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Old October 23rd, 2005, 06:46 AM   #16
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RAID 1 would cut the effective capacity in half; a 16GB P2 would store only 8GB of data. Panasonic uses RAID 0 in the P2 cards, giving the full advertised capacity (4 x 4GB CF cards in a P2 = 16GB).

Part of the cost premium is because Panasonic uses only zero-defect CF cards in P2 (see: http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=47737). I have no idea what magic the P2 controller chip might do. But if I was designing something like a P2 card, rather than cut the capacity of expensive CF cards in half with RAID 1, I'd have my clever engineers design at least a minimal fault tolerance into the P2's firmware so that a few bad bits amongst billions wouldn't cause the user any problems. But that's just me, the non-engineer, thinking.

Here's a link to an advertising PDF that has some useful information on the P2: ftp://ftp.panasonic.com/pub/Panasoni...pers/P2-WP.pdf

P2 has been used in the pro market for over a year now. If it is successful in that market, I'd be inclined to think it must be pretty reliable. But rather than only wildly speculating, we can ask current users about the reliability history? Anyone with experience?
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Old October 23rd, 2005, 03:41 PM   #17
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in P2

It's SD memory card, not Compact Flash.
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Old October 23rd, 2005, 08:10 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete Bauer
Part of the cost premium is because Panasonic uses only zero-defect CF cards in P2
big deal...must have shots are not taken by photographers with cheap memory cards...

all high end SD cards are zero-defect rated, basically, error specification of less than one (1) bit in 1,000,000,000,000,000 bits read

that doesn't mean you won't have any errors, it means there is little chance...
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Old October 23rd, 2005, 08:11 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Mike Morrell
If p2's are 0+1 then this justifies the price being double of the other memory. And this was the right design.
not really, if you look at my post again you will see no justification on any technical merit, maybe justification in the fact that you have no other option for p2, as of now...
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Old October 23rd, 2005, 11:38 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
Since there are 4 cards in them, I think it's pretty good guess it's a RAID 0+1 or similar.
The internal memory configuration of P2 cards is probably not a traditional RAID style implementation. This is all bound by Panasonic NDA, and I haven't gone so far as to apply for any licensing or whatnot, but I have considered it in order to dig into the P2 and possibilities related to it. I decided to hold off as there are already a handful of mainstream memory companies signed on as P2 license partners.

Anyway, the closest comparison to a RAID configuration would be RAID 0 or a striped array. But I would assume that the 4 SD-type memory chips contained in a P2 are probably accessed via a multi-channel memory controller. Interleave style memory controllers with multi-channel access are commonplace in both todays PCs as well as embedded systems.

There is no mention of redundancy or mirroring (RAID 1) in any of the available P2 documentation. And it really would serve little purpose on an SD device. The failure rate on memory that meets Panny's P2 standards are less than what most of us experience with tape devices. This is also another reason for the higher prices.

As of right now, P2 prices are (IMO) a bit too high - probably about 35 to 65 % too high. But the prices we see now are MSRP from the sole supplier. As the HVX200 starts to ship and a market for P2 cards expands, you can bet that third-party memory suppliers will begin to offer P2 media. And if history of memory products is any indicator, these third-party suppliers will outpace Panasonic both in capacity and lower pricing.

P2 is going to be a tough nut to swallow for most of 2006, I'm afraid. But it should really take off within a year. ...If that doesn't happen, then we can probably kiss the P2 format goodbye. Which also leads to another point about pricing. Panasonic undoubtedly knows that they will have to get P2 capacities up and really cut those prices within the next year if they're going to successfully push the P2 format into the HVX200's intended market. Failing this task, they will be dead-ending their own product.
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Old October 24th, 2005, 12:14 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Robert Mann Z.
all high end SD cards are zero-defect rated, basically, error specification of less than one (1) bit in 1,000,000,000,000,000 bits read
Unfortunately, this isn't true...

There are very-few zero-defect rated memory options on the market. While most cards may have an MTBF rating of 1,000,000 operations or more, that's actually not very good. By zero-defect, we're talking about memory chips that have been specifically tested to ensure every bit is functioning properly for multiple operations before being incorporated into a P2 device. Most memory devices ship from the factory with at least a couple non-functional bits. Even the so called "high end" ones. Currently, the only zero-defect SD cards that are available to the general consumer, that I'm aware of anyway, are the Mission Critical series from PNY. And they cost nearly double the price of their other offerings. They are fully tested for every bit to be error/defect free and they have a guaranty.
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Old October 24th, 2005, 08:15 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Jeff Kilgroe
Unfortunately, this isn't true...

.

my kingston sd card is 133x and zero defect rated ...i paid $124 bucks...
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Old October 25th, 2005, 02:14 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Robert Mann Z.
my kingston sd card is 133x and zero defect rated ...i paid $124 bucks...
Hmmm... Didn't know Kingston was offering "zero defect" memory. What type of warranty/guaranty do they back it up with? I haven't looked at Kingston recently as I've never been a big fan of their products (too many bad experiences with desktop RAM over the years).

But if you paid $124 for a zero defect 1GB SD card within the last 3 months, that would be about right. I can buy 150x 1GB without the zero defect guaranty all day along for about $60 from Viking, Transcend, Patriot, PNY, etc... The PNY SD modules I referred to in my earlier post have street prices of about $130 for 1GB and $290 for 2GB. So we're not far off.

Anyway, with current prices, I don't see where a 4GB P2 card should be more than $470 and 8GB P2 at about $1200 or less. Panny is quoting P2 prices that equate to an $800 premium on each 8GB card. Hopefully we'll see some third-party P2 solutions within a short time of the HVX200 release. But I think we've hashed over all the prices on this forum enough and we're all in agreement that Panasonic's P2 prices are stupid.
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Old October 25th, 2005, 03:50 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Jeff Kilgroe
But I think we've hashed over all the prices on this forum enough and we're all in agreement that Panasonic's P2 prices are stupid.
I'm not sure we all agree they are "stupid" for the simple fact that you cannot get a SD card that reliablely records 100 Mb/s, so we have nothing to compare it to. All the comparisons above don't address that simple fact.

They don't seem any higher margin wise than any other low volume, ultra-high performance item in any other field.

Volume and 3rd part support will push the prices down, but P2 will never be a cheap as simple SD cards.
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Old October 27th, 2005, 03:02 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
I'm not sure we all agree they are "stupid" for the simple fact that you cannot get a SD card that reliablely records 100 Mb/s, so we have nothing to compare it to. All the comparisons above don't address that simple fact.
OK, I suppose we don't all agree. And the simple fact that a single SD card doesn't reliably record 100Mb/s data streams has been addressed repeatedly. Hence the whole continued discussion of what approach Panasonic is using to multiplex 4 SD-type memory chips together.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
They don't seem any higher margin wise than any other low volume, ultra-high performance item in any other field.
Compared to what exactly? There are plenty of other solid-state storage solutions available in niche-market industries. Prices are all over the place and it's hard to put your finger on any specific comparison. The P2 card is a fairly simplistic approach, assembled from commodity components. Makes perfect sense for the intended application, IMO. The best comparison we currently have for P2 cards is to consider the components that are integrated into them... Which means a PCMCIA Type II shell, 4 SD-type memory chips, a simple NVRAM LSI - I bet a 256KB chip would be plenty good here, a quad-channel memory controller - probably timed at 25~33MHz. And a nice 4-layer PCB to hold it all together (which I doubt they use, they'll probably go with a mylar or ABS film printed layer. Aside from the SD chips, were talking components that have a total manufacturers cost of about $7500 per thousand. About $7.50 per P2 card for initial runs and the price should drop as P2 becomes more of a commodity and/or larger production runs are warranted. If we take the price of the proper calibre SD memory in retail packaging and insert that price figure into our P2 calcs, we're shouldn't be too far off. I said $470 for a 4GB P2... That's definitely do-able right now. Even $650 for a 4GB P2 isn't a stretch and would probably still be acceptable to many, but Panny's current list prices are a bit over the top. Keep in mind that there are currently PC card form-factor SD devices on the market, some that handle multiple SD chips. We're only talking about a finely-tuned version of one of these with some high-grade SD chips. This isn't cutting-edge technology manufacturing, these are commodity components. If you want to compare solid state devices to other niche industry solutions, there is currently an Israeli company that manufactures solid-state hard drive replacements for hostile environments and military use. These use multiple compact-flash devices inside a conventional 2.5" or 3.5" HDD housing. Their current top of the line device houses 16 4GB CFII chips in a 3.5", 64GB form factor and costs about $14K. Sound expensive? It is for the equivalent of a 64GB hard drive (street price of an 80GB 3.5" 7200rpm HDD these days is about $65). But look what Panny is quoting for 8GB P2 cards! Even at the currently estimated bundle price of $2250 ea. that's 33% higher per GB than the CF HDD device.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
Volume and 3rd part support will push the prices down, but P2 will never be a cheap as simple SD cards.
Yes, I never said it would be as cheap as simple SD cards. When I said that $1200- would be a good target price for an 8GB P2, that was taking all these details into account and is still more than double the price of the simple SD card equivalent.

Now don't get me wrong... I still plan to buy the HVX200. And the P2 workflow makes a lot more sense for integrating with what I do and how I would like to do it. Tape solutions aren't where it's at for me and I'm not so sure that the Firestore or similar devices will be a truly better alternative. I'm waiting to see the initial reviews and video shot with this camera before taking the plunge, but I've got an HVX200 w/2x8GB P2 cards already figured into my '06 budget. And in a couple years when 32GB P2 cards are readily available for less than what current 4GB P2s cost, I'm sure I'll find something else to complain about.
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Old October 27th, 2005, 03:30 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Kilgroe
OK, I suppose we don't all agree. And the simple fact that a single SD card doesn't reliably record 100Mb/s data streams has been addressed repeatedly.
I have yet to see solid benchmarks that back this up. www.anandtech.com just did a bunch of tests and the ultrafast drives barely sustained 15 MB/s which is barely enough for 100 Mb/s and nowhere near the 640Mb/s for P2. These drives are priced right around $100 per GB and being produced in gratitous volume. I've yet to see hard evidence of price-gouging by Panny on this issue.

Quote:
Compared to what exactly?
Any low-volume, high performance product - computers, cares, boats, plane, cameras, classical guitars. Lower the volume, higher the performance, higher the price in a capitalistic system. Like the old cliche, there choices "Fast, Cheap, Good" - you only get two.


Quote:
I'm sure I'll find something else to complain about.
That's what internet board are for :)

We are getting DVCPro-HD in miniDV form factor with awesome solid state storage for a tiny fraction of the cost of DVCPro-HD deck and we all gripe about it being too expensive.

Sure, I would be happy to see P2 prices fall which they will of course and I would like to see Vegas support the cam. But other than that, there does not seem to be that much to pick about the HVX. Certainly no other manufacturer has stepped up to prove them wrong other than Canon's HD-SDI out which is a very cool feature at the price.

That's the real crux of the matter. If Panny could build P2 cards for half the price, they would because they sell more cameras, more cards, more readers. They have way more invested in making the cards affordable than we do. And little in their corporate history suggest they are content selling a very low volume of stratospherically priced items.

The want the HVX to rule the low-cost DV world and have the impact the DVX series did and has. We shall see (and hope) that they can deliver.
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Old October 27th, 2005, 03:36 PM   #27
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I deliberated tremendously, and then I became very exhausted of thinking about the yes/no conundrum and its thousands of permutations.

I came to the point of necessary justification and pre-ordered the HVX200 with two 8GB cards.

Boom, done, sell XL2, and now I relax and wait. :)

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Old October 27th, 2005, 04:13 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
We are getting DVCPro-HD in miniDV form factor with awesome solid state storage for a tiny fraction of the cost of DVCPro-HD deck and we all gripe about it being too expensive.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for that statement. I recall shortly after launching this forum the "arguments" from a member (thankfully no longer with us, for other reasons) about the number of Mini-DV cassettes he could buy as opposed to a P2 card... and how hard it was for me to comprehend that sort of apples-to-oranges comparison. The HVX200 is a DVCPRO HD camcorder, and it is certainly the least expensive, most affordable DVCPRO HD camcorder yet. You can't weigh a P2 card against a Mini-DV cassette (if all you want is Mini-DV, then stick a tape in the HVX and go shoot). You have to weigh a P2 card against a DVCPRO HD tape, and the VTR you'll need to play that tape. But what about the consideration of archiving DVCPRO HD? Sure, you can archive to DVCPRO HD tapes, plus the $20,000 VTR you'll need to play them, but DLT makes a lot more sense and is definitely more cost-effective.

I understand that some folks want to compare this to HDV because of the somewhat similar pricing, but this is not an HDV camcorder. You should look at the HVX200 relative to your other choices for acquiring DVCPRO HD, and then you'll begin to see just how cost-effective P2 is. Not to mention the convenience of completely bypassing the video capture process, since P2 is instantly edit-ready.

Quote:
If Panny could build P2 cards for half the price, they would because they sell more cameras, more cards, more readers.
Exactly. If the manufacturers could make and sell these things for a few hundred bucks, then they would in a heartbeat. Unfortunately that concept seems to be lost on a lot of people.
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Old October 27th, 2005, 04:35 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Chris Hurd
You can't weigh a P2 card against a Mini-DV cassette (if all you want is Mini-DV, then stick a tape in the HVX and go shoot). You have to weigh a P2 card against a DVCPRO HD tape, and the VTR you'll need to play that tape.
That's especially funny because we could start griping about the price of miniDV tape compared to VHS (which you get 2 hours of SP on) why only an hour on miniDV? 1 hour miniDV runs around $4 compared to $1 for VHS plus it's really $8 for miniDV! That's an outrage!

I hereby demand miniDV tapes for 50 cents each...let's start protest!

But seriously, even in the tech field, prices do come down, but the brand new CPUs and brand new hard drives are always, always much poorer price/performance buys the the older volume items.

www.extremetech.com just did an article http://www.extremetech.com/article2/...1876770,00.asp on CPUs which are the very definition of "more for less" but the top AMD and Intel CPU's hang at the bottom of the flops per dollar.

Sure, cheap SD cards are everywhere, but don't put 'em my cam. Even if third party P2 makers come out with card half the price, I would not even consider them if they are equally reliable to Panny's.

Same reason I'm obsessive about what tapes I use in my DVX - I've never had tape dropout ruin a shot and don't plan on it. Great footage is priceless and solid state is the future of all storage, so P2 strikes me as revolutionary rather than a pain in the butt.
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Old October 28th, 2005, 12:09 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
We are getting DVCPro-HD in miniDV form factor with awesome solid state storage for a tiny fraction of the cost of DVCPro-HD deck and we all gripe about it being too expensive.
No, we're griping because the P2 memory is expensive, and the only ways to get around that involve more time and/or money to implement. It's a fair point that the HVX200 is the most affordable way to start shooting DVCProHD footage, but it's still going to cost a few bucks to build an effective workflow around this camera. Whether that makes sense will depend on the circumstances, and it will be interesting to see how that shakes out for various users and purposes.
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