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Old February 25th, 2005, 01:25 PM   #76
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Toke, there are several issues with 10bit color with todays systems.
1. Most video cards only support 8bit per channel. Matrox has one that supports 10bit on your screen, but you give up most of your alpha channel to get it.
2. 10bit codecs put a lot of strain on most desktop computers, both cpu and IO. If you want a real world test, go to Blackmagic designs' web site and download their free codecs for Quicktime (both Apple and Windows). They will show up for any nle that supports Quicktime.
Both Premier and Vegas on Windows can use them. Try editing and rendering and everything you usually do. The do not require BlackMagic hardware to run.

3. Maybe this will all change once we get 64bit windows, but who knows.

I too would like 10bit or better yet 12 or 16bit, but those systems are out of my price range. 10bit uncompressed HD(1080p) single stream requires minimum 1.2gigabit throughput. (over 150Mbytes per stream). thats something that can even put lots of strain on Ultra320 Scsi drives. Most HD is edited offline in some form of SD.

If you want 10bit, scream at MS and Apple and the video card manufacturers (Apple has repeatedly refused to offer 10 or 16bit). Until they support and deploy it, it's unlikely the camera makers will make affordable 10bit cameras. No market outside of very high end systems.
(btw, don't mistake the 10bit ramdac outputs the video card makers talk about. Thats strictly for video/dvd playback, not for cg or editing).

Your frustration is felt by many of us, but it's not the camera makers at fault on this one. really.
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Old February 25th, 2005, 03:34 PM   #77
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<<<-- Originally posted by Toke Lahti : <<<-- Originally posted by Jan Crittenden: I think this is a question best answered with"life is full of little tradeoffs. -->>>

>I think you can answer with that to every question on the earth, but it isn't very productive.

But it is reality.

<<<-- I think it is based on what people are willing to pay for technology. -->>>

People are willing to pay for 8bits when they don't know any better.

Unfortunately this is not held up with evidence. If everyone had refused to use DV, the course of compression would have been much different. If everyone was willing to pay for the 10 bits, then they would have made DigiBeta the most popular format and not DV based products. So it is fairly obvious from here, that no, people are not willing to pay. DigiBeta was in the market for almost 2 years prior to any DV based format!

And all new products, even HDCAM, IMX, HDV and XDCAM are 8 bit. So it is a matter of what people are willing to pay balanced against a percieved quality performace. Can you pay for better, can you renegade something like Juan's product. Sure, but there is a much smaller market. And if there is something huge there, then Juan will make a lot of money.

Best,

Jan
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Old February 25th, 2005, 08:43 PM   #78
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Excellent question, Michael!

I was thinking the same thing myself. Hope you don't mind me adding to your question...
Jan,
have you seen footage from the camera? If so, what size screen(s) and what was your initial reaction?
I remember mine when I first downloaded a M2T file from the FX1 and holy @#!@$. Anything like that?
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Old February 26th, 2005, 09:59 AM   #79
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<<<-- Originally posted by Jan Crittenden: If everyone had refused to use DV, the course of compression would have been much different. If everyone was willing to pay for the 10 bits, then they would have made DigiBeta the most popular format and not DV based products. -->>>

Quality was not the reason why everybody didn't buy digibeta. It was price.

My frustration of this slow technical development in digital video might become in working in different fields.
When I bought vx1000 in -95 it seemed that development will be rapid.
Before that people were using u-matic with inferior quality and analog beta with over ten times higher prices.
After that almost nothing has happened.
Maybe prices in higher quality digital video has halved in last decade (not digibeta of course), but that's really nothing when you compare advancement in computers or digital still photography. There one zero has dropped from prices and quality is ten times better than decade ago.

I also bought 16:9 televison in -95. Still before now you couldn't buy 16:9 camera with at least 1/3" sensor less than $20k.

I think that reason for this slow development is mainly lack of competition. There is sony with everything very expensive and panny with something less expensive. If you compare situation in still cameras there is about a dozen of top grade manufacturers. And there is lot of choises in the "middle class".

Another thing might be that better than consumer class quality is instantly thought to be needed only in big money television productions in top economical areas where one hour of program can easily cost eg. $500k. How about areas where hour of program can cost only one tenth of it or less? Well, just use the same cameras than home hobbyist...

Technically it would have been very easy to offer 10bit upgrade to dv-formats for years. That would make 25Mbps to 32Mbps that could be easily handled with existing tape and transfer technics. Camera heads already have higher than 10bit dsp's, so there would be no expenses over there either.
Every $1k computer today could handle 10bit even if converted to 16bits.

I hope that this new Panny's camera will strike to this non-existing $2k-20k range with good quality for smaller economic areas and non-commercial productions!
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Old February 26th, 2005, 05:39 PM   #80
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First you say that people are willing to pay for 10 bit, and when I show you that they aren't; you say that it is because it it is too expensive. Hey, you said that people were willing to pay for it. Apparently not.

You make asumptions, you think are correct. In reality, you don't know because you are not in the manufacturing end of things, you are not in the R & D Department, you don't know how long it takes to make things happen and or even make a new product. I have tried to explain. You don't care for what I have said and do not want to beleive it. You think it is based on the lack of competition and that isnt it at all.

Please, this part of the thread is going nowhere. You know it, I know it, all that are reading it know it.

I will not respond to this part of the thread again.

Best regards,

Jan
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Old February 26th, 2005, 06:11 PM   #81
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I feel your pain Jan. Thank for all the enlightening insight you have painstakenly written. Having been in product design over the years I perfectly understand you points.

jh
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Old February 26th, 2005, 09:48 PM   #82
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Jan, I am very gratefull for your presence here, it's a great opportunity to voice our concerns, ask intelligent questions and, even though you can and will not "leak" information that we might be eager to know, you do add enormously to the quality of these conversations and go to great care and detail in answering when you can. Please don't go away just because someone is obsessing about an issue or two. Stay with us.
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Old February 27th, 2005, 05:32 AM   #83
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Hey I am not thinking about going away, I just refuse to waste my time on that part of the thread as t benefits none of us. No I want to be here so that when I can say something you guys will be among the first to know.

Best regards,

Jan
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Old February 27th, 2005, 12:11 PM   #84
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Jan: Can I Focus it?

Hi Jan,

Thanks again for letting us know what you Can let us know. Theoretical discussions Are a waste of time when you've got a new camera just around the corner!

As I assume the new HD/P2 is still 8 or more months away, here are a few details of its design that I really hope are looked at very closely before its release. No pie-in-the-sky wishlist, just realistic tweaks that could make all the difference. I'd appreciate your comments on what has been or may be implemented re:

1. Viewfinder. --- Needs higher magnification, higher res. If it won't get a physically larger & finer viewing system, than the existing one could be at least made better by exchanging a few optics in it w/higher magn ones. Bigger is better here, and absolutely needed.

2. Viewfinder again. - The only way to exploit the camera's quality (and I believe you that it's gonna' Rock) is to be able to Focus it. Porting over the DVX100's vf will simply not be up to the task. But if the existing vf is what ends up on the HD/P2, then a focus assist toggle that would greatly magnify a central portion, a la Sony Z1/FX1, will be the minimum necessary. This also requires either a higher res vf (or LCD) to make it of much value, and if this system is used, it really should be a good bit better in res/magn than Sony's, which is just Barely adequate. And of course it should also work While recording.

3. ...Let's see... the VF! - Getting the vf much better on a budget is I'm sure a tall order, but will really show Pana's intentions for its end-use, and will make or break the camera's success in the long run. This because when down the line, someone else comes out w/a camera even better than DVCPRO HD, yours will still compete, if it has the better viewing system.

4. Image Stabilization. This camera is probably going to be Extra light in weight, so hopefully the OIS will be specially dialed-in to the nth degree. And made available in HD mode. I think a small form-factor for a camera like this is perfect, but that means it will end up being hand-held that much more often.

Along w/picture quality, and of course **low-light capability**, the ability to fine focus must be job #1 on the new cam. Thanks for listening, and if anyone in engineering/product dev needs to be reminded of any of the above before it's too late, please forward!
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Old February 27th, 2005, 02:50 PM   #85
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Agreed completely. Focus is crucial, especially considering the cost of an HD field monitor. PLEASE include an "enhanced focus" option, something like what the FX1/Z1 do, which would let us zoom in to full pixel resolution for focusing! That's probably the #1 best feature it *needs*...
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Old February 27th, 2005, 03:51 PM   #86
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Re: Jan: Can I Focus it?

Hi Vlad,
>As I assume the new HD/P2 is still 8 or more months away, here are a few details of its design that I really hope are looked at very closely before its release.

You would be amazed at how much is locked in at this time. Your suggestions are good ones and I will pass them along. From the time of the first DVX idea till the first NAB with it, was 18 months. There are many things that go into these little cameras that not everyone can appreciate.

It is sort of like the 1880 Victorian my husband and I purchased. Before we do anything really cool, we have redone the electrical, which was done in the 20's and the 40's and again i the 90's, we have redone the gas, and the plumbing. When we are all done, none of this work will show, and we have owned the house for 5 months. Of course we gratefully don't have to live in it at the same time as we are the world's slowest contractors. ;-)

>This camera is probably going to be Extra light in weight, so hopefully the OIS will be specially dialed-in to the nth degree.

People think/thought the SPX800 would weigh in significantly lighter than its tape-based brother the SDX900. They are within ounces of each other.

Thanks for the ideas, I will pass them along.

Best,

Jan
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Old February 27th, 2005, 05:26 PM   #87
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> something like what the FX1/Z1 do,
> which would let us zoom in to full pixel
> resolution for focusing!

Yes! But unlike the FX1/Z1, make sure it can be used while recording.
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Old February 27th, 2005, 08:02 PM   #88
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Since we are all speculating here (except Jan) I have to believe that on the day (or shortly after) the new Pana is officially announced, there will also be an announcement from some 3rd party about an dvcprohd hard disk recording system. There shouldn't be any reason the pana couldn't record directly through the firewire interface. If it's anything like what JVC does for their 5000 series of cams, it should be quite small and easy to haul around. Maybe even hook up to the on cam battery.
If this isn't the case... someone on this board should get venture captital and move quickly.

I really think the current crop of P2 cards are more for ENG work than short/feature production. at least for the near term.

There are too many smart people out there to ignore such an opportunity.

But with NDAs all around I'm just blowing smoke at the moment. Okay I've got that off my chest now. hehehe
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Old February 27th, 2005, 08:25 PM   #89
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Since we are wishlisting, here is the Hard Disk that fits in a PC-Card slot and can handle more than 100 Mbps. Please Jan pass on the idea that the camera should be able to use this kind of storage in it's slot:

Meet the Toshiba 1.8 inch PC-Card. The initial offering is 5 GB but it seems they can scale that up to 60 GB as they have disks in the same form factor with that capacity:
http://sdd.toshiba.com/main.aspx?Pat...00659C000003B7
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Old February 27th, 2005, 08:41 PM   #90
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Indy future is in your hands!

Jan, I do appreciate how far in advance the many details of these things have to fall into place, which is why I limited my suggestions to those that could be Relatively easy to change, if they want to. But I cannot stress enough the importance of having a better finder in this cam. It is the vital heart of the device that has Not kept pace w/the advances in its electronics.

We're reaching the point w/this level camera, where potentially more important or more-widely viewed work could get made w/them, some of it for the big screen. Pana is obviously keeping its price point flexible (or at least under its hat) at this stage, so if adding $500 or $800 to the MSRP can allow it to have an improved viewing system, then I'm certain that would help distance the camera from the field and sell more of them, and make users who know the difference grateful for Panasonic's commitment.

Oh, and good luck w/the house!
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