 04-03-2007, 06:01 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waruilewi View Post

Hi guys, my first post to your forum, hope everyone is well here.

Welcome...and it's now your forum, too! Congratulations on your purchase.

I think one cannot say that a particular recording medium is better than the others. There is no "best" medium as they each have their own set of pros and cons, IMO.

Solid state has the advantage of less moving parts and smaller overall form factor for the camcorder. Transfer speeds are also great. The problem is that SDHC chips aren't cheap. When you're on vacation, you'll presumably need to buy more chips, a laptop, or other external storage solution. There are also reports that some 8 GB SDHC chips aren't supported. Once 8 GB and higher chips become more commonplace, it'll be a real downer having a camcorder that supports mainly 4 GB chips.

In regards to the SD1 specifically, I was somewhat impressed with the picture quality...until I saw the Canon HV10's. The SD1 has a max bit rate of 13 Mbps (CBR) or a mere 9 Mbps (VBR) IIRC. I think they should've made it the bit rate higher. Also, the SD1 and Sony's SR1 are first generation AVCHD camcorders. Compatible software is only now *starting* to catch up. I'd wait for the next wave of AVCHD camcorders before considering one.

Quote:


In regards to the tape archival topic, I do believe the inherent advantages to having a tape backup but am confused why people think that MiniDV will still be around in 5-10 years.

It's difficult to say whether miniDV will still be around in 5 to 10 years. But then, given how technology is progressing, can't the same thing be said about SDHC chips?
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post #7 of 175 Old 04-03-2007, 06:51 PM
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Has anyone seen anything about the Sanyo HD-2? It's quite a bit cheaper than the others. The HD1 received mediocre reviews, but if the HD2 looks a bit better. Also, Panasonic has an SD3 on the way.
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post #8 of 175 Old 04-03-2007, 08:04 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ibhan View Post

Also, Panasonic has an SD3 on the way.

As I'll be buying a camcorder in July/August, I have to look critically at all my options.

Native 1920x1080 is a new feature but it's still at 13 Mbps, it seems. Other features seem to be the same as its predecessor -- pixel count, low light performance, optical zoom. Native 1920x1080 is obviously a step up but if *everything* else is the same, I think I'll pass.
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post #9 of 175 Old 04-03-2007, 09:29 PM
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Quote:


Native 1920x1080 is a new feature but it's still at 13 Mbps, it seems.

Because of MPEG-4 H.264's more bit-efficient compression, isn't quality of AVCHD at 13 Mbps on par with HDV at 25 Mbps?
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post #10 of 175 Old 04-04-2007, 11:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vikingmd View Post

Hmm, to me the panasonic looks better with the video of the flowers. There is less mosquito noise. It does look overly sharp however. The dark scene demonstrates macrobocking for the panny and once again masquito noise for the Canon.

At least that's my less-than-well-educated-about-camcorders impression.

I also find the Panasonic to look superior in these samples. The Canon is slightly sharper, but appears to degrade substantially with movement. Perhaps it's some strange playback issue (Mac, VLC Player), but I would find the Canon video intolerable. Does no one else see the substantial pixelation as the image pans?
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post #11 of 175 Old 04-04-2007, 01:28 PM
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Canon video (and Sony for that matter) look fine with motion. The video had been encoded and probably suffered for that. If this were an issue you'd hear the internet boards screaming with complaints about the Canon footage.
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post #12 of 175 Old 04-04-2007, 06:08 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waruilewi View Post

Because of MPEG-4 H.264's more bit-efficient compression, isn't quality of AVCHD at 13 Mbps on par with HDV at 25 Mbps?

That is certainly what we're all told. AVCHD compression is "over twice as effecient as MPEG2." From my personal experience and clips I've seen, I don't think the SD1 produces quality on par with competing models.

I think that this is about the time when the next wave of AVCHD camcorders should come out but the SD3 seems to be almost a copycat of the SD1.
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post #13 of 175 Old 04-04-2007, 07:26 PM
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I had my wife (native from Kyoto) help with the translation and she says that besides the true 1920x1080 LSI component that the HDC-SD3 also supports an optional secondary battery source, a "battery holder kit" that can be tethered to prolong the shooting time by double. Part is VW-VH04-K, goes for about $70, or 8,400 yen.

I thought this was a worthy bit of news as I always bought additional battery packs for my other camcorders, and this would answer those who wanted additional running time and feared that the SD1/SD3 would be lacking in this area.
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post #14 of 175 Old 04-05-2007, 04:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Ross View Post

Canon video (and Sony for that matter) look fine with motion. The video had been encoded and probably suffered for that. If this were an issue you'd hear the internet boards screaming with complaints about the Canon footage.

Were they encoded differently? The motion artifact is only present in the Canon footage, not the Panasonic. It really ruins the Canon video.
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post #15 of 175 Old 04-05-2007, 05:38 PM
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I don't know ibhan, but I know in looking at the video from the HV20 directly to my 50" Fujitsu plasma, I see none of this at all. As I mentioned before, if this were really an issue, you'd hear many Canon owners screaming about it. I don't believe I've read one complaint on an issue like this.
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post #16 of 175 Old 04-05-2007, 07:01 PM
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Things I don't like about the SD1.

1. no accessory shoe
2. no headphone output

At that price level, accessory shoe and headphone output should be included.

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post #17 of 175 Old 05-23-2007, 07:45 AM
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Any word on release date for the SD3?
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post #18 of 175 Old 05-23-2007, 08:14 AM
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I've been considering the SD1 or SD3 too, now that editing solutions are starting to emerge, the price has fallen, and a streaming network media player is available for the AVCHD clips it produces (Tvix M-4100SH - an SD3 clip has been confirmed to play on this box). The HV20 clips I've seen seem to have a slight edge in overall image quality though.
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post #19 of 175 Old 05-23-2007, 10:08 AM
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Originally Posted by RickInMA View Post

Any word on release date for the SD3?

I'm trying to determine that as well, and was prepared to wait, but Amazon now has the SD1 for less than $850, with free shipping...ummmmmm
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post #20 of 175 Old 05-23-2007, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Ross View Post

Canon video (and Sony for that matter) look fine with motion. The video had been encoded and probably suffered for that. If this were an issue you'd hear the internet boards screaming with complaints about the Canon footage.


AFAIK it was only SD1 video that was transcoded, and lost some quality.
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post #21 of 175 Old 05-25-2007, 12:17 AM
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As of today, the SD3 is available for pre-order at B&H. They expect it to be in stock within 7 business days.
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post #22 of 175 Old 05-25-2007, 07:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Fontana View Post

As of today, the SD3 is available for pre-order at B&H. They expect it to be in stock within 7 business days.

Thanks...now I wait for the price to drop before I absolutely have to have one in September.
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post #23 of 175 Old 05-27-2007, 10:47 AM
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For Memorial Day, CC's advertising the SD1 for $829... use one of those AAA 10% coupons and it's just $746 before tax, even beating B&H's $799 (currently the lowest from a reputable dealer). Details on getting the 10% coupon:

(1) go here: http://www.aaa.com/circuitcity
(2) use zip code 94111 or other California ZIP code
(3) choose "enter as non-member" (option not available unless ZIP is in California)
(4) enter your email address
(5) coupon arrives in as as little as 30 minutes
(6) locate HV20 at circuitcity.com
(7) during check-out enter online coupon 10%-off code

(if you prefer, you can just print the coupon and give it to the clerk at CC)
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post #24 of 175 Old 05-27-2007, 03:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Fontana View Post

For Memorial Day, CC's advertising the SD1 for $829... use one of those AAA 10% coupons and it's just $746 before tax, even beating B&H's $799 (currently the lowest from a reputable dealer). Details on getting the 10% coupon:

I got the coupon and I'm sitting here trying to decide to do this deal or wait for the SD3.....what to do???
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post #25 of 175 Old 05-27-2007, 05:26 PM
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Same here... I'm leaning towards the SD3 but as the only real differences are the full 1920 horizontal resolution and external battery input jack, the SD1 seems to be a more sensible choice. On another forum, they were rationalizing that the SD1 may actually show fewer AVCHD compression artifacts since the same 13 Mbps bandwidth is encoding fewer pixels. Seems plausible, but on the other hand, those pixels cover the same image complexity. Sample clips are online for both models, but I don't have an easy way to play them at full 1080i resolution yet, so the quality looks about the same to me. One thing's for sure... both camcorders will only get cheaper, so if you can keep waiting, I'd do that. The CC coupon is good until the end of 2007. Me- I've got a baby daughter who isn't getting any younger, so I want to settle on one this week and get shooting.
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post #26 of 175 Old 05-27-2007, 05:36 PM
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It would be nice if a current user of the SD1 could chime in with pro and con comments.

I am also on the fence as to which model to buy.

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post #27 of 175 Old 05-27-2007, 06:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Fontana View Post

Same here... I'm leaning towards the SD3 but as the only real differences are the full 1920 horizontal resolution and external battery input jack, the SD1 seems to be a more sensible choice. On another forum, they were rationalizing that the SD1 may actually show fewer AVCHD compression artifacts since the same 13 Mbps bandwidth is encoding fewer pixels. Seems plausible, but on the other hand, those pixels cover the same image complexity. Sample clips are online for both models, but I don't have an easy way to play them at full 1080i resolution yet, so the quality looks about the same to me. One thing's for sure... both camcorders will only get cheaper, so if you can keep waiting, I'd do that. The CC coupon is good until the end of 2007. Me- I've got a baby daughter who isn't getting any younger, so I want to settle on one this week and get shooting.

If I knew for certain that the real world difference was minimal, I would buy the SD1 in a heartbeat. I guess I'm as concerned about buying what is already an orphan camcorder, but I guess that is true with all of them to a certain extent.

BTW, I meant to say thanks for the AAA coupon link/instructions.
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post #28 of 175 Old 05-28-2007, 08:52 AM
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No problem. OK, so I thought of a good argument in favor of the SD3: square pixels, eliminating the need to scale 1440->1920 somewhere between acquisition and display. The pixels of the SD1's clips are non-square, like HDV's, making the clips require scaling (and the resulting softening of the image) for playback on a fixed pixel display (which covers nearly everything on the market at the moment).

The SD3's clips should be easier to handle on a PC. I'm tired of working with DV's 720x480 non-square pixels, where there is no good compromise to display the clips correctly... scaling down to 640x480 or scaling up to 720x540 both soften the image substantially and introduce artifacts.
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post #29 of 175 Old 05-29-2007, 02:58 PM
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Thanks for the coupon Mark. Now all I need to do is take the next step and actually buy the HV20
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post #30 of 175 Old 06-02-2007, 09:44 AM
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The most obvious difference between the two (other than probably PQ) is BUILD quality. The Pany is a million times better built than the clunky Canon (and I own a Elura 100). It has a better LCD, better zoom, better built-in mic, way better optical stabilizer, and better/sleeker balance and handling. It also has a better optical zoom at 12x and appears to have a cleaner digital zoom as well (30x). Finally, it uses 4meg SDHC cards instead of archaic tape--and with the SD3 looming, I've seen it online at low at $649 (!) which is hundreds less than the HV20. I do wish it had a light up front and low-light itself is unknown, but it's still very tempting and doesn't get a fair shake in my opinion.
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