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Old May 28th, 2015, 11:42 PM   #1
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What's the state of play on reasonably cheap high speed?

A question I ask every year or so it seems.
I've been watching for the FS700 to come down in price or get some decent competition for what seems like forever. Yet nothing seems to have appeared. Or at least the price hasn't budged in forever, even while there is open warfare in the 'pro-sumer' space over just about every other feature and many cameras that seem to destroy it terms of normal video quality for sometimes half the price.

But maybe I'm just not paying attention. What are the good high speed options these days? Ideally I'd like to have that 240fps at 1080. There's some cameras that seem tempting but they usually stop at 120
Have I missed anything?
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Old May 29th, 2015, 06:04 AM   #2
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Re: What's the state of play on reasonably cheap high speed?

Sony's PXW-FS7 does 180fps at 1080. A reveiwer says there's some slight softening of the image and some moire and aliasing, but not too bad. Choice of XAVC-L or XAVC-I (ALL-I) codecs. Philip Bloom has a review on it.

Another cam I'm looking into is that Ursa Mini. The FS7 looks more my kind of camera with buttons all over the place, whereas the Mini appears nearly button-less, though about half the price of the FS7. Waiting for some samples.


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Old June 2nd, 2015, 02:46 AM   #3
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Re: What's the state of play on reasonably cheap high speed?

Cheers. Yeah it seems to be creeping in to the feature lists. There still doesn't seem to be much that directly matches the FS700 in this area. Waiting for the next Gopro I suppose.

It's interesting how a lot of cameras seem to trumpet the speed of their sensor in the early press releases, but when it comes to actually releasing the camera itself they generally find there's no real call for it and it's cheaper to skip building the ram and data pathway fast enough to handle it (or I assume that's the reason).
Speeds over 200fps are generally only 720p.

As much as I'd like a proper video camera into the bargain, I suspect dedicated purpose gear might end up being the way to go (Since you can just get a BMCC or something cheap for normal speed at a nice picture)

The Edgertronic is a move into the scientific camera area a bit
edgertronic

The bummer is again the frame size. I don't mind non standard sizes if I get the speed. But if that max frame size was juuust a little bit bigger... (Although it might scale up those few lines ok. I don't know. Pro video rendition is often down the list for these sorts of devices so I wouldn't be surprised if scaling up is a bad idea. But you never know I guess).
It's a good start though. Maybe the edgertronic 2 will be the thing.
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Old June 2nd, 2015, 10:04 AM   #4
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Re: What's the state of play on reasonably cheap high speed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Murray Christian View Post
Speeds over 200fps are generally only 720p.
Right tool for the right job. A high speed camera has a different set of engineering priorities than a prosumer or all-in-one cam. If you need high speed, you need to budget for a Miro rental.
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Old June 3rd, 2015, 01:24 PM   #5
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Re: What's the state of play on reasonably cheap high speed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Murray Christian View Post
A question I ask every year or so it seems.
I've been watching for the FS700 to come down in price or get some decent competition for what seems like forever. Yet nothing seems to have appeared. Or at least the price hasn't budged in forever, even while there is open warfare in the 'pro-sumer' space over just about every other feature and many cameras that seem to destroy it terms of normal video quality for sometimes half the price.

But maybe I'm just not paying attention. What are the good high speed options these days? Ideally I'd like to have that 240fps at 1080. There's some cameras that seem tempting but they usually stop at 120
Have I missed anything?
I agree that I expected competition for it by now, but really isn't it cheap enough yet? For what you get, even the new prices are crazy cheap.
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Old June 3rd, 2015, 02:02 PM   #6
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Re: What's the state of play on reasonably cheap high speed?

Depends where you are I suppose. Its not that it shouldn't command a high price for what you get, but I'm apt to let capitalism help me get toys cheaper when possible.
Here it's still in the $8.5-$11k range. Grey marketing or importing something that expensive still puts on duties and taxes that cut the difference down to very little with exchange rates (last time I checked anyway). I can't really justify that much at the moment
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Old June 3rd, 2015, 09:06 PM   #7
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Re: What's the state of play on reasonably cheap high speed?

For 120fps @ 720x1280, I am liking what I get out of the FDR-AX100. I'm going to down-rez to SD anyways, so it's good for DVD quality. On the plus side, when in high-speed mode, the powered zoom works, the exposure level is continuously adjusted for the scene, auto-focus works, you still have some manual control of exposure available if you need it, and you get audio recorded. Not all cameras do these things in their high-speed mode. Another thing about this camera is that the file saved on the card is not rolled into a 29.97 or any other frame rate, it actually gets recorded as 120 progressive frames. That means you can adjust it in your NLE to 24, 30, 60, 90 or 120 fps for different speed up rates. And, if you want sound, it's there, if you want to play it back at real-life speed, you can (120fps), then let your NLE render out as a 29.97 or 30p, whatever you need in the final product. For high-speed, lots of light is desireable. With its 1.0 inch-type sensor, it does pretty good. The zoom is not great, only 12x. For $1,700 or $1,800 I think this camera is a fantastic bargain. And of course the 4K, 100Mbps is there if you want it. For those cams that shoot high frame rates at FHD (or higher), you most likely will be using a non-powered zoom lens. To go to the powered zooms on an interchangeable lens camera is looking really expensive. I haven't "twixtored" any of my 120fps footage to see how it looks, if say it's bumped up to 240, but that might be workable in some situations.

Regarding the Edgertronic, interesting idea, I wish them well, but the reviews are scant and seem like just a few people close to the project are writing about it. I doubt they're selling many. Tethered to a laptop, that's a pretty big drawback. The quality didn't look all that great either.

Another thing to look for on the high speed cams is how much they "window" the sensor. I think that's the correct term. What I'm referring to is the zoomed in effect the camera produces as the image gets seriously cropped in the high frame rate modes. So, you give up any semblence of wide angle shooting.


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