PAL Canon perfect, But NTSC is MUCH cheaper?

Discussion in 'Canon' started by MemImages, Nov 26, 2003.

  1. MemImages

    MemImages Guest

    Hell all.
    I need some advice.
    I am interested in purchasing the Canon Elura 50 or Mv6iMC as it is known
    here in Australia.
    It retails here for around $1600 AU and the Elura 50 I can pick up in the
    states for around $800AU. Half price.
    I am travelling to the US to visit family shortly and would like to purchase
    a camera for the trip.

    My question is this.
    Will I be happy with my NTSC Camera when i return to OZ given that:

    A/. I will be editing the vids on my PC and recording my videos productions
    onto vcd discs.
    B/. I believe my SONY TV can interpret a NTSC signal.
    C/. I like saving $$$! :)

    I read a few posts saying that the quality is different. Will I really
    notice it when I download the video onto my system, add some special effects
    narrations e.t.c Then burn the video onto a VCD in the desired format.

    Any assistance would be appreciated

    Davin
     
    MemImages, Nov 26, 2003
    #1
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  2. MemImages

    Jerry. Guest

    If you keep everything in NTSC.
    NTSC = 30fps, PAL = 25fps.
    Are you sure, I doubt it does a proper NTSC > PAL standards conversion, it
    might be viewable on a TV set (most TV's are quite adapt at guessing what
    should be present in the signal), but that does not mean a capture card
    will.
    What does your customs say about importing good, that is what you will be
    doing, you might just loose what you save in what you have to pay in import
    duty (and you can't explain away an NTSC camera as easily as would could a
    PAL camera bought abroad...).
    People who view NTSC all the time say PAL is crap, people who view PAL all
    the time say that NTSC is crap ! There / are / differences and system quarks
    in both standards.

    add some special effects
    Remember, crap in = crap out, special effects or not... In other words, if
    there is anything that is noticeable between a NTSC image and a PAL one it
    will be there before and after what ever you do in post production.
    You are taking a large financial gamble, if you can afford to take the risk,
    but if you can't.....
     
    Jerry., Nov 27, 2003
    #2
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  3. MemImages

    Tony Morgan Guest

    Unlikely.
    If things are the same in Oz as they are here in the UK, then you should
    be able to pre-order a duty-free camcorder at one of the outlets you get
    in the duty-free area at your Oz airport, pick it up on the way out, use
    it in the US, and get it back in without paying duty. Here (at Gatwick
    at least) you have to pre-order it from Head Office (of the retailer)
    about four weeks before travelling.
     
    Tony Morgan, Nov 27, 2003
    #3
  4. MemImages

    Chip Guest

    I have perhaps 100 NTSC Region 1 DVD's and maybe another 100 PAL region 2
    DVD's. Does *anyone* notice the difference in quality when they come around
    and watch on my Panasonic 42" plasma? No. Never.

    The only dis-incentive against buying "foreign" equipment is really the
    warranty. No-one wants to have to send the gear abroad for a warranty
    repair.

    But for editing on a PC, burning VCD's and watching on a TV, an NTSC
    camcorder will do just fine.

    Chip.
     
    Chip, Nov 27, 2003
    #4
  5. MemImages

    Jukka Aho Guest

    Though you will run into problems the moment you want to mix
    someone's PAL footage to your NTSC video (perhaps there were
    two cameramen in that wedding and you would like to use some
    of the footage the other two guys shot?) or play back the
    holiday video at your grandma's place which only has a PAL
    tv set.
     
    Jukka Aho, Nov 27, 2003
    #5
  6. MemImages

    Keith Laws Guest

    Why on earth would it need to?

    --
    Keith Laws

    What's my solution?

    .....NOISE POLLUTION
     
    Keith Laws, Nov 27, 2003
    #6
  7. Shame on you Jerry, I thought everyone here knew NTSC was 29.97fps.
     
    Malcolm Knight, Nov 27, 2003
    #7
  8. MemImages

    Jerry. Guest

    I do, I just rounded it up :~P
     
    Jerry., Nov 28, 2003
    #8
  9. MemImages

    Jerry. Guest

    The set doesn't (as I mentioned), something like an NLE that is dealing with
    individual
    frames etc will...
     
    Jerry., Nov 28, 2003
    #9
  10. MemImages

    Chip Guest

    No he won't. This is not a problem with a PC; he can easily convert PAL to
    NTSC and vice versa... in the unlikely event that he needs to do this.
    No-one is going to do in-camera editing when they have an edit PC, are they.

    [snip]
    OK, theoretically this could be a problem. But in practice? The guy
    already said he wants to burn VCD's etc. Are we to presume he will be
    carrying the camcorder itself around, to play unedited videos on people's
    TV's? I think not. And anyway, would he pay *double* just for this
    once-in-a-lifetime capability? Well I wouldn't.

    No, the fact is an NTSC camcorder is just as good as a PAL one for the
    purposes he needs. The *only* issue is the warranty.

    Chip.
     
    Chip, Nov 28, 2003
    #10
  11. MemImages

    Jerry. Guest

    Are they, you mean standards converters are not needed, just a NLE ?
    Yes he will need to play the tape out to a TV, how else is he going to see
    what he wants to capture to PC or DVD writer, I doubt he'll be happy using a
    2.5 x 3 inch LCD for long !
    If he only uses the camcorder to view and play the tapes, and only uses a PC
    to copy the tapes to another medium.
     
    Jerry., Nov 28, 2003
    #11
  12. MemImages

    Jukka Aho Guest

    Not so easy. There are no quality standards conversion methods
    for consumers. You can do crappy hobbyist-level so-and-so
    "standards conversion" with a regular NLE, and there are some
    VirtualDub filters which can help you bit further, but the end
    result will still be nowhere near material shot natively in the
    target format, or professional standards converters such as
    Snell & Wilcox's "Alchemist", which does real motion detection
    and interpolation. Especially the motion quality will suffer
    with hobbyist-level tools. Conversions will also take lots of
    time, since every frame needs to be recalculated.
    Not so unlikely, either. Hobbyist-level camcorders are usually
    bought for filming family events: holidays, weddings, birthdays
    and such. Nowadays there is almost always someone else videotaping
    the same event too, and at least I regularly use material from
    "the other guy" when I edit together a watchable piece of video
    from the event.
    In-camera editing has nothing to do with it, standards conversions
    are not easy with PC's and NLE's either. For example, one particular
    nuisance is that you need to render the material that is in the
    foreign format to even preview it properly on a telly, instead of
    watching the small (and off-colored) preview window on your PC
    monitor.
    The same standards conversion issue (as above) arises when he
    wants to make a PAL VHS copy for the Grandma. Of course if you
    accept the long rendering times and the notion that Grandma
    does not need that much quality in the first place (and can
    very well watch a bit juddery/blurry motion), then all is fine.
     
    Jukka Aho, Nov 28, 2003
    #12
  13. MemImages

    Keith Laws Guest

    Only if you are using an old TV, just about all modern TVs in the UK can
    play NTSC direct from the camera.
    --
    Keith Laws

    What's my solution?

    .....NOISE POLLUTION
     
    Keith Laws, Nov 28, 2003
    #13
  14. Doesn't have to be particularly modern; most 'big name' PAL TVs and
    VCRs were NTSC compatible in 1992 when I first kitted myself out with
    a decent domestic system.
     
    Malcolm Knight, Nov 28, 2003
    #14
  15. MemImages

    Jukka Aho Guest

    Most NLEs are unfortunately tied to the project's (single) designated
    video format; it is not possible to preview mixed NTSC and PAL footage
    on the same timeline through the DV camcorder to the telly without
    rendering the "foreign" format to the project's video format. (I'm
    not sure if most/any NTSC DV camcorders would even _allow_ real-time
    previewis of PAL DV data in PAL format, or vice versa.)
     
    Jukka Aho, Nov 29, 2003
    #15
  16. MemImages

    Keith Laws Guest

    No idea, but they seem to be able to playback PAL tapes just fine, if
    that helps.
    --
    Keith Laws

    What's my solution?

    .....NOISE POLLUTION
     
    Keith Laws, Nov 29, 2003
    #16
  17. MemImages

    Keith Laws Guest

    Mine renders any transitions before printing to tape, so is rendering
    the foriegn format any different?

    --
    Keith Laws

    What's my solution?

    .....NOISE POLLUTION
     
    Keith Laws, Nov 29, 2003
    #17
  18. MemImages

    Jukka Aho Guest

    If you have big chunks of material in the foreign format (as might
    very well be the case when two guys are shooting the same event
    from different angles - in a wedding or some such - and you later
    try to edit it all together) it would be nice to be able to edit
    it the normal way: by previewing the timeline on a tv set in real
    time, through the camcorder. If half of the cuts lead to a hefty
    rendering session before you can view the clips on the tv (or even
    see properly where you cut) that is just not acceptable (not to say
    the quality of doing standards conversion in a hobbyist-level NLE
    would be acceptable anyway.)

    You could manage by standards converting the captured material from
    the "foreign" camcorder _before_ importing the clips to your NLE app,
    but the main problem still lays in finding an app that lets you do
    that in a high-quality way (fields-based conversion instead of frames-
    based, motion interpolation instead of dropping/duplicating fields,
    proper colour conversion instead of just passing the data through.)
    There just aren't those types of applications for the consumer market.
    At any rate, proper standards conversion is as processor intensive
    task as compressing the video to MPEG-2. If you have to do that
    kind of lenghty batch job every time you need to use your NTSC
    material (however cheaply acquired) in a PAL setting, is it really
    worth the time and trouble?

    Entire books have been written about how hard and complicated it is
    to do proper standards conversion and get quality results. Here are
    a couple of good resources on the subject:

    The Engineer's Guide to Standards Conversion
    <http://www.snellwilcox.com/knowledgecenter/books/books/estandard.pdf>

    The Engineer's Guide to Motion Compensation
    <http://www.snellwilcox.com/knowledgecenter/books/books/emotion.pdf>

    Of course if you truly only use the cheap NTSC camcorder in an
    isolated environment - for a couple of predefined purposes where
    you _never_ ever need to worry about using anything you have shot
    in _any_ kind of PAL setting - that is another matter. However,
    when living in a PAL country, you usually cannot avoid it in the
    long run - some situation _will_ come up that just requires
    converting to PAL, no matter what - and then you are limited to
    some crappy hobbyist-level conversion method that does not look
    nearly as brilliant as the original material (not to mention any
    material natively shot in the PAL format.)
     
    Jukka Aho, Nov 30, 2003
    #18
  19. MemImages

    Chip Guest

    I mean you can convert from PAL to NTSC easily on your PC.
    Eh? I think we are getting confused here. Lets start again: With an NTSC
    camcorder and a TV that can handle NTSC signals, and a PC; he has everything
    he needs to enjoy making videos. And no, you don't really need to hook the
    camcorder up to the TV very often - if ever. Just dump everything onto the
    PC, edit away and burn a DVD.
     
    Chip, Nov 30, 2003
    #19
  20. MemImages

    Chip Guest

    TMPGENC seems to do a pretty good job. And its free.

    Chip.

    You can do crappy hobbyist-level so-and-so
     
    Chip, Nov 30, 2003
    #20
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