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Old November 10th, 2006, 06:07 AM   #1
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Hi

We are looking at the idea of producing a portable, laptop style PC that will take either a Black Magic or AJA Cona Capture card for HDI/SDI and component etc.

The computer would be Windows based, have external raid ability and suggested different lossless capture codecs for capture to internal 500gb SATA 2 drive etc. It would be portable and have good battery life and powerful in terms of processing and graphics ability.

The solution would also be ideal to use with Software like Serious Magic's DV Rack for monitoring and shot set up, and Premier Pro etc..

We are still in the R&D stage and have a manufacturer working on the design.

I am looking for help on issues like:

(a) Demand - How much interest is there in this kind of solution?
(b) Price point. Suggestions welcome
(c) Feature suggestions

Thanks

Trevor Allin
Clear Cut Media
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Old November 10th, 2006, 11:56 AM   #2
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What advantage would your product have over a Mac, especially the new Intel-chip Macs?
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Old November 10th, 2006, 02:10 PM   #3
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Hi

Thanks for your reply, and its a great question!

I think the answers would be around these areas:

(1) Portable for field use, like a laptop but desktop power.

(2) 5 hour (approx) batteries that are easily swapable in the field.

(3) Hot swapable internal SATA 2 drive. Can change internal disk without powering down, for direct to disk capture etc.

(4) External SATA 2 Raid ability built in.

(5) Take AJA card or Blackmagic capture card, which would be fairly unique in this type of computer in terms of its form factor being small and portable etc.

(6) Reasonably priced!

Kind regards

Trevor
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Old November 10th, 2006, 07:42 PM   #4
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"Portable for field use, like a laptop with desktop power..." is how I think of my Powerbook...are you talking about making your own proprietary notebook computer?
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Old November 11th, 2006, 02:45 AM   #5
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Hi Benjamin

Yes in essence but with the ability to capture component and hd/sdi. The Powerbook, or any other laptop, cannot capture uncompressed / lossless. It is primarily a portable capture solution, as well as editing.

The people who might be interested in this solution would be those with hdv cameras that have component or hd/sdi outputs.

Thanks

Trevor
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Old November 11th, 2006, 09:47 AM   #6
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I'd be very interested in it.
I'm mainly using a desktop computer and a FS-100 right now.

Im going to have to travel to do commercial shoots, and to be able to have my editing rig right there and possibly have their commercial done and ready for them to see by next day when I leave, would be worth a bit.

Im assuming the basics, like abundant firewire and USB 2.0 inputs.

I'd rather not pay over 2000, but I could understand a computer this specialized easily costing more, I may simply be dreaming on the price though.

The external raid is nice.

The hot swappable hard drives are great, but if they encounter the same problem P2 cards have it will be an issue(too costly to be practical for many)

I'd say if the swappable hard drives cost more than 2x the cost of a traditional hard drive of the same size, its too much. Once again, I dont know the prices of the parts and technology involved well enough to say that my views are accurate or reasonable, just an opinion.

I'm not sure if everyone would like it, but software for saving High Def video straight to the hard drive during a shoot may be a major bonus, but obviously it would drive the cost up greatly and may not be worth it to some people.
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Old November 11th, 2006, 10:53 AM   #7
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Hi Steven

Thanks for your feedback. It's your kind of situation that was in mind as we were looking at this project.

In terms of the swapable hard drives, you would be able to use any SATA hard drive. The hot swapable part will be in the way that it will connect to the computer. So price of these are very attractive for direct to disk recording.

In terms of the capture software there are many options. Premier Pro could be used. Blackmagic have their own excellent little capture program, and of course there is DV Rack and the like.

At this point it is difficult to nail down the price as I am still talking this through with the company that will take care of the actual manufacture.

Kind regards

Trevor
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Old November 13th, 2006, 04:36 AM   #8
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HD Portable Laptop station
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Old November 13th, 2006, 06:12 AM   #9
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Hi

Thanks for the link, I really appreciate it. Yes it looks similar in concept. Two things come to mind.

(1) I am not sure from the site as to whether it will take component. Along with other feature comparison issues.

(2) Price is 10k! The price of the solution I am looking at will atleast be half that price. Accessibility of price point is a major factor that we are considering as most people are priced out of the market on these kind of solutions.

Kind regards

Trevor
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Old November 13th, 2006, 06:59 AM   #10
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Hi Trevor,

I have a Sony Vaio AR-190 notebook. It has a CoreDuo proc, 2 Gb ram, and a 200Gb Raid 0.

I use DV Rack 2.0 HD to capture into it from Sony FX-1's.

My thoughts: The external would be great, but what connection method? SATA? Firewire 800?
Do I need analog component connections from an HDV cam? I would assume HD-SDI would be VERY beneficial, but I don't have a cam that outputs that signal yet.
Screen size: the more the merrier. Mine is 17.8". I love it for DVRack.
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Old November 13th, 2006, 08:41 AM   #11
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http://www.vydeo.com/products/EC34.html
http://www.mobl.com/expansion/produc...ion/index.html
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Old November 13th, 2006, 10:36 AM   #12
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Hi Craig

Thanks for your input.

In terms of the external, SATA 2.

On the analogue side, I use JVC-HD101 which has component outputs. In fact it is this camera that inspired the project.

I share your enthusiasm for DV Rack HD, I use it also and love it! It would be good if you could connect to the camera other than firewire somehow so that you could use a BM or AJA card with it etc. Then again technology is moving so fast I am sure it wont be long!

Kind regards

Trevor
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Old November 13th, 2006, 10:44 AM   #13
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Hi Serge

Thanks for the links again! You're not much of a talker are you!?

I like the products and am sure they will have a useful role to play. Do you know whether they are bringing out a component version? And how with a normal laptop you could capture 1080i HD uncompressed? I am partiicularly thinking of sustained write speeds to a hard drive.

Very grateful, thanks!

Trevor
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Old November 13th, 2006, 12:54 PM   #14
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Trevor, if you want capture from JVC HD100 component out, use AJA HD10A 10-Bit Analog to Digital Converter and record to MEDIATOR HD Flash DVR
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Old November 13th, 2006, 04:02 PM   #15
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It would really be great if you could remove the screen latency. I originally thought that DVrack would let me eliminate carrying around a field montor. Unfortunately, the latency makes it useless for that. Good for lots of other stuff but not monitoring.

It'd be a real equipment saver if you could plug the monitor out from a camera into a loptop and switch between the capture view and the camera view. (Hey, maybe you can and I just haven't been reading enough!)

Brad
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