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View Full Version : lots of hmc150 questions before i buy



Strobe Media
12-31-2008, 01:22 PM
Hi everyone, so I plan on buying an hmc150 within the next week or so and i just have, for lack of better words, a shit load questions about this piece of machinery.

1.) I hear about people having problems running this in Sony Vegas, I currently run Sony Vegas 8.0 on my computer with these specs

AMD Athlon 64x2 Duo Core processor 5600+
Windows Vista
3gb ram
500gb hard drive

I want to know if my computer will be able to handle this because if not well that will pretty much decide my options between the HMC-150 and the HVX-200.

2.) I also heard that when transferring footage from the sd cards through a usb cord and not firewire... the clips are in a weird format and you need some sort of transcoder to put them in DVCPROHD format, do I absolutely need this to edit in sony vegas? where do I get this? does it cost money?

3.) The SDHC cards that you use in the HMC-150, can those be purchased at say Best Buy or Circuit City rather then buying panasonics brand?

4.) I film skateboarding mostly and i know the thread sizes of the hmc150 and the dvx100 are the same, 72mm, but are the bayo mounts the same size? I'd need to know this so i can decide whether or not to keep my dvx100 fisheye.

that's about all the questions i have.

Barry_Green
12-31-2008, 01:28 PM
1) Vegas 8.0c has some compatibility, but not perfect compatibility, with HMC150 footage. As stock it has no compatibility with HVX200 footage; you'd need to get raylight for HVX200/P2 compatibility. It would seem reasonable to expect full HMC150 compliance in the next version of Vegas (but no guarantees).

2) You specifically would not want to do this. Changing them to DVCPRO-HD format would mean that you'd have to buy the $200 Raylight add-on.

3) Any Class 4 SDHC card will work. For the lesser recording modes you can even use a Class 2 card.

4) The bayonets are at least somewhat compatible (I've exchanged the lens hoods between a DVX100 and an HMC150) but that doesn't mean the fisheye lens would work. It might, but I don't know.

David Saraceno
12-31-2008, 02:10 PM
Buy the best quality Class 6 SDHC cards you can find.

For event work, you don't get a second chance.

The clips are MTS files, which is what AVCHD records. The free Panasonic AVCHD to DVCProHD converter creates a virtual p2 card/volume which you can ingest into most PC/Mac editors. On a Mac, there isn't an additional purchase; on a PC, it depends on which editor. For Vegas, listen to Barry.

Strobe Media
12-31-2008, 02:37 PM
so you're saying Vegas should be compatible with HMC150 footage, but only compatible with HVX200 footage if i buy a $200 raylight thing? is that an external or internal part? sorry for my ignorance on the subject of HD...


also, would switching to Premiere help at all? it seems like vegas is a big hassle when it comes to editing.

Barry_Green
12-31-2008, 02:52 PM
Premiere Pro CS4 has native support for AVCHD and for DVCPRO-HD. Vegas doesn't have native support for P2/DVCPRO-HD so you have to buy the Raylight plug-in for it to work.

Strobe Media
12-31-2008, 03:05 PM
so it would be best for me to obtain either premiere pro cs4 no matter what camera i choose, or if i have my heart set on vegas and hvx, get the raylight plug in. But barry, in your personal opinion which holds a lot more weight then the people i've talked to, which camera, if you had your option, would you go with.

Ed Kishel
12-31-2008, 03:27 PM
I have been reading PPcs4 is very iffy with AVCHD from the 150. My Vegas Pro 8.0c plays well with AVCHD 720/1080 24p. 720 60p is a no go for me- too jumpy- it must be transcoded first.

I own the HMC150 and here is my Vegas workflow:
http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?t=152079&highlight=gearshift

Mike Harvey
12-31-2008, 03:32 PM
I'm having issues with Premiere CS4 and AVCHD on a much beefier computer than yours. I would just update to Vegas 8.0c if I were you. Since you already know Vegas, I wouldn't fork out the money to change unless you really like Premiere

Another option is to buy the new Cineform Neo Scene for $130. It will convert AVCHD to the Cineform codec. This requires much more hard drive space since the files will be huge, but should work just fine and be easier to edit in Vegas. And you don't lose resolution like you would with the free DVCProHD converter.

As to SDHC cards... look at Newegg.com. They have a lot of them from several manufacturers for cheap. $35 for a 16gig SDHC card versus $1500 for P2 is a big difference. And while you should buy the best, that doesn't mean you should just buy Panasonic. You can find several comparable cards for nowhere near the cost.

Hidef1080
12-31-2008, 04:49 PM
I just switch over to Vegas Pro 8c and I had/have no real problems with my native PH 720 files.
The playback is not as smooth as I would like in the preview window but my current laptops are not spec'ed out pure editors.
I had Premiere Pro CS3 and I did not really care for the transcoding because I could see too much of a resolution hit going from AVCHD to DVCPRO HD.
I did my research and I went with Vegas Pro over CS4.

I'm working with PH AVCHD on core 2 laptops with ease and speed.
I don't think I could get that with CS4...

Strobe Media
12-31-2008, 05:46 PM
so my computer will be ok? but would it be easier for me to get the hvx and work with the DVCPROHD codec over the AVCCAM codec?

Mike Harvey
12-31-2008, 07:48 PM
Would it be easier? Probably. The question you need to ask is is it $1500 extra for the camera and $1500-$3000 for media easier? I personally don't think so. Given that Vegas handles it decently and for $130 you can get the very good Cineform codec or for $200 you can get Raylight (which you'll need to get anyways if you go the HVX route)and work in DVCProHD after downloading the free DVCProHD converter from Panasonic, I personally would go with the HMC.

That is, of course, unless there are extras that come with the HVX that you find useful, like being able to record in all DVCPro codecs and DV, simultaneously recording DV to tape, firewire out, and a bunch of other stuff. If not, get the HMC, and use some of the money saved on computer upgrades (you're going to need a second dedicated video hard drive), or a better tripod and/or mics, or just pocket the difference.

Mike Harvey
12-31-2008, 07:56 PM
Also, if you're absolutely hellbent on DVCProHD, you might want to also look at the HPX170 if you don't care about tape. It's basically the HMC (same lens and chips) with more features and P2/DVCPro instead of SDHC/AVCHD. It also has more features than the HVX. It's a bit less than the HVX, but at least $1k more than the HMC... plus you have P2 media costs.

Just so you know all your options from Panasonic in this price range.

Barry_Green
01-01-2009, 09:06 AM
which camera, if you had your option, would you go with.
I did have the option, and I went with the 170. But my circumstances may not be the same as yours.

Unless you NEED to have a DV tape deck, I don't see any reason to go with an HVX200A over an HPX170. The 170 is so much better ergonomically and has tons of nice little features; unless you have a compelling reason for needing an HVX200A over an HPX170, I wouldn't even consider it, I'd get the 170 over the 200A.

So that leaves the choice between the HPX170 and the HMC150. Both cameras are physically nearly identical, same imagers, same lens, same core image. The main differences are price, recording format, and features.

On price it's a no-brainer, the HMC150 is way less expensive and its recording media is way less expensive. So if price is your primary concern, it's HMC150 all the way.

On recording format, the HPX170 uses the time-tested, proven, well-accepted, universally-supported DVCPRO-HD format. If you're working in news or professional production, if you need support in Avid and Flame and Combustion and Inferno, if you need instant editing, you may need that. If you don't do any of those things, and if you have the luxury of time, then AVCHD may be plenty good enough. AVCHD users now are either using a native editor on a powerful system, or transcoding the footage to an editing codec. A couple of years from now AVCHD editing will probably be as ubiquitous and easy as DV editing, but right now it's more of a struggle.

On features, the HMC150 has most of the important stuff but the HPX170 does offer a lot more (like standard-def recording, variable frame rates for slow/fast motion, interval recording, loop recording, etc).

So, let me put it another way, totally backwards - the 170 is the way to go if you can afford it, unless your shooting style is all about longform recording in which case the 12 hours' recording time on a 150 makes a compelling case! Feature wise and support wise the 170 has everything going for it. But the 150 is substantially less expensive. For a professional I'd say the 170 is definitely the choice; for an enthusiast it comes down to whether you value variable frame rates and P2 over cost and long recording times.

Strobe Media
01-01-2009, 11:13 AM
thanks a lot guys! i have an HMC150 in line just in my price range, again thanks a lot for your help on everything!

ilauzirika
01-01-2009, 04:24 PM
You won't regret it! is an awesome camera! enjoy it, learn all the little details and play with the user settings and you'll get some stunning images! it took me 4 years to save enough money for a camera and the hmc came, it was in my price range and had everything I needed. Now I'm 19 and finally can start (not that I didn't do it before, but with borrowed cams) using my own camera for all the projects I get (more since I got the camera).

I needed something that gave me good quality fully controlable images, not only cause I wanted them but because the people I worked for asked for that quality.

you know, it's new year and I have a strange need for talking about myself........


Enjoy the camera!

jeff9329
01-05-2009, 11:37 AM
I have been reading PPcs4 is very iffy with AVCHD from the 150. My Vegas Pro 8.0c plays well with AVCHD 720/1080 24p. 720 60p is a no go for me- too jumpy- it must be transcoded first.

I own the HMC150 and here is my Vegas workflow:
http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?t=152079&highlight=gearshift

I can report that 1080i and 720P30 work perfectly with Vegas 8.0c. I have done quite a few projects in these formats with no issues.

I believe (subjectively) that 720P30 looks a little better and views/renders a little better than 1080i based on the weddings and events I have shot so far.

Is it only 720P60 that Vegas 8.0c dosent work with? I thought I shot some 720P24 that wouldn't work. Can't remember now.

ESTEBEVERDE
01-05-2009, 01:53 PM
What is the best editor for 720P60?

I have a sports shoot coming up! :-0

Ed Kishel
01-05-2009, 03:09 PM
I can report that 1080i and 720P30 work perfectly with Vegas 8.0c. I have done quite a few projects in these formats with no issues.

Although I can also edit these formats natively as well, one thing I notice is that when the playback head crosses from one avchd clip to the next, playback hangs for about 1 frame on the cut, before going to the next clip.

Jeff, so that I know if this is just me or Vegas- take 2 clips from your 150 into Vegas, place them on the timeline (make sure you snap them together so there are no gaps).

Now, starting at the first clip- play it back and see if the preview monitor hangs for a sec when it crosses to the 2nd clip.

Mine does this. Its no big issue, but annoying when trying to preview your cuts, and this is why I use gearshift.

thanks

Bucknfl
01-06-2009, 07:01 AM
The HMC150 is ideal for freelance cameramen who can simply hand off the sd card at the end of the shoot to a producer. This is much faster and easier than P2.

jeff9329
01-06-2009, 09:27 AM
Although I can also edit these formats natively as well, one thing I notice is that when the playback head crosses from one avchd clip to the next, playback hangs for about 1 frame on the cut, before going to the next clip.

Jeff, so that I know if this is just me or Vegas- take 2 clips from your 150 into Vegas, place them on the timeline (make sure you snap them together so there are no gaps).

Now, starting at the first clip- play it back and see if the preview monitor hangs for a sec when it crosses to the 2nd clip.

Mine does this. Its no big issue, but annoying when trying to preview your cuts, and this is why I use gearshift.

thanks

Mine definately does not do that. With no crossfade and two different, but not contiguous footage, clips butted together, it's an instant and glitchless transition.

I have been setting my preview monitor on preview/auto lately because I have been working on a lot of multicam scene transitions. That setting may not give the best resolution, but it eliminates all glitches in the preview. I use best/full for color grading in the preview window.

Strobe Media
01-06-2009, 10:21 AM
I'm buying my HMC150 tonight, but just a question, the company i shoot freelance for uses PPcs3, they know almost anothing about the AVCCAM codec, they shoot all on HDV or SD, should i stand by them and help them as they import it or can a retard do this?

Barry_Green
01-06-2009, 10:27 AM
CS3 doesn't support AVCHD. You'd have to transcode it to something else if they want to use CS3. You can use the free MainConcept transcoder to turn it into DVCPRO-HD. Or they could upgrade to CS4 which has support for AVCHD.

ESTEBEVERDE
01-06-2009, 10:32 AM
But what about 720 60p?

Is that sorted yet or still a no go in CS4 and/or Vegas Pro?

Mike Harvey
01-06-2009, 10:43 AM
CS3 doesn't support AVCHD. Period. CS4 does, but as I and others can attest to it doesn't support it well. And you need to have a fairly beefy computer (I have a 2.4Ghz quadcore with 8 gig of ram and Vista 64). Until a later update that may solve this, you need to use the DVCProHD converter or wait a couple of weeks for Cineform Prospect HD v4 to come out to make CS4 a real option.

A lot of folks are reporting that the latest version of Vegas Pro is running it smoothly, however. So that is always an option.