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Old November 25th, 2009, 07:11 AM   #1
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Why do we need Convergent Designs?

I love CD and they're doing great things with the Nanoflash. My question though is why Sony doesn't do what they've done inside their cameras? ie put a 100mb/sec GOP and 280mb/sec I frame codec in an EX3-type camera?
There's not a massive power draw, so that's not an issue, it's not big so the camera would only have to be slightly larger, no problem, the technology is there obviously because CD are doing it. Why then is there not an EX3v2 with these codecs built in.
I assume the answer is purely not wanting to compete with their own higher-grade (read higher-priced) product lines, or is there actually something else? Do they not feel there would be a big enough market for a prduct like this?
Be interested to hear your thoughts.
Steve
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Old November 25th, 2009, 07:58 AM   #2
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Steve this has crossed my mind a few times and the only thought i have is Sony does not want to compete with their high end cameras.

I look at the new PMW-350 with the Nano and think this is a perfect chance for Sony to work with CD and combine the two. Would this upset the 700 and 800 owners? Not sure maybe the disk base is enough of a difference along with their cameras being CCD.

Anyway interesting question.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 08:20 AM   #3
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Dear Steve,

This is an interesting question.

Yes, we use the outstanding Sony codec module, the same one as in the PDW-700 and PDW-F800 cameras. This module is a marvel of engineering and very flexible.

While we use this a the heart of the nanoFlash and Flash XDR, there is literally years of work involved to add the electronics and firmware.

For exmple, the Sony module does not write to CompactFlash cards, does not handle closing one file and opening another seamlessly so that no audio or video is lost.

The Sony module does not create files in Quictime format.

I am certain that they are many other things that we bring to the table in the nanoFlash.

In other areas, we definitely like the fact that one can use the nanoFlash on a wide variety of cameras, Sony and non-Sony.

And, one can purchase one nanoFlash and most likely use it with your next camera.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 08:34 AM   #4
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Agree 100% Dan. I think you've amazed most of us here with the things you guys have done, and all the plus points you raise are correct.
BUT, with Sony's massive infrastructure I'm sure that the amount of time and money CD have spent developing these prodcuts would be a tiny drop in the ocean to them, and can only reason that they are protecting their higher end products - though probably struggling more and more to convince people that they should buy a 25,000 camera that has in effect a lower spec and quality than a 5,000 plus Nanoflash!
If I was the Sony corporation I'd be thoroughly embarrased that a small company like CD has been able to blow me right out of the water with technology, price point, and also customer relations!
Hey Dan, just a thought, why don't you go the whole hog and just make a camera! If it's as ahead of the game as the Nano it'd be a winner.
Steve
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Old November 25th, 2009, 08:36 AM   #5
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Steve,

My feeling is that Sony is trying to hit certain price points in its product offering representing differing levels of what is "good enough" for each user. When we look at 35 Mbps XDCAM EX compared to 25 Mbps HDV, from which many EX users may be moving, we have a codec that could be more than adequate for industrial, training, web, etc etc. The dual processor module to achieve 700/800/nano/xdr bit rates and color sampling would add significantly to that price. So, I would guess it is far less about cannibalizing sales and more about new/upgrade customers at a comfortable price point.

This is where CV (as well as AJA) come into the picture. Here we have two entirely different options and concepts but both with the goal of how to get the image quality you want at whatever price point, form factor, and codec you desire. Note the operant word here is "you"-- devices like CV products mean that the user is dictating the codec, and not the camera manufacturer.

I do not detract from any professional product. For me personally, Nano works best with my style owing to its portability, flexibility and price.

I, for one, like the idea that a camera could be built around imagers and optics, allowing users the flexibility of whatever recording format they desire. I wouldn't even mind a camera head tethered to recording device of choice. Wait a minute.... doesn't this sound suspiciously like the good old days????
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Old November 25th, 2009, 08:44 AM   #6
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Couldn't add more than about 2000 though Ned, as CD are able to make an add-on box for that. And if it was 2000 on top of an EX3-type camera it'd still make it massively cheaper than the PDW800 etc. and so massively attractive.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 08:56 AM   #7
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Dan I think the Nano is an excellent product and we do not want you to go away. I own one Nano after having owned a XDR, and as you know I will be buying another soon.

Still it is interesting that Sony does not give CD the big bucks and add the Nano/XDR to their product line. But being self employed maybe this is not what CD would like and I understand why.

A CD HD camera interesting idea Steve.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 09:06 AM   #8
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Agree Paul, Dan and Mike have my support and admiration.
I'm not really talking though about Sony marketing the Nano, more that they should have its functionality built into a camera.
But now I've raised it I'm more and more keen on the idea of CD doing the whole thing, maybe as a tie-in with a camera/sensor/lens manufacturer.
I'd want 1/2" or 2/3" CCD, 1080 at 1-60fps (or 720 if that's too much to ask), swappable PL, B4, Nikon and Canon mounts, and a decent viewfinder. Let me know when it's ready Dan. With Sony continuing to release so much new stuff and annoying purchasers of similar products 6 months previously who'd now prefer the new model (ie PDW800 vs 700 and F350 vs EX3) I'd be happy never to have to deal with them again.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 10:39 AM   #9
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Bandwidth

First off, I consult for sony as an independent DP/Editor.
The largest segment for Sony are the broadcast/cable networks world wide. They have been involved with Sony from the start of XD. Design, workflow, uplinks, feature sets, and many other specifications have been thoughtfully brought to the Sony table by these networks and Sony has come up with a solid functioning system. I have not had a single problem or frame loss since XDSD came out (2005). My maintenance cost have dropped 100%. In addition, all the NLE's that are on board with Sony are actively involved in XD.
Many of these entities are struggling with the decline in viewership while others have seen increases. They have existing infrastructures that meet the 50Mb bandwidth pipeline. Remember Betacam????? Some are limited to 25Mb (ABC) as well as thousands of smaller production facilities.
Name a camera like the 800 that can do all the things it can do. Please do not get into a product battle here, unless you have read the entire manual and understand it.

Sony Product Detail Page - PDWF800

I could never get CBS 60 Minutes or any other network to accept 100-180 MB LGOP on a "regular basis". Never ever going to happen. They are limited to pipe size and server space period. For most of them to add that capability would cost millions they do not have. Just watch a well done segment on 60 Minutes and tell me if we need more "Pop" than the 50 Mb is delivering. Remember it goes a long way down the chain before we see it on our Bravia's or LG's.
Sony is no fool. They know their market. This is where CD comes in. An unrestricted third party that enables the few of us who can record and deliver higher bit rate images, when a client requests it. And of course CD's transparency and willingness to listen and react to it's base. See below how CD and Sony answered the EX archive dilemma.

http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/converge...-workflow.html

http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/converge...orkflow-2.html

http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/converge...dcam-disc.html
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Old November 25th, 2009, 10:43 AM   #10
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So Dan, when will the new camera be ready? :)

Steve you raise good points and point out the true workings of a free market.

Over time, the camera manufacturers will have to up their offerings due to companies like CD pushing the envelope and offering us the customers more value.

But I feel for the camera makers right now as this industry is in a major state of flux and they are probably wondering what the next ten years will bring to their business models.

The mid level products look stunning and even more stunning with a CD recorder invloved.

The chance of selling the high end is decreasing with every model released.

The best thing is that us CD owners can sail through as the cameras come and go knowing we can just "hook up" to whatever we are using at that time.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 11:34 AM   #11
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It's just marketing

Hi all,

I think it's very clear why Sony don't add 50Mbit recording to the EX3 or the PMW-350 yet..it's just marketing.

Sony are being VERY careful about segmenting the market with their various product ranges.

At the moment there are clear differentiators between HDV, NXCAM, XDCAM EX, XDCAM HD and HDCAM SR and that's the way Sony like it.

If they put 50Mbit recording in the 350, who would ever buy a PMW700 at twice the price?

We might not like it, but it's the way Sony has chosen to do business, so we're stuck with it for now, I guess.
Doesn't stop us complaining!!

Regards

Dave
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Old November 25th, 2009, 12:19 PM   #12
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No complaining here I think Sony does a great job. My EX1 has worked it's butt off for two years with out a glitch. And with the Nano the EX1 and the PMW-350 are winners in my book.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 01:49 PM   #13
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Dear Friends,

While we feel that our nanoFlash significantly improves the image quality of many cameras, it should be noted that there are operational advantages to the higher end cameras.

Quoting Alister Chapman, "Even the EX1 with the nanoFlash looks stunning".

The Sony PDW-700 and PDW-F800, each with a nanoFlash, do over some advantages over the EX1 with the nanoFlash.

I am just trying to put this into perspective.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 01:53 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Chalmers View Post
We might not like it, but it's the way Sony has chosen to do business, so we're stuck with it for now, I guess.
Except that we can buy a Nanoflash. Just seems insane that you need to do that and bolt on an accessory that quite clearly could be done in camera by the manufacturer.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 02:54 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dennis Dillon View Post
I could never get CBS 60 Minutes or any other network to accept 100-180 MB LGOP on a "regular basis". Never ever going to happen. They are limited to pipe size and server space period. For most of them to add that capability would cost millions they do not have. Just watch a well done segment on 60 Minutes and tell me if we need more "Pop" than the 50 Mb is delivering. Remember it goes a long way down the chain before we see it on our Bravia's or LG's.
]
Thanks for your input Dennis, thing is if you only want 50 mb/s then fine, the Nano will do that too, but it's good to have the option of more (and especially of I frame) for those who might need extra bit rate for whatever reason.
A few years back you'd have to accept what you were given by these mega-manufacturers and if they said something couldn't be done you'd accept their word, whereas now if they were to say that they couldn't make a camera with an option of 35, 50 and 100 mb/sec GOP AND upto 280 mb/sec I frame codecs for an extra cost of 1-2000 you'd know for sure that they'd be talking rubbish.
Steve
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