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Old November 3rd, 2006, 05:45 PM   #1
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New AJ-PCD20 5 slot P2 drive first impressions.

I just received the new AJ-PCD20 5 slots P2 drive.
Here are my first comments.
First off, the AJ-PCD20 can accepts firewire 800 and USB2. that's a good surprise. I always thought it was FW 400.
After installing the driver it took exactly 5 minutes to copy a full 8 gig card into the internal HD of my mac.
The reason I bought it is because we've been using the P2 store but it's way too slow on the mac side. Once full, it takes over 1.5 h to copy all the partitions into a back up drive.You have to do this every 6 or 7 P2 cards, so in the end it's not very useful when shooting on location.Unless it's a short shoot.
The AJ-PCD20 is definitely a must for all of us mac users.
Other great feature about it is of course the ability to insert five P2 cards at once, and even better the cards mount numbered 1 to 5 so you quickly know which one is in which slot. I always hated the way the P2 store partitions mount on the mac, all named "no name" with no numbering whatsoever.
The unit support direct editing (although not in FCP), and you can choose to have the P2 cards mounted as a separate volume or as 1 combined.
It can be powered with 16V Car DC Power Adapter when on remote location.
and of course you can install it as an internal drive also.
e.
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Old November 3rd, 2006, 09:24 PM   #2
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Thanks for the valuable feedback on that unit Eric.
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Old November 4th, 2006, 10:53 AM   #3
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Ah, learn something new every day. I didn't realize it was FW800 either. Hmmm....
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Old November 4th, 2006, 11:16 PM   #4
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The new one is. They had a five-slot reader before but it was, IIRC, USB-only. This new one is USB and also FW800.
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Old November 6th, 2006, 09:29 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Green
The new one is. They had a five-slot reader before but it was, IIRC, USB-only. This new one is USB and also FW800.
I did see the original AJ-PCD10 back in January and it was (as you stated) only USB2.0. the PCD20 has been out for over 6 months, so I wouldn't call it "new". I knew it added firewire, I just didn't realize it was actually FW800. Panasonic makes no effort in their marketing to point that out. It would be beneficial if they did so... Instead, their marketing people put more effort into claiming how the new model is more compatible with Mac systems. But I'm not sure what they're trying to say since the original PCD10 worked just fine with Mac systems and all of Panasonic's PCD10 product literature showed it connected to a Power Mac G5.
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Old November 7th, 2006, 02:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Kilgroe
I did see the original AJ-PCD10 back in January and it was (as you stated) only USB2.0. the PCD20 has been out for over 6 months, so I wouldn't call it "new". I knew it added firewire, I just didn't realize it was actually FW800. Panasonic makes no effort in their marketing to point that out. It would be beneficial if they did so... Instead, their marketing people put more effort into claiming how the new model is more compatible with Mac systems. But I'm not sure what they're trying to say since the original PCD10 worked just fine with Mac systems and all of Panasonic's PCD10 product literature showed it connected to a Power Mac G5.
I totally agree, Panasonic definitely needs improvement in how it communicate
and described it's products.
I just found out that now the P2 store manager application does work on the mac side (only Power pc side). I (and I'm not the only one) thought all along it was only a PC app.
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Old November 7th, 2006, 06:29 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Peltier
I just found out that now the P2 store manager application does work on the mac side (only Power pc side). I (and I'm not the only one) thought all along it was only a PC app.
Holy crap... they didn't initially have this available for download when I bought my P2 Store!
Anyways... this is nice, now I don't have to deal with my PC to clear the P2 Store.
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Old November 7th, 2006, 06:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Jankis
Holy crap... they didn't initially have this available for download when I bought my P2 Store!
Anyways... this is nice, now I don't have to deal with my PC to clear the P2 Store.
and you know how I found out?
when I received the 5 slot drive the P2 store mac application was bundled with it. go figure!!
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Old November 9th, 2006, 07:38 PM   #9
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This unit rocks! Very fast transfers...

I had to transfer a stack of 8GB cards today, and this unit really helped.

One 7.14GB of content transfered in less than 2.5 minutes. 5 full cards in approximately 12 minutes.

This is a big help for multicamera HVX200 or SPX800 shoots.

We also got to play with the new P2 field editor/recorder. It was very sharp too.

Things are coming along well for the evolving P2 workflow.

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Old November 10th, 2006, 06:33 PM   #10
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does this thing really sell for around $2000?
If so, besides greed on panasonics part, can someone explain me why?

that box shall include neither complex moving parts nor anything out of the extraordinary (a single chip?), being just another solid state memory reader, like the (very fast) one I use for my DSLR that costs 9, right?

Ok, lets agree on $199. but $1999?????.

Well honestly it's smaller than a MacBookPro, so maybe that's why it costs the same. The price you pay for miniaturization.
And the HVX200 breaks down like this I guess: $2000 for the card rec/reader alone, leaving $4000 for the lense, the CCDs, the tape mechanism, the audio and video circuits, a/c subsystem, etc, etc...

very fine marketing strategy from panasonic, to release a relatively cheap great camera and then milk the user with the accessories.
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Old November 10th, 2006, 07:07 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Coll
does this thing really sell for around $2000?
If so, besides greed on panasonics part, can someone explain me why?

that box shall include neither complex moving parts nor anything out of the extraordinary (a single chip?), being just another solid state memory reader, like the (very fast) one I use for my DSLR that costs 9, right?

Ok, lets agree on $199. but $1999?????.

Well honestly it's smaller than a MacBookPro, so maybe that's why it costs the same. The price you pay for miniaturization.
And the HVX200 breaks down like this I guess: $2000 for the card rec/reader alone, leaving $4000 for the lense, the CCDs, the tape mechanism, the audio and video circuits, a/c subsystem, etc, etc...

very fine marketing strategy from panasonic, to release a relatively cheap great camera and then milk the user with the accessories.
Henry,
1 - If you don't like it, no one is forcing you to buy the gears.
2 - when you see the price of tape decks out there, I don't feel it's a rip off.
3 - If you wait 10 years, you'll be able to buy your P2s and all accessories at Target for very cheap, until then, stick with tapes.
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Old November 10th, 2006, 08:28 PM   #12
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yeah, i know. sorry, but i was planning on the best p2 workflow and that thing looked great.. until i saw the price.

couldnt believe it really. and such high price it's just marketing IMO.
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Old November 11th, 2006, 02:26 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Coll
yeah, i know. sorry, but i was planning on the best p2 workflow and that thing looked great.. until i saw the price.

couldnt believe it really. and such high price it's just marketing IMO.
That's so easy to say, but the fact is -- nothing else does what that product does. No $9 memory card reader supports P2 cards. So it's the only thing that does what it does.

For those who complain, I suggest that there's an entrepreneurial opportunity available for you. Design and engineer something like this and sell it at $200, if it's possible to do so. I tried this, I went to a certain company that has the technical expertise to do exactly this type of thing, and I also asked 'em to engineer a "ghetto" P2 Store that would have interchangeable hard disks. They did a bit of research and came back saying that yes it's possible, but the product would have to sell for $2000 to make it worth their while.

Which kind of brings us exactly back where we started.
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Old November 12th, 2006, 03:07 PM   #14
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can this unit also handle 16GB P2 cards once they are out?
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Old November 13th, 2006, 04:25 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cees Mutsaers
can this unit also handle 16GB P2 cards once they are out?
I dont see why not, since it's just a reader. might need to download a new driver.
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