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Andrew Reid

Sony NEX 7 video mode - first impressions review

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Thanks mainly to the unexpected success of their NEX line of consumer mirrorless cameras, Sony are probably the only company to realise the truth about mirrorless and its future direction. Namely that it is the future, especially for video.

[url="http://www.eoshd.com/?p=6990/"]Read full article[/url]

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs
Interesting... I didn't think that there would be a contest between this and the GH2. 1080 60p is also a very enticing feature. Very excited now about the outcome of this review, actually in a strange way hope that the NEX 7 can come out on top.

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Nice first video.  Looks very filmic, even the grain looks very organic.  And the sunset sky at the end, nice gradation.  Looks like a real contender for video!  Can't wait for the full review!!  Thanks Andrew!

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I really like the image of this camera. The tone gradation is lovely.
Hey Andrew, would you say this camera looks "more professional" to show up in a paid gig than, say, the GH2?
I know this can be a dumb question, but unfortunately, showing up in a paid gig, looks matter too... at least for some clients.
How would you compare this camera's "pro look" to a Canon 7D?
Really wanna know your opinion.
Love your site. Please keep it up!

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@tungah - This camera is smaller than a GH2, many lenses are bigger than the camera itself, so if you are concerned about "looking" professional this would really be quite difficult without a substantial setup. Chuck a monitor, mattebox, rails and good stabilisation into the mix and it just might.

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Pentax have just unveiled a mirrorless version of their K5 called the K-01. The video on a K5 was pretty much an afterthought, it will be interesting to see what they have done with this new mirrorless version.

[url=http://www.pentaxforums.com/news/pentax-k-01-officially-announced.html]http://www.pentaxforums.com/news/pentax-k-01-officially-announced.html[/url]

Chris

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[quote author=tungah link=topic=243.msg1618#msg1618 date=1328308091]
I really like the image of this camera. The tone gradation is lovely.
Hey Andrew, would you say this camera looks "more professional" to show up in a paid gig than, say, the GH2?
I know this can be a dumb question, but unfortunately, showing up in a paid gig, looks matter too... at least for some clients.
How would you compare this camera's "pro look" to a Canon 7D?
Really wanna know your opinion.
Love your site. Please keep it up!
[/quote]

Hey my Borat bro. If you turn up to a pro gig in a mankini, it won't look good no matter what. I think the camera if it is anything less diminutive than a FS100, C300 or AF100 benefits from an external monitor, cage, and rig. Then the client will think it looks pro. The client of course should be more bothered about what kind of video they get at the end of it.

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[quote author=ChrisJ link=topic=243.msg1623#msg1623 date=1328318627]
Pentax have just unveiled a mirrorless version of their K5 called the K-01. The video on a K5 was pretty much an afterthought, it will be interesting to see what they have done with this new mirrorless version.

[url=http://www.pentaxforums.com/news/pentax-k-01-officially-announced.html]http://www.pentaxforums.com/news/pentax-k-01-officially-announced.html[/url]

Chris
[/quote]

I want it to be good. But it looks like a Lego Brick and has no unique technology in it. Sony, Canon and Panasonic develop their own sensors, Canon and Sony develop their own EVFs. Pentax don't even have an EVF on the Lego Brick and their sensor is from Sony. Ground breaking? Doesn't look like it but I will be over the moon to proved wrong....

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"The quality of stills on the NEX 7 are astonishing and at the 5D Mark II level. It is like an APS-C version of that camera image quality wise."

Get lost!!!!
The samples I've seen from the NEX 7 doesnt come close to the 5DMkII.
You can compare RAW samples on dpreview. NEX 7 ISO 400 noise is about the same as the 5DMkII at ISO 1600, a 2 stop margin but despite the Sony's higher resolution it is not as good as the Canon on finer details

[url=http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/sonynex7/page27.asp]http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/sonynex7/page27.asp[/url]

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[quote author=Andrew Reid - EOSHD link=topic=243.msg1624#msg1624 date=1328324206]
The client of course should be more bothered about what kind of video they get at the end of it.
[/quote]

I couldn't agree more, Andrew.
Would be nice if [i]some[/i] clients also did. ;)
Thanks for your opinion, man.

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[quote author=ChrisJ link=topic=243.msg1623#msg1623 date=1328318627]
Pentax have just unveiled a mirrorless version of their K5 called the K-01. The video on a K5 was pretty much an afterthought, it will be interesting to see what they have done with this new mirrorless version.

[url=http://www.pentaxforums.com/news/pentax-k-01-officially-announced.html]http://www.pentaxforums.com/news/pentax-k-01-officially-announced.html[/url]

Chris
[/quote]

Taken from Imaging Resource:

Movie mode. When Pentax debuted the K-7 SLR back in 2009, it was a little ahead of the game, being the first to offer aperture control for video capture. Since then, its video functionality hasn't developed as quickly as the rest of the market, and recent models have rather lagged the competition when it came to video capture capabilities. The company has clearly put quite a bit of work into resolving that for the K-01, and its movie-mode functionality has received quite an overhaul.

Like the tiny Pentax Q, the K-01 now records videos with more modern H.264/MPEG-4 AVC compression, which is rather more space-efficient than the archaic Motion JPEG compression used in its SLR cameras. (Of course, it also takes a more powerful computer to edit, and some might argue that Motion JPEG has the potential for higher image quality, but with the Pentax K-5 requiring as much as 600MB of storage per minute of video captured, it was clear that a more modern compression format was needed.)

The K-01 also bests Pentax's enthusiast flagship in terms of video frame rate, being able to capture Full HD (1,080p; 1,920 x 1,080 pixel) video at a rate of 30 frames per second, where the K-5 was limited to 25 frames per second. Better still, it's possible to opt for frame rates of 25 or 24 frames per second, if that better suits your target for the recorded video. In addition, at 720p (1,280 x 720 pixel) resolution, it's now possible to record at 50 or 60 frames per second. There's still a VGA (640 x 480 pixel) mode, as well, if you prefer to capture in standard-def, and this offers the same frame rate options as the Full HD mode.


That's not all, though. The K-01 now offers a choice of either aperture or shutter-priority capture, where--with the exception of the Pentax Q, which offered a choice of Program or Manual exposure--previous Pentax models have been limited to only program or aperture-priority. (It's not yet clear whether full manual capture is possible with the K-01, however.)

The K-01 also inherits the Pentax Q's ability to create time-lapse movies in-camera, great for making a video of a flower opening, tides ebbing and flowing, or weather patterns in a cloud-scattered sky.

Movie audio has also been revisited, with a built-in stereo microphone in place of the monaural mics of past models, plus a stereo mic jack for external mics. There's also both a wind noise suppression filter, and a manual audio gain control, although we don't yet know how fine-grained this is.

Pentax has also rethought its movie-mode interface, and now offers not only a separate Movie position on the Mode dial, but also a dedicated Movie record button, suggesting that movie capture may now be possible from other modes, as well. (That would be a very worthwhile improvement, as having to change modes makes it less likely you'll be fast enough to grab a spontaneous clip, when an unanticipated opportunity presents itself.)

The Pentax K-01 also includes limited in-camera movie editing functionality. It's possible to split videos in-camera, extract still frames from movie clips, or delete frames from videos.

-------------------

Should be on par or better than what Sony offer atm though I doubt huge bit rates or GH2 GOP1 without a hack.  I think its a fun camera and there are lots of great Pentax lenses.  In body IS is nice as well.

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[quote author=Simco123 link=topic=243.msg1627#msg1627 date=1328326804]
"The quality of stills on the NEX 7 are astonishing and at the 5D Mark II level. It is like an APS-C version of that camera image quality wise."

Get lost!!!!
The samples I've seen from the NEX 7 doesnt come close to the 5DMkII.
You can compare RAW samples on dpreview. NEX 7 ISO 400 noise is about the same as the 5DMkII at ISO 1600, a 2 stop margin but despite the Sony's higher resolution it is not as good as the Canon on finer details

[url=http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/sonynex7/page27.asp]http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/sonynex7/page27.asp[/url]
[/quote]

I don't know what you are seeing, but to say the NEX 7 doesn't come close to the 5D MkII for stills is just plain wrong!

At base ISO it is giving more detail, in RAW and JPEG.

At ISO 1600 again in RAW it is only *slightly* noisier and yet STILL resolves more resolution and is less soft. In JPEG the noise reduction engine is more advanced in the Sony since it is far newer in terms of image processing.

Also an APS-C sensor is less demanding on your lens in terms of coverage, vignetting and corner sharpness. Plus you can adapt more to it. The NEX 7 beats the 5D Mark II hands down for stills.

Probably will write an article about this since I have both and do actually use them for stills as well as video.

[img]http://www.eoshd.com/uploads/iso100.jpg[/img]

[img]http://www.eoshd.com/uploads/iso1600.jpg[/img]

By the way, the manner in which these sites (DPReview, etc.) test ISO is really silly, under bright studio lights. All the results above are much noisier in REAL low light shooting than they appear there.

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I hope I'm doing a mess for posting this here, but as there was a part that was converted from 1080p50 to 1080p25, I wanted to ask.

What's the best way to convert the AVCHD 2.0 1080p60/50 so video editors on Mac can understand it? I thought that as the iMovie understands 1080p30 imported direct from the camera, it would be the same for the 1080p60, but that doesn't work. So far I only found some paid softwares. Is there a way to do it with freewares?

Thanks!

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What I do to be able to edit nicely on mac is convert to Apple Prores using Quicktime (before you have to install  this plugin https://eww.pass.panasonic.co.jp/pro-av/support/dload/avccam_impt/agree_e.htm)

Then I conform to 25p using Cinema Tools.

Hope it helps.

Regards.
Enrique.

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[quote author=Andrew Reid - EOSHD link=topic=243.msg1630#msg1630 date=1328364878]
[quote author=Simco123 link=topic=243.msg1627#msg1627 date=1328326804]
"The quality of stills on the NEX 7 are astonishing and at the 5D Mark II level. It is like an APS-C version of that camera image quality wise."

Get lost!!!!
The samples I've seen from the NEX 7 doesnt come close to the 5DMkII.
You can compare RAW samples on dpreview. NEX 7 ISO 400 noise is about the same as the 5DMkII at ISO 1600, a 2 stop margin but despite the Sony's higher resolution it is not as good as the Canon on finer details

[url=http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/sonynex7/page27.asp]http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/sonynex7/page27.asp[/url]
[/quote]

I don't know what you are seeing, but to say the NEX 7 doesn't come close to the 5D MkII for stills is just plain wrong!

At base ISO it is giving more detail, in RAW and JPEG.

At ISO 1600 again in RAW it is only *slightly* noisier and yet STILL resolves more resolution and is less soft. In JPEG the noise reduction engine is more advanced in the Sony since it is far newer in terms of image processing.

Also an APS-C sensor is less demanding on your lens in terms of coverage, vignetting and corner sharpness. Plus you can adapt more to it. The NEX 7 beats the 5D Mark II hands down for stills.

Probably will write an article about this since I have both and do actually use them for stills as well as video.


By the way, the manner in which these sites (DPReview, etc.) test ISO is really silly, under bright studio lights. All the results above are much noisier in REAL low light shooting than they appear there.
[/quote]

I think you are either looking through rose tinted lens or trying to ignore reality by trying to hold on to an mistake.
The example you posted on the medallion flatters camera with higher resolution but even your example shows how noisy the NEX 7 is compare to the competition. Take a look how bad the NEX 7 is and no prize for guessing which camera delivered the best IQ

[img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7001/6817207553_bd6445a084_b.jpg[/img]

Unless you are shooting at base ISO in good lighting I suggest people who shoot above ISO 800 to avoid the NEX 7 like a plague. Even at base ISO the higher resolution NEX 7 lacks fine details compare to the 5DMkII and that is not good.

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I wouldn't say that the NEX is unusable in stills over ISO 800, but certainly the 5DII is better (by about a stop in print if you believe DXO).  I'd give the NEX the edge at low ISO though, and certainly in lens flexibility if you don't require AF.  Video is a separate question, since the downscaling determines the effective sensor size, and the 5DII is notoriously weak in that.

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[quote author=EnriquePacheco link=topic=243.msg1633#msg1633 date=1328368898]
What I do to be able to edit nicely on mac is convert to Apple Prores using Quicktime (before you have to install  this plugin https://eww.pass.panasonic.co.jp/pro-av/support/dload/avccam_impt/agree_e.htm)

Then I conform to 25p using Cinema Tools.

Hope it helps.

Regards.
Enrique.
[/quote]

Thanks! I'll take a look.

So far, I found a software called RewrapAVCHD, it rewraps the MTS file into m4v and so does the Handbrake, but I think that the Handbrake actually converts it. The difference is that with the Handbrake you have control over it, with the RewrapAVCHD you have no control over it, you can't choose codec, quality, etc.

Is there a difference between conforming the video and importing it as a 60p and making a slo-mo? Let's say I conform it from 60p to 24p and I import as a 60p and slow it down 2,5x to make it 24p - as the rest of the project is 24p. Is there any difference in quality or more like a workflow preference?

Thanks!

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