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AVIs on Digital Camera

 
 
Darren
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      11-10-2004
Hi,

I notice that some Finepix cameras can record 640x480 at 30fps (eg E550) but
these are around the 300 GBP mark.

Are there cheaper cameras that can do 30fps (at 640x480 or maybe 320x240)?

Can the Finepix do it because they use XD cards? i.e. Does it have to use
XD cards to do 30fps.

Thanks, Darren.


 
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Joe Hotchkiss
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      11-11-2004
"Darren" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:419273ec$0$33640$(E-Mail Removed)...
> I notice that some Finepix cameras can record 640x480 at 30fps (eg E550)

but
> these are around the 300 GBP mark.
>
> Are there cheaper cameras that can do 30fps (at 640x480 or maybe 320x240)?


I have a 5 mega-pixel Sony DSC P93. 173 GBP from www.pixmania.co.uk.
At 640x480 30fps a 1GB card will last about 12 minutes, or there is a higher
compression 640x480 16fps mode which stretches this to 44 minutes. A 1GB
card is about 120 to 150 GBP, so you could get a camera+1GB stick for around
300. The prices of 4GB sticks are now looking reasonable.

> Can the Finepix do it because they use XD cards? i.e. Does it have to use
> XD cards to do 30fps.


It is not just xD cards that can do this. Part of the reason memory stick
pro is more expensive than other forms of memory is that it has always had a
high write speed.

I do like the movie mode, and disagree with the "if you want movies, buy a
movie camera" idea. I want stills most of the time but now and again I want
movies. There is no way I am going to carry around two cameras. Sample
clip at
http://www.harrowsubaqua.org.uk/phot...9/MOV00766.MPG
At 14.5MB for an 11 second clip I'll understand if you don't want to
download it. )
It is the sort of thing where a still just wouldn't do the scene justice.
When I was deciding which camera to buy I thought movies would be nice. Now
I regard a decent movie capability as essential. YMMV.

( 160 GBP, I think. for the underwater housing to 40m, but similar housings
are available for a lot of cameras from various manufacturers. )

--
Joe

http://joe.hotchkiss.com


 
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nafod40
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      11-11-2004
Joe Hotchkiss wrote:
>
> I do like the movie mode, and disagree with the "if you want movies, buy a
> movie camera" idea. I want stills most of the time but now and again I want
> movies. There is no way I am going to carry around two cameras.
>
> It is the sort of thing where a still just wouldn't do the scene justice.
> When I was deciding which camera to buy I thought movies would be nice. Now
> I regard a decent movie capability as essential. YMMV.


I second that. I bought an A70 for the stills, and found myself using
the movie mode very frequently. Shots of friends skiing, rock climbing,
kids saying hi to grandma, golf swing,...no end to its uses.

 
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David J Taylor
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      11-11-2004
nafod40 wrote:
[]
> I second that. I bought an A70 for the stills, and found myself using
> the movie mode very frequently. Shots of friends skiing, rock
> climbing, kids saying hi to grandma, golf swing,...no end to its uses.


But these are snippets - not full movies that contain just moving images,
aren't they? So are the requirements are likely to be different to a
"proper" video camera?

The prime reason for choosing a particular still camera should be its
still image performance and capabilities, not its movie snippet abilities.

Cheers,
David


 
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Toke Eskildsen
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      11-11-2004
David J Taylor wrote:

[A70 movies]

> But these are snippets - not full movies that contain just moving
> images, aren't they?


There's no such thing af moving images. At least not with standard
technology. It's all just a lot of stills shown quickly after each
other. If the images are shown rapidly enough, it looks like moving
images, so we call them that.

> So are the requirements are likely to be
> different to a "proper" video camera?


There are differences, especially if we're talking interlacing, but
movies from a digital camera are just as much movies as those produced
by a DV-cam or a VHS-cam.

A lot of digital cameras produce crappy movies, but it seems to me that
the manufacturers are really catching up. 640x480, 30fps, as Joe talks
about, isn't that unusual for the new models. Not that the raw numbers
equal great quality, but it's a big step in the right direction.

> The prime reason for choosing a particular still camera should be
> its still image performance and capabilities, not its movie
> snippet abilities.


Why?

People have lots of reasons to selecting a camera. I have a Dony DCS-
T1. A small digital camera, with okay image quality in good light and
bad image quality in low light. I knew that before I bought it, so why
did I buy it? Speed, size and movies. Not that image quality didn't
matter, it just didn't have that high a priority.

I see no reason why a person shouldn't choose the T1 (or another camera
like it) with the primary purpose of having a small movie camera and
the secondary purpose of being able to take stills.
 
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nafod40
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      11-11-2004
David J Taylor wrote:
> nafod40 wrote:
> []
>
>>I second that. I bought an A70 for the stills, and found myself using
>>the movie mode very frequently. Shots of friends skiing, rock
>>climbing, kids saying hi to grandma, golf swing,...no end to its uses.

>
>
> But these are snippets - not full movies that contain just moving images,
> aren't they? So are the requirements are likely to be different to a
> "proper" video camera?


Oh definitely. It is not a replacement. I have both. They complement
each other well.

> The prime reason for choosing a particular still camera should be its
> still image performance and capabilities, not its movie snippet abilities.


There's enough models out there that you can include movie capability
into your mix of criteria (my opinion). Over and over I find that I end
up taking movies in places that I didn't consider doing so when I left
the car. Very serendipitous. Spinning the mode knob to movie is all it
takes.

Here's a "snippet" taken with my A70 at Big Sky, Montana. Again, I was
riding the tram and thought, "Man, this is gorgeous, wish I had a video
cam...hey, my digicam takes movies..." 20 megs download.
http://www.personal.psu.edu/faculty/...ram%20ride.avi

 
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Darren
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      11-11-2004
> I do like the movie mode, and disagree with the "if you want movies, buy a
> movie camera" idea. I want stills most of the time but now and again I
> want
> movies. There is no way I am going to carry around two cameras. Sample
> clip at
> http://www.harrowsubaqua.org.uk/phot...9/MOV00766.MPG
> At 14.5MB for an 11 second clip I'll understand if you don't want to
> download it. )
> It is the sort of thing where a still just wouldn't do the scene justice.
> When I was deciding which camera to buy I thought movies would be nice.
> Now
> I regard a decent movie capability as essential. YMMV.


I downloaded the file. Very good considering it's underwater!

Do you have an example not underwater?

I saved it to CD-RW and my DVD player played it, but it was very jerky. I
had this with another mpg file recently. I think if the mpg file has a very
high bit-rate (and 23 meg for 11s, is very high) the DVD player struggles to
read the data off the CD-RW disk fast enough.

I converted it to SVCD and it played fine (but had been reduced to 480x480
at 28fps or 26fps and ended up only 2.5meg in size).

Have you tried saving the file to DVD for watching on a TV? Was it easy?

Darren.


 
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Joe Hotchkiss
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      11-12-2004
"Darren" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:4193ccbc$0$4023$(E-Mail Removed)...
> I downloaded the file. Very good considering it's underwater!
>
> Do you have an example not underwater?


I haven't had the camera a long time and only have a couple of decent
movies, land or otherwise. The only good dry ones are shots of family
though that I don't care to share, and anyway, 58MB for 2mins 44sec is more
than I have room for on any web site. And it would take hours since I still
only have a dial-up line, not broadband.

> I saved it to CD-RW and my DVD player played it, but it was very jerky. I
> had this with another mpg file recently. I think if the mpg file has a

very
> high bit-rate (and 23 meg for 11s, is very high) the DVD player struggles

to
> read the data off the CD-RW disk fast enough.


It plays smoothly on my PC. Apart from the camera shake/wobble that is.
There isn't much opportunity to brace yourself or rest the camera on
anything for this kind of shot. I considered converting it for quicker
download but the quality dropped dramatically.

> I converted it to SVCD and it played fine (but had been reduced to 480x480
> at 28fps or 26fps and ended up only 2.5meg in size).
>
> Have you tried saving the file to DVD for watching on a TV? Was it easy?


I just tried it as a VCD and as a DVD. Pretty simple with the Pinnacle
software that came with the PC. The DVD wasn't bad but the VCD was poor.
I've no idea what resolution or frame rate was being used but it wasn't as
good as viewing the original on the PC. No surprise there I suppose but on
both formats a couple of black frames 'flashed' up that I certainly didn't
expect.

--
Joe

http://joe.hotchkiss.com


 
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Toke Eskildsen
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      11-12-2004
Joe Hotchkiss wrote:

> It plays smoothly on my PC. Apart from the camera shake/wobble
> that is. There isn't much opportunity to brace yourself or rest
> the camera on anything for this kind of shot.


You might want to take a look at DeShaker. It's a free plugin for the
tool VirtualDub and it makes it quite easy to compensate for shaking.
The price is either zooming, cropping or occasional black borders, but
for moving shots such as yours, I find that it improves the experience.

> I considered converting it for quicker download but the quality
> dropped dramatically.


I tried compressing your clip using Xvid and found that 2.5MB was
enough for high quality 640x480 30fps. With your permission, I'll put
a DeShaked version and a plain Xvid version online.
 
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Joe Hotchkiss
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      11-12-2004
"Toke Eskildsen" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:Xns959F61FCE25ACtokeeskildsen@130.133.1.4...
> I tried compressing your clip using Xvid and found that 2.5MB was
> enough for high quality 640x480 30fps. With your permission, I'll put
> a DeShaked version and a plain Xvid version online.


Please do. I'd be interested to see the result.
--
Joe

http://joe.hotchkiss.com


 
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