Thursday, September 08, 2011

Other Interesting - mostly Sony - News

Sony NEX 5N *vs* FS100 and NEX VG20 – hands on comparison | Andrew Reid | EOSHD
Andrew got to spend some time at the IBC show with these three cameras, and offers his impressions.
Well first of all let me tell you that the VG20 is an absolute piece of crap. This is a camera that is meant to sit below the FS100 and is a good $1700 more expensive than the NEX 5N and yet it has a plethora of disadvantages compared to the diminutive mirrorless camera. It brings so little to the party for that extra $1700 namely a top handle and better audio. But in adding those, it also brings massive operational and build quality frustrations to the hapless operator.
Ouch! Now Andrew is somewhat of a bomb thrower, but his points are well taken about the lack of physical buttons and the "PlayStation" interface. Build quality? I guess I'll have to wait and see how it compares to Sony's other consumer camcorders.

I also think he starts out with an incorrect premise:
"For the customer Sony is targeting this camera at – the event shooter and professional videographer..."
He also overlooks the $1,599.99 lens-less version, but that's quibbling.

While a camera in this price range probably would appeal to those users, I am pretty certain that they are not the target market for this camera. The NEX-VG20 is part of Sony's consumer line of camcorders (at least here in the USA) where the professional division starts with the NXCAM (i.e. the NEX-FS100.) Of course, he's not impressed by that camera either, even though it does offer all the buttons and a more business-like interface than the VG20; at twice the price.

The NEX-5N looks better every minute...

Canon Hanging on to Mirrors Means Opportunity for Sony, Panasonic Cameras | Mariko Yasu and Takashi Amano | Bloomberg
Bloomberg sees Canon and Nikon sales falling and thinks it's due to a lack of mirrorless offerings:
The two Tokyo-based companies use mirrors in all cameras with interchangeable lenses, a technique Sony Corp. (6758) is shifting away from. As a result, Canon and Nikon’s combined share of the Japanese market has fallen by 35 percent, while Sony’s share has doubled, according to estimates at research firm BCN Inc.

Rigging Sony's FS100 for an Indie Feature Shoot |Bryant Frazer | StudioDaily
How DP Justin Talley chose the NEX-FS100 for shooting Somewhere Slow:
Talley was impressed by the FS100's sleek form factor because he saw the potential for building a rig that he describes as "Voltron-esque," allowing him to quickly transition in the space of a minute or two from a full-on digital-cinematography rig to a minimal, Hasselblad-sized handheld set-up that can be squeezed into a small room.

Sony gives more detail of its OLED viewfinder
| DPReview
Information from a Sony press release about the OLED viewfinder used in the NEX-7, SLT-A77, SLT-A65 and the optional EVF for the NEX-5N. Unfortunately, it's a Google translation:
High contrast is a characteristic inherent organic EL displays, wide color gamut, fast response by the performance, video and attentive, more natural color reproduction, tone characteristics, and provides excellent video characteristics.

Shooting Andrea Corr Live | Den Lennie | F-Stop Academy
A counter-point to the above article, Den looks at shooting a live concert performance using multiple cameras; three Sony PMW-F3's and four Canon DSLRs. One problem they had was that the budget only allowed for four camera operators, so three of the cameras would be locked down, requiring they spend time beforehand figuring out where to put these cameras:
You do this by walking around the venue with camera in hand (in this case I had my 7d with 70-200 and James his 60D with 70-300mm lens). It’s pretty straight forward and involves walking around the entire venue looking for viable camera positions so that you can safely leave a camera running unattended for a 90 minute gig.

Sony F65 Page | Sony
Sony's new F65 now has it's own page. Check the graphic about the color gamut and how it compares to film: Extended color gamut

Stunt Poetry | Rishi Kaneria | Vimeo
Only just saw this, and quite frankly, who needs a Phantom when you can use Twixtor?!

Adobe Edge Preview 2 | Adobe Labs
A new preview of their tool for creating animated web content using HTML 5, CSS3 and JavaScript. Adobe continues to explore new authoring environments...

And if that's not your cup of tea, you might be interested in Adobe Carousel:
This new app–announced today for iOS and Mac OS X (with Android & Windows versions in development)–brings a highly tuned version of the Lightroom/Camera Raw engine to mobile devices, combining it with excellent multi-device syncing.
The apps are free, but you pay a subscription for storing pictures. They aren't on the App Store yet.

Red EPIC Canon mount test drive review | Mike Seymour } FXGuide
For those that can afford an Epic, here's a lengthy look at this mount, which is described as being very well made, and easy to install and field swap. The only real negatives seemed to be the weight it adds to the camera, and issues related to the Canon lenses themselves (most DSLR lenses aren't designed for cine use.)
The Canon mount would seem vital to anyone who has their own camera and likes the freedom to be experimental, independent and give up no image quality. RED may have taken a few months to release the mount but the build quality shows that this is something the RED boys themselves like to use. This is not an accessory it is a vital component but it is $2000 which is not inexpensive.

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