Sony NEX VG10 - Quality

Discussion in 'Filmmaking' started by sunnyr83, May 29, 2014.

  1. sunnyr83

    sunnyr83 New to TalkEmount

    1
    May 29, 2014
    London
    Hi.

    Recently picked up a Nex VG10 for some short automotive videos in the future.

    I have done a bit of test footage indoors of the family and outdoors using the supplied 18-55mm lens and all looks great whilst capturing but when I load the SD card onto my computer and play, it really looks awful, fairly grainy and the colours don't match what I was viewing through the viewfinder and LCD screen, it basically doesn't look HD quality at all, it's close if not lesser quality than my Sony Z1.

    I used Sony Vegas pro 11 for a quick edit (1 min video) and rendered the clip and again it was poor quality.


    Question is, is there any certain settings people use on the camera that they can share and also what settings when rendering through Sony Vegas?
    What is the best quality to record at to burn to a DVD or Bluray disk and watch on a large HDTV?
    As it records AVCHD, is it something to do with that?
    The 1st test clip I done the Gain was set to auto but having put the gain on 12 indoors the grainy look seemed to have lessened slighty.

    Im at a loss with the quality as iv given up taking test footage.

    Any help is kindly appreciated.
     
  2. Dan Euritt

    Dan Euritt TalkEmount Regular

    191
    Jan 11, 2014
    there could be issues with the computer that are causing the poor playback quality.

    have you tried playing it back on other computers?

    what bitrate settings were used to record the video?

    if you can post a link to a short clip that you shot, we can take a look at it.
     
  3. Poki

    Poki TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 30, 2011
    Austria
    The reason for this is the same as on all E-Mount cameras. The screen and EVF show the uncompressed signal from the sensor. This is the kind of quality you can get when attaching an external recorder via the HDMI port of the camera, and this is also the big advantage of the NEX-VG-cameras vs. the NEX-still-cameras, as the latter ones do not support clean HDMI out.

    Without an external recorder, though, you're limited to what you get. And no, nothing is wrong with your camera, your computer or your software. That's just what you get with a highly compressed AVCHD codec. To make things even worse, the VG10 does not even support the AVCHD 2.0 standard all newer E-Mount cameras support, which could give you 24 fps at 24 Mbit/s or 50 fps at 28 Mbit/s. You're basically limited to 60i at 16 Mbit/s.

    With an external recorder, things should be MUCH better. Although you'll still be limited to 60i interlaced frames per second.

    Also, the kit lens is not ideal for anything but the brightest daylight, as the NEX-VG10 uses the old 16MP NEX-5 sensor which was developed with mainly stills in mind. So it basically applies a line-skipping protocol to a 16:9 cropped area of the sensor.

    In other words: If you want great 1080p video quality without an external recorder in a small, light and relatively cheap package, get a Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera.

    Edit: If you want to stay with E-Mount, there are options too, but they're far more expensive. For that, you get more features than any of the BMD cameras, although you won't get a good in-camera recording option. You'd still need an external recorder like this one: http://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/hyperdeckshuttle
     
  4. Dan Euritt

    Dan Euritt TalkEmount Regular

    191
    Jan 11, 2014
    i see from the specs that it has a funky video spec: acquires at 30p(29.97), but records at 1080 60i, 24Mbps??
    https://docs.sony.com/release/specs/NEXVG10_mksp.pdf

    i had heard that there were a few nex cameras doing that, but it's the first time i've actually seen the spec :-/

    the good news is that it's probably not recording true interlaced footage, just using some duplicate frame scheme, that should be easy to re-combine frames to a clean 30p, with no lines.

    but will that actually be 24Mbps... i think that it'll be usable, as long as the lighting is good... lets see the sample footage.

    i use sony vegas 12, with the yadif deinterlace plugin:
    http://www.sonycreativesoftware.com/Forums/ShowMessage.asp?Forum=4&MessageID=754027
     
  5. Poki

    Poki TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 30, 2011
    Austria
    Like I said, with an external recorder, you can get amazing quality out of the VG10. With the internal codec and the incredibly bad compression, even at 24 Mbps, it just won't spill out great quality video.
     
  6. unlo

    unlo Sony ******

    Jan 19, 2014
    Ohio
    Matt
    This thread has me wondering a few things maybe someone with more knowledge can help me out.
    I'm planning to rent a NEX VG-900 for a weekend coming up in the spring to shoot a Fire/Flow festival in Ohio. Obviously the larger full frame sensor is going to give me better quality over the vg10. But will I be crippled by the AVCHD codec as described? Would it be worth my while to also have on hand an external recorder for better quality? I'd really like to get everything in order well in advance for this event. So any ideas on equipment / accessories anyone can advise would be appreciated.
     
  7. Poki

    Poki TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 30, 2011
    Austria
    Yes, the VG-900 also is crippled by an AVCHD codec, although it supports the better 2.0 one with a more efficient CPU, so quality will be slightly better.

    To take full advantage of the VG-900, you'll definitely need an external recorder. Blackmagic Design makes some awesome, small and not too expensive external recorders.

    So this is one option. Another one would be to buy a Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema Camera. It costs less than a thousand bucks and offers awesome quality right to the SD card (ProRes 422, or even RAW video with a software update). The downsides are that you'd need MFt lenses, and you'd loose most of the features of the VG-900 (slo mo, microphone, reportage style form factor, EVF, ...).

    So these are two great options. The VG-900, much bigger, heaver and more expensive, but together with an external recorder it delivers great quality video and it offers buckets of features. Or the BMD PCC, a small, lightweight and cheap-ish camera that delivers great quality right to the SD card, but it lacks most of the features the VG-900 offers. It's your choice - only you can know if you actually need the additional features of the VG-900 and whether they're worth their price.
     
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  8. unlo

    unlo Sony ******

    Jan 19, 2014
    Ohio
    Matt
    so something like the Blackmagic Design HyperDeck Shuttle 2 SSD Video Recorder with a SSD mounted would be an option? you mention features being available on the vg900 none of those are hindered by recording to the external recorder?
     
  9. Poki

    Poki TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 30, 2011
    Austria
    Yes, and it's one of the better options out there.

    And nope, none of the features of the camera will be deactivated when an external recorder is connected. After all, this camera is constructed with an external recorder in mind, otherwise the price would just be outrageous.
     
  10. unlo

    unlo Sony ******

    Jan 19, 2014
    Ohio
    Matt
    lol i thought it already was.
     
  11. Poki

    Poki TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 30, 2011
    Austria
    Considerng the features - and quality it can deliver with an external recorder - the price actually is not too bad. Sure, cameras like the BMD Cinema Camera might rival it's image quality at lower price points, but they lack all the features necessary for run-and-gun style video shooting. The VG-900, on the other hand, can just be as easily used in a studio environment as on the go. Not that it's cheap, but I actually think it's worth the asking price if you're serious about your videos.
     
  12. Hawkman

    Hawkman TalkEmount Top Veteran

    943
    Sep 10, 2013
    Virginia, USA
    Steve
    Um, I may be out of line on this, but how about the A7S? It has the XAVC codec at high bitrates and reportedly performs excellently for video, including 4K to an external recorder.
    Just sayin'.


    Sent from my iPhone using TalkEmount
     
  13. Poki

    Poki TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 30, 2011
    Austria
    From an image quality perspective, that's true. But then again, you'd loose most of the advantages the VG-900 has over BMD's offerings, so the A7s is basically the same as BMD's cheaper 4k cameras - just with better low light IQ at the cost of a not so well-rounded workflow and lacking some features of the BMD.
     
  14. unlo

    unlo Sony ******

    Jan 19, 2014
    Ohio
    Matt
    Well I Def want to do a lot of long video recording. And I've been looking @ the vg900 for some time now. Looks like saving up for an external recorder is a good idea.
     
  15. Dan Euritt

    Dan Euritt TalkEmount Regular

    191
    Jan 11, 2014
    be sure and get a recorder that has a start/stop record function, from the record button on the camera, via the hdmi connection... i think that the new atomos ninja recorder does that with certain cameras, don't know about the shuttle recorder.

    be realistic about what you are actually going to be shooting, and get a camera that works for that... those sonys are long in the tooth, compared to the technology that's out there now.