Friday, 6 July, 2007

24p and 25p in one camcorder

I wrote earlier that some camcorders can do 24p or 25p depending on where they are sold. But there are some that can do both - as well as NTSC and PAL in SD mode.

JVC camcorders for one.

An entire range of camcorders can do 720 at 24p as well as 25p. They are the GY-HD100, HD101, HD110, HD111, HD200, HD201, HD251.
The GY-HD100, HD101, HD110, HD111 can do 720 at 24p an 25p
and SD-PAL at 25p, 50p, 50i and NTSC at 60p
(but not 720 at 50p and 60p)

And the HD200, HD201, HD251 can do 720 at 24p an 25p and
720 at 50p and 60p
(but not SD-PAL at 50p and NTSC at 60p).

Very complicated, but JVC has all this in a table called 'hdv-comparisons_1.pdf' at their site somewhere.

Mind that all these JVC camcorders do 720 and not 1080. And whether or not these modes capture fine into FCP - can't say till I hav e actually tried al on the PAL version.

The Canon XL-H1 is another that can do both. It needs to be 'service-centre modified' to do that. The PAL version that can do 1080 at 50i and 25F natively, can, with the optional upgrade do 60i, 30F and 24F.
And, of course the NTSC version can do 60i, 30F and 24F natively and with the optional upgrade do 50i and 24F.

So you can get the camcorder from anywhere and still do a variety of formats. But this camcorder does 1080, and not 720.

What is the 'F' behind 24, 25, and 30? At Canon's site there is a document that explains it thus...

'These Frame modes have the same look as progressive frame rates, but are not labeled
“progressive” because they are created with an interlaced chip. The end result is exactly the
same to the editing system (and to our eyes) as 30p and 24p, respectively.'

Apart from the JVC and Canon cameras, I don't know of any other camcorder that can do 24p and 25p. Of course, if you're stuck with some other camcorder that can so one or the other, you can look up my CinemaTools workaround in and earlier post.


  1. Hi Neil!

    Great posts. I really am enjoying your site – meaning, lots of useful information. Thank you!

    I was looking for a contact page for you but there wasn't so I hope to reach you through this comment.

    I live in South India and want to start producing documentaries again (and possibly other small commercial projects locally in India) with some friends here. We are all from America but happily live in Karnataka full time.

    My wife and I are visiting California in July and I have the task of getting us an HDV camera for the $3-4k USD range – after allot of research we are choosing the Canon XH A1 but the looming question is NTSC or PAL. I am trying my best to research this online but not quite finding the answers I need. Can you comment on this? We would be so grateful.

    We were naturally going to just get a PAL camera (XH A1). Makes sense right. Well PAL cams are a bit more expensive AND they don't seem to be in stock at most Pro Video shops like B and H. Problem is I have less than 4 weeks in the states and worried about the risk a delay in getting a the XH A1E so I was reconsidering getting the NTSC version.

    Would the NTSC XH A1 give us allot of headaches here in India in the future? We all use Macs (g5), FCP 5 and 6 soon. We do all our own editing etc...

    We wish to produce Documentaries, short films and commercials for broadcast and DVD distribution right here in India, and possibly abroad too.

    Sorry to go on here, but if you happened to recommend PAL (XH A1) as the ideal choice, then it seems like the best bang for the buck would be to get the NTSC version and pay for Canon to do some magic and turn on the 50i and 25p mode, right? The easiest would be to just pick up the NTSC version, but not if it's not going to be good for us in the long run.

    Hope to hear from you soon, and one day meet you in Mumbai!
    All the best,

  2. I made out a reply but couldn't mail it as you've left no address. Can you please mail me at
    And I have a detailed reply waiting.


  3. Dev Benegal10:43 PM


    Could you post your answer / email on the site. I'd love to know how this was resolved.

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