Friday, April 20, 2012

Quick Links

NEX-FS100 Firmware V2.0 | Sony | Website
The v 2.0 firmware update for the Sony NEX-FS100 is now officially available from Sony US.
  1. Added 50Hz recording system (PAL): 1920x1080 50p, 50i, 25p and 1280x720 50p.
  2. Camera Profile (camera settings can be saved to and loaded from a memory card).
  3. Additional 4x and 8x Expanded Focus magnification: (with user selectable focus area).
  4. Selectable ISO or GAIN sensitivity display.
  5. Selectable Focus indication in FEET or METERS (E-mount lens only).
  6. Selectable Shutter indication as EXPOSURE TIME or SHUTTER ANGLE.
  7. Added the following Aspect-Ratio markers: 2.35:1, 1.85:1 and 1.66:1.
  8. Display ON/OFF button enables Zebra and/or Histogram overlay onto video output.
  9. Compatible with the new A-Mount to E-Mount adaptor, model LA-EA2. One push Auto-IRIS and continuous 15-point, Phase-Detection Auto-Focus operation with most Alpha A-Mount lenses is available. Lens metadata is displayed onscreen and stored real-time to image file.

Out of the Black: BlackMagic`s new Cinema Camera – why they got it right, but so wrong | Frank Glencairn | Blog
Frank explains the problems he has with the camera, including the placement of all the ports, and the Mac orientation of the hardware/software:
There is a touchscreen and some buttons on the rear (where you want to mount your V-mount battery, but that´s an other story). That might be workable on a tripod, but on the shoulder its a pain in the ass. I understand that they can add features or change things better in firmware that way – even some things that would be impossible with hardware buttons, but some barebone switches in better places would be really nice.

Blackmagic not just by name – why the Cinema Camera is the future | Andrew Reid | EOSHD
Meanwhile Andrew thinks this camera will turn the market upside-down.
Until now a viable raw codec cinema camera had not been anywhere near under the $15,000 mark. (The Scarlet isn’t ready to be used at $10,000 for the brain only). Is it any wonder these products are seen as niches when they are priced for a niche?

Blackmagic Cinema Camera - Graded Screen Grab 3 | 144
This poster took some footage shot with the Cinema Camera and graded it:
Regarding the image quality. I like it a lot. Lots of grading options and you can push it a long way. I noticed some stuck pixels when grading it (you can see them in some black areas) but apparently this is just a pre-production issue.
Main issue for me is there's fairly unpleasant red/green noise in the blacks. Quite noticeable when the blacks are lifted, quite apparent in the tone remapped version for instance.
Might be a pre-production issue again and whatever it would clean up easily in Neat Video or Denoiser etc (not ideal though obviously).

FreshDV NAB 2012 – JVC 4K Camera | Kendal Miller | FreshDV
Dave Walton of JVC talks about the GY-HMQ10 street price of $4995 and 4K "fully self-contained" camera. This was announced a few months ago, and as of this date isn't yet shipping.
There's some interesting information, including that the lens doesn't close down below f/5.6 due to lens limitations.
The GY-HMQ10 uses a single 1/2.3" CMOS 4K sensor, which provides 3840 x 2160 images.

Sony NEX FS700 : a post by James Tonkin | F-Stop Academy
Video example and article with impressions of using the NEX-FS700:
The 24Mbs AVCHD codec is much more efficient than expected and produces a very clean output for a majority of situations. In fact often when A/B’d against a higher bit rate codec, it is almost impossible to tell the difference. However, extremes in both lighting and movement can cause the native AVCHD codec to break up and artefact. In the case of live concert recording I would always use a secondary external recording device, both as backup but also to employ a higher bit-rate recording to reduce these artefacts.
Den Lennie also posted this 16 minute long hands-on discussion of the camera:
Sony NEX-FS700 Hands on Video Overview

NAB 2012 Video Blog - Tom Guilmette | Vimeo
If you didn't get to NAB, Tom Guilmette provides the next best thing; a quick video tour:
I took a few minutes to walk around the crowded halls with a Sony SR11 and ask a few vendors questions about gear that I thought was interesting.
For those of you who could not make it to Vegas this time, please sit back and enjoy just a sampe of what you missed! I highly recommend that you make NAB a priority and do whatever it takes to get time off from your busy schedule to check out the convention.

Adobe Prelude: A Symphony of Pre-Event Options | Tim Siglin | StreamingMedia
Article explaining the features and benefits of Adobe's new ingest and simple transcoding tool
This combination of simple features within Prelude allows the add-on application to both lower the pain point of ingesting content as well as shortcutting the need to always reach for Adobe Media Encoder to do simple transcoding jobs.

Canon 5D Mark III underwhelms on sensor test | Stephen Shankland | C|Net
Interesting news that the 5D Mark III isn't that much better in low-light than the MarkII:
DxO gave the 5D Mark III sensor a score of 81 on the DxOMark test of image sensor performance when shooting raw photos. That's an all-time Canon best, but it's only a bit ahead of the 5D Mark II's score of 79 and well behind that of the camera's top competition, Nikon's D800, whose score of 95 tops the DxOMark list.

NAB 2012: TECHNICOLOR Show Cinelight simple colour correction and grading software | Matt Allard | DSLR News Shooter
Technicolor gets into the digital color grading business:
Technicolor’s new CineLights software is marketed as a straightforward way to colour correct and grade footage shot with log style gamma curve material. We speak to the company about it.

NAB 2012: Ikan show new D series monitors and Elements rigs | Matt Allard\
| DSLR News Shooter
Ikan offers slightly cheaper monitors (than Marshall!):
Ikan have a big range of new products here at NAB 2012 – the most interesting is the D range of mini monitors which feature Waveform monitoring options.

Fear and loathing at NAB 2012 | Ryan Lawler | Gigaom
A look at the changing audience at NAB. Many of the people I know that went aren't in the broadcast television production business:
In attending a few of the higher-profile sessions, I got the feeling that this year’s NAB Show wasn’t actually about broadcast TV, at least not in the way that it’s sold or distributed. It was instead about the multiplatform piece, and seemed specifically to shine a light on those who were leading the charge in that arena. The only problem is that the creators and distributors it highlighted weren’t broadcasters, at least not in the traditional sense, but those mired in the online-only or online-first world.

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