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  • Taking the plunge - HDV or AVCHD

    Well, Im about to take the plunge, as my 12 year old Sony DV camera is getting flaky.

    I'm curious as to opinions about the 2 different formats. From my research, it looks like HDV would be the way to go, especially as EDIUS is my prime editing software. I have a Storm 2 card or OHCI available - not an NX card, so I'm not sure where this will lead.

    I can pick up a Canon HV20 for a song, so I'm looking seriously at that, as it will shoot in SD onto mini-dv tapes and might be a good "bridge" between SD and HD until I'm better setup for HD or get any real demand for HD content.

    As I understand it, I can use 1394 to grab the HDV footage, and then convert it to Canopus HQ in the bin. Will this work OK with the Storm card, or will I need to upgrade that before doing any serious HD work? I know the Storm card cannot output HD to a monitor, but for now, I will still be working in SD, so I don't think that's a serious concern.

    Any opinions would be appreciated!

    Thanks!

    Tom

  • #2
    I have a HV20. I do not need a special capture device but just the Firewire port. If you have a fast enough computer, it will capture the HDV and convert it to ConopusHQ AVI in real time. The files are larger, but quality is fantastic.

    Edius does a great job with converting the 1440 x1080 to 740x480. Print to DVD works very well. Quality of HV20 video converted from HDV to SD DVD is better than the SD video from the Canon GL2 camcorder.

    Both the camcorder and Edius work very well.

    Rick

    Comment


    • #3
      If you want to edit easily then HDV is the way to go. AVCHD cams have a real advantage for the average consumer in that logging clips etc is very convenient with the supplied software ( at least for Sony) and simple cuts only editing with this software is also very easy to make DVD's or AVCHD disc for play on Blu-ray players. Playback from the AVCHD camera is also convenient for picking and playing clips for family etc as these can be seen on the LCD and be selected, or search with several ways none of which are possible with HDV or tape based cameras. For that reason I have both!!! FX1 plus several DV cams and a Sony SR7. The choice for family events is the AVCHD SR7, no fear of running out of tape, and instant clip selection and playback for the group. On my Panasonic Plasma it is almost impossible to tell the difference to my FX1 in good light. The FX1 wins in low light as to be expected. But as far as the family are concerned the SR7 is just fine in low light!!!!!!! AVCHD can be converted, for easier editing, to HQ but this takes a long time on my AMD X4200 so I edit my mix of AVCHD and HDV in Vegas that seems to manage native files of both a little easier than Edius.
      If your only going to buy one camera then buy the HDV since it will be easier to edit and can still shoot DV to mix with your other cameras. For family convenience I would still choose the AVCHD cam.

      Ron Evans
      Ron Evans

      Threadripper 1920 stock clock 3.7, Gigabyte Designare X399 MB, 32G G.Skill 3200CL14, 500G M.2 NVME OS, 500G EVO 850 temp. 1T EVO 850 render, 6T Source, 2 x 1T NVME, MSI 1080Ti 11G , EVGA 850 G2, LG BLuray Burner, BM IP4K, WIN10 Pro, Shuttle Pro2

      ASUS PB328 monitor, BenQ BL2711U 4K preview monitor, EDIUS X, 9.5 WG, Vegas 18, Resolve Studio 17


      Cameras: GH5S, GH5, FDR-AX100, FDR-AX53, DJI OSMO Pocket, Atomos Ninja V x 2

      Comment


      • #4
        Tom,

        I have 2 DVStorms that I have used for several years. I just purchased an NX card with HD Expansion (PCI-X variety) for editing in HD.

        I will be installing it in a third machine, based on an Iwill DK8N. I chose this board because it was Canopus certifed for the NX and HD.

        I will continue to edit in SD with the Storms and Premiere, but will be learning Edius with with the NX on the DK8N machine.

        It appears you may need to do the same thing for HD editing. The PCI-X version of the NX is getting hard to find, but the PCIe versions, in the U.S. at least, is more prevalent.
        Regards,

        Jon

        #1: Iwill DK8N, 2 x 270 Opterons, 2 Gb RAM, WinXPPro-32, Edius 5.51, NX PCI-X & HDV Expansion, ProCoder 3, Imaginate 2, Sony WV-DR9, Sony EDV-9500, Sony GV-D200.
        #2: Asus P5E, Q9400, WinXPPro-32, Edius 6.07, HD Spark
        #3: Edius SP with Breakout Box, Win10, Edius 7.53

        Comment


        • #5
          Hi Tom,

          We have done extensive tests comparing AVCHD and HDV - so here are our conclusions:

          A great part of your decision lies on what you intend to do with your final videos. If you are recording "home movies" or archival material to display on "small" screens, you probably won't notice much difference between the 2 formats. However, there are picture artifacts displayed in the AVCHD format. It's MPEG4 (HDD or BluRay), not MPEG2 (which is what HDV is), and the compression is greater in THIS version of MPEG4, resulting in a picture that when displayed on a "large" screen - say 52 inches or more - is definitely visable. Although, this is more apparent on side-by-side comparisons of the two formats. HDV is, without a doubt, the cleaner picture - but again I stress that this is only on larger screens - the larger the more you can see the compression, obviously.

          That said, there are terrific advantages to AVCHD. No tapes to carry around, load and unload! Hard drives are getting larger, HD-DVD discs are getting less expensive and memory cards are just around the corner for the "home" cameras.

          However, we've shot over 200 hours of HDV and never lost a second of video. We had a clitch on one of the hard-drives recording AVCHD and didn't know it until too late. But this is quite rare. We have not vibration tested the AVCHD cameras, but the HDV cameras are basically impervious to vibration and hard knocks during recording. Other than falling off a cliff!

          The Canon HV20 (and the newer HV30 - same camera a few improvements) gives a super picture, and has the best optical image stabilization in the business - bar none! You can't go wrong with this camera.

          I don't know what kind of photog stores are available to you in Virginia, but if possible, ask them to let you shoot some footage "in the store" with both cameras and then see what the difference is yourself - if a monitor is available.

          The best of luck to you. I hate making decisions like this! ! !

          Cheers,
          Alan
          Alan J. Levi
          Director

          SYSTEM: ASUS P8Z77-VPro mobo, Intel 3770K CPU, 16 Gig Crucial 1866 RAM, Antec 1000W PS, EVGA nVidia 560Ti 1Gig Video, CoolerMaster CPU cooler, LG GGW-H20L BluRay DVD, SPARK card w/23" Samsung 1920x1080 Monitor, OCZ 240GB SSD boot in Swapable Tray & 3 WD Enterprise 1TB video RAID 5 HDD's. 4.5TB RAID 1 Outboard backups, Behringer2000 Audio Fader/Controller

          Comment


          • #6
            Thank you all for your comments. They've been a great help.

            Most of my shooting is for "home movies", church productions and a few steps up, but I am going to be doing several videos for non-profit groups this year as well as some more major endevours. My goal is to get a better camera later in the year with more professional features, and use whatever I purchase now for a second "b-roll" camera. The price point is unbelievable, considering I can get the Canon for half the price I paid for my first generation Sony MiniDV

            The advantages of the tapeless MPEG-4 format are appealing, but I have been concerned about possible artifacts and difficulties editing. I think I would go that route if it were strictly for family videos.

            HDV has been proven to be fairly robust, and the way it can be used with EDIUS and Vegas are selling points. Plus, I could better mix footage for now with the old camera, shooting in SD.

            I have a place I can order from that will let me return the camera within 30 days if it does not do as promised, so I think I'll give the Canon a shot.

            Thanks again everyone.

            Tom

            Comment


            • #7
              The Canon HV20 (and the newer HV30 - same camera a few improvements)
              Few improvements is right, not worth the $400 price difference, the HV20s are fast disappearing at the current price point.
              GA-EP45C-DSR3,Core2Q3ghz,8gig1066,260GTX,2x 20"AOC,22"Vizio1080pTV, Edius5/HDspark,PC3,Imaginate, CS5ProdStudio/IntensityPro,Win7_64
              HPdv7t 17"notebook,8gig,2 IntHD,9600GT512M,17"extmon, Edius4.61,CS4Prodstudio.Win7_64,MX02Mini
              DAW,HPdv9000,x2Turion,4Gig,2IntHD,Audition3,Cubase 4,XPpro,Alessis F/Wmixer,M-Audio F/Wmixer,BCF2000, BehringerMixers, Fender sound sys
              Numerous Ext eSATA drives & Raids shared between systems

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by ixlor8 View Post
                Quality of HV20 video converted from HDV to SD DVD is better than the SD video from the Canon GL2 camcorder.

                Rick
                Rick:
                How's the comparison with the GL2 hold up in low light? I use a GL1 in marginal light in churches and am satisfied with it, but for camera 2 I've been using an Optura Xi. The Optura's low light performance is poor. Often have to set shutter speed to 1/30. Lots of work in post to make the footage useful. Been thinking about getting an HV20.
                Fred D
                Win 7 Pro-64 bit, EDIUS Workgroup 8.5, Intel Ivy Bridge i5, ASUS P8Z77-V-LK, 8GB Kningston DDR3, Pioneer BDR-209UBK, EVGA NVIDEA GEForce GT630, Corsair TX750M 750w Power Supply, 4 WD Black HDD for 3.15TB, ACEDVIO, Spark HD, eSATA controller, ANTEC 300 case.

                Comment


                • #9
                  The new generation of AVCHD camcorders coming out soon, may well give HDV camcorders a run for their money. The Canon HG10 is already fairly close to the HV20's picture quality, although I'd still give the edge to the HV20.

                  However the new units that are soon to arrive will have increased bitrates as well as a full 1920X1080 resolution. This should, in theory, provided the sharpest picture yet in a consumer camcorder. Of course it may also be more difficult to edit due to the larger file sizes.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Ken,

                    Would LOVE to know where you got that info on the new AVCHD 1920 x 1080 info. Now we ARE talking about the direct recording, are we not? There are a slew of small cameras that will OUTPUT 1920 X 1080 to an external recorder, but the internal (HDV, BluRay, HDD, Mem Cards) aren't up to recording that kind of bandwidth yet. We (the "movie" industry techies), usually get advanced info - rumors they're called - and if you have sources that bring this kind of info to your doorstep, then I applaud you and your connections! Keep us posted!

                    Cheers,
                    Alan
                    Alan J. Levi
                    Director

                    SYSTEM: ASUS P8Z77-VPro mobo, Intel 3770K CPU, 16 Gig Crucial 1866 RAM, Antec 1000W PS, EVGA nVidia 560Ti 1Gig Video, CoolerMaster CPU cooler, LG GGW-H20L BluRay DVD, SPARK card w/23" Samsung 1920x1080 Monitor, OCZ 240GB SSD boot in Swapable Tray & 3 WD Enterprise 1TB video RAID 5 HDD's. 4.5TB RAID 1 Outboard backups, Behringer2000 Audio Fader/Controller

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I have the HV20 and I'm quite surprised with it's PQ at it's price point.

                      As for AVCHD, I haven't used any myself but the consensus is that HDV still is a better compressor for low cost cams.

                      My take on HDV (MPEG2) is that MPEG2 has had many years to get the hardware MPEG2 compressor tweaked to give great HD performance. AVCHD is still very young and has great potential to produce better HD images at lower data rates; that said AVCHD still has a way to go to surpassing HDV in image quality at lower data rates.

                      ...Angelo
                      Canopus/GV: DVStorm2 w/component-out board, ADVC300, Edius 4.61, ProCoder 3.05, Imaginate2
                      System: MSI B75A-G43 (v2.0), i7-3770K, 4GB, HD6850, Pyro1394 pci-e, 6 Disks 2.4TB non-raid, Win7-32bit, Dell 24" & 19" LCD

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I am following the evolution of AVCHD cameras as it is my intention to get one as my next upgrade. Looking at the specs, AVCHD is rated up to c25Mbps (this is the highly compressed version - not the pro intra version). The latest generation of AVCHD cameras operate at c20Mbps. AVCHD should be approaching or reaching its full potential within the year. The AVCHD vs HDV comparison probably will need to be re-examined then.

                        I also spotted that, for the consumer market, Panasonic is to offer a small, stand aloneburner that burns from AVCHD cards into DVDs in HD.
                        Last edited by drgagx; 02-12-2008, 10:43 AM.
                        DVC laptop: W870CU i7; 17.3" 1920x1080; 2x 1TB 7200rpm SATA notebook drives; Edius 8.5WG; Windows 7.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          The latest generation of AVCHD cameras operate at c20Mbps
                          hmmmm ....... what for cams did you mean ???

                          I know only 16 Mbit\sec on the Sony SR11\12 with (1920x1080)
                          and 17 Mbit\sec on the Canon F10\F100 (with 1920x1080)

                          and this is not much better than the older 14-15 Mbit\sec for the 1440 cam-generation

                          friendly greetings from europe\austria\viena..... old Hans
                          Edius 5,51 / Edius 6.08 / Edius 6.54(b) / Neo 3.0 / Neo 3.5

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by drgagx View Post
                            I also spotted that, for the consumer market, Panasonic is to offer a small, stand aloneburner that burns from AVCHD cards into DVDs in HD.
                            Sony has had a burner for some time and Canon has also announced one. The Sony one is VRD-MC5, http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs/...8&tab=Features
                            Has some nice features for most video formats.

                            Ron Evans
                            Ron Evans

                            Threadripper 1920 stock clock 3.7, Gigabyte Designare X399 MB, 32G G.Skill 3200CL14, 500G M.2 NVME OS, 500G EVO 850 temp. 1T EVO 850 render, 6T Source, 2 x 1T NVME, MSI 1080Ti 11G , EVGA 850 G2, LG BLuray Burner, BM IP4K, WIN10 Pro, Shuttle Pro2

                            ASUS PB328 monitor, BenQ BL2711U 4K preview monitor, EDIUS X, 9.5 WG, Vegas 18, Resolve Studio 17


                            Cameras: GH5S, GH5, FDR-AX100, FDR-AX53, DJI OSMO Pocket, Atomos Ninja V x 2

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by AJL14 View Post
                              Ken,

                              Would LOVE to know where you got that info on the new AVCHD 1920 x 1080 info. Now we ARE talking about the direct recording, are we not? There are a slew of small cameras that will OUTPUT 1920 X 1080 to an external recorder, but the internal (HDV, BluRay, HDD, Mem Cards) aren't up to recording that kind of bandwidth yet. We (the "movie" industry techies), usually get advanced info - rumors they're called - and if you have sources that bring this kind of info to your doorstep, then I applaud you and your connections! Keep us posted!

                              Cheers,
                              Alan
                              Yes Alan, most definitely 1920X1080 to either the hard drive or media stick depending on which camera you're discussing. Canon has 2 new models, the HF10 and HF100. These will both record 1920X1080 to an SDHC memory card. Data rate will be 17mbps. Sony has three units coming out that all have hard drives and Sony memory stick capability. These units will be bigger than the Canons due to the hard drives. The only difference between the 3 is hard drive size and a smaller imaging chip on the lowest model of the three. Unlike the current slew of AVCHD units, these are true 1920X1080 to whatever media is used.

                              These are no secret and all the info is on the respective websites of these two manufacturers. The Canons and Sonys are due out in March.

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