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Sony NXCAM NEX-FS100 CineAlta
An interchangeable lens AVCHD camcorder using E-Mount lenses.


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Old January 25th, 2012, 12:44 PM   #1
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external rec for fs100

Hi there,
any advice on wich external rec works better with the sony fs100. i looked at the atmos ninja, aja & nano. the ninja is winning pricewise. but will like some advice from does who have any of this units before i place an order.

thanks in advance!
Pedro
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Old January 25th, 2012, 02:52 PM   #2
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Re: external rec for fs100

That discussion is occurring in multiple threads around this forum right now. Not just for the FS100 but which one in general is best. Best is a very subjective term.

One bit of info that I was recently made aware of is the PIX240 is the only recorder that can currently read HDMI timecode from the FS100. That may or may not be of interest to you but if it is there is no other choice.
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Old January 25th, 2012, 09:30 PM   #3
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Re: external rec for fs100

i question the need for an external recorder.

some folks are imagining that since the fs100 is 4:2:0 as recorded internally, that an external recorder is a necessity.

the sony version of avchd is a very robust and winning codec.

i suggest folks shoot and edit with avchd and then see what happens rather than assume an external recorder is mandatory.

ymmv

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Old January 26th, 2012, 02:03 AM   #4
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Re: external rec for fs100

I agree, although I have an external recorder (HyperDeck Shuttle) and see no difference in the quality of the image
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Old January 26th, 2012, 06:08 AM   #5
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Re: external rec for fs100

I can see a need for an external recorder if you want to use the FS100 for broadcast duties, such as Discovery HD and the BBC HD. From what I understand, the AVCHD codec isn't accepted by high end broadcast outlets. It's fine for local broadcasts, as I've shot several commercials for the local affiliates.

If anyone has used their FS100 with just the internal codec for a big broadcast outlet - ESPN, Discovery, National Geographic, BBC, etc. - please let us know.

I'm not critisizing the AVCHD codec, but we don't set the standards for broadcasting.
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Old January 26th, 2012, 08:22 AM   #6
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Re: external rec for fs100

I recently shot several days of interviews and broll for a European customer. The material is for use on a web site, and possibly TV down the road (though not likely). I questioned the client on why he needed pro res 4:2:2, since
1- The avchd code from the FS100 looks so good, and
2- He'd never see the difference.

He insisted, and I rented a Ki Pro Mini from Abel Cine in New York. The KPM was fairly easy to use, once I got some help from Abel Cine. There are very few settings that need to be changed, once you get it set up. Also keep in mind that the KPM records Pro Res 4:2:2 , which is ready to drag right into FCP. I posted a question about it's use with windows (CS5), and got a reply from Joe Thorn , from Aja. The thread is on the Aja forum here at dvinfo.

While on the subject, I wanted to give a shot out to the people at Abel Cine in NYC. The main person I dealt with was Alana Casner, and she was incredibly help full. She patiently answered my questions over a several day period, and got everything to me on time. After I received the KPM, I had menu confusion, an needed help right away. I tried their emergency support number at night, and got a call back quickly from Mike, the owner. The next day, I needed some formatting help, and spoke to David, who was also very helpful. My entire eperience with Abel was very positive, and I would use them again, and highly recommend them to anyone else.
The KPM worked well, and Abel provided a complete rig, so that I was able to mount it on the back of my rails and power it with an Anton Bauer battery. The KPM also requires fast CF cards.
Bruce Yarock
Yarock Productions
Pembroke Pines Fl.

Last edited by Bruce S. Yarock; January 26th, 2012 at 08:30 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old January 26th, 2012, 09:07 AM   #7
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Re: external rec for fs100

Bruce, how about the timecode? Did the Aja record that data?
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Old January 26th, 2012, 04:15 PM   #8
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Re: external rec for fs100

I know it keeps coming up all the time on virtually all forums but I've found that the broadcast minimum of 50Mbps is a bit of a red herring to be honest. It only really applies if you are contributing the bulk of the footage for a HD production as there are always exceptions and allowances for using a sometimes sizable % of footage that does not meet those requirements. I've not actually had footage from the FS100 used yet as I've had it less than a month, but I've had HDSLR footage used plenty of times and that never meets the broadcast requirements for all kinds of reasons not just the bit rate!

Cheers, Simon
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Old January 27th, 2012, 07:47 AM   #9
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Re: external rec for fs100

Glen,
I'm not sure becuase I had so much going on and the client didn't need it. If you post that question on the Aja Ki Pro forum here, you'll get an answer pretty quick, probably from Joe Thorn from Aja.
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Old February 10th, 2012, 04:22 PM   #10
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Re: external rec for fs100

I own an FS100 and a PIX240 recorder and have shot with them a lot over the past 3 months. The biggest advantage of using the PIX240 with this camera is to get ProRes files immediately, and for use as a focus aid. The cmaera's AVCHC codec holds up really well in post, and I've rarely been able to detect an improvement in the PIX240 footage, other than it being available for editing in FCP7 right away. I think that lack of improvement is because of the camera's 8-bit output which is fairly limiting. When the PIX with a Sony EX3, which has 10-bit output via SDI, I can do more extensive color manipulation.

The PIX can be set to be triggered by the camera's on/off control, and this is really convenient. I've struggled over remembering to turn on other external recorders I rented after starting the camera each time, and especially remembering to turn them off at the end of a shot: oops, media used up way too soon!

The PIX240 is expensive for just these uses with the camera, but makes sense to get if it will also be used with other cameras as well. This week it was used for cross-conversion at a corporate shoot (it can take HDMI in and covert it to SDI and vice versa, with throughput of either signal as well while acting as an external monitor.)

I've built 2 rigs for mounting the PIX unit to the FS1000. If anyone wants photos of the mounts, I'll post them.
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Old February 12th, 2012, 11:58 AM   #11
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Re: external rec for fs100

Chuck, please post photos of your 2 configuration.

Because many of my broadcast and corporate clients won't except AVCHD, I also bought a PIX240.
But I haven't found a satisfactory mounting solution.

I'm using the PIX as a monitor/viewfinder on a FS100, F3, EX3, Z5... and mounting it beside the lens so the camera can rest on my shoulder.
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Old February 14th, 2012, 06:00 AM   #12
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Re: external rec for fs100

I have a shuttle. In my tests the FS100 AVCHD footage holds up really well.

However if you're grading heavily, the cleaner colour from 4:2:2 can make life easier. The AVCHD will break up in fast motion and low noise levels. You can argue that you don't see that, which is true up to a certain point but again if you're dealing with graded material that break up can become important as secondary correction can change during fast movement.

There is also a detail improvement, although you sometimes have to look for it.

The AVCHD codec has natural noise reduction too. Sometimes this makes footage look a bit better, sometimes you don't want it. At least uncompressed you have that choice.

So you can gain a small improvement in quality but you'd need to have a good reason for needing it though.

Having said this i read a while back that the HDMI is 4:4:4, i don't know of any external recorders that do that. I would love to know whether this is the case?

cheers
Paul
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Old February 14th, 2012, 09:57 AM   #13
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Re: external rec for fs100

A recent update from my Sony reseller: The Atmos Ninja can now be triggered through the HDMI connection, which solves the LANC problem it had will the FS.
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Old February 14th, 2012, 03:51 PM   #14
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Re: external rec for fs100

Bill,
I notice that the ninja ha only an hdmi in, not out. I rented a ki pro mini and it has an in and out, which allowed me to go from the camera to the kpm, kpm to my Zaucto evf on my shoulder rig. It looks like that if I went with the ninja, I'd have to go into the zacuto from the camera, and from the zacuto out to the ninja.

I wonder if that would be safe and if there would be any signal degradation. Does atomos make a unit with both hdmi in and out?
Bruce Yarock
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Old February 15th, 2012, 12:06 AM   #15
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Re: external rec for fs100

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce S. Yarock View Post
Bill,
I notice that the ninja ha only an hdmi in, not out. I rented a ki pro mini and it has an in and out, which allowed me to go from the camera to the kpm, kpm to my Zaucto evf on my shoulder rig. It looks like that if I went with the ninja, I'd have to go into the zacuto from the camera, and from the zacuto out to the ninja.

I wonder if that would be safe and if there would be any signal degradation. Does atomos make a unit with both hdmi in and out?
Bruce Yarock
'Interesting question.

I know that SmallHD monitors have both HDMI through, plus option of component in (which could work fine for monitor) So if both outputs work simultaneously, is this workable?
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