Sanyo Xacti VPC-HD2000
World's first 60f/s HD camcorder
Review ‘It’s a Dual camera,’ says the little sticker on the side of the vaguely retro, pistol grip, Sanyo Xacti VPC-HD2000 camcorder. Sure it can function as a 12Mp still camera too, but when it comes to video, Sanyo claims the Xacti is the first consumer camcorder to shoot 60 frames per second in 1080p full HD. To achieve this, and easier editing, Sanyo utilises "True Progressive" scanning technology which, during playback, allows freeze framing on full, rather than interlaced images.
Sanyo’s Xacti VPC-HD2000: a sharp shooter with pistol grip to match
Being a 1080p camera, the HD2000 produces a higher calibre of video signal than 1080i shooters can, resulting in a more solid looking image. Interlaced scans can suffer when the subject or the camera moves quickly.
The HD2000 offers seven different modes of shooting video, including two high-speed options at 240f/s and 600f/s, respectively, delivering very smooth (60f/s) slow-mo playback at quarter or tenth of normal time. Although you can't zoom in or out while recording in this mode, and the lower picture quality really means it’s really only to be used for fun, if you choose your distance correctly, you’ll be able to watch your kids running like the Six Million Dollar Man through the finish line on sports day
Like its predecessor, the HD1010, the HD2000 incorporates Face Chaser technology. This feature simultaneously monitors the exposure and focus of up to 12 faces in one shot, whether still or video, and does so well.
The photo camera offers ten different shooting options from 12Mp (interpolated) down to 0.3Mp. There are also two high-speed sequential shooting options delivering a supposed 12f/s at 4Mp and a definite 6f/s at 8Mp. The camera allows up to 15 shots at a time. This helps avoid needless and lengthy processing and editing time. Regardless of frames rate, it's a useful feature and a good example of this camera’s sure-footed capabilities.
The 2.7in LCD hinge seems flimsy but holds its own
There are a number of manual settings available, if you spend time toggling into the recording menu to find them. Unfortunately, there is no programmable option to save customised settings and, considering the price, such a facility really should exist. Instead, you just have to keep going back into the menu if you want to change or check anything. As well as auto exposure, the camera can work with aperture priority, shutter priority and manual.
>really.. 2 decades ? I mean I only know one person who still has a CRT tv.
I guess my target audience (extended family members) aren't so much into keeping up with technology. They keep tellies around until they break or otherwise deteriorate into being unwatchable. Old PAL sets may or may not be able to lock into 30fps.
So my solution is to stick to 25/50 rates in all cameras (except for mobile phones, where there is no choice but which have crappy quality anyway).
ok. I hear you. but really.. 2 decades ? I mean I only know one person who still has a CRT tv.
and how are you pumping your home vid into them ? DVD I assume ? Most of which will cope with 25/pal/ntsc/30 fps anyway. i.e. they will do the best they can to interpollate to 50 fields per second.
and yeh, you shoot in HD if you want to. But I was like you 5 years ago, and I shoot all HD now. It just gives you soooo much more freedom for editing even if you end up sticking something on youtube ( http://www.vimeo.com/3084247 .. one of my flights).
sure, compiling clips with different resolutions and framerates is tricky. But it will always be that way - some content needs more temporal info, some more definition (e.g. sky tv broadcast some stuff in 720p30, some in 1080i60.. same datarate. different tradeoff). A decent NLE takes care of it (I use sony vegas).
And yeh.. I know 'ntsc' is 29.97. But even then some digital cameras shoot in true 30 fps, so you ALWAYS need to be aware of source fps.
@stu (on 50hz rates)
"What exactly is a '50hz tv set' in 2009 ? It does not exist."
Everyone I might want to share videos has one. I expect it will be at least a decade or two before I can assume everyone has a flat-screen HDTV- capable set (so why even shoot HDTV ? In the hope the full resolution can be seen and shared in the future).
"I have numerous video cameras, some shoot 25fps, some 30fps, some 60 fields per second (i.e. AVCHD interflace). As long as your edit sticks to the same fps as the source footage, there is no problem."
But when you edit a combined film that contains material from them all, you have to pick one common frame rate for the result, and anything not in the common rate will turn jerky.
By the way, the NTSC rate is not really even 60hz (that would be too easy), but a funny fractional 59.94 or something like that. As I said, Blecch!
PAL/NTSC ceased to be meaningful when we threw out out CRTs and analogue recordings.
If you have a DVD or a PC, and a flat screen tv or a monitor it makes not a blind bit of difference whether you feed it 24/25/30 or 60fps. It will display if fine.
What exactly is a '50hz tv set' in 2009 ? It does not exist.
720p for example comes in 3 flavours: 24, 25 and 30 (broadcast wise.. though you can obviously have whatever you like). All playback fine at the approporiate rate off a PC onto a monitor or hd tv.
I have numerous video cameras, some shoot 25fps, some 30fps, some 60 fields per second (i.e. AVCHD interflace). As long as your edit sticks to the same fps as the source footage, there is no problem.
you are creating a problem where there is none.
No 50fps, blecch
Too bad it does not do 50fps or at least 25fps. Anyone not living in USA, Japan or a handful of other 30fps TV countries will see jerky motion if the output is transcoded to regular TV.
This issue is the main reason I did not buy an earlier generation HDTV Xacti when a friend offered to sell it cheaply. I evaluated it for a few days and found anything involving a smooth motion (eg a playground swing or a carousel) looked horrid on a 50 hz TV set. As my European country is not likely to move to 60 hz in the foreseeable future (not even for HDTV), camcorders that are 30hz or 60hz only are useless.