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Old April 20th, 2005, 01:59 PM   #16
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From what I've read the P2 4 gig chip holds about 4 min., 30 secs. of footage. That's roughtly one minute per gig. A 100 gig hard drive, then, would hold only 100 minutes of footage. Most productions I work on seem to average about 8-10 hours of tape. Ten hours would be 600 minutes, which would mean six 100 gig hard drives. OK, I store those 6 drives in a box and then start on my next show...oops, gotta buy another 6 drives.

If you're shooting TV news and don't need to keep your original tape for years, then P2 is wonderful. For me it's not there yet. Also, I read that it takes about 4 minutes to download the footage from a 4 gig P2 card to the 60 gig drive they want to sell. At one minute per gig, that's pretty much real time transferring. Somebody correct me if that's not right. So if you have the 2 chip card with 8 gigs, you shoot for 8 minutes, give the thing to an assistant who spends 8 minutes transferring the footage, probably longer to check it and then erase the card. You would obviously have to have a second set so you could keep shooting while the transfer process is taking place. Also, would the drive have battery power? Lots of my shooting is often outdoors away from AC power. Seems to me the only logical solution is to have enough P2 cards to last all day. I often shoot between 2 and 3 hours of tape in a day, especially when doing interviews. That would be a lot of P2 cards to buy. I'd be better off getting a Varicam and using tape, at this point.

That is not to say that P2 and/or BlueRay may or may not replace tape one day. You would think prices would start to drop and capacities to increase. Look at hard drives. With our first Avid Media Composer in the mid '90's, we paid $2500 for each 9-gig drive. A couple of years later we paid about the same for each 18 gig drive...and today we use 100 gig firewire drives for under 400 bucks each.

To me the issue of having to transfer the footage and then erase the card to reuse it is just about as significant as the price. I can live with 8 minutes of shooting in most cases--I shot 16mm for years, and that's about what you got, if you factor in rundown, off a 400' roll. For documentary work, that would be a hassle, but it can be done. If I were a TV news guy, I'd be screaming for this camera right now, but for me I think it's gonna be a tape world for awhile longer.
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Old April 20th, 2005, 02:31 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Pryor
From what I've read the P2 4 gig chip holds about 4 min., 30 secs. of footage. That's roughtly one minute per gig. A 100 gig hard drive, then, would hold only 100 minutes of footage.
It depends on what format you shoot on. 1 gig/minute is true of DVCPRO100 recording, but not the other formats. Not all productions will call for DVCPRO100.

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Most productions I work on seem to average about 8-10 hours of tape. Ten hours would be 600 minutes, which would mean six 100 gig hard drives. OK, I store those 6 drives in a box and then start on my next show...oops, gotta buy another 6 drives.
Well, 8-10 hours of tape, at least for my productions, would constitute a short feature, in which case I'd load the 600 minutes and delete the bad takes/unusable footage. That would scale it down quite bit. For things like music videos, I usually only shoot about 4-5 tapes, max. One 400 GB HDD would do fine, and considering how much the client is paying for everything else, a few hundred bucxk toward the HDD isn't much.

Quote:
If you're shooting TV news and don't need to keep your original tape for years, then P2 is wonderful. For me it's not there yet. Also, I read that it takes about 4 minutes to download the footage from a 4 gig P2 card to the 60 gig drive they want to sell. At one minute per gig, that's pretty much real time transferring. Somebody correct me if that's not right. So if you have the 2 chip card with 8 gigs, you shoot for 8 minutes, give the thing to an assistant who spends 8 minutes transferring the footage, probably longer to check it and then erase the card. You would obviously have to have a second set so you could keep shooting while the transfer process is taking place.
I was under the impression that the card will transfer to Panasonic's HDD solution at 2Xreal-time. Who knows what it could do with a faster HDD?

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Also, would the drive have battery power? Lots of my shooting is often outdoors away from AC power. Seems to me the only logical solution is to have enough P2 cards to last all day. I often shoot between 2 and 3 hours of tape in a day, especially when doing interviews. That would be a lot of P2 cards to buy. I'd be better off getting a Varicam and using tape, at this point.
Their are HDD enclosures that run on internal battery power for 8 hours + (some links exist in another thread on here), and ones that will run off of the computer/camera if they offer a 6-pin connector.

Quote:
That is not to say that P2 and/or BlueRay may or may not replace tape one day. You would think prices would start to drop and capacities to increase. Look at hard drives. With our first Avid Media Composer in the mid '90's, we paid $2500 for each 9-gig drive. A couple of years later we paid about the same for each 18 gig drive...and today we use 100 gig firewire drives for under 400 bucks each.
Far, far under $100 :)

Quote:
To me the issue of having to transfer the footage and then erase the card to reuse it is just about as significant as the price. I can live with 8 minutes of shooting in most cases--I shot 16mm for years, and that's about what you got, if you factor in rundown, off a 400' roll. For documentary work, that would be a hassle, but it can be done. If I were a TV news guy, I'd be screaming for this camera right now, but for me I think it's gonna be a tape world for awhile longer.
The camera obviously might not work for everybody using typical production means and workflows. It demands that you rethink and tweak that workflow, which isn't inherently a bad thing.
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