Question about buying camera's from USA

Hi, my brother is looking for a camera to buy and im looking at the canon hf10. This camera especially is cheaper in the US compare to the UK. So im thinking of getting it from there, will it be a problem seeing as it's NTSC and we use PAL. Cause most the stuff he will record will go straight to dvd through the computer (like what im having problems with in my other thread!), so won't he be able to make it into PAL while capturing it to the PC. Or if thats not possible capturing it as NTSC, then burning it as PAL, maybe through Nero or Ulead Video Studio if that's possible.
 

A n d r e w

Well-known Member
Camcorders & video editing forum > search this forum > ntsc > go
 

solidamber

Active Member
Besides the format there are some other things to consider, charger not all US stuff is duel voltage. warranty, if it is a US model probably will not have a world wide cover, import duty and vat plus royal mail handling charge, resale value will be less, when you take all these things into account, it maybe less of a bargain than you originaly thought.
 

tianuk

Active Member
Hi, my brother is looking for a camera to buy and im looking at the canon hf10. This camera especially is cheaper in the US compare to the UK. So im thinking of getting it from there, will it be a problem seeing as it's NTSC and we use PAL. Cause most the stuff he will record will go straight to dvd through the computer (like what im having problems with in my other thread!), so won't he be able to make it into PAL while capturing it to the PC. Or if thats not possible capturing it as NTSC, then burning it as PAL, maybe through Nero or Ulead Video Studio if that's possible.

got the same question, was going to get one of my mates to bring it back for me or if that doesnt work order it on ebay...its about 250quid cheaper that way.
 

A n d r e w

Well-known Member
As I suggested earlier, try a forum search for "NTSC" as this topic has been discussed frequently (and that's an understatement).

Andrew.
 

vib ribbon

Banned
The NTSC issue is always something to consider, but if (like me) you are only going to playback HD material on a HDTV then the whole NTSC and PAL argument goes out the window?

My last two camcorders have been NTSC ones, my first from the US and my current Canon HF11 i got from Japan. The huge saving i made getting them from abroad (especially the HF11) far, far outweighs any negatives relating to PAL and NTSC.

The only issue that has sometimes crosses my mind is the warranty issue, but "who dares wins" and all that. :cool:
 
yea i don't really mind about the warranty, resale value all that stuff. It's just will i be able to capture it as PAL and then burn it as PAL, or capture it as NTSC and then burn as PAL? Also which method is better?
 

A n d r e w

Well-known Member
yea i don't really mind about the warranty, resale value all that stuff. It's just will i be able to capture it as PAL and then burn it as PAL, or capture it as NTSC and then burn as PAL? Also which method is better?

If you want 50i ("PAL") as the end result, buy a 50i camera. Conversion will degrade the image. A 60i ("NTSC") camcorder is fine if you have playback options that accept a 60i signal, or are just looking for something to get video onto the web, or don't care about image degradation and want the cheapest you can find.

I assume you do care about image quality, because otherwise spending money on an HD camcorder would be a bit silly.

Andrew.
 

vib ribbon

Banned
TBH, I cant think of any consumer or prosumer camcorder that gives you the option to record in both formats?

I would have thought that recording in NTSC then converting into PAL wont look as good as something thats recorded in PAL in the first place - but I have not tried it myself so cant say for sure. Saying that, i know that PAL records at a higher resolution, but NTSC records at a higher frame rate so they probably level themselves out, i dont know.

There are plenty of apps out there that convert NTSC camcorder footage to PAL and vice versa - a quick search on google yielded loads of results.

What we need is some sample footage - a clip recorded in NTSC, which is then converted to PAL and then vice versa - for all I know we might not be able to tell the difference?
 

PhilipL

Well-known Member
Hi

You just have to look at some of the lower budget American programs we get on UK TV to see how bad conversation can look from NTSC to PAL :(

Popular shows like Friends from what I remember started to be recorded on film as conversion to different TV systems was easier with better quality.

All the big American series that get shown over here like Lost, Heros, Desperate Housewife's etc are all still shot on film as far as I'm aware as it simply means conversion isn't an issue.

In other words, you don't want to try it.

Regards

Phil
 
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so which will mean i have better quality with a NTSC camera:
1. Capturing as PAL then burning as PAL
or
2. Capturing as NTSC, then burning as PAL
 

PhilipL

Well-known Member
Hi

The best quality is to have no conversion, i.e. you don't mix formats. If you want PAL to play on PAL equipment you must capture in PAL, converting it afterwards is going to be troublesome and give rise to all sorts of issues regarding frame rates and format.

Regards

Phil
 

glesgaguyav

Active Member
ok so with my NTSC camera capture in PAL and burn in PAL.

As has been said previously. You cannot capture to PAL with an NTSC camera, you need a PAL cam to do this, you can convert NTSC to PAL in software but be aware that the footage is not as good as the original and different software give different results, it takes dedicated equipment costing thousands to do a proper job.

It's faulse economy to buy an NTSC cam if you want your output to be in the PAL format, 25fps and 30 fps are two different formats and cannot be mixed.
 
what i mean is recording with a NTSC camera, then connecting it to my mac with imovie and then capture as PAL and Burn as PAL. Or with a NTSC camera connect it to my mac then wiht imovie and capture as NTSC and then reencode to PAL when burning. WHich option is better.
 

A n d r e w

Well-known Member
what i mean is recording with a NTSC camera, then connecting it to my mac with imovie and then capture as PAL and Burn as PAL. Or with a NTSC camera connect it to my mac then wiht imovie and capture as NTSC and then reencode to PAL when burning. Which option is better.

Okay, the following response (number 1) assumes you are shooting HD video, which is what you implied earlier even though you insist on talking about your "NTSC camera" (see number 2).

(1.) If you've recorded in 60i, you'll need to capture in iMovie as 60i. Conversion will have to happen later, prior to burning to DVD. Once you've captured and edited and output your HD movie, then you'll do the NTSC-to-PAL conversion.

(2.) Call me a nit-picker, but in the world of HD there is no "PAL" and "NTSC." There are 60i and 50i (or 60Hz and 50Hz) standards which effectively do the job of the old PAL and NTSC standards in that there are general geographical differences, but there is no resolution difference (both are 1440x1080 or 1920x1080 depending on the recording format: HDV, AVCHD, etc.) as there was with good ol' standard definition PAL and NTSC - just a frame rate issue (29.97 frames per second for 60i; 25 frames per second for 50i). However, once you've downconverted your edited HD movie to standard definition to be burnt to DVD, you'll opt for either PAL or NTSC.

Andrew.
 
what if i my hd camcorder is NTSC i capture it at 60i then want to burn it as blu ray on a dvd. This can be done in the new Toast. Will i lose quality then when it re-encodes to PAL? Will the less frame rates make a big difference?
 

glesgaguyav

Active Member
what if i my hd camcorder is NTSC i capture it at 60i then want to burn it as blu ray on a dvd. This can be done in the new Toast. Will i lose quality then when it re-encodes to PAL? Will the less frame rates make a big difference?

IMHO Yes, you cannot convert 30fps to 25fps easily, while the frame size for HD is the same for both standards the frame rate isn't it remains constant in both formats. It's iether got to be 30fps NTSC or 25fps PAL interlaced/progressive

You would find that you would have skipped frames on playback especially on fast movement, whilst the quality of the resolution would remain the same for HD.

For SD the same applies with the added factor that the resolution is also changed which in turn causes further loss of quality.

IMO if you want to take advantage of the cheaper NTSC cams then it's best to stick to this format, which means that in future if you want to upgrade your cam and combine any footage, you'll have to keep to the NTSC format. You may also find that PAL AV equipment sold in the UK will not be compatable, that's why IMO it's false economy, notwithstanding the issues with warranty and repair.
 
Finally as im recording in NTSC, should i capture it in NTSC, edit in NTSC and then burn as PAL? Is this the best way to reduce quality loss?
 

A n d r e w

Well-known Member
Finally as im recording in NTSC, should i capture it in NTSC, edit in NTSC and then burn as PAL? Is this the best way to reduce quality loss?

Probably. A simple rule of thumb would be to make any conversion of one standard to another the very last step in your workflow. That way you're can be sure you're working with the best quality video throughout.

Andrew.
 

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