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Old July 26th, 2007, 04:22 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by Wayne Morellini View Post
It maybe an little worse. The new Red pocket, the new Sony HD XDCAM EX, the replacement for the HVX200 using H264 Intra, inter, have the potential for delivering quality at an much higher point. Yet again, there is plenty of superior sensors out there to what Panasonic is probably using.

Red Pocket - I'll believe it when I see it - still waiting on the red itself before we start talking about the pocket

Sony XDCAM EX - HDV codec. Why bother?

The H264 Panny might be worth it, but it depends on what price it's launched at.

For existing HVX owners I thinkt he Hydra will be a good buy - if the Hydra is less than the cost of these other cameras, then it's only an add-on to an already great camera. But for people who will be looking at purchasing an HVX + the Hydra, that will put the camera at a closer price competition with some much nicer cameras. But at the same time, it's nice that you break the purchase up into 2 chunks - the camera itself, then the mod.

For someone who doesn't have 15 grand sitting around, buying the cam & then putting on the mod breaks the price into 2 much more affordable chunks.
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Old July 26th, 2007, 05:50 PM   #47
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Odd turn the discussion has taken. I remain thoroughly amped about the Hydra, and have asked Juan to pleeeeeeeease let me be one of his first beta testers.

I think the thing sounds fantastic. You guys have taken a look at what he got out of a DVX, right? If he can do that with a DVX, I think the results are incredibly promising for what he can get out of an HVX.

At the bare minimum we're talking about true variable-frame-rate 1080p (yes, 1080/60p) with 14-bit color depth, and uncompressed! Probably (*probably*) a notably sharper image, and probably extended dynamic range. But definitely much smoother gradients, completely eliminating shadow blockiness, and variable frame rates.

Plus the ability to do 2K res at 14 bit.

Yes there'll be a cable, yes you'll be tethered, but look at it in its practical context: first, I'm *always* cabled to something, whether it's a monitor or the audio guy. If you're shooting completely untethered, is your resultant video quality likely to be so high that you'll need 14-bit uncompressed footage? I dare say not, so I wouldn't stress about it -- you can always use it as a regular HVX shooting to P2 for those circumstances.

Second, the cable can be as long as a football field. Hardly restricting at all, provided you've got a cable wrangler (and again, if you think you need 2K resolution at 14 bits for your shoot, then you likely can afford $100/day for someone to wrangle a cable).

Third, who says you have to abandon solid state? SSDs, SxS cards, even P2 cards could still be used. What the computer writes your footage to is certainly not restricted to hard disks!

Obviously the mod makes more sense for those of us who are already past our warranty period. But there's tens of thousands of us. And with the Hydra reportedly being offered for $3500, that's not much more than a single 8GB card used to cost when it was first announced (8GB debuted at $2750 back in mid-2005). Seems like a no-brainer upgrade to me. Then again, we have to see the unit perform to know what the true benefit of the upgrade is.

As far as comparing this upgrade to the HPX500, that's a night-and-day different comparison. HPX500 is a $20,000 purchase, Hydra's a $3500 upgrade for your existing product. HPX500 is a large shoulder-mount interchangeable-lens PAL/NTSC switchable 4-XLR ENG/EFP production camera, Hydra's a small low-cost 2K uncompressed HD unit. Different markets entirely.

News has been slow on the Hydra front, but I still think it's exciting. I was never that much of a fan of the logic behind the Andromeda; I thought it was an amazing feat of engineering but didn't see people paying $3,000 to modify a $3,500 camcorder that uses $4 tapes, but for the HVX it's brilliant -- people who have already sunk $10,000 to $15,000 into building a full HVX200 kit including a P2 Store, cards, a laptop, etc; seems to me that Hydra would be viewed as "another accessory", reasonably priced in context, and one that (potentially) greatly expands the camera's power for those times when you need it.
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Old July 28th, 2007, 02:30 AM   #48
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Wow, I dont get where this thread is going... RED? Other cameras? Uhh.... this is a $3500 mod to your camera that will add the option of UNCOMPRESSED 4:4:4 2K footage from your sub $5000 camera!!!! Have you guys ever seen uncompressed video? There is nothing currently or even on the horizon that will deliver what the Hydra can for less than 3 times the price. I mean, pick up a used HVX for $4K, mod it and have a $7500 camera that shoots uncompressed 2K to your existing laptop.

If you have seen what the DVX can do with this mod (I agree with Barry, it was a kitchy add-on for THAT camera) then I dont know how you could keep from being pumped about what it can do for the HVX. I promise you will start to see footage that looks like it was shot on cameras that cost 10X the price...


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Old July 28th, 2007, 08:01 AM   #49
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Most of the cameras I mentioned are probably going to be much less than $7500, maybe even the Red pocket (which is delayed until after the Red is finished, about around now). I have seen 4:4:4 uncompressed, from the previouse DVX version mind you and the point is that the inferior quality of some of these cameras might be high enough to sway some people to go with them for full warranty service/convenience etc.

The XDCAM EX uses the superior 35mb/s XDCAM format at least, not just HDV.

How much of the 14bits does the S/N ratio actually allow to be used?

But, I would still go reel stream if they had an suitable model at the right price fro me.

I give up hope of seeing Juan here again, after what was said about him and his company.
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Old July 28th, 2007, 10:51 AM   #50
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Just to clarify: I'm not anti-Hydra, I think what it can bring to HVX users would be flat-out amazing leaving a no-contest winner against any hand-held camera, period. My point is that the *average* HVX owner doesn't have the infrastructure or budget to handle an un-comp workflow from acquisition to post. That coupled with the fact that you'd still be dealing with the limitations of the HVX itself (fixed lens, limited audio, 1/3" inch image characteristics) I'd rather see people put their money into a system that they could really grow into and with such as the HPX500 and actually add more capabilities for the future rather than soup-up a closed-end stand-alone camera.

So like I say, it's an amazing piece of engineering and think it absolutely has it's place in the market, it's just not the end-all for super-good-looking affordable HD acquisition.
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Old July 28th, 2007, 04:07 PM   #51
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Robert, I agree but the average user does not need RED, uncompressed, etc. etc. etc. Wayne, the cameras you listed are HIGHLY compressed or unknown. Pocket RED will likely not be here until 2009 and has ZERO specs, just a "it is in the works."

I am sorry but H.264, MPEG, etc. are not the future of professional high-end acquisition. As it did with audio, the move will be toward less compression and there is not likely a sub $10K solution in the near future.

The misconception in the pro-sumer world (where I do most my work) is that it is about resolution when comparing cameras. What is being evidenced and what is on the horizon, is that camera companies are going to define their consumer/prosumer/pro lines by the compression schemes.

Lastly, the move in general in sensors is to single chip CMOS, the way Hydra works it MUST have 3 CCD to work with. Given the user-base, the HVX is the smartest camera to implement Hydra in.



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Old July 28th, 2007, 04:51 PM   #52
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my sentiments exactly ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ash Greyson View Post
Wow, I dont get where this thread is going... RED? Other cameras? Uhh.... this is a $3500 mod to your camera that will add the option of UNCOMPRESSED 4:4:4 2K footage from your sub $5000 camera!!!! Have you guys ever seen uncompressed video? There is nothing currently or even on the horizon that will deliver what the Hydra can for less than 3 times the price. I mean, pick up a used HVX for $4K, mod it and have a $7500 camera that shoots uncompressed 2K to your existing laptop.

If you have seen what the DVX can do with this mod (I agree with Barry, it was a kitchy add-on for THAT camera) then I dont know how you could keep from being pumped about what it can do for the HVX. I promise you will start to see footage that looks like it was shot on cameras that cost 10X the price...


ash =o)
You've hit the nail on the head! Get a used camera modify it and use it to good effect with an adaptor!
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Old July 28th, 2007, 08:13 PM   #53
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Hydra can probably easily be adapted to the HPX500 as well. Then you'd have uncompressed 2K res @ 14 bits from a 2/3" imager.

How many practical shooting circumstances are there where we'll NEED uncompressed 2K at 14 bits? Probably not that many; for television production the world is becoming an HD world and it's going to stay HD for decades; I mean anyone who thinks that the TV stations (who just shelled out hundreds of thousands of dollars to upgrade to HD) are looking to upgrade again any time soon, well, I'd say they don't know TV station managers very well!

Again, we have to see it to know what the practical value of it is. I think Hydra's inexpensive enough that it almost becomes a "why not" type of purchase, especially for anyone who's doing any keying. And if he adapts it to the HPX500, it's the first accessory I'd get for an HPX500.
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Old July 29th, 2007, 01:57 AM   #54
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Dean, your remark sparked another idea that proves the validity of Hydra. Look at the dynamic and robust 35mm adapter market! There are guys lined up around the block to spend $1500 to $5000 (matte box, follow focus, M2/Brevis/SGpro) adapting their pro-sumer cameras to get a 35mm look. The latest camera to catch fire with adapters is the sub-$1000 Canon HV20. Juan needs a good marketing dept to help spread the word that compression, dynamic range, etc. are as important factors as DOF, etc.



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Old July 29th, 2007, 10:57 AM   #55
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Robert, I agree but the average user does not need RED, uncompressed, etc. etc. etc. Wayne, the cameras you listed are HIGHLY compressed or unknown. Pocket RED will likely not be here until 2009 and has ZERO specs, just a "it is in the works."

I am sorry but H.264, MPEG, etc. are not the future of professional high-end acquisition. As it did with audio, the move will be toward less compression and there is not likely a sub $10K solution in the near future.
I prefer the pixel shifted Hydra like stuff for the economy and benefits of bigger sensor pads, and have had an history of advocation for pixel-shift on the low end (but, unfortunately, companies are not playing on the low end, including Foveon).

The cameras I list are highly known (as in what they promise as an minimum) except for the Red, which was reportedly supposed to be revealed within moths of the revelation (now delayed). And what they promise is low end professional Eng performance, which will be good enough for many people. At 25mb/s HDV 1080i is starved, at 35mb/s min XDCAM HD combined with low noise, and progressive, it has moved up an notch. At 50mb/s+ h264 Intra (incidentally, which the television work flow industry in moving towards, even in visually lossless, and true lossless 4:4:4) we are expected at similar quality to 100Mb/s, let alone if they go to the 100mb/s mode, which would be within reach of the visually lossless range. Even on the min likely specs it looks good enough, even for me. Even 24mb/s 720p AVCHD would be tempting. For an price I prefer products that are likely to be easy to service, and not to be orphaned. At an cheap enough price it becomes an "why not".

Anybody see anything on the AVCHD Pro-line shoulder mount, or HVX200 replacement?
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Old July 29th, 2007, 06:32 PM   #56
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Let me clarify further... I am not talking ENG, I dont see why that segment would need 2k or uncompressed. Looks like we are not talking apples to apples here. I am talking commercial work, studio work and narrative work, all things that uncompressed and 2K will benefit. It does not help in the doc and ENG world. I just dont see most people in these other fields wanting a MORE compressed format. I dont see XDCAMs exploding in these markets. For every music video and short film shot on an XDCAM, there is probably 100 shot on an HVX.

Still, the bottom line, is that a Hydra HVX will provide an image with a resolution, a color space and a dynamic range that no camera remotely in the same price range can reproduce.



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Old July 31st, 2007, 11:17 PM   #57
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I don't know what you are talking about now. I've got all my Apples in the right basket. I was saying that the new cameras offer significant performance increase, low end Eng quality, over HDV. That an number of people may prefer that quality and an certain level of product certainly, warranty and support. I don't think that many tens of thousands customers are going to abandon going with known brands to go with the Andromeda/hydra just because it has clearly superior quality. There is also the subject of HDMI/component recording. Sure the cheap hardware recorders are still expensive compared to Hydra conversion, but an Intensity recording solution is cheap, and could be made to fit into an case the size of an CD drive. I suspect that Reel is exactly geared towards the expected number, thousands of conversions per year. I would hope they can find an cheaper product that can do tens of thousands per year. I think the hydra solution is much cheaper than an Intensity solution in quantity.

Looks like they are talking about $8K for the Sony, but that doesn't means it won't turn out to be less than $6K.
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Old August 17th, 2007, 01:10 AM   #58
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Why did Juan never answered the questions???

Everyone started disccusing, but the fact is, that juan did exactly what noha or that guy said that he never answers emails and that.. i mean, i didnt see any comment after we all asked him, the price, and the date...

he didnt even responded to the guy that badtalked him... man.. was he right???
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Old August 17th, 2007, 10:58 AM   #59
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Juan doesn't spend a lot of time promoting -- he spends it working. He did exactly what he said he was going to do with the Andromeda, even when people said it was "impossible". And he'll do exactly what he says he'll do with the Hydra.

He appears to prefer to let the product do the talking. Last I heard, Hydra will be out before the end of the year.
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