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Silicon Imaging SI-2K
2/3" 1080p IT-integrated 10-bit digital cinema w/direct-to-disk recording.


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Old May 28th, 2006, 04:13 AM   #16
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First, Turon processors. If it's not a Dual-Core Turon, it won't work. If it's a dual-core Turon, make sure it's over 2.0Ghz. We highly recommend Core Duo Intel processors at 2.0Ghz+. I've noticed you said you bought a single-core processor . . . this will not work I'm afraid :( 64-bits doesn't help the problem since that is a memory-related issue . . . the 64-bit procs can't take two different 32-bit threads and treat them like they are separate (like a dual-core machine can).

For audio, embedded 16/48 audio *inside* (or muxed with) the Cineform RAW AVI is working right now as I type this. We also have some nice audio level meters so you can see what's happening.

You just need a device that has standard Windows WAV drivers (not ASIO).
24/96 needs ASIO support, and QT support, since video-for-windows is limited to two channels at 16/48.

In order to get embedded 24/96, you will need equipment capable of 24/96 (such as a USB audio device, or on-board HD audio that can record at 24/96). Also this type of audio should work fine on PC/Windows, since that's what we're recording on, despite it being Quicktime.

I still feel the *best* way to get good 24/96 is to use an external audio device and sync it with the camera . . . we can do that very nicely right now since we have time-of-day timecode, so you can sync everything up using a timecode slate . . . we will have LTC syncing in the future (before release), so you can slave the camera's timecode to the audio device if you choose.

Thanks,

Jason
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Old May 28th, 2006, 07:45 AM   #17
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Thanks Jason!

Matheiu, I hope Ari and Jason have answered your questions.

One last anecdote I'll throw out, is a clip I did last year. Two SI-1300 cameras, 24.00p, 1280x720, and external audio DAT (2/16/48). Just using clapboard, the cameras hummed along synced to each. Later I added audio to the video, and it ran perfectly for more than 4-minute shot.

SI's clock synthesizers have always been quite accurate, IMHO, even when I was a mere customer.

The clocks on the 1920HDVR are even better, and completely programmable.

BTW, I do use external 24/96 device now, Saffire, recording to old laptop over Firewire. Synced via clapper with the SI-1920's. This works fine for me.

>> How? "VIGO" would be a nice homage...

Here is the thread about naming the SI-1920HDVR:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=67906

cheers,

Kyle
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Old May 28th, 2006, 02:18 PM   #18
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To anyone who's wondering:

The clock synthezisers on the SI-1920 are SMPTE spec, meaning +/- 1 frame every hour between any two devices.
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Old May 28th, 2006, 03:15 PM   #19
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Merci beaucoup Jason and Kyle!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Rodriguez
To anyone who's wondering:

The clock synthezisers on the SI-1920 are SMPTE spec, meaning +/- 1 frame every hour between any two devices.
But also for the camera head configuration working directly to the laptop or only with your recorder attached (full version)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Rodriguez
For audio, embedded 16/48 audio *inside* (or muxed with) the Cineform RAW AVI is working right now as I type this. We also have some nice audio level meters so you can see what's happening.
And can you confirm both features are available from the $12,500 camera head configuration?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Rodriguez
You just need a device that has standard Windows WAV drivers (not ASIO).
24/96 needs ASIO support, and QT support, since video-for-windows is limited to two channels at 16/48.

In order to get embedded 24/96, you will need equipment capable of 24/96 (such as a USB audio device, or on-board HD audio that can record at 24/96).
Is there any laptop with on-board HD audio? Or any accessory to that? I'm afraid not...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Rodriguez
I still feel the *best* way to get good 24/96 is to use an external audio device and sync it with the camera . . .
Besides the usual suspects, any device suggestion? Or if you prefer, including and among them, pick one...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Rodriguez
we can do that very nicely right now since we have time-of-day timecode, so you can sync everything up using a timecode slate . . .
From the camera head? Available from now?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Rodriguez
we will have LTC syncing in the future (before release), so you can slave the camera's timecode to the audio device if you choose.
Before release? Soon? Coming one, two months?

After release is it possible to upgrade from the camera head version? Already available from now?

And specially for the camera head configuration, it will be merely a software update and not need for a hardware replace or modification, can I believe?


*EDIT*Kyle, it's already posted as you suggested.

Last edited by Mathieu Kassovitz; May 28th, 2006 at 10:10 PM.
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Old May 29th, 2006, 05:36 AM   #20
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If your laptop has a microphone input, you will have, *right now*, audio muxed with the video in the Cineform AVI format with the camera head.

The software is what's doing the audio recording (not the camera head), so just plug a mic into your laptop and make sure that Windows sees it as an audio input device, and we can read from it, and will mux it into the AVI, so you'll get dual-channel audio embedded in the AVI. So yes, that means the $12.5K version can record audio . . . as long as your laptop has audio inputs or some sort of audio input device (USB device, etc.) that uses standard WAV drivers.

The +/- 1 frame is only applicable if you're trying to sync two devices together, i.e., our camera with an external audio device. If you're recording right into the laptop (so the software is grabbing frames from the camera and muxing it with the audio), then there's no issue with sync, since we're syncing the audio right there with the picture.

The camera head is dumb. It's just a RAW data dump of visual imagery from the camera head to the computer. The software is the real brains of the camera, adding timecode, audio, compression to Cineform RAW,etc. So as long as you have the software, you have all the features of the camera. Doesn't matter if it runs on a laptop or whatever . . . the only issue is that the embedded camera will have nicer form-factor/one-piece design, and be more rugged for field use than using a laptop.
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Old May 29th, 2006, 06:11 AM   #21
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[tweaks?]

And about future tweaks before the release? (september?) Will there be just to the software or also to the hardware? (I'm referring the camera head not the recorder) I can figure even dumb . . . as far as it is viable, will it be possible to change something or not?

We know you will have changes with the new lighter, smaller and better balanced design of your full version. That's why the same can be possible maybe for the camera head or not?

[camera head prototype and its release version -- differences between them?]

QT and timecode, will it be only a software tweak or also a hardware one? And in this case, just to the recorder (full version)? New inputs/outputs design, for example? Or also will it imply any modification in terms of the camera head version available now?

Is the camera head ready or are the final tweaks already done? Would it be possible to release today not merely as prototype but as production unit? Or the last version will be different than the present one?

[audio?]

24/96 will be other new feature but in this case not for the camera head because its windows or PC restrictions, limited to 48K (but in your press release or info it is mentioned 44.1Khz -- only for the full version recorder?), 16-bit, 2-channel uncompressed audio, is that so? According your field-tested experience using the laptop recording configuration, will it be ENOUGH as audio capturing? Pre-amps? Will it be "the" solution just adding a good mixer with a good pre-amp besides the XLR balanced audio adapter?


*EDIT*Merci Jason! Your inputs are useful specially to people outside your technical field.

Last edited by Mathieu Kassovitz; May 29th, 2006 at 07:55 AM.
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Old May 29th, 2006, 08:53 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathieu Kassovitz
[tweaks?]

And about future tweaks before the release? (september?) Will there be just to the software or also to the hardware? (I'm referring the camera head not the recorder) I can figure even dumb . . . as far as it is viable, will it be possible to change something or not?

We know you will have changes with the new lighter, smaller and better balanced design of your full version. That's why the same can be possible maybe for the camera head or not?
Software will be changing and upgrading on a consistent basis to meet customer needs....like more audio support! This update can be done via email or download from our web site

We are going to make changes to the Silicon HD Mini (camera head). We are improving the lens locking mechanism and some changes to fit nicely into the new Silicon DVR (full body camera and recorder).

Do you have any requests or suggestions?




Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathieu Kassovitz

[camera head prototype and its release version -- differences between them?]

QT and timecode, will it be only a software tweak or also a hardware one? And in this case, just to the recorder (full version)? New inputs/outputs design, for example? Or also will it imply any modification in terms of the camera head version available now?

Is the camera head ready or are the final tweaks already done? Would it be possible to release today not merely as prototype but as production unit? Or the last version will be different than the present one?

QT and Timecode support are software only upgrades. That is the benefit of our architecture. We can eaily add more features and capabilites!

We are waiting for final Silicon on the sensor for production grade parts (improved SNR and highlight/clip compensation).

We are discussing the possibility to offer a limited number of prototype units before September. Would you be interested?




Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathieu Kassovitz

[audio?]

24/96 will be other new feature but in this case not for the camera head because its windows or PC restrictions, limited to 48K (but in your press release or info it is mentioned 44.1Khz -- only for the full version recorder?), 16-bit, 2-channel uncompressed audio, is that so? According your field-tested experience using the laptop recording configuration, will it be ENOUGH as audio capturing? Pre-amps? Will it be "the" solution just adding a good mixer with a good pre-amp besides the XLR balanced audio adapter?


*EDIT*Merci Jason! Your inputs are useful specially to people outside your technical field.
The same software application is used for both Mini (with laptop) and DVR (integrated unit). In the case of "Spoon" project they are using one of each.

In general, the on-board PC audio is only used for scratch audio only, due to noise induced from other electronics. Using a separate audio digitizer (via USB/Firewire) will provide better audio perfromance. The current .AVI files we record are limited to 48/16. QT will support higher bit depth and resolution, which will work well with these external USB audio devices. The support for QT and better Audio will be software only upgrades.
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Old May 31st, 2006, 09:06 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ari Presler
We are discussing the possibility to offer a limited number of prototype units before September. Would you be interested?
Why not? It will be a possibility. Maybe a good suggestion to the producer . . . I'm afraid your product is unique, better than video (including interlaced HD and also rather tape) and it seems to me it will be the best digital camera to indie cinema during 2006.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ari Presler
In general, the on-board PC audio is only used for scratch audio only, due to noise induced from other electronics.
Is that clear regarding your field tests? And about monitoring and portable power-suppling for the Silicon HD Mini (camera head)? Is it your 7" LCD touch screen available? Other solutions? Field batteries really portable and with easy management for the cameraman operating the camera head?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Rodriguez
We highly recommend Core Duo Intel processors at 2.0Ghz+. I've noticed you said you bought a single-core processor . . . this will not work I'm afraid :(
Don't worry . . . I would buy a new one :)

Are you thinking this one would it be working?
http://www.notebookreview.com/assets/11890.pdf


*EDIT*Merci Ari!

Last edited by Mathieu Kassovitz; May 31st, 2006 at 11:45 PM.
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Old June 1st, 2006, 12:33 AM   #24
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1.) Proto Schedule

We are planning to have a few Mini's by mid-July. Do you have any deadlines/schedules?

2.) PC Audio

It is your choice on how to capture and record the audio. That is the beauty of the open architecture.

3.) 7" Touchscreen Display

Yes..It is available for shipment.

4.) Battery
The Silicon HD-Mini consumes approx 6W and LCD 8W. You can use the small Dionic90 (or equivalent) and get several hours of operation on a Mini rig before a change is required.

5.) Notebook

You should chose a notebook with the Intel 10/100/1000 GigE NIC. Why are you chosing a ultraportable versus a larger model with WUXGA 17" or larger display for others to be able to see and also use for editing (just curious)?
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Old June 1st, 2006, 01:49 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ari Presler
Proto Schedule

We are planning to have a few Mini's by mid-July. Do you have any deadlines/schedules?
To July? No. But who knows there will be any occasion as soon as possible to testing it. I'd like to and I will inform you of my coming agenda and interest. Well, about this last stuff . . . it's already known.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ari Presler
7" Touchscreen Display

Yes...It is available for shipment.
$12,500 package? Is it working with the PC (Windows XP environment)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ari Presler
Battery

The Silicon HD-Mini consumes approx 6W and LCD 8W. You can use the small Dionic90 (or equivalent) and get several hours of operation on a Mini rig before a change is required.
. . . with Silicon HD Mini/camera head n'est-ce pas? (that is, in frenglish: right?) Also as $12,500 package?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ari Presler
Notebook

You should chose a notebook with the Intel 10/100/1000 GigE NIC. Why are you chosing a ultraportable versus a larger model with WUXGA 17" or larger display for others to be able to see and also use for editing (just curious)?
Nothing special in any way other than as I love cinema-verité . . . weight and big structures, why? (it squashes the art form and I don't want it if possible . . .) This is the case where lesser is better. Lightweight and small as far as feasible. Still to monitoring, it would be interesting a gadget tool like that . . . BTW, do you know any tablet PC with the Intel 10/100/1000 GigE NIC? Or maybe it can be added to such device . . . what do you SI men say ? Or can you give us any certified system as suggestion?

Last edited by Mathieu Kassovitz; June 1st, 2006 at 06:32 AM.
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Old June 1st, 2006, 11:46 AM   #26
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Mathieu...Creative makes a 32 bit pcmcia audio card that records 24/96 stereo if you need that. It lists for under 100 US. It has drivers for WMV, ASIO 2, and directplay/directshow. It will play back DVD-A at 24/96 resolution on my laptop (a sample disk is included). It has both an analog and optical input connectors (I believe you have to use he optical input for 24/96 recording). You can even mix multitrack audio with it if needed.

There are other various firewire and usb options available that work for both desktop and laptop. I also have an M-Audio firewire 4/10 and an M-Audio Microtrack 24/96 which work with either desktop or laptop PCs.
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Old June 1st, 2006, 04:27 PM   #27
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I'd have to recomend the Motu Traveller for Location work, a 4 pin XLR makes life nice and easy power wise and it has proved it's worth to us and others on Film and Drama shoots, the SMPTE features are very usefull indeed and as we use Adobe Auditon it ties in very nicely with Premiere Pro for editing.
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Old June 3rd, 2006, 04:19 AM   #28
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Hi Ari,

I recently bought a Dell Inspiron 9400 - dual 2.0 Ghz, 2gig ram (667mhz ddr2) but only 10/100 ethernet. This rules this lappy out of the game, no? Any way around the ethernet limitation?

Thanks
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Old June 3rd, 2006, 10:39 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Madsen
Hi Ari,

I recently bought a Dell Inspiron 9400 - dual 2.0 Ghz, 2gig ram (667mhz ddr2) but only 10/100 ethernet. This rules this lappy out of the game, no? Any way around the ethernet limitation?

Thanks

Steve. Unfortunately I cant find any option to get GigE into that notebook. It does have the right cpu performance :-(.

I checked the Dell Docking stations...but, no go. Ebay purchase anyone?
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Old June 3rd, 2006, 10:47 AM   #30
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Merci Joe and Ian. Any thoughts SI men about their suggestions? Thank you.
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