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Explorer
Posts: 12,024

A reason for Americans to use PAL when filming in Europe

So I was just reading an article by Abe Kislevitz regarding the Hero3 Black and I came across a paragraph that might be useful for anyone who normally films in NTSC but is visiting a country that uses PAL.  I've always understood that the difference in the two formats was to conform to the display frequency used in the Americas (60 HZ-NTSC) versus what is used in Europe (50 HZ-PAL). While this is true, another important consideration actually has nothing to do with the camera or device used to display the video, but rather the lighting.  Apparently the lights in Europe are running at 50 HZ and so video footage shot in NTSC under these lights can create, "flickering like crazy".  I don't think the situation would happen if you reverse the scenario (PAL in a NTSC country) but as Abe points out, "it’s generally a good practice to film in your countries’ native power cycle-age".

 

You can read the entire article here http://abekislevitz.com/understanding-your-gopro-part-2/ . The paragraph on NTSC-PAL is about half way down the article.  And, as always, I highly recommend reading all of Abe's articles related to GoPro to get the most from your cameras. http://abekislevitz.com/?catid=11

 

I hope someone finds this information helpful.

 

Regards,

 

Daniel

Adventurer
Posts: 9,773

Re: A reason for Americans to use PAL when filming in Europe

AIptek did both ntsc as well flicker.

Nomad
Posts: 536

Re: A reason for Americans to use PAL when filming in Europe

You don't have to change to PAL or vice Vera, the flicker control is corrected by the shutter speed, 50Hz is basically 50 flickers per second so to cancel out the flicker you double the shutter speed. If the shutter speed is 100fps there will be no flicker in Europe, 120fps in America and so on. Basically just double the shutter to compensate for the Hz range.

Explorer
Posts: 12,024

Re: A reason for Americans to use PAL when filming in Europe

@epicallyepic
While changing the shutter speed can be an option, in some lighting situations it is not, especially indoors or in the night where higher shutter speeds significantly darken the picture. Also, higher shutter speeds may not produce the desired effect for the overall look and feel of the video.

I tend to think that for most people, it will be simpler to just change the default recording to PAL. However, you do provide another option for people to try and that might work better for some. Thanks for your contribution to this post.
Nomad
Posts: 536

Re: A reason for Americans to use PAL when filming in Europe

That's what ISO is for. It's all physics it's how your noise cancelling head phones work. It's sort of like the harmonic response effect, push in the equal frequency but exactly opposite to counter the issue.
Explorer
Posts: 12,024

Re: A reason for Americans to use PAL when filming in Europe

Higher ISO and you have more noise (grain) in the video. Switching to PAL is a much more simple option that will be easier for most to do. I'm not saying you're wrong, it's just not an elegant solution.