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Old August 4th, 2009, 05:31 PM   #1
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Received the Nano/Testing/ItRocks

Hey everybody,

Just wanted to say that we received the nanoFlash this morning and I have done some super quick testing and so far I am VERY HAPPY!

There's lots to test, but so far I've been able to:

Record 100mbs Long GOP
Record 160mbs Long GOP

Haven't tested I-frame modes but will do that soon.

Files were recorded from an XL-H1 and they do indeed look like uncompressed output, even with some extreme whip pans in a low light interior shot in the studio. For now we have to figure out a battery solution, which I'm hoping CD can offer soon. It's frustrating to not have a working portable solution right from the get go. We'll see about getting something from the battery/adapter vendor in the other thread.

I can also confirm editing straight from the CF card (SanDisk Extreme IV 45 MBs) in FCP 7 and outputting a self-contained QT directly without recompression. (I put in a few transitions to see if they held up and they were fine)

The only curiosity is that FCP seems to recognize the material as XDCAM 422 1080i 50bs, even though I was able to edit and output at the native file size/bit rate.

Anyways, well done CD!!

More later

A png frame grab from the 160mbit mode recording should be visible. (2.9 MB file size) It was shot with 1080 60i output from the XL-H1. Enjoy pixel peeping a whip pan!! At some point I will show a hideous HDV frame from the same moment...hehe
Attached Thumbnails
Received the Nano/Testing/Rocks-nanoflashtestedit160mbitstuff.png  

Last edited by Barlow Elton; August 5th, 2009 at 02:12 AM.
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Old August 4th, 2009, 05:33 PM   #2
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Thanks for the report, Barlow -- are you able to upload attachments
directly to this thread? Let me know if that's not working for you.
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Old August 4th, 2009, 05:34 PM   #3
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I think it's working now. Thanks Chris, I'll share more soon
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Old August 4th, 2009, 08:41 PM   #4
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Dear Barlow and Friends,

Many NLE's (Non-Linear Editors) do not recognize the bit-rates that we produce, such as 100/140/160 Mbps Long GOP.

So, we trick the NLE's into recognizing our files by reporting, in the file header, that the file is 50 Mbps.

Please note, while we trick the NLE's, you do get all of the benefit of the bit rates that we put into the files. The NLE's codec, decoder portion, does not care what the recording (encoding) bit rate was, it just uses all of the data present.

Full Disclosure: It is important to note that a render by your NLE is limited to whatever maximum bit rate is allowed by your NLE. Of course, full uncompressed output does not have an limitation, and one can choose the output codec of their choice or stick with ours.

However, if your NLE's is capable of full uncompresed output via HDMI or HD-SDI, then you can feed this back into a Flash XDR or nanoFlash to achieve the same high-quality as the original recording, but after all of your edits. Or you can choose whatever option you want from the wide variety available in the Flash XDR and nanoFlash.
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Old August 4th, 2009, 09:30 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barlow Elton View Post
Hey everybody,



Files were recorded from an XL-H1 and they do indeed look like uncompressed output, even with some extreme whip pans in a low light interior shot in the studio. For now we have to figure out a battery solution, which I'm hoping CD can offer soon. It's frustrating to not have a working portable solution right from the get go. We'll see about getting something from the battery/adapter vendor in the other thread.
Do you have an hirose plug via AC? How did you run the electrical into the nanoflash?
I'm waiting for a swit battery and D-Tap /hirose connector to run the unit. They should all arrive sometime end of this week ... beginning of next.
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Old August 5th, 2009, 02:04 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Harrington View Post
Do you have an hirose plug via AC? How did you run the electrical into the nanoflash?
I'm waiting for a swit battery and D-Tap /hirose connector to run the unit. They should all arrive sometime end of this week ... beginning of next.
We just used the AC adapter that came with the unit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Keaton View Post
Dear Barlow and Friends,

Many NLE's (Non-Linear Editors) do not recognize the bit-rates that we produce, such as 100/140/160 Mbps Long GOP.

So, we trick the NLE's into recognizing our files by reporting, in the file header, that the file is 50 Mbps.

Please note, while we trick the NLE's, you do get all of the benefit of the bit rates that we put into the files. The NLE's codec, decoder portion, does not care what the recording (encoding) bit rate was, it just uses all of the data present.
I think this is brilliant and seems to work well despite the non-standard XDCAM files. (non-standard at least to FCP)

Quote:
Full Disclosure: It is important to note that a render by your NLE is limited to whatever maximum bit rate is allowed by your NLE. Of course, full uncompressed output does not have an limitation, and one can choose the output codec of their choice or stick with ours.
I don't have a problem with the native XDCAM workflow of the nanoFlash files. It's easy enough to 'offline' in XDCAM 50mbs mode--even with full image filtering. Yes, it does reduce the image quality to a more compressed version of the codec...but it's easy enough to just copy/paste a finished XDCAM edit into a ProRes HQ sequence and render first generation into ProRes. That way you don't need to convert to an intermediate, such as ProRes, until doing a final output.
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Old August 5th, 2009, 03:28 AM   #7
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question ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barlow Elton View Post
We just used the AC adapter that came with the unit.
.
Elton ... I have the NanoFlash sitting right before me and do not see a barrel input on the unit for AC? Are you saying you have the unit plugged into the AC via the supplied barrel plug? On my unit, I only see the Hirose power input. I was supplied with an AC barrel plug but no means (as far as I can see) to plug the AC directly into the unit? Maybe Dan can clear this up.
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Old August 5th, 2009, 05:48 AM   #8
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Dear Friends,

We have many options for powering the nanoFlash.

1. If you have a battery system, such as IDX or Anton Bauer with a D-Tap, we offer a D-Tap to 4-Pin Female Hirose cable.

2. The Swit battery, sold by Alex Dolgin at Battery Charger Quad - Camera DC Power - DC Power Converters - Panasonic - Sony - Canon - JVC is a great option for Sony EX1/EX3 users. It powers the camera and offers a D-Tap to power the nanoFlash with the above cable.

3. We offer a Male 4-Pin XLR to 4-Pin Female Hirose cable for those with traditional 4-Pin Female power sources.

4. We offer a Male 4- Pin Hirose to Female 4-Pin Hirose for many pro cameras that have a Female 4-Pin Hirose power tap that is capable of 5.6 watts of power (not all are, some are limited to around 200 mW).

5. We offer a Female 4-Pin Hirose to bare leads if you have to wire it into your own power supply.

6. We offer two versions of a back plate with a Anton Bauer Gold Mount Adapter so you can use any Anton Bauer Gold Mount battery.

Please note that this is typically overkill, as a Dionic 90 will power the nanoFlash for over 15 hours.

7. We can work with various Swit and Dolgin battery holders by modifying them to provide a Hirose 4-Pin Female cable.

8. We can offer a cable for the Anton Bauer Elipz batteries.

9. We are working on our own power solution.

10. One can build their own power cable by using a Hirose HR10A-7p-4s(73) (solder version, includes the pins) or HR10A-7p-4sc(73) (crimp version - buy the female pins separately). Note: Pins 1 & 2 are Positive and Pins 3 & 4 are negative. This is the same as Toshiba's power supplies for their POV cameras, but different than most pin configurations.

The nanoFlash is protected from short durations of power being powered with reverse polarity. If the nanoFlash does not power up, disconnect the power as soon as possible. Extended duration of reverse polarity may damage the nanoFlash.

We accept 6.5 to 19.5 Volts DC so a wide range of battery types may be used. We do not directly support 28V DC power.

Our D-Tap to 4-Pin Female Hirose is the most popular solution.
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Old August 5th, 2009, 10:12 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Harrington View Post
Elton ... I have the NanoFlash sitting right before me and do not see a barrel input on the unit for AC? Are you saying you have the unit plugged into the AC via the supplied barrel plug? On my unit, I only see the Hirose power input. I was supplied with an AC barrel plug but no means (as far as I can see) to plug the AC directly into the unit? Maybe Dan can clear this up.
Hi Dean-
My apologies, it appears we shipped the wrong type of AC power supply. We will ship the correct type and the D-Tap cable today.

Best-
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Old August 5th, 2009, 03:59 PM   #10
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power ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Schell View Post
Hi Dean-
My apologies, it appears we shipped the wrong type of AC power supply. We will ship the correct type and the D-Tap cable today.

Best-
thanks Mike
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Old August 9th, 2009, 01:38 AM   #11
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Ok, so I shot some footage that I knew would be VERY difficult for HDV and even the 35mbs long GOP mode to deal with.

Details:

Shot with a friend and his kids up in the nearby mountains beside a small river. Put the XL-H1 on a jib arm (Kessler crane) with the nanoFlash mounted on the hot shoe of the camera.

My intention was to shoot something VERY motion intensive and obviously difficult for HDV and other low bit rate long GOP modes to encode...but also a 'real world' kind of shot, i.e. nothing ridiculous.

I ended up shooting scenes of the kids throwing rocks into the river, and I deliberately filled the frame with a lot of rushing water in the background--a prime recipe for codec breakdown IMO.

Recorded the following modes:

--HDV 1080i and 24F to tape (recorded simultaneously while uncompressed live SDI was captured by the nanoFlash)
--35mbs long GOP 4:2:0(same as the EX1's top recording mode)
--50mbs long GOP 4:2:2
--100mbs long GOP 4:2:2
--160mbs long GOP 4:2:2
--220mbs 4:2:2 I-frame

For ***** and grins I even recorded live HV-30 HDMI output, but I screwed up and forgot to turn off the data display, so I got some goofy shots that are REALLY clean and uncompressed looking, but have silly data displays in the recording.

I attached a few png grabs from both 1080i and 24F SDI/nano recordings. The interlace grab was recorded at 160 mbs long GOP and 24F (in a 1080i stream) was recorded at 100 mbs long GOP. The HV-30 frame (which will be obvious) was recorded at 100 mbs long GOP. All are full 1080 frames so download and open full size to really peep at the compression.

So far I am extremely impressed with the quality of the compression the nano puts out. I still agree that the 100 mbs long GOP mode is the sweet spot, but I have to say that I like the higher bit rate options for added peace of mind.

Here is a 10 second raw SDI nano/QT file that I can share for a short time. It's 1080i recorded at 160 mbs long GOP. Requires FCP 6 or later, I believe.

Right click and "save as" (193 MB)

http://files.me.com/mrbarlowelton/ybq218.mov

More thoughts later!
Attached Thumbnails
Received the Nano/Testing/Rocks-rockthrow1080i.png   Received the Nano/Testing/Rocks-24f-100mbs.png  

Received the Nano/Testing/Rocks-hv30-24p-100mbs-1.png  
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Old August 9th, 2009, 01:48 AM   #12
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Here is a grab from the 35 mbs mode:
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Old August 9th, 2009, 04:25 AM   #13
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Dear Barlow,

We greatly appreciate you taking the take and effort to put the nanoFlash through its paces.

It is very nice of your to share your results.

We will be happy to post your footage on our website.
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Old August 9th, 2009, 01:57 PM   #14
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Thanks Dan.

If the footage is useful to C.D. by all means, please feel free to add it to the website. I really like the innovation inherent in the nanoFlash. It's VERY easy to use and incredibly lightweight and non-PITA (a miracle compared to every other "portable" solution, save for the XDR) and basically opens up a whole new dimension of quality and possibilities to the stable of cameras we already use.

I like the fact that it's so unobtrusive. You don't need a video village or data wrangler and it means the solo outdoors shooter can take this thing into the wilds and get pristine quality right from the get-go.

I have some other footage I think really shows off the immunity to artifacting that you can get with the higher bit-rate options.

Here's a grab similar to the 35mbs shot posted above, but this time with the max 220mbs I-frame mode. (btw, I post lossless .png grabs in order to eliminate the question of jpeg artifacts introduced from the export process in QT player)

Note: to those out there that aren't big fans of 1080i--I realize it's not aesthetically pleasing to watch compared to true progressive shots, particularly from a frame grab, but understand that interlace is the toughest king of footage to encode cleanly, and the H1 is a native 1080i camera...and I haven't even gone into the surprising cross-conversion possibilities of high quality 1080i to progressive formats like 720p. More on that later...
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Old August 9th, 2009, 04:26 PM   #15
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Looking good Barlow. I just got my recorder too and I'll be posting up some footage very shortly. My testing has gone well so far, I've even run some footage at the highest bitrate possible. I also can't see a difference between that and the 100Mbps Long GOP. No visual difference, just bigger files.

The files I post will be codec torture as well. Stay tuned ...
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