25 or 50p video in Europe ?

Martin68

Active Member
As I understand it correctly, camcorders and cameras with video capabilities are designed to shoot video in Europe and most of the world at 25p and 50p (formally known as PAL frame rates in the analog days) only the American markets and a very few others shoot at 30p or 60p, as most of the world has a 50hz electrical grid and an established video format which matches the 50hz grid.
So why is it that smartphones still don't offer compatible frame rates for 50hz countries, with them only shooting video at 24 30 and 60p? These framerates work perfectly in North America but for the rest of the world they are not compatible. The main reason is that lights flicker, and you can't use the phone camera as a b role if your primary camera is a PAL version.
I want to point out that the Sony Xperia 1ii offers 25p in its cinema pro app and iPhone has recently added 25p in its latest software update for the promax, but for some reason, Sony do not offer 25p in its standard video app, and apple only offer it if you activate it. Its almost as if 50hz countries are less important for video than 60hz countries. I'm aware that all modern tvs can display 30p in a 50hz country, but flickering lights are a big problem that I'm really surprised that phone manufacturers still haven't addressed. Samsung sell their flagship phones with exynos processors for Europe and snapdragon for the US, yet the exinos version of the phone is still only 30p or 60 video designed for 60hz countries. This is obserd, do you think this madness will ever be corrected or is it already too late. I know I have moaned about this before, but it is really a problem that no one seems to complain about apart for a small few, as I'm guessing most sit in silence and simply put up with degraded flicking video. These phones are camcorder replacements, the video is often better than a camcorder, yet the format is not right for 50hz countries. Your views?
 
Last edited:

Martin68

Active Member
Yes but few people are bothered with 24p yet its been made more available, few people are bothered with picture quality in general, yet we see 8k video recording on smart phones, while not on proper camcorders yet. There are more people than you think who would like compatible frame rates that match the country they live in, in fact 3 quarters of the world. Had they all been offered 25p and 50p in the first place, then I'm quite sure none of them will be shooting in 30 and 60p when they notice the lights start flickering.
 

SHIELD Agency

Novice Member
Since people in 50Hz countries are buying 60Hz equipment (Action Cams, Drones,...) the industry has no need to change that. Not selling anything but getting many requests for 50Hz recording modes might help.... but most of the people ignore bad quality... so I guess that won't change. 😭
 

Martin68

Active Member
Why did this 30/60 start in 50hz countries in the first place? my guess is that just about all developers are based in the USA, like microsoft, hence why computers run monitors at 60hz.
Back in the day, video equipment was all sold as 25i (formally known as PAL in the analog days, though the abbreviation is still used today for digital frame rates) then 25p, then 50p, these frame rates are still offered when you buy a dedicated camcorder in 50hz countries, but smart phones are so much more convenient as they often shoot better video than many cheaper camcorders and are always with us in our pocket, yet we can not take this video capability to its full advantage in 3/4 of the world at night with 50hz lights flicking, and also if we want to mix video shot between a PAL camcorder and a smart phone. But the worst part is flicking lights in 50 Hz countries, which i am really surprised the developers have not addressed this yet as the flicker is more of a problem than the 30p we are forced to shoot video in.
I'm fully aware that 3rd party apps allow 50hz frame rates such as filmic pro, but 3rd party apps dont take full advantage of the way stock apps are tweaked to maximum performance for the phone they are made for, also 3rd party apps dont have all the features of the stock app and cant be quick launched by a double press of the power button as is the case with Samsung phones.
If 50Hz frame rates are that "un needed" then why is broadcast tv still using them in 3/4 of the world?
 

Martin68

Active Member
Here is a good explanation, The guys speaks for Europe, but in reality 3/4 of the world has this problem. He also speaks about iphone in 2014, but only just in December 2020 Apple added 25p video recording capabilities to their iphone pro max which is a leap forward but I am an Android user ready to upgrade to the Note20 phone, so i'm really hoping we see the same upgrade from Samsung too but i'm not holding my breath. check out this video, you can clearly see the 50hz light flicker problem.
 

12harry

Distinguished Member
It an issue of sorts, but as most folk "don't care" - ( or don't notice, unless pointed out) - it's unlikely to be resolved.
Most video editors don't appear to mind and may fudge frames to match 50/60, 25/30 media . . . although it always helps if there is no problem in the first place.
My TV monitor switches to 60Hz when the PC is on... what that does to Edited 50p media I haven't noticed . . . .
fps was a big issue when discharge lamps were in use...but LEDs don't work the same way - so that issue has gone....

Good luck.
 

SHIELD Agency

Novice Member
Playback of smooth moving 50p footage will likely play not smooth, when the video card must add 20% of non-existing pictures to fill the 60p. But having a TV monitor (like me) you could just set your graphic card output to 50p. Then it will fit to your footage. Maybe you will even notice it looks better than before in slowly moving sequences. :thumbsup:
 

12harry

Distinguished Member
I'm not sure that is right... The Video-Editor creates the film in whatever fps you specify ( and some will up-load to YT at whatever definition you desire ),
When playing-back from a PC there is an issue whether the Graphics card determines the TV, via H\DMI handshake.
However a Media-Player software should be able to command the Graphics card to output 50fps if the TV has that capability.
Normally, I test-play my USB-memory stick films on a 3D BlueRay player (USB-input) , linked to my TV via HDMI -or- At a club, they will choose a Media=Player that has a list of Options.... so I don't think there is a need for any additional frames..... Yet most DVD/BD players claim to do "Up-scaling" - so that should work OK.

Cheers....
 

SHIELD Agency

Novice Member
a Media-Player software should be able to command the Graphics card to output 50fps if the TV has that capability.
  • MediaPlayer Classic Home-Cinema has this option (needs to be enabled manually in the settings). :smashin: When my Win10 Mini-PC is switching resolution and/or framerate, my LG 50"Plasma-TV won't get audio via HDMI any more. A Windows bug with some mainboards. 😭
  • Could not find any setting for that in VLC (neither simple or advanced view)
  • Windows default players will not switch the framerate upon video playback
Nearly all TV sets should have some kind of "info" button to show the currently playing framerate and resolution. So finding out if the playback is 1:1 can be done quickly.
 

Martin68

Active Member
surely there must be some agreement to my OP though right?
Smartphones should be able to shoot the same frame rates as camcorders do for the country they are sold in. 50hz light flicker, integrating them and their video footage with existing PAL equipment, and that 3/4 of the world use PAL frame rates and 50Hz electrical grid. Surely someone must agree with me that there is a native problem here?
 

chrishull3

Well-known Member
surely there must be some agreement to my OP though right?
Smartphones should be able to shoot the same frame rates as camcorders do for the country they are sold in. 50hz light flicker, integrating them and their video footage with existing PAL equipment, and that 3/4 of the world use PAL frame rates and 50Hz electrical grid. Surely someone must agree with me that there is a native problem here?
Yes i agree,my iPhone records 24 30 or 50P,so set my camera on 24P if i am going to use footage from both as that looks better than mixing frame rates.
 

SHIELD Agency

Novice Member
Everyone making quality videos will agree that 25p/50p recording would be required in the 50Hz world. Unfortunately >95% of all recorded footage is not used to make quality videos.
 
Most video editors don't appear to mind and may fudge frames to match 50/60, 25/30 media . . . although it always helps if there is no problem in the first place.
My TV monitor switches to 60Hz when the PC is on... what that does to Edited 50p media I haven't noticed . . . .
fps was a big issue when discharge lamps were in use...but LEDs don't work the same way - so that issue has gone....

Good luck.
As a broadcast TV editor it drives me POTTY!!!! Even as I watch TV of an evening every dropped frame hurts my soul! Just been editing a series for BBC and some supply footage in an alien USA format (it's just a menu setting on most camcorders - and iPhones COULD do it easy if enabled) so I have to convert it to the European 25P or 50i spec. It gets mushy, may lose sync with the audio - basically I play 29.97P 'NTSC' videos at 119.88% to make them fit the UK/European broadcast frame rate.
ntsc Untitled.png


It's a VERY odd mathematical number. The picture suffers, the motion suffers, lights will flicker, audio may slip as it too has to be speeded up and pitch shifted down and it takes render time. A complete WASTE of time and quality. Drives me potty. Everyone should be able to select 25P or 50P or 50i or whatever works best within multiples of 50Hz. Simples. Off for a lie down ;-)
 

The latest video from AVForums

Samsung Micro LED, Mini LED, NEO QLED TVs and More: AVForums Podcast Interview
Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Full fat HDMI teeshirts

Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom