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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PMW-300, PXW-X200, PXW-X180 (back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.


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Old March 16th, 2012, 09:54 AM   #61
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Jensen View Post
"Flimsy" is exactly how I would describe SD cards. In fact, three weeks ago I had a 32GB SDHC card from a major manufacturer literally fall apart. I was using my finger tip (not fingernail) to insert it into a reader when the card split into two halves (like two slices of bread) and my finger went right into the card. After that, the card would not work and I lost about 40 clips. Luckily the camera and lighting was still setup in the studio so it only took a couple of hours to reshoot, but now I am even more wary of using SDHC cards.
Please can you provide details of the card so that others can avoid them?

I must say my EX1 cards never leave their MxM adaptors. Once locked in place they stay in there. But I do have to handle SDHC cards directly for some of my other cameras and can't say that the brands I'm using (mainly ATP with a few Sandisk Extreme's thrown in) have ever felt flimsy. I'm not mad keen on handling them, but that is more down to size. Frankly I'm worried enough when handling any media master, let alone something the size of a postage stamp.

If you are that concerned about the cards breaking I'd suggest one of the professional cards as demoed in that video, possibly the Hoodman which has a steel plate through the middle.
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Old March 16th, 2012, 11:24 AM   #62
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

The card that fell apart on me was an older blue 32GB Hoodman. It is my understanding the new Hoodman's being sold today have been redesigned. I keep each SD card in it's own adapter too, but I have to take them out to go into my reader. That is where the damage occurred.

Also, just for the record, I should say that I generally do not recommend shooting anything important on SDHC cards. I use SxS cards 99% of the time but this just happened to be a long day where I decided to use an SD card instead of erasing an SxS card. That decision cost me two hours of reshooting . . . but I knew that was the risk. If it was for something that could not be done over again, I never would have used the SD card at all.
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Old March 16th, 2012, 11:54 AM   #63
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

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The card that fell apart on me was an older blue 32GB Hoodman. It is my understanding the new Hoodman's being sold today have been redesigned. I keep each SD card in it's own adapter too, but I have to take them out to go into my reader. That is where the damage occurred.

Also, just for the record, I should say that I generally do not recommend shooting anything important on SDHC cards. I use SxS cards 99% of the time but this just happened to be a long day where I decided to use an SD card instead of erasing an SxS card. That decision cost me two hours of reshooting . . . but I knew that was the risk. If it was for something that could not be done over again, I never would have used the SD card at all.
I think this is also a good reason why large memory cards add more risk such as 64GB SxS cards or 128GB CF cards.
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Old March 16th, 2012, 01:07 PM   #64
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

I have been using the 64gb SXS cards since they arrived on the scene and I have not had one bit of information lost. I can't say that about the CF cards I use in my Nanoflash. In fact, on more than occasion once the 64 SXS saved me from totally losing images on the corrupted CF cards.

Luc said that losing in a 100 or a 1000 is great odds. I disagree, because you know that "one shot" is going to be irreplaceable.
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Old March 16th, 2012, 02:29 PM   #65
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

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I have to take them out to go into my reader.
An adaptor costing just a few dollars prevents any direct handling of the card being needed at all and will allow the SDHC adaptor to be plugged directly into the USB port. Hence why my cards have never left their MxM adaptors since they were first put into use.
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Old March 16th, 2012, 03:01 PM   #66
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

[QUOTE=Steve Kalle;1721099]In terms of reliability, nothing is better than the SxS cards which are designed for one purpose, and one purpose only - to record a constant stream of data.

I use PMW-350 and record simultaneous to nano flash and sxs cards and last job i have done the nano flash saved my life because i lost all data on sxs card, nothing in there and when i put it in camera it said (unknown media)... lost everything, and the 450 euro sxs card can be thrown in the trash:-(...
And that's after two years of usage, sxs was beaten by CF in my case. now i have also the FS-100 and i will continue using my trusty nano flash with CF cards and record on both nano and sd on fs100.
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Old March 16th, 2012, 08:39 PM   #67
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

Marcus,

Thanks for suggestion. However, I have no desire to shoot on any SDHC cards in the future so it doesn't matter at this point. It's SxS or nothing.
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Old March 17th, 2012, 03:03 AM   #68
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

Same here. As I bought the PMW-320 only for my hobby, and it's never going to make me any money, I thought buying two adapters and some SDHC cards would save me some money. It did, but I found the use of these flimsy cards so inconsistent with my love and respect for professional solutions, that I invested in 4 SxS cards + a Sony SxS card reader anyway, albeit second hand ones. Now I can use the camera with peace of mind and in a reliable manner. I sold eight of the SDHC cards and kept two for use in pure amateur equipment. That's what they were designed for.
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Old March 19th, 2012, 02:07 PM   #69
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

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Originally Posted by Chuck Fishbein View Post
I have been using the 64gb SXS cards since they arrived on the scene and I have not had one bit of information lost. I can't say that about the CF cards I use in my Nanoflash. In fact, on more than occasion once the 64 SXS saved me from totally losing images on the corrupted CF cards.
Which CF cards?
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Old March 19th, 2012, 02:13 PM   #70
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

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I think this is also a good reason why large memory cards add more risk such as 64GB SxS cards or 128GB CF cards.
Flash memory wears out. While we were used to older flash memory with 100,000 write cycles, the best flash available in CF cards is now in the sub-10,000 write cycle range. Recent flash cell implementations have 1000-5000 write cycles and , very recently, even 100 write cycles. Flash memory performance (some stalls are 1/3 second) and reliability drop as the card reaches 90% of its capacity. The answer is to use a larger card and avoid filling it up, and that also addresses your concerns with placing more video data on a large card. In practice, it's hard to wear out a card, but my mind is not at ease after reading the tech specs for flash cells.

I could see a market for the industrial grade flash (Single Level Cell - SLC) to be placed in flash cards for customers willing to pay for reliability, but my industry friends tell me that no flash cards (CF, SDHC, etc.) use SLC anymore. Would you be willing to pay 2-3x the price of a top-of-the-line SanDisk Extreme? That would be the same as replacing all of your flash cards more often.

From Sony, I would like to see parallel recording to two cards as an option given that two flash card slots are available on the EX-series.
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Old March 19th, 2012, 02:38 PM   #71
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

Dear Friends,

There are special techniques in designing both the hardware and software to ensure that both CompactFlash and SSD's do not slow down as they are filling up.

We have implemented these techniques in both the nanoFlash and Gemini 4:4:4.

When we test both CompactFlash cards and SSD's we test them to very close to 100% capacity.
(In the nanoFlash we reserve just a small amount of memory, since some cards routinely fail if you fill them up 100%.)
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Old April 18th, 2012, 01:58 PM   #72
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

I have been waiting patiently, but despite dealer suggestions to wait, the expected developments at NAB don't seems to have happened. The only significant change being the software updates allowing the HyperDeck Shuttle to write to ProRes HQ and the Atomos devices to write natively to Avid

Alister's YouTube clip XDCAM 35Mb/s compared to Samurai ProRes HQ - YouTube conclusively shows the benefits of these devices, so herein lies the oft asked question: which recorder to go for?

Currently I'm using an EX3, but an F3 / FS700 is looming. The logical decision on performance with EX3 is the NanoFlash and this would be my choice. However, the price here in the UK is still way out of line (the US$1000 reduction does not seem to have translated) at GBP1995. By comparison, the Samurai comes in at GBP1050 and the HyperDeckShuttle (with battery etc) is GBP450.

All these units need CF / SSD to make them work adding around GBP200-250 to the price of each.

The arguments about 8bit / 10 bit, data rates etc all have validity, especially with the new cameras, but the key point with all these devices is 4:2:2 colour and reduced compression.

Does anyone have experience of the HyperDeck Shuttle with Sony cameras. On specs and price it seems to be the sensible option, if not the most compact.

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Old April 18th, 2012, 03:07 PM   #73
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

Hi Nick,

I have looked at the Hyperdeck to use with an F3 but the main reason why I do not like it is because it requires a computer to change its settings and to monitor what it is doing.

One important feature to look into is 3:2 pulldown removal. The nanoFlash supports it but other recorders have not like the Ninja.
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Old April 18th, 2012, 03:21 PM   #74
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

As a PAL user pulldown isn't an issue, something I've never had to worry about.

Nick, I think ProRes is only on Hyperdeck studio not the shuttle.

I'm using an EX1 and looking seriously at the FS100, I don't need super slowmo for an additional 2000...
I know it's got SDI and NDs, but a variable ND is actually more flexible I think.
Also the 4k chip means it's likely to be a little worse off in low light.

What about the new Ninja 2? the HDMI out, metadata integration and new screen look great.

(BTW creativevideo have the NF at 1700 all in!)

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Old April 18th, 2012, 04:16 PM   #75
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Re: EX3 nanoflash vs samurai?

Thanks Steve and Duncan,

As Duncan says, the pulldown is not a problem. I spoke to BM yesterday and the PR HQ is on Studio and Shuttle 2, so it is an option, but as Steve mentioned usability and also I suspect, dust resistance may not be the finest.

FS100 is interesting, but the SDI and NDs on the FS 700 would be the deal-breaker for me - planning on a zoom + CP2s and they have no thread for Vari-ND. SDI also means Samurai not Ninja. I notice that Alister uses Samurai a lot with his F3

Interested to hear the CV have the price down at last - I was quoted 1900 + VAT by the UK importer today.

Too many choices!
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