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Panasonic DVX / DVC Assistant
The 4K DVX200 plus previous Panasonic Pro Line cams: DVX100A, DVC60, DVC30.


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Old February 1st, 2006, 12:47 AM   #31
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General HD/HDV Acquisition is my suggestion. It isn't from a Co. as large as Sony/JVC/Panna but it is of a similar vein.
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Old February 1st, 2006, 10:01 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Juan P. Pertierra
If you are interested in seeing how the image format affects it, just convert the tif file to jpg in photoshop.
I did that and it introduced artifacts similar to ones in the other JPG files, so posting these images in different formats wasn't a fair comparison. Also, it looks like the Z1U chart was recorded on a different background than the other images, which introduces uncertainties about the effects of lighting on the image. I think we can all glean enough from the images as posted to learn something useful, but it's more useful when identical procedures are followed to generate such comparisons.

Also, to be thorough we should compare images from Andromeda to uncompressed capture options for other cameras. Until someone does that, I don't know how Andromeda compares to, say, connecting a Z1U via component cables to a Kona2 capture card.
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Old February 1st, 2006, 07:13 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by Ken Hodson
How does the DVX lens hold us back with your setup?
It actually is not the weak link in the chain. In fact, if you push detail up in the Sculptor processing for a EIA resolution chart one can see the vertical trumpets beyond 800 and horizontal past 900. The nominal output as shown on the rez chart at:

http://forum.reel-stream.com/viewtopic.php?t=363

doesn't jump up that high because my algorithm doesn't sharpen the image in its default setting, but it's obvious that the lens is more than capable of resolving HD resolution comparable to the other cams. As much resolution as we are already pumping out of it, the practical limit of the imaging block is reached before that of the lens.

The chromatic aberration across the entire range is also far below the aberration visible from the factory lens that comes with the Canon and HD100. You don't need Andromeda to verify this, most current DVX users already know how well it performs. This is not surprising, as the internal lenses in cameras such as the DVX and HVX have a large number of elements in them, and as such it is easier for the optical engineer to zero out aberration. Cheaply making good removable lenses with fewer elements for small chips is a different story, because it relies more on the actual quality of the glass($) and not the optical composition of elements.

Kevin: I posted the jpg of the HVX chart, because:
a.)That was the only format it was available at the time and
b.)it was the chart that showed the highest resolution for the HVX of all the tests done.(+7 detail level)

Barry has just sent me a re-processed BMP which I have replaced in the post.

I try to be as fair as I can. Like everybody else, we don't have every single camera available to us to shoot charts, so the best I can do is pick the best results for each camera and using the same chart.

Cheers,
Juan
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Old February 1st, 2006, 09:22 PM   #34
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Dang.
Juan - you are really tempting me to look for an older DVX.
I would love to mount on a steadicam with a 35mm adapter
(and feed into a 12" powerbook that I could use also as a monitor)

But please explain the ratio is 4:3 > 16:9 ?
I don't quite understand...

Also - I am in NYC - is there anyway to see a model in operation
Thanks again
J
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Old February 1st, 2006, 09:33 PM   #35
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Will a PC laptop enter the equation at some point in the future?
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Old February 2nd, 2006, 03:24 PM   #36
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John:

The CCD's on the DVX are 770x492 at NTSC pixels. This yields an image 1.4 ratio. Andromeda allows you to capture all the information from the CCD's, so you endup with an image 1.4 in ratio (1540x984 NTSC pix). However, from there you can target just about anything.

Our goal was to impose no limitations that are not actual hardware limitations. Thus, Andromeda gives you all the information the camera really captures, and the filmmaker is free to use it how he/she sees fit.

Just one example of how this can be exploited: normally the anamorphic adapter yields a 16:9 image. However, since Andromeda records areas of the CCD normally cutoff by the camera, with the anamorphic adapter you actually get an image at the cinematic 1.85:1 aspect ratio.

If you are recording the full 1.4:1 frame, it is much like shooting film. Sculptor provides reticules within the 1.4:1 frame, and you can later apply pan-and-scan techniques if required, etc.

Ken:

We have plans to support PC in the future as long as the available hardware supports the required data rates. The main issue is that Andromeda uses up more USB bandwidth than just about any other USB 2.0 device out there. Thus not many systems are designed such that a high throughput can be mantained from the USB port through the bus and to the drive.

The Apple Powerbook and Mac Mini are very fast in this respect, but for example, the powerful G5 tower actually has slower USB performance. However, with macs we only have a few machines to test for compatibility. With PC's, there's such a large number of variations, that it's a larger task to find out on what models the motherboards are configured in the required manner.

Cheers,
Juan
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Old February 2nd, 2006, 10:46 PM   #37
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Thanks again Juan. Keep us posted on the PC developments. Please.
Your product becomes so much more appealing to the 95% of us that own PC gear. When you find a platform that works let us know so we can make sure our laptops comply. Then it is Ebay for a used 100a!
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Old February 3rd, 2006, 09:43 AM   #38
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Juan,
Thanks for all the info -
I hope you get your hands on an HVX - I would love to see Andromeda get around this cameras limitations too
BTW: you are now taking preorders, when will they be coming round.... I'll sign up in your forum.
Thanks
John
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Old February 3rd, 2006, 05:42 PM   #39
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Hello,

Will make sure to post on any developments. One of the reasons why mac was a good choice(besides the technical stuff i explained) was the existence of the mac mini. For a few hundred dollars you can get a very compact recording system which can be setup in many different ways. We have people who have made their own portable setup with mac minis, or built one into a monitor, etc.

Also, many of our users do their work on PC, they just connect the external hard disk to their PC and use the media from there.

John: We are filling orders like crazy as I type. :) If you are sending in your DVX, it normally takes 5-7 business days before we send it out with the system installed.

Cheers,
Juan
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Old February 3rd, 2006, 11:49 PM   #40
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Wow,
More tempting than ever !!!
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Old February 4th, 2006, 11:28 AM   #41
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What is the read/write speed a USB drive needs to be compatable, or work for your system?
A MAC mini? You would have to rig up some sort of battery power or be tethered by cables. So if we are going to be tethered with cables, the MAC mini is really the best desktop for the job? I always assumed you ment MAC laptops were better suited than PC laptops. So even in the catagory of desktops, the mini MAC has a large advantage?
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Old February 4th, 2006, 12:05 PM   #42
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Juan,
Sorry to post this here and on the Reel|Stream forums
but I am very interested in Andromeda and have a few questions that might help others too:

1) I most often shoot mobile with a light glidecam smoothshooter - How can I use a computer in this situation? I was thinking of strapping a laptop to my vest, but Motion & a laptop (with spinning Hard dirve & possible fan noise) doesn't really seem smart

2) So I can find used prices for DVX around 1800$ on eBay, but the DVX(b) is at around 3000$ ...??? That much better?
(unfortunately I am Not a previous DVX owner - which would make my decision easy)

3) I would LOVE this to work, but it is similar price as an HVX...(minus P2)
Is it that much better in terms of Res/less noise/ artifacting? NOTE: I am not being difficult - I know this is subjective, and I know most don't have an HVX to compare it to...I just want your thoughts on it

4) I want 16:9. I assume from your posts I would frame that in Post or with Sculptor?

5) Also - I record to Laptop or Mac mini (which may work on the steadicam sled -- if....if... the Mini has a battery--?) and can I also back up in DV what is shoot simultaneously?

it is so nice that people are thinking outside the Box
I am trying to glean as much info as I can -
Thanks,
John
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Old February 4th, 2006, 03:39 PM   #43
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Ken:

There is no limitation on drive read speed for recording. But, the record drive should be able to write at 28MByte/sec continously. This is not hard for a modern 7200RPM 3.5" drive to achieve. There are even some new 7200RPM notebook drives that can achieve this speed.

You are correct in that you can also use a Powerbook, I was just pointing out the mac mini is the most economical solution. In my opinion the most portable solution out of the box is the 12" powerbook, but if you are building your own setup and already need power for something else, the mac mini is also a good choice.

John:

1.)You can use a setup with a 12" powerbook, which would be completely portable. You can also use active USB2.0 extension cables to make the cable length very long and simply keep the computer static somewhere. Tethered setups such as this are used all the time on film shoots.

2.)You can install our system on any of the three DVX variations, although we recommend either a DVX100A or a DVX100B. The reason being is that most of the DVX100(original) specimens we have seen have been used heavily, and it is not uncommon for them to have other problems that we have to fix before proceeding.

That said, the only difference between the DVX100A or DVX100B are just the actual camera features, the image captured by Andromeda is the same.

3.)I'd say look at what you are planning to do and the footage from both systems. So far all the tests seem to point that Andromeda on the DVX yields more dynamic range, color precision and resolving power, without compression artifacts, among other things. You don't have to believe me about this, you can just look at the posted test results and decide for yourself.

Of course, the HVX does have some advantages such as variable frame rates and a more portable form factor. I can't say for sure, because for example if you buy an HVX with a 4GB card, that's not really that portable if you plan on recording more than 4 minutes. You'll have stop and download to a computer every 4 minutes of continuous shooting. Even if you go for a $10,000 dual 8GB card setup and plan to shoot continuously, you need to download while shooting.

These are all things to take into consideration. I've talked to a lot of people that see the HVX as a more portable solution, until they start thinking about how the card worflow would work. Many just endup having the camera hooked up to a computer anyway.

4.) You can either letterbox in post, shoot 10-bit 16:9 which is automatically letterboxed by sculptor, or you can use the anamorphic adapter for a 1.85:1 aspect ratio.

5.)Operation of the camera is completely unaffected by Andromeda. The camera ALWAYS operates as normal, so yes, you can record to tape regardless of what Andromeda is doing.

I hope this information is helpful, please let me know if you have any other questions.

Cheers,
Juan
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Old February 11th, 2006, 10:19 AM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Juan P. Pertierra
Remember that I said pixel-shift has advantages and disadvantages, not advantages across the board. A possible reason why camera companies would go for higher-pixel count sensors and sacrifice other performance aspects is simple:

PIXEL COUNTS SELL

Try a search in all the forums and see how many people are talking about resolution/pixel counts and how many mention, say, dynamic range. You'll see that when asked what they want from a new camera, they immediately say 2K! 4K! If you ask me, give me 16+ stops latitude uncompressed, at 720P and as much color precision and frame speed as possible. The studies done on cinema resolution show that at the best, a standard cinematic print has about 600-800 equivalent lines of vertical resolution. We've been exceeding film for a LONG time as far as resolution goes. All the current and vapor camera designs seem to completely miss these other aspects that nobody is addressing, except Panavision.

And then people wonder why it still looks like video. It's not impossible to do. Everybody seems to be just barking off the wrong tree. :)
..

Hope this helps,
Juan
Yes, this is true. I have been looking at sensors with 15 stop to 20 stop latitude (using dual slope and per pixel gain enhancement schemes) from Cypress Semiconductor. I have also been considering extreme pixel shift for HD and very low light work. I have specific purposes in mind for it, and jobs that border on surreal footage. People don't realise that the video look is low stop high contrast look, and that resolution is not the answer to everything.

Juan, there has been much talk about recording uncompressed from HD camcorders via the component (or HDMI interface) but there is nothing cheap to do it. Are you planing a cheap component/HDMI recording version of the Andromeda in a box, if so, I would have a use for it in a custom made camera. My only need is 4:4:4 10bit+ and variable resolution.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Shannon Rawls
I hear you can fit a V8 in a Volkswagon beetle.

Mmmmm, but I think I'd rather just buy a Camaro.

- ShannonRawls.com
What about two V8's in a old Mini for 4 wheel drive, read it once ;)


Thanks

Wayne.

Last edited by Wayne Morellini; February 12th, 2006 at 08:07 AM.
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Old February 11th, 2006, 02:06 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shannon Rawls
I hear you can fit a V8 in a Volkswagon beetle.

Mmmmm, but I think I'd rather just buy a Camaro.

- ShannonRawls.com
I think that is a horribly inaccurate analogy.
If one already has the cam it is a very lucrative finacialy, especially if you also own a mac laptop. I think it is more of a $ issue than raw horse power. All of the new HDV cams can output uncompressed, but at a staggering $$ due to the equipment needed. A/D convertors, capture card, capture PC, very fast RAID. Not exactly very portable. Or light on energy requirements.

This system isn't for everyone, but I think it is incredably advantageous to the indie film-maker. The mac laptop might be a deal breaker for some who can then justify getting a HVX or HDV cam (get on this boys, you are gonna loose sales!) but even then, this frankenstein has an amazing price/performance ratio.
Ferrari for the price of a ford might be a better analogy.
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Last edited by Ken Hodson; February 11th, 2006 at 04:03 PM.
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