Tuesday, January 07, 2014

CES Week

It's CES week, and while there aren't any real pro-camera announcements so far (or really expected), there are still some interesting bits of new gear, as well as some other bits of news.

The regular News

Gizmodo reviewed the Blackmagic Pocket Camera and they give it an unequivocal 'maybe': "I have no hesitation in saying that for certain applications, it's still worth buying."

Over at CanonRumors, Sigma announced a 50 f/1.4 Art lens, as well as 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 DC Macro OS HSM Contemporary. Not sure what the price is. While you're there, check out this interesting article about plastic vs. metal in lens mounts. "Are Metal Mounts Better Than Plastic?"

There's an interesting graphic on different codecs and when to use them.

Adobe has announced support for new GPU's in Premiere Pro CC 7.2, including the ones in the Mac Pro.

Philip Bloom has been working on his review of the Sony A7, A7r and RX10, and he posted the video last night. Not perfect cameras, but they are quite likable.

Finally, I really like the Canon C100, and it recently dropped in price, but that doesn't mean it's not without it's problem, as this fairly detailed post from Matt Davis explains C100 Chroma Subsampling – the fix. He provides an interesting alternative to using an external recorder with the C100.


There's new consumer cameras from Canon at VideoMaker, and also in this piece at B & H Photo. No 4K announcement, but they did talk about an app-controlled "Pan Table" that costs $100 and "can move the platform 200 degrees to the left and right as you shoot video. It can also tilt up and down by 20 degrees." Teasingly, there's no picture of the device yet.

There are lots of 4K TV announcements, but Stu Maschwitz explains why you don't need one - yet.

Everyone is pretty sure that 3D is dead, as Vizio has dropped it. I'm sure it will come back in another ten years or so...

Here's some more on Netflix's support for 4K.

Drone maker DJI plans an Octocopter that will fly your Canon 5D. Yes, you've been able to buy things like this for some time, but DJI has put the mass into drone marketing.

Sony updated their Action Cams, and announced some new camcorders, but the really interesting thing is the FDR-AX100, which is the 4K camcorder for $1,999. Nino Lietner at Cinema 5D has some details:
The zoom range of the built-in lens equals 29-348mm in 35mm terms, which is very impressive. Of course this comes at a massive price: the camera loses a lot of light when zooming in, if I recall correctly the prototype goes down all the way to f/6.7 at the far end of the lens (while starting at a very fast f-stop which I can’t recall exactly – and the PR info seems to be lacking about the speed of the lens). 
One other interesting thing is that Sony actually announced two camcorders that share similar (identical?) sensors (resolution and size) and hardware: but the HDR-CX900 records to HD and costs $1,499, while the FDR-AX100 records to 4K and costs $1,999. The latter records in XAVC S (to SD cards) and it will be interesting to see how this compressor compares to their AVCHD compressor. I haven't seen data rate specs.

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