Video

Video-Camera Recording Format and Resolution Charts

Handy Camcorders

Canon
XL H1

Canon
HX A1
HX G1

JVC
GY-HD1xx
GY-HD2xx

Panasonic
AG-HVX200

Sony
HVR-Z1
HDR-FX1

Sony
HVR-V1
HDR-FX7

Sony
HVR-Z7

Sony
PMW-EX1



TV-Format /
Camcorder
Manufacturer
Camcorder
Model
Sensor
Type
Effective
Sensor
Resolution
Sensor
readout
Recording
Format
Color
Sam-
pling
Recording
Format
Luminance
Sampling
Max. Effective
Luminance
Resolution
(
*2)
Max. Effective
Chrominance
Resolution
(
*2)
Digital NTSC       interlaced   4:1:1 720x480 720x408(*3) 294k 14% 180x480 86k 4%
Digital PAL       interlaced   4:2:0 720x576 720x490(*3) 353k 17% 480x288 138k 7%
HDReady 720p     progressive     1280x720 1280x720 922k 44%      
FullHD 1080i     interlaced     1920x1080 1920x918(*3) 1763k 85%      
FullHD 1080p     progressive     1920x1080 1920x1080 2074k 100%      
Canon

XL H1

CCD, 1/3" 1440x1080 interlaced(*4) HDV (HD2) 4:2:0 1440x1080 1440x918(*3) 1322k 64% 720x540 389k 19%

HX A1
HX G1

CCD, 1/3" 1440x1080 interlaced(*4) HDV (HD2) 4:2:0 1440x1080 1440x918(*3) 1322k 64% 720x540 389k 19%
JVC

GY-HD1xx
GY-HD2xx
(*7)

CCD, 1/3" 1280x720 progressive HDV (HD1) 4:2:0 1280x720 1280x720 922k 44% 640x360 230k 11%
Panasonic

AG-HVX200

CCD, 1/3" 960x540 progressive DVCPRO HD
50/60Hz,720i/p
60Hz,1080i/p
50Hz,1080i/p
4:2:2
960x720
1280x1080
1440x1080

960x540
(*1)
960x540
(*1)
960x540
(*1)
518k 25%
480x540
(*5)
640x540
(*5)
720x540
(*5)

259k
346k
389k

12%
17%
19%
Sony

HVR-Z1
HDR-FX1

CCD, 1/3" 960x1080 interlaced HDV (HD2) 4:2:0 1440x1080 960x918(*3) 881k 42% 720x540 389k 19%

HVR-V1
HDR-FX7

CMOS, 1/4" 960x1080
diagonally
progressive HDV (HD2) 4:2:0 1440x1080 960x1080 1037k 50% 720x540 389k 19%

HVR-Z7

CMOS, 1/3" 1920x1080 progressive HDV (HD2) 4:2:0 1440x1080 1440x1080(*6) 1555K 75% 720x540 389K 19%

PMW-EX1

CMOS, 1/2" 1920x1080 progressive XDCAM EX 4:2:2 up to
1920x1080
up to
1920x1080
2074k 100% up to
960x1080
1037k 50%
The average viewer will only be able to detect an improvement in resolution when there's at least a step up by a factor of two or more. Some sources claim vertical resolution were more visible than horizontal resolution.

Notes

(*1) Panasonic's HVX-200 camcorder uses pixel-shifted sensors. For details see here.

(*2) The effective resolution is also influenced by the anti-alias filter, the quality of the lens and the overall quality of in-camera signal processing. Therefore the values given in this column represent no more than the best achievable resolution due to the limitations of the sensor and the recording format when all other factors are optimized.

(*3) Interlaced sensors read only half the lines per field. To reduce interlace flicker, additional anti-alias filtering is required. This was taken into account by reducing the effective vertical resolution by a factor of 85% in the table. The figure 85% is certainly not scientifically correct for all cameras but has proven representative in many resolution chart comparisons and should be a fair starting-point.

(*4) High-end Canon video cameras traditionally offer a "frame movie mode" for recording progressive pictures. While the exact details of this procedure still remain unpublished it seems quite clear from resolution chart recordings that the sensor readout is still interlaced and some software deinterlacing is being performed in the camera's microcontroller after image aquisition. Vertical resolution does not seem to be improved.

(*5) Regardless of the pixel-shifting debate it should be entirely clear that three sensors, each with 540 lines of resolution, can not resolve RGB colors any better than by 540 lines.

(*6) In extention to the original HDV (HD2) specifications this camera can also record 1080p25 images.

(*7) In extention to the original HDV (HD1) specifications this camera can also record 720p50 images.

Video Recording Formats

System   PAL-DV NTSC-DV HDV HD1 HDV
HD2
HDCAM HDCAM SR XDCAM SD XDCAM HD XDCAM EX
Manufacturer various various JVC Canon
Sony
Sony Sony
Video Quantization 8 bit 8 bit 8 bit 8 bit 8 bit 10 bit 8 bit 8 bit 8 bit
Compression DCT
Intraframe
DCT
Intraframe
MPEG2
Interframe
MPEG2
Interframe
DCT
Intraframe
MPEG4 SP
Intraframe
MPEG2 (IMX)
Intraframe
 DCT
Intraframe
MPEG2
Interframe
MPEG2
Interframe
Compression Ratio 5:1 5:1 18:1 18:1 4:1 2,7:1
4,2:1
       
Color Sampling 4:2:0 4:1:1 4:2:0 4:2:0 3:1:1 4:2:2
4:4:4
4:2:2 4:1:1
4:2:0
4:2:0 4:2:0
Luma Resolution 720x576 720x480 1280x720 1440x1080 1440x1080 up to
1920x1080
720x480
720x576
1440x1080 up to
1920x1080
Chroma Resolution 360x288 180x480 640x360 720x540 480x1080 up to
1920x1080
up to
360x576
720x540 up to
960x540
Picture Format 576i 480i 720p 1080i 1080i/p 1080i/p 480i
576i
1080p 1080p
Framerates 25i 30i 25/30p
50/60p(*1)
25/30i
25/30p(*1)
24/25/30p
25/30i
24/25/30p
25/30i
variable variable variable
Video Datarate 25 Mbps
CBR
25 Mbps
CBR
19 Mbps
CBR
25 Mbps
CBR
112-140
Mpbs
CBR
440 Mpbs
CBR
30/40/50
Mbps
CBR
25
Mbps
CBR
18 Mbps VBR
25 Mbps CBR
35 Mbps VBR
50 Mbps CBR
18 Mbps VBR
25 Mbps CBR
35 Mbps VBR
Audio Sampling 32/48 kHz 48 kHz 48 kHz 48 kHz
Quantization 12/16 bit 16 bit 20 bit 24 bit 16 bit
Compression none MPEG1
Layer II
none none
Audio Datarate 1536 kpbs 384 kbps 3840 kbps 13824kbps 3072 kbps
Channels 4/2 2 (or 4(*1)) 4 12 4
Tape Size 1/4" 1/4" 1/2" Blu-ray disc SxS-Card
Playing Time 80-270 mins 80 mins 49-155 mins 124-155 min 25 GB (single layer)
50 GB (dual layer)
16 GB
as of 2007
Part 1: SD-formats, Canon, JVC and Sony
(*1) An extention of the original HDV specifications only supported by some cameras.

System   PAL-DV NTSC-DV DVCPRO25 DVCPRO50 DVCPRO HD
Manufacturer various various Panasonic
Video Quantization 8 bit 8 bit 8 bit 8 bit 8 bit
Compression DCT
Intraframe
DCT
Intraframe
DCT
Intraframe
DCT
Intraframe
DCT
Intraframe
Compression Ratio 5:1 5:1 5:1 2,5:1 6,7:1
Color Sampling 4:2:0 4:1:1 4:1:1 4:2:2 4:2:2
Luma Resolution 720x576 720x480 720x480
720x576
720x480
720x576
960x720 1440x1080 1280x1080
Chroma Resolution 360x288 180x480 180x576 360x576 480x720 720x1080 640x1080
Picture Format 576i 480i 480i
576i
480i
576i
720p 1080i/p 1080i/p
Framerates 25i 30i 30i
25i
30i
25i
25/30/50p 25p
25i
30p
30i
Video Datarate 25 Mbps
CBR
25 Mbps
CBR
25 Mpbs
CBR
50 Mbps
CBR
100 Mbps
CBR
Audio Sampling 32/48 kHz 32/48 kHz 48 kHz
Quantization 12/16 bit 12/16 bit 16 bit
Compression none none none
Audio Datarate 1536 kpbs 1536 kpbs 3072 kbps 6144 kbps
Channels 4/2 4/2 4 4 8
Tape Size 1/4" 1/4" P2-Card
Playing Time 80-270 mins 80 mins 40 mins 32 GB
as of 2007
Part 2: Panasonic