Compact Flash, Why not? at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Open DV Discussion

Open DV Discussion
For topics which don't fit into any of the other categories.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old September 9th, 2005, 02:47 PM   #1
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 143
Compact Flash, Why not?

Given the economies of scale and current high demand for flash memory in the D-SLR market, why not build a camcorder that uses Compact Flash, too?

This topic entered my mind earlier this morning as the result of logging and capturing 19 hours of footage from a recent trip to Europe. I've decided that capturing tapes totally blows! While there is "another camcorder around the corner" that records to "memory cards" my feeling, as a supporter of that company's products, is the memory product they offer is unsuitable for me because of its' proprietary nature and the price they are asking.

Compact Flash cards, however, are huge in the marketplace. They are fast enough and now large enough to make sense for video recording. Plus, they are dirt cheap... For example, an 8GB Compact Flash (capable of sustained write speeds 2.5 times faster than MiniDV tape) costs roughly 1/3 the price of a similarly outfitted card type from "another manufacturer."

The question is... Why not? It seems that "flash" is "flash" regardless of the container you put it in... So, why not leverage the cheapest container?

(I'd like to keep this discussion away from wild speculations "Yeah, Canon is gonna make one of those..." and focused on the technical implications, please.)
Brian Wells is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 9th, 2005, 03:17 PM   #2
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 115
I thought about this a long time ago and was looking into why using CF cards wouldn't work right now. Here's my conclusion:

Let's pretend that an 8 MB/sec data stream from the encoder to the CF is normal. That's roughtly 2 min/GB. So, a 4 GB CF card capable of sustained write speeds that fast is roughly $450. That's only 8 minutes -- not too good considering a DV tape can hold 40 - 60 minutes for $4. Even at 4MB/sec data rate (roughly DV/HDV quality), we'd still get 16 minutes for $450.

I'd rather use a $3 tape.

I think the future of video is definitely in CF. They provide all the luxery of direct-to-disk without moving parts like a hard drive based solution and CF can be formatted and written to 1000x compared to tape's maybe 7x before dropouts start occuring. But current cost/capacity is insane. People are already crying about the cost of Panasonic's P2 cards.

When 16GB CF capable of sustained HDV quality (25 Mbps write speed) are made available for $15/card, we will see tape die.

My 2 cents.
Xander Christ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 9th, 2005, 04:31 PM   #3
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 143
The numbers I put together are a bit more hopeful considering the prices of CF cards are a bit less now and capacity is ever-increasing... Oh, and products like the iPod Nano make flash technology look so cool!!

Why would a diskless workflow be useful to me?
FCPHD cannot reliably perform "Automatic Scene Detection" after removing the Advanced Pulldown from 24PA footage. So, in order for me to get individual clips from a 60-minute tape, I have to "log and capture" one at a time or sift through an entire tape after ingest, trim clips, and use media manager to create separate files for each clip. This is terribly time consuming. I believe the benefits of Direct-To-Edit would offset considerably the cost of the CF cards. This is especially useful for tape-based MiniDV. Perhaps I am in the minority of users who doesn't care much for HD? For those that do, an HDV camcorder that records to CF cards would fill a unique space in the market, for sure.

The problem is the system from Panasonic does not provide enough ROI to justify the purchase of the memory card, for me, at this time. Ultimately, it's cheaper (and, slower) to log and capture. Until a CF camcorder is available, I probably won't be going diskless anytime soon.
Brian Wells is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 10th, 2005, 12:59 AM   #4
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 2,222
Or, allow capture to a portable hard drive, either internal or mounted externally in a little pack. Since the data transfer rate is not limited by the tape, the camcorder could write better than DV25 (dreaming of DV50 or DV100 or 120P ... ). Or, it could write DV25 + MPEG2 or MPEG4.
Gints Klimanis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 10th, 2005, 01:04 AM   #5
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 2,222
Yes, capture and tape transport in general, bites. I like the archival properties of tape. So, we can just pay for an external miniDV tape drive.
Then, we won't have to deal with searching for the end of the tape, striping the tape with time code, cleaning tape heads, worrying about different tape types, copying tapes. The portable hard drives may not deliver much more bandwidth than the tapes, but I think that variable performance drives will emerge. These drives can run at lower spin rates (less power consumption) during recording, and much higher for capture.
Gints Klimanis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 10th, 2005, 01:06 AM   #6
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 2,222
Ohhhh, I'm rolling ...

And, I REALLY hate losing a few seconds of the start of many recordings due to preroll. Sure, I've learned to count to five before the action. Though, since a lot of taping is of indoor action sports, I hand the camcorder to my friends when I'm the player. And, guess what, a few seconds of very bout are lost.
Gints Klimanis is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Open DV Discussion

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:10 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network