The Digital Betacam format has been the high quality format for standard definition video production since its inception in 1993. The Sony DVW-970 camcorder represents the latest example of evolving technology to meet the ever-changing demands of today's production environments. At the center of this camera is the proven performance of the Power HAD EX CCD chip set. In combination with a highly precise 14-bit analog to digital conversion, it delivers high sensitivity, low noise, very low smear levels as well as a progressive scanning mode which includes 24p for film-like shooting.
A variety of unique features including slow shutter, interval record and picture cache recording have been incorporated for greater creative abilities. Yet the camera is more a more efficient tool with reduced size and lower power consumption over previous models.
Power HAD EX Advanced CCDs
The DVW-970 camcorder is equipped with proven state-of-the-art three-chip 2/3-inch type Sony Power HAD EX CCDs. This CCD imager achieves a high sensitivity of f/11, an excellent signal-to noise ratio of 65 dB and a remarkably low smear level of -145 dB allowing the DVW-970 to produce pictures of stunning quality. Integration of the Power HAD EX CCDs also allows progressive scanning, including 24p for film-like effects.
Advanced Digital Signal Processing
A key to quality in DSP cameras is how many bits are used in their nonlinear process, such as gamma correction. The advanced DSP of the DVW-970 camcorder uses more than 30 bits in its nonlinear process, minimizing round-off errors to maintain the high quality of the Power HAD EX CCDs. The DSP also enables highly
sophisticated image controls, such as the multi-matrix function, triple skin-tone detail control, and adaptive highlight control.
Light Weight, Compact and Low Power Consumption
The DVW-970 is designed to be very compact and lightweight, for a high level of
mobility in the field. It weighs approximately 12 pounds (5.4 kg) including the viewfinder, microphone, BCT-D40 tape, and BP-GL95 Battery Pack. With its new-generation LSI, the camcorder achieves a low power consumption of approximately 29 W.
User Friendly Menu System
The DVW-970 offers an easy-to-use menu system to facilitate detailed camera settings. Setup parameters are well organized in a two-layer menu system: a user menu and sub menu. The user menu allows access only to the standard setup functions needed by the camera operator, and can be customized for fast access to the menus they use frequently. The sub menu makes all menus accessible, each of which is categorized into groups such as paint, file, and maintenance. Menu pages can be displayed in the camcorder viewfinder, as well as on a monitor screen via the video test output, and the menu control system can be operated easily using a rotary switch on the camcorder.
Incorporating Sony Power HAD EX CCDs, the DVW-970 generate progressive images of 29.97P delivering outstanding clarity as well as a cinematic look. In addition, the DVW-970 can produce 24P images when an optional CBK-FC01 Pull-down Board is installed, offering film-like motion effects. Images captured in 24P scanning mode in the camera head are 2-3 pull-downed and recorded on tape at 59.94i field rate.
Picture Cache Recording
Picture Cache Recording is a convenient function whereby up to eight seconds of video signal are buffered into memory before the REC button is even pressed. This means that everything that happened eight seconds before the REC button was pressed (Stand By Mode) will still be recorded to tape, a capability that
can help prevent the loss of unexpected but important events occurring before the operator even has the chance to press the REC button.
Interval Recording is a useful function that intermittently records signals at pre-determined intervals (automatic and manual), ideal for recording over long periods. In manual mode, a specified number of frames is recorded every time the REC button is pressed or the camcorder repeatedly records at a specified
interval after the REC button is pressed. In auto mode, the camera records frames at pre-determined intervals over a pre-determined total shooting time. The Interval Recording function allows recordings to be made over long time periods on a single tape, and minimizes wear of the tape-drive mechanism.
A selectable gamma table is provided to easily give a specific look to a picture by selecting from multiple fixed gamma patterns including so-called film-like gamma. Five patterns of film-like gamma and six patterns of standard gamma can be selected.
The TruEye technology makes it possible to virtually eliminate hue distortion, particularly obvious in high light conditions that result from conventional RGB analog or digital processing. By processing the video signal data at three levels, brightness, hue, and saturation, similar to how the human eye works, the TruEye feature assists in the reproduction of natural skin tones.
Adaptive Highlight Control
The DVW-970 camcorder provides multiple knee-points/slopes for superior overexposure control. The camcorder analyzes the highlight areas of a scene and automatically sets and optimizes multiple knee points/slopes accordingly. This enables the reproduction of extremely difficult images (such as an interior
scene that includes a brightly sunlit window) with much more overexposure latitude. This function applies only to input video levels in excess of the knee point; the middle- and low-luminance parts of the video signal are unaffected by this control.
The Multi-matrix function enables color adjustments to be applied over a color and/or hue range as specified by the operator. The color spectrum is divided into 16 areas of adjustment, where the hue and/or saturation of each area
can be adjusted. This provides interesting in-camera color effects similar to secondary color correction.
Electronic Soft Focus
The Electronic Soft Focus included in the camcorder applies an effect similar to using an optical soft-focus filter but in a much more convenient way. Electronic Soft Focus uses the detail signal to reduce (not increase) the sharpness of the picture. By subtracting the detail signal from the original
signal Electronic Soft Focus is able to provide a picture that is softer than that achieved when detail is switched off completely. Electronic Soft Focus can be used in conjunction with Skin-tone Detail to change only the sharpness within a specific color or hue range.
Sony DVW-970 Specs
3-CCD, 2/3-inch, Interline Transfer type 16:9 Native and 4:3 Switchable
f/11 @ 2000 Lux
0.008 Lux @ f/1.4 with 48 dB Gain + Slow Shutter at 16 Frame Accumulation
Filter Wheel A Clear, 1/4 ND (1.5 Stops),1/16 ND (4 Stops) Filter Wheel B CROSS, 3200K, 4300K, 6300K