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Old June 5th, 2006, 04:26 PM   #1
Specialized Communications
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
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CinePorterô

Hi Everyone,

Some new pictures on the CinePorterô page, if you're interested.

www.spec-comm.com

Still no official release date, but we are shooting for the end of summer and hope to have an official date soon.

David Linetsky
President
Specialized Communications Corp.
20940 Twin Springs Drive
Smithsburg, MD 21783-1510 USA
800-359-1858
301-790-0103
Fax: 301-790-0173
davidl@spec-comm.com
www.spec-comm.com
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Old June 5th, 2006, 04:48 PM   #2
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damn thats one ugly looking thing.. but i LOVE the idea of using the standard HVX batteries and 12v cell batteries thru XLR.. now we're talking non proprietary and its the SMARTEST move ive seen a company make so far.
Storage capacity is also in real world figures and most likely this will be the solution for this unit as it hits the long form event market

Mate i wish u guys the best of luck... great work and great design
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Old June 5th, 2006, 05:23 PM   #3
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Thanks Peter,

It's funny, but in the tens of thousands suggestions we received, I don't recall even one referring to that it should look pretty. :)

Number one suggestion was "make it rugged and bullet-proof." I'm not sure I'm happy with the "looks" myself. We were limited by HDD size and structural integrity. It really does look heavier than it is. There is special gel type material that supports the drives. There may still be some changes before it goes into final production. One thing you will find, that even though it adds some weight, it actually balances the camera out. We will be adding some more pics and an accessory section, which will show you the tripod plate and a plate that has an adjustable handle on the left side.

Stay tuned and in the meantime I'll be glad to answer any questions.

Thanks again for the honest remarks, we do need them to make changes.

David
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Old June 5th, 2006, 06:03 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Linetsky
Hi Everyone,


Still no official release date, but we are shooting for the end of summer and hope to have an official date soon.
That's great news, but...(and this isn't meant to be sarcastic, but an honest question)...what can I use in the mean time? I'll save my bucks for the 'Porter, but I need something more affordable to record to until it's released.

Any suggestions until then?
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Old June 5th, 2006, 06:15 PM   #5
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David-- Great Work! It does look like a beast, but 2.5 lbs is not that bad at all. Can't wait to test drive one!

Just wondering- how long is the cable from the Cineporter to the camera? I ask because I use a mattebox w/ rods (zacuto plate), so that whole rig would have to mount on top of the cineporter. (That's one tall setup!)
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Old June 5th, 2006, 06:29 PM   #6
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Location: Bloomington, IL
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Some questions...

Thanks very much for an exciting product - I'm hoping I can give you some money very soon...

As far as questions:

1) Can you please elaborate on the 'hot-swap' capability of the battery? I noticed the 4-pin XLR (which would be nice with an a/c supply or bescor brick etc. Are you saying you can use the Panny battery, get a warning, and have a minute to exchange a new Panny batt, without losing a beat? Does the unit hold a small charge for an operation like this?

2) A/C adaptor? I figure an IDX to 4pin A/C would work - just curious if the unit comes with an A/C supply as well, etc.

3) Expectation of battery time from the normal Panny battery? Please base around the different models available - but I'm looking at the 2 disk model. Will a battery last for an hour? Longer?

4) What is the possibility of crimping/bending/eventually shorting the P2 cable at the body (especially if you're shooting low, bumping with your leg, etc)? Looks like a DVI protocol for the interface? Anyway to fortify it, protect with a metal 'bump loop', etc?

5) What is the expected price of added cables (for backup and flexibility with different lengths, etc)? I'm guessing it's pretty costly. Also, does it detach at the P2 side, or is that hardwired?

6) Can you provide 'dummy cards' to plug up/protect the unused P2 slot? If the design is going to require having the P2 shield open, I assume that's going to leave the other slot open to dust/debris, problems, etc. Either that, or can we plug it with another P2 card without any trouble? Would hate to eventually gum up with gaff tape, etc. Perhaps a new 'temp lid'?

7) Looks like the left hand side has some diagnostic buttons - does this continuously display text/battery/space and also change colors for warnings, etc? What can you tell us about it.

8) Fan on the left (thank you) and there appears to be some 'gills' on the front. How noisy is this unit and how detectable is the fan or any operational noise/vibration from it to the the built-in mic and/or a side mic in the holder? Also - how easy will it eventually attract or suck in dust, and can we clean it out ourselves without voiding the warranty?

9) Dual-disk model (thank you). Can you speak to the capability of the redundancy? Hopefully this thing is 110% bulletproof in terms of file capture, no corruption, etc? I assume that a redundant build protects against losing data to one disk failing as well?

10) Dual-disk model: can you change it from redundant operation to extended recording (say from one shoot to the other). If so, how easy/quickly. If not, why not?

I'm very interested in this product for my use, and for renting. As you can tell, I'm pretty anal about things working correctly. Any and all details you can give are very much appreciated.

Thanks again very much for your innovation!

Shawn
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Old June 5th, 2006, 09:19 PM   #7
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I'll do my best to get all the questions answered tonight.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Denis Danatzko
That's great news, but...(and this isn't meant to be sarcastic, but an honest question)...what can I use in the mean time? I'll save my bucks for the 'Porter, but I need something more affordable to record to until it's released.

Any suggestions until then?
I think the only two other choices you have are P2 cards and FireStore. I know the demand for the CinePorter is great, but we just don't want to rush and then have problems that are going to cost our customers. It'll be solid when it ships.
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Old June 5th, 2006, 09:24 PM   #8
Specialized Communications
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Irwin
David-- Great Work! It does look like a beast, but 2.5 lbs is not that bad at all. Can't wait to test drive one!

Just wondering- how long is the cable from the Cineporter to the camera? I ask because I use a mattebox w/ rods (zacuto plate), so that whole rig would have to mount on top of the cineporter. (That's one tall setup!)
It looks like in the end it will be a little lighter than the 2.5 lbs and we are working on "rounding" things a little while we have time.

You will be able to get the CinePorter from Zacuto. They are one of our dealers. They actually have an external mount for the CinePorter, if you wish to mount it that way. We also have 3 and 6 foot extensions for other mounting options.
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Old June 5th, 2006, 10:22 PM   #9
Specialized Communications
 
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Posts: 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn Alyasiri
Thanks very much for an exciting product - I'm hoping I can give you some money very soon...

As far as questions:

1) Can you please elaborate on the 'hot-swap' capability of the battery? I noticed the 4-pin XLR (which would be nice with an a/c supply or bescor brick etc. Are you saying you can use the Panny battery, get a warning, and have a minute to exchange a new Panny batt, without losing a beat? Does the unit hold a small charge for an operation like this?

2) A/C adaptor? I figure an IDX to 4pin A/C would work - just curious if the unit comes with an A/C supply as well, etc.

3) Expectation of battery time from the normal Panny battery? Please base around the different models available - but I'm looking at the 2 disk model. Will a battery last for an hour? Longer?

4) What is the possibility of crimping/bending/eventually shorting the P2 cable at the body (especially if you're shooting low, bumping with your leg, etc)? Looks like a DVI protocol for the interface? Anyway to fortify it, protect with a metal 'bump loop', etc?

5) What is the expected price of added cables (for backup and flexibility with different lengths, etc)? I'm guessing it's pretty costly. Also, does it detach at the P2 side, or is that hardwired?

6) Can you provide 'dummy cards' to plug up/protect the unused P2 slot? If the design is going to require having the P2 shield open, I assume that's going to leave the other slot open to dust/debris, problems, etc. Either that, or can we plug it with another P2 card without any trouble? Would hate to eventually gum up with gaff tape, etc. Perhaps a new 'temp lid'?

7) Looks like the left hand side has some diagnostic buttons - does this continuously display text/battery/space and also change colors for warnings, etc? What can you tell us about it.

8) Fan on the left (thank you) and there appears to be some 'gills' on the front. How noisy is this unit and how detectable is the fan or any operational noise/vibration from it to the the built-in mic and/or a side mic in the holder? Also - how easy will it eventually attract or suck in dust, and can we clean it out ourselves without voiding the warranty?

9) Dual-disk model (thank you). Can you speak to the capability of the redundancy? Hopefully this thing is 110% bulletproof in terms of file capture, no corruption, etc? I assume that a redundant build protects against losing data to one disk failing as well?

10) Dual-disk model: can you change it from redundant operation to extended recording (say from one shoot to the other). If so, how easy/quickly. If not, why not?

I'm very interested in this product for my use, and for renting. As you can tell, I'm pretty anal about things working correctly. Any and all details you can give are very much appreciated.

Thanks again very much for your innovation!

Shawn
Shawn,

1. You are correct. This way you don't have to worry about shutting down to replace batteries There is a small Li-ION battery inside the CinePorter that remains charged from the external battery or power. We guarantee a minute to remove power or battery and replace. The display will give you a count down and then flush the cache, close the file and shut down if you don't replace power. It also does a smart shut-down when you do a "normal" power-off.

2. We include one of our 6000 mAh Batteries and a charger. A full accessory list will be added to the web page soon. You can use the adapter that comes with the camera or a standard 12V source, as you have mentioned.

3. We are still working on the power management algorithms, but you should be able to expect at least a couple of hours from our battery. We'll post actual figures when they are ready.

4. We used an extra high quality DVI connector because it is very sturdy, inexpensive and most of all, can handle the multiple 1.5 Gb/s channels we need to set up to make this work. It does NOT have anything in common with DVI at all. We figured this would confuse some, so don't plug anything DVI in there or something may blow up :) We include a cable clamp that mounts on the camera and are working on ways to protect the cable. At this time there is no special protection at the connector on the CinePorter, just lots of reinforcement.

5. The cable is molded into the Interface Card. We will have special extensions. They will not be expensive. They will have a Male and a Female "DVI" end. You will not be able to use standard DVI cables, since the cable itself is far different from a standard DVI cable and the pinout for the pairs and power is proprietary. We will list pricing when it's ready.

6. the door will have to stay open. We will be shipping with a blank that does not drain power like a P2 card. We are also looking into a rubber "cap" solution, but there is no decision on that yet. The door can be easily removed if it gets in the way.

7. Both buttons are also high rez Dot Matrix LCD displays. They will walk you through the menu structure a well a act as status and information indicators. They are super rugged and light up in green, yellow and red. You can choose almost anything to be displayed on them, as well as cycle through different things. There is keylock as well. We will publish the menu structure when the manual is ready and the structure is finalized.

8. We used as large of a fan as we could fit. This is a Mag-Lev fan and we turn it very slowly, so it's virtually silent. In the menu you have two options. Keep it on full speed all the time for constant "noise" level or have it in a smart mode running very slow and change the speed gradually as needed. Db ratings will be added to the specs shortly.

I'm sure there will be dust collecting on the inside. We do not expect any more necessary service than any other piece of gear and don't expect it to collect any more dust than the camera or comparable products. Opening it up will void the warranty. We don't expect that you will need to do that. We will publish service recommendations when some field data is returned on this issue.

9. We know how important your footage is to you. We also know the more storage you have the more you will lose in a drive failure. On the 320 GB model you can choose RAID 0 for 320GB or RAID 1 (full mirror) for 160GB. In this mode if one disk fails you will still retain all of your footage and can continue working like nothing happened. It is also a smart mirror, which adds another level of data protection.

10. Very easy. Quick format takes about a minute. You will loose anything on the CinePorter if you switch modes, so make sure it's empty.

Shawn, We are probably even more anal than you are. :) I hope I answered all of your questions. If not please ask for whatever clarification you require. I'm very close to the project and there are a million details. I'll answer any questions I can.

David
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Old June 5th, 2006, 10:48 PM   #10
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Thanks very much David - your replies are greatly appreciated, and I look forward to your product with great anticipation. I think you've got a very well thought out product here, and I appreciate all of your attention to detail and being so accessible to your potential customers.

I'm sure I'll have additional questions, but that certainly covers things, and has more than 'wet my whistle'.

I also look forward to the additional mounting options, and any other thoughts you have for future mounting to the 800, or the '07 round of big P2 shoulder cams (HPC2000/P2 Varicam, etc).

Is this a composite body, metal?

What should we expect from the viewfinder in terms of reporting back the recording time? Will it show the remaining recording time (ie: 400minutes, 200minutes (similar to what it does with current P2 cards in or out of the slots & based on the recording format), nothing in the viewfinder?

Again - thanks again.
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Old June 6th, 2006, 02:49 AM   #11
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Great to see this is nearing the finish line. A few questions:
1. Is there a way for UK customers to buy this - via a distributor/ direct from yourselves - and what is the likely cost?
2. Silly question but have to ask - as it is a big P2 device am I right in assuming there are no regional issues?
3. Will it be possible to upgrade the unit's hard drives as faster/larger disks become available?
Thanks
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Old June 6th, 2006, 10:02 AM   #12
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I'm really excited about this product.
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Old June 6th, 2006, 10:34 AM   #13
Specialized Communications
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn Alyasiri
Is this a composite body, metal?

What should we expect from the viewfinder in terms of reporting back the recording time? Will it show the remaining recording time (ie: 400minutes, 200minutes (similar to what it does with current P2 cards in or out of the slots & based on the recording format), nothing in the viewfinder?

Again - thanks again.
The final production is in lightweight alloy similar to the HVX.

There are many ways for us to appear to the camera. This is something we are still working on. We want to be as transparent as possible. Currently, and is subject to change, you see a virtual 8GB card appear in the VF and remaining TOTAL time on one of the displays on the CinePorterô. The recording is seamless from one virtual card to the next. You can then use the buttons on the CinePorterô to cycle through all the virtual P2 cards that make up the total storage of the CinePorterô and view them in the VF.

David
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Old June 6th, 2006, 10:42 AM   #14
Specialized Communications
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim White
Great to see this is nearing the finish line. A few questions:
1. Is there a way for UK customers to buy this - via a distributor/ direct from yourselves - and what is the likely cost?
2. Silly question but have to ask - as it is a big P2 device am I right in assuming there are no regional issues?
3. Will it be possible to upgrade the unit's hard drives as faster/larger disks become available?
Thanks
Tim,

1. We are still working out the distribution outside of US. We are looking at attending IBC and certainly hope to have everything worked out by then.

2. All development has been done with US equipment, however we do not expect any major issues. We are in the process of acquiring European cameras for testing. This is why we expect European delivery to be slightly after the US release.

3. We will have an HDD upgrade in place when larger drives become available. It will likely not be a user replaceable option, since there will have to be other changes, but that remains to bee seen.

David
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Old June 6th, 2006, 12:09 PM   #15
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When you say the fan is "virtually silent"...

is it quiet enough to use the on camera mic as a reasonable sound source?
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