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Old April 28th, 2006, 08:27 PM   #1
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100HD v. Grass Valley Infinity

For those of you who have been following the saga of 2nd Unit, here's an update.

We had a great time shooting NAB and meeting the people who are integral to the prodution; so great that 2nd Unit has been expanded to include a weekly discussion on budget filmmaking to include JVC cameras as well as the new Grass Valley Infinity, their new mid-range level camera we were exceedingly impressed with.

We spent our time at NAB talking about Hawkfeather Productions being given four cameras to use early next month scheduled for release in June or so with the focus on the move up from JVC semi-pro weaponry. As you know, we shot the first CMSA Championship with JVCs and now are looking to shoot the second with the Infinity in June. We'll be looking at and commenting on the Infinity for true HD scene grabs. We're redrafting the site now to accommodate the changes and travelling to Oregon to talk about and hopefully pick-up a new Infinity next week. The new site will have streaming media so viewers can see the awesome pictures this camera takes.

A big thanks to John Naylor, Infinity Program Director for working with us on this and we sincerely hope that the grass roots level look at the camera will reveal a reason to sereiosly look to Grass Valley as a move up from the JVC when the time comes...and it will come to those of you who get the most out of 2nd Unit after it launches. No longer are these pro,. 2/3" ENG cams out of reach for existing JVC or other HDV users with a price tag of $25k plus lens. As a move up from a $1000 hand-held, yes but from a JVC 100HD or HVX or Canon it's not such a leap when you're ready to make the junp.

And to all the people who invaded the motor coach Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, what a grat time we had. Thanks for making it all worth it.
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Old April 28th, 2006, 10:11 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonathan Ames
No longer are these pro,. 2/3" ENG cams out of reach for existing JVC or other HDV users with a price tag of $25k plus lens. As a move up from a $1000 hand-held, yes but from a JVC 100HD or HVX or Canon it's not such a leap when you're ready to make the junp.
I'd be curious to see a test of the $8k lens on an HD-100 vs. the Grass Valley Infinity. I think the deeper DOF and razor sharp lens combo on the HD-100 might win out for your type of shooting.

Obviously there are other variables like dynamic range and 50P / 1080i and recording format. But for me the lack of 24P on that camera made it a non-starter when I first read about it.

When I look over the camera horizon it looks strangely - RED. :-)
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Old April 29th, 2006, 09:48 AM   #3
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I heard that 24p could be available on the Infinity later in the year.
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Old April 29th, 2006, 10:06 AM   #4
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I'm not sure about Infinity's use of a hard-disk-like media for recording. How much of a jolt can it take while it's recording? Thing with tape is that even if it takes a hit that breaks up the picture for a second, it just keeps rolling. If a hard disk takes a head crash, it's done.
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Old April 29th, 2006, 12:04 PM   #5
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The Infinity's been shock-tested and survives impacts of 13 iLBu (International Load Bearing Units I think he said) which I'm told is a european scale of "jolt". It's equivalent to dropping the camera from a height of 6" onto a hard surface while running with no dropped frames. Now 6" might not sound like much but compared to the bumps sustained while the camera's on your shoulder shooting, it's like 4 times the effect. Any more than that and maybe tou should switch camera positions...or professions!!!

Also, I hear 24 is going to be available as well but, as I've said in other posts, each person needs to select the camera right for their type of shooting. Ours will probably never be 24fps. We do reality and sports needing long focal throws over 350 ft with high DOF to assist in maintaining focus as subjects move toward and away from the cameras. 30 and 60p is our preferred mode but you.re right; alot of people are doing drama where 24 is important. In my humble opionion, the Infinity isbn't designed for this. Its size and weight are designed for handheld operation whereas stick, pedestals and motion support mechanisms like the Stearucam most often support cameras used for drama.

Again, sorry for the misspellings. It's not that I'm uneducated, I'm just a terrible typist and can't find a spell check on this board!
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Old April 29th, 2006, 12:13 PM   #6
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Wow!!! You have been doing some studying. I heard the same thing but I haven't seen it. But I got the same information from a friend who's a top shooter who GV invited to NAB to handle questions and demos. He absolutely said he'd dropped it while filming and found no jitter or stopage at all. You just got your JVCs and I'd think with just starting out, that's alot of cash and, again, with all due respect, even you said you're "not there yet" in terms of needing, using or understanding professional equipment. And you clearly did your homework. What's up?
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Old April 29th, 2006, 12:27 PM   #7
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Just following your advice J:-) . Wasn't it you who told me that cameras, lighting, sound whatever, it can all be replaced but nothing takes the place of education? The more I study, the more I listen, especially to people on this board who walk the walk every day, the more I'm going to learn and the more likely my chances of success will be. You're right. I'm not ready for something like the Infinity right now but I will be and besides, understanding how the whole process works lets me make better decisions. Next week's my last week at the studio and I won't have the easy access to people around here who have been shooting their whole lives. So I better understand what makes things work because like you said, nothing emptys a bank account faster that ignorance. May 22nd we're at our first race so we better be ready. Grass Valley or not, the camers still roll one way or another!
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Old April 29th, 2006, 01:23 PM   #8
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Jonathan, It was great visiting with you at the motorcoach on Monday.

To those who have not had the chance to meet up with Jonathan, he is a great guy, great host, a blast to have a drink with and a great asset to this business. Definately look forward to working with him more in the future.

To everyone else I met at the motorcoach - great times and please stay in touch.
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Old April 29th, 2006, 01:34 PM   #9
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Tim, trying to keep all the names and faces straight. Was that you with your wife who was shooting some backpacking in Hawaii?

Warren
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Old April 29th, 2006, 01:46 PM   #10
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Hi Warren, No I was sitting on the couch next to by friend.
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Old April 29th, 2006, 05:33 PM   #11
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Okay, that narrows you down to two guys, Tim. One of you had dark hair and a beard and the other was sandy blonde, I think.
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Old April 29th, 2006, 07:59 PM   #12
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Same old Warren. I love this guy. Everyone's packed in the coach chattering away about cameras, shooting schedules, apps and what-not and someone's in "My" chair.."The" Chair...the leather recliner kicked back with the foot stool propping up some tired tootsies...Cowboy Action Shooting from Tunica on the big screen just takin' it all in. I look over and it's WARREN just kickin back and taking it all in. With his footage playing on the big screen.

It was definitely great meeting all the board people and thank you so much for your very kind words. NAB is always a wonderful place to see what's up in the industry but this year was truly special with three class-act party sites giving everyone the opportunity to make the rounds and meet all the people from the board. Family is a great thing to have and putting names with faces really brings it all together. I'm truly looking forward to producing 2nd Unit because of the family I met last week in Vegas. Warren's already shot for me and he's definitely going to be coming back when the show and site kicks off and goes live. Tim, you're coming in also and Joe Bowey and his wife...what a great gift basket to show up with. The whole entertainment industry knows about my coffee vice...gotta have the best and lots of it... and you should see the gift Joe showed up with.

Anyway, almost enough said but Vegas last week bears saying this... Chris and Jarred head up two vital resources for the next generation of filmmakers and it's not going to be too long before some of you are working with me and others much higher up on the food chain on shows that are shaping the future of television and cinema. It used to be I tried to make time for the Boards and those of you whom I met at NAB now know why. After last week, the Boards have become a priority in my life right next to my company because of the people I met. I don't want to go all teary eyed but you all, to use Joyce M's words, simply rock and I'm proud to be assoicated with all of you. Anything you need, just ask and I hope you find 2nd Unit to part of the family spanning the Boards and showcasing your generation of filmmaker. And one last person I left out; Jollie-O. You bring hope, class and vision to the black filmmaking community. Anything you need, man, I'll be there for you and we'll start with what we talked about on Sunday.

See ya...and thanks again fir the kind words.
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Old April 29th, 2006, 08:25 PM   #13
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Oops! If I'd known I'd taken your chair.... well... I might have enjoyed it even more!
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Old April 29th, 2006, 08:42 PM   #14
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Always...and I mean ALWAYS welcomed to it! And in fact come Monday, I'm shopping for one for your own. Seriously, there are very few people I would have enjoyed seeing in it more when I turned around and saw you. I didn't even know you came in as I said that night.. You couldn't miss that smile on my face. You're always welcome...in my coach, in my house, on my set...anywhere. You're a class act...A real person who knows his limitations and his capabilities. Your results, after a couple days of training and listening to Mike, one of the best shooters I have, and you were turning out great product shooting hard stuff feeling like sh&%!!! at that. I get smiles just thinking about it. So I'm glad you stopped by and enjoyed the evening.
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Old April 29th, 2006, 09:17 PM   #15
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Hey I knew you would enjoy the coffee. Me and my wife thought this was the BEST NAB we have been to. I purchased a focus 101 tripod and got a portabrace ctc3 for a steal from there booth. (Brand new for $$) My cheap kata bag for my consumer bag was more expensive.
STILL WAITING for batteries. I did have a break in in my truck but nothing stolen.
As soon as I can get the batteries I'll shoot and send you a reel. Maybe you can use another shooter.
Did anyone go to the HD100 seminar on wed at NAB? I wish I could have stayed and went to it.
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