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Old April 1st, 2011, 05:30 PM   #1
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FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

To the CD team. Bit of a curve ball thrown here. I have just read that one of the Sony officials was quoted as saying that the FS100 HDMI port may spit out 8 bit 4:4:4. Now I wonder whether the Nanoflash can be upgraded to handle that? Just wondering.
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Old April 1st, 2011, 06:16 PM   #2
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

Dear Henry,

Sorry, but no.

4:4:4 requires dual link HD-SDI, or HD-SDI 3G, and media much faster than CompactFlash cards.

Our Gemini 4:4:4 is needed to process 4:4:4.
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 05:51 AM   #3
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

To be fair 8 bit 4:4:4 is not that ubiquitous. I am assuiming that it is twice the data rate of 8 Bit 4:2:2
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 06:45 AM   #4
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

Here's a useful reference link for this discussion:

HDMI - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

What it tells us is the theoretical limits of HDMI of course. Dan, I would consider you a great source for applied knowledge in this area so perhaps you could enlighten us on your experiences with HDMI. Since the FS100 has only a single HDMI output which I believe although can't confirm is HDMI 1.4 compliant we won't be getting any SDI goodness from that camera. According to this article though 4.4.4 is supported in xvYCC and YCbCr in addition to sRGB. That being said, the Nanoflash is limited to 4.2.2 and the Gemini only has HDMI output no input. I'm guessing there were design choices made for specific reasons and if that information can be shared without getting into intellectual property issues I would be most interested to hear more about it.
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 09:54 AM   #5
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

Ok I think I just answered my own question here. It would seem that while HDMI standards are somewhat cutting edge, camera manufacturers are a bit more conservative in their implementation of the technology. I believe the FS-100 is 8bit HDMI and 4.2.2. Oh well.....
From a CD perspective I can see why they may have not pursued an HDMI input at 10bit 4.4.4 now. While making it more compatible for the future, the camera industry hasn't exactly shown an interest in heading in this direction when they have HD-SDI already.
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 09:58 AM   #6
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

Dear Nelson,

We started designing the Gemini 4:4:4 last Summer.

At that time, and as far as we know it is still true, no camera had or has a 10-Bit HDMI output.

There are other cameras that output 8-Bit 4:4:4 over HDMI. We have been aware of these for years.

Up until the FS-100, there was no HDMI output only camera that was a good match for full uncompressed recording.

HDMI is wonderful, except for the connector. On any professional shoot, where thousands of dollars are at stake, one would normally want a more secure connector to the external recorder.

Now that Sony has publicly stated that the HDMI out of the FS-100 is 8-Bit, the nanoFlash is certainly a viable option.

There are two reasons why I say that.

One, the 8-Bit camera matches the 8-Bit nanoFlash.

Two, we expect the Sony FS-100 to be a very low noise camera, much like the PMW-F3.

With a low noise input, the nanoFlash can produce some stunning images. With less noise in the image, the very low noise Sony XDCam Codec can do an outstanding job.

This is proven on a daily basis by those using the nanoFlash with an F3.

Just so you know, it is tough to decide what to design into a product. One cannot really predict what will be coming out from other manufacturers while the product is being designed and built.

One other consideration is size. We pride ourselves on building very small, powerful recorders that do not use much power.

Also, one has to make room for the HDMI input connector, both inside the unit and on the connector panel of the unit.

I hope this helps, and helps answer your question.
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Last edited by Dan Keaton; April 2nd, 2011 at 02:47 PM.
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 02:04 PM   #7
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

Hi Dan,

This makes complete sense to me from a business perspective. I think you hit upon a key point here too regarding the connector. I believe most of us view HDMI vs. HD-SDI as consumer vs. pro due to the lack of robustness in the design. In any event, it will be interesting to see the Nanoflash paired with the FS-100. The F3 has already proven to be pretty awesome and I wouldn't be surprised if the FS-100/Nanoflash rig becomes the low budget indie solution to be beat this year. There is certainly a lot of upside from the DSLR camp there especially with the Nanoflash taking it to the next level. Thank you for the quick response Dan!

Regards,
Steve
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 04:13 AM   #8
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

This discussion makes no much sense if we don't say what are we talking about.
So, what are you talking about when you say "8b 444"?
Are you talking about RGB or YUV?

8b 444 YUV?
A "no-downsampled" 8b YUV signal makes no much sense. I know only one codec able to work on this fashion (Sheer).

8b 444 RGB?
Thats plain 8b RGB (No need to write 444. RGB can't be 422 or 420. It can't be downsampled as YUV).

The statement that HDMI is capable of 8b RGB, doesn't means that your AF-100 is able of 8b RGB.
All the HDMI 1.3 devices are 8b RGB capable, but you need get that 8b RGB stream from somewhere.
and THERE IS NOT any 8b RGB processing in that camera to extract that signal.
The AF-100 can not be recording 8b/420YUV and putting out 8b RGB at the same time.
Basically you would need two processor to get this done.
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 10:03 AM   #9
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

Rafael,

I guess everybody agrees the the AF100 outputs 8b 422. It's the FS100 which is still unclear - however, Mr. Martinez is quoted to have said that it can be switched in the menu between 422 (obviously YUV) and 444 RGB (both 8-bit), over HDMI which also transports the TC.

I think that at least the TC part should be addressed in the future nanoFlash versions.

Piotr
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 01:36 PM   #10
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

Hi Piotr,
Don't get mixed by marketing terms.

The only way those cameras might put out 8b RGB, is when playing the files recorded on camera.
Then is not problem getting 8b RGB or 8b YUV out of the HDMI (although you will be getting that from 420YUV) stuff.

What you can't dream is getting an RGB stream out of the HDMI while you are recording in camera (8b YUV).

For any camera is not a problem to manage 8 or 10b,422 or 420 YUV at the same time (like the EX-1 that records 8b/420 while put out 10b/422); is all about a single YUV stream; but you need a BIG-BIG processor to manage full standard YUV and RGB at the same time.

And even if possible Piotr, they will never give you this feature. This belong to 15K-up cameras :-)

About TC, HDMI do not supports SMPTE TC.
Only the cameras manufacturers can get this done. I don't think CD can do much about.
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 07:26 PM   #11
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

Dear Friends,

We have a Sony FS-100 in our lab.

We are committed to updating our firmware so that the nanoFlash can extract and use the timecode embedded in the HDMI input stream, just as if it came in through HD-SDI.

In other words, it will be fully supported.
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Old April 16th, 2011, 05:48 PM   #12
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

Are you saying we can trigger record then?
Thanks
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Old April 16th, 2011, 06:20 PM   #13
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Re: FS100 - 8 bit 4:4:4?

Dear Alvise,

Yes, once we complete the firmware upgrade, the nanoFlash will receive and process the timecode embedded in the HDMI stream.

Thus, one will be able to set the nanoFlash to trigger on incrementing timecode.
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