The Tape vs. Solid State Debate at DVinfo.net

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Old March 21st, 2005, 03:59 AM   #1
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While I believe that there is no way that this new Panasonic camera will compete in the price range of the current "prosumer" ones like the Z1, XL2 etc (especially once you factor in the cost of P2 per minute), I'm sure Panasonic are going to come out with something amazing under US$10k. Man, even if they ditch the P2, do tape only DVCProHD that would be divine - so us HiDef wannabes didn't have to go to HDV.

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Old March 21st, 2005, 11:12 AM   #2
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No No death to tape! No more tape.

Aaron, Why don't you just go the Firestore route if P2 isn't going to work for you. I will if the P2 cost is more then SD cards in them are really worth. You'll get alot more recording time that way with Firestore.


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<<<< Man, even if they ditch the P2, do tape only DVCProHD that would be divine - so us HiDef wannabes didn't have to go to HDV.

Aaron -->>>
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Old March 21st, 2005, 11:17 AM   #3
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Michael, good point. I've always felt that the technology in Direct to disk solutions were always rife with problems, but maybe I'm mistaken; I'd love to go direct to HD if not solid state. Some closer integration would be nice between HD and cameras - as I understand it, you basically need separate start stop buttons on the recorders - no biggy I guess. Oops going OT now.

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Old March 21st, 2005, 12:41 PM   #4
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I think, one way or the other, tape's life as an integral component in the middle of the workflow is coming to an end.

P2, XDCAM, and hard disk recording just offer too many advantages. Instant file access, random access, ability to delete bad clips, instant review of any clip...

Think about it, having to hunt for a clip, rewind, stop, play, rewind some more, stop, play, and then *remember to fast forward to the end so you don't tape over other footage*), and eliminating the interminable capture sessions, dealing with dropouts, etc...

... that's all going away. Just like CDs replaced cassettes, hard disks replaced cassette storage on computers, DVDs replaced VHS, etc. Nonlinear, random access acquisition is so superior that it will definitely replace tape.

Tape is cheap, granted -- although, hard disk is cheaper than high-def tape! Three hours of HDCAM tape is about $240, three hours of DVCPRO-HD tape is $135. Three hours of hard-disk storage for DVCPRO-HD is under $115 (and if you're talking about 720/24P storage, you can get three hours of that on hard disk for about $60). And cheap tape makes for a good archival medium, where you never need to go back and get your footage. But indestructible solid state, or high-capacity cheap hard disk or optical... there's just no question. The only question is, which format, and how soon. Cost will be an issue, perhaps hard disk recording will tide us over until P2 cards are ubiquitous and huge -- a 16gb card would hold 40 minutes of 720/24p data, which is longer than a BetaSP camera tape (and a lot more, if you delete unusable clips as you're shooting!)

You've got to give tape its due -- it's been cheap, reasonably reliable, small, and ubiquitous. But things are changing, and they can't change soon enough, as far as I'm concerned. Bring on the P2 and the hard disk revolution!
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Old March 21st, 2005, 12:49 PM   #5
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Another important point for me on the P2 issue is the fact that if these P2 cards can actually be read by an off the shelf card reader (which I believe they can), then we have eliminated the need for a deck.

P2 cards may be a slight investment at the onset, but they can be reused NUMEROUS times.

Tape seems deceptively cheap to me... it's easy to forget I had to spend about 2K for my deck initially. And that is only because I"m working with DV/DVcam. A DVCPro50 and DVCProHD deck are way out of my realm. With solid state we will no longer to tied to the limits of the deck, only the limits on what codecs our cameras will allow us to record.

How much nicer would it be to spend that 2-3K on P2 cards initially, and then never spend another penny on aquisition again? And be able to shoot 3 different formats without spending any extra money on proprietary decks or tapestock?
(unless I want to buy more P2 cards).
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Old March 21st, 2005, 04:25 PM   #6
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Excellent point! On a laptop you don't even need any sort of card reader, you can plug 'em straight into the cardbus slot. On a desktop you may need something like a $70 PCMCIA card reader device.

But either way beats the daylights out of having to buy a $20,000+ deck!
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Old March 21st, 2005, 08:46 PM   #7
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TRUTH is...

panasonic needs to bring in cash somehow

tapes being sold are huge in profit margine

surprising jvc is big on tapes they are the heart of the vhs/svhs reighn, for matsushita to do this is pretty big

they lose a lot of money right off the bat if they have an open space. storage is the easy part. the truth is any 2.5 laptop hard drive is all you need but pana would not get much money from it,

p2 is a way for pana to make money(memory stick by sony)

i could say its a bad move, but it push's the specs of other cams. tapeless is the future they jumping early because of lack of respect from people( a lot of people own and buy up sony VX /canon GL XL) they are making a nice chess move(pana) they still need a way to make money

anyone manufaturer can release a 3ccd 1/3 cam with a lap top harddrive that would be about $2000 but then no tapes? no p2 cards? big profits lost
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Old March 21st, 2005, 09:56 PM   #8
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" TRUTH is...panasonic needs to bring in cash somehow"

Of course they do, they are a company with a financial responsibility to their stockholders. Nothing wrong with that.

"tapes being sold are huge in profit margine"

Not sure if that is actually true, but regardless, seeing as the DVX is one of the best selling DV cameras of all time, I doubt Panasonic will be hurting their tape sales too much.

"they lose a lot of money right off the bat if they have an open space. storage is the easy part. the truth is any 2.5 laptop hard drive is all you need but pana would not get much money from it,"

Don't discount the fact that solid state is more reliable than hard drives, and gives you an entire aquisition system with no moving parts (minus those in the lens).
Panasonic will not lose money with this, they will gain loyalty from those who buy the camera, and the P2 cards.
What kind of camera do you think these people will upgrade to in the future?


"p2 is a way for pana to make money(memory stick by sony)"

Everything companies do is a way for them to make money. That is why they exist.
You say that as though it's a bad thing.

"tapeless is the future they jumping early because of lack of respect from people( a lot of people own and buy up sony VX /canon GL XL)"

Actually, I don't see any lack of DVX100s where I am.
Panasonic may have not gotten much respect about 3-4 years ago from the 'prosumer' crowd. But I would say that the DVX turned that around completely.
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Old March 24th, 2005, 03:09 PM   #9
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By the way....another note on the Tape vs. solid state debate....


I just got done pulling my hair out over a real nasty head clog on my deck.

I for one CAN"T WAIT to be able to use solid state.
No more head clogs, no more drop outs, no more ruined footage.

Granted, these things don't happen to me often (head clogs and drop outs) but when they do it just reminds me of how horrible this tape system is.

Bring on the solid state!
And not a moment too soon.
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Old March 25th, 2005, 12:30 AM   #10
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You need a firestore buddy

You need a firestore buddy...

when will prices go down for these?

or will someone make a modded external 2.5" hard drive enclosure, with an lcd and a few buttons...

solid state is coming look at psp...
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Old March 25th, 2005, 01:50 PM   #11
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Re: You need a firestore buddy

<<<-- Originally posted by Lebroz James :solid state is coming look at psp... -->>>

I'm totally psyched for solid state. Atari has this machine called the 2600 that's totally solid state. The games have no moving parts. It will revolutionize the world.
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Old March 25th, 2005, 11:45 PM   #12
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"Atari has this machine called the 2600 that's totally solid state. The games have no moving parts. It will revolutionize the world."

Now that's just crazy talk.
How is a game going to work with no moving parts??
Should this thread go to Area 51 now?

Actually, I have an Atari 2600 sitting here in my house right now. I guess I never realized how far back my love of solid state memory goes.

:)
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