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Convergent Design Odyssey
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Old October 8th, 2008, 10:36 PM   #1
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Thank You Mike Schell

I'd like the DV Info followers here to know just how generous Mike Schell has been to me and the production of Drs Foster & Smith's "Faithful Friends" for the Animal Planet. Mike allowed our production to use an early Flash XDR unit to record segments during the 4-week shooting near San Diego California in September. I used the new Sony XD Cam EX3 cameras together with the Flash XDR recording @ 100 Mbps, it was flawless. We even recorded from a live HD-SDI switcher and it never missed a frame. IMO This was an amazing combination garnering near uncompressed images. As a DP its important to me to learn about every new tool available and I believe the new Flash XDR is a must have tool to ensure high quality beautiful images. I've been a supporter of CD and I may have met a few of you working at the CD booth during this years NAB, but I'm more than a believer in Convergent Design products. Please feel free to checkout the shows when they are completed Faithful Friends Television - Season 2
I can't thank Mike Schell enough.

Thank You Mike

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Old October 9th, 2008, 06:37 AM   #2
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Great -- thanks for this report Michael.

I like forward to reviewing your work in my living room,
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Old October 9th, 2008, 07:11 AM   #3
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That's great Michael!!
In fact, it was you who told me about the Flash XDR many months ago and thanks to you I already got one...(-: I also use it with the Sony EX3.

Please would you be so kind to share your workflow with us?
How do you view the footage in the field as you can't view it in the camera?
What NLE do you use?
How do you store all the footage?

In your opinion is it better to shoot interlaced at 100Mbs than progressive at 50Mbs ?

Any other tips regarding the workflow would be greatly appreciated.
Please Dan, Mike and other users - your ideas are very welcome.

Thanks!
Ofer Levy Nature Photographer
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Old October 22nd, 2008, 12:01 PM   #4
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Michael it is great to hear of your success with the XDR Flash an the EX3. I had a great conversation with Mike Schell today and ordered my unit to use with my EX1. My higher end clients have been looking for fewer artifacts from our helicopter footage and this looks like the ticket.

I also would be very interested in the same questions as Ofer.
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Old October 22nd, 2008, 09:43 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Ofer Levy View Post
That's great Michael!!
In fact, it was you who told me about the Flash XDR many months ago and thanks to you I already got one...(-: I also use it with the Sony EX3.

Please would you be so kind to share your workflow with us?
How do you view the footage in the field as you can't view it in the camera?
What NLE do you use?
How do you store all the footage?

In your opinion is it better to shoot interlaced at 100Mbs than progressive at 50Mbs ?

Any other tips regarding the workflow would be greatly appreciated.
Please Dan, Mike and other users - your ideas are very welcome.

Thanks!
Ofer Levy Nature Photographer
Hi Ofer-
I would personally recommend Final Cut Pro as your editing platform. It is certainly very well supported with 3rd party hardware and software, offers tremendous features (such as Color) and is very reasonably priced.

With respect to the workflow, you will soon be able to pop the cards out of the Flash XDR, insert them in a FW-800 CF reader and start editing w/o copying or rewrap of the files. It really works slick, IMO. FCP plays back 50 or 100 Mbps files w/o any problems.

I would recommend shooting in a progressive format at 100 Mbps, for maximum quality.

Sometime next week, we should release the firmware to allow playback of individual QT clips, so if you purchase a portable HD-SDI monitor (maybe something from Marshall), you can quickly review each "take".

Please take my recommendations with a grain of salt, as I am sure there are many users who swear by Avid, Edius, Vegas or Premiere; all of which are also excellent NLE programs.
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Old October 23rd, 2008, 08:20 AM   #6
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Thanks for that Mike !

I am still not using the Flash XDR as I am waiting for you guys to come up with the update which will enable the 1080 25p at 50/100Mbs from the Sony EX3. As far as I understand what I can get now is not real progressive. I may be wrong but I prefer to get true 1080 25 progressive at 35 Mbs using the EX3 without the Flash XDR. Please let me know if my assumption is wrong.
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Old October 23rd, 2008, 10:09 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Ofer Levy View Post
Thanks for that Mike !

I am still not using the Flash XDR as I am waiting for you guys to come up with the update which will enable the 1080 25p at 50/100Mbs from the Sony EX3. As far as I understand what I can get now is not real progressive. I may be wrong but I prefer to get true 1080 25 progressive at 35 Mbs using the EX3 without the Flash XDR. Please let me know if my assumption is wrong.
Hi Ofer-
We are testing the true progressive mode in our lab now. I hope we can post the firmware later today or tomorrow. One special note: since the HD-SDI output from your Sony camera is 1080psf (progressive segmented frames) we cannot detect the difference between 1080i50 and 1080psf25. The HD-SDI stream is identical to the Flash XDR.

However, there is an option in the menu to tell XDR to process these frames as true progressive and not interlaced. In other words, we recreate the true progressive frame before sending to the Sony MPEG2 CODEC. So, be sure to set this menu option before recording.

In the case of 1080psf24, we always detect this stream properly, as there is no valid 1080i48 video.
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Old October 23rd, 2008, 10:47 AM   #8
 
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Originally Posted by Mike Schell View Post
Hi Ofer-
One special note: since the HD-SDI output from your Sony camera is 1080psf (progressive segmented frames) we cannot detect the difference between 1080i50 and 1080psf25. The HD-SDI stream is identical to the Flash XDR.
Mike...

will the same hold true for 1080i60 and 1080psf30?
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Old October 23rd, 2008, 11:05 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Bill Ravens View Post
Mike...

will the same hold true for 1080i60 and 1080psf30?
Hi Bill-
Yes, same issue exactly. You will need to set the psf-in option on Flash XDR menu. Also, you can also set the HD-SDI playback to be either 1080psf or simply 1080p. The Sony cameras are all psf, not sure about Panasonic, Canon or JVC.
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