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Old October 27th, 2005, 11:20 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Kevin Shaw
No, we're griping because the P2 memory is expensive, .
But I still maintain the question is "compared to what?". Its cheap compared to DVCPro-HD decks, tapes and camera. Just add it up - $25K for cam, $25k for deck and $80 per tape.

Compared to SD card? See my point - that's not apples to apples. Compared to HDV? Again, not apples to apples...

The only even marginally valid comparison is Grass Valley's Infinity system using CF but details are very sketchy (plus the cam cost 5 times the HVX200)

Until there is a another solid state solution for shooting 1080p 4:2:2 100 Mb/s option, i don't see what how the "expensive" complaint can be considered objectively. It's purely subjective as we miniDV shooters have become used to shooting with $3K camera and $5 tapes.

But those of that shot 16mm before realize it's all relative. 1080p 100 Mb/s 4:2:2, variable frame rates and the like can't be done on cheap tape or cards.

Just look at the Firestore - they had to redesign the whole line just to take DVCPro-HD.
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Old October 27th, 2005, 11:28 PM   #32
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When you look at it from the standpoint of "what are my other options for working with DVCPRO HD," then the P2 card prices don't seem that bad at all.

Not needing a $20,000 VTR is a pretty big savings right up front.

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Old October 28th, 2005, 01:52 AM   #33
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The REAL point behind P2 cards

OK, all this info is very nice and dandy, but I think most people are missing the real point behind the P2 issue.
For me, and I think for 90% of camera users, the real issue (even if they haven't realized it yet) is that recording to a medium that can only hold just a few minutes of footage is simply unacceptable and impossible to implement in a realistic every day production or workflow.

So the HVX can be a marvelous idea, but until they can come up with a way to record AT LEAST 20 minutes of HD to a card that dosnt need a mortgage to pay for, the HVX will be just a niche camera...... a very small niche camera.
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Old October 28th, 2005, 12:26 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by Adrian Vallarino
So the HVX can be a marvelous idea, but until they can come up with a way to record AT LEAST 20 minutes of HD to a card that dosnt need a mortgage to pay for, the HVX will be just a niche camera...
There is a way to record even more that 20 minutes of DVCProHD with the Firestore option. I've been looking forward to seeing this camera in action, but when that Firestore was announced, I can't wait.

As for P2, I think it will be a great option once the prices go down and capacity go up. A bit too pricey for me right now, but the Firestore for 2K sounds reasonable to me.
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Old October 28th, 2005, 12:46 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
I have yet to see solid benchmarks that back this up. just did a bunch of tests and the ultrafast drives barely sustained 15 MB/s which is barely enough for 100 Mb/s and nowhere near the 640Mb/s for P2. These drives are priced right around $100 per GB and being produced in gratitous volume. I've yet to see hard evidence of price-gouging by Panny on this issue.
Ah, it seems we've had a communications breakdown somewhere... Of course a single SD card can't reliably cope with the bandwidth, but when talking P2, we're not discussing a single SD card. We're discussing 4 of them being used in an interleaved, multi-channel array. We must also wade though the marketing voodoo from Panasonic's propaganda department. Panasonic has never claimed 640Mbytes/sec, but rather speeds greater than 640Mbit/sec, which the 8GB P2 cards will handle. The maximum achieveable limit of the P2 design is 132MByte/sec, which is 1056Mbit/sec. This limit is due to the 32bit PCMCIA implementation, which is a long-established standard.

Here's what we know...
P2 = PCMCIA Type II 32bit Cardbus interface
33MHz (because that's what 32bit cardbus operates at)
Maximum theoretically achievable bandwidth = 132MBytes/sec.
Quad-Channel memory controller (probably 33MHz)
4 * 32bit SD-type memory chips
SD interface base rate is 115KB/sec
150X 1GB card = 16.8MByte/sec hypothetical max
180X 2GB card = 20.2MByte/sec hypothetical max
4 * 16.8 = 67.2 * 8 = 537.6 Mbit/sec
4 * 20.2 = 80.8 * 8 = 646.4 Mbit/sec

Here's what we can surmize...
Panasonic is not the manufacturer of their P2 cards, they're OEM and pasted with the Panny label. I have a couple theories as to who the contracted manufacturer may be. All components in P2 cards are commodity items. Looking at the top-teir of the currently available commodity components, we magically get the same numbers that Panasonic's marketing machine is spewing forth. As the benchmarks you've seen at Anandtech show, there are several factors which affect the true speeds these components operate at -- interface design, production quality, environment, heat transfer, resistance variations, and karma. 150X 1GB cards are showing real-world speeds up to about 15MB/sec, but let's just play it safe and assume 12.5MB/sec. In an interleaved system, we lose a few picoseconds per cycle and also gain with some redundant cycles at these rates. The 12.5MB/sec can be maintained as long as the cycle is maintained, especially with a 32bitx33MHz memory controller - streaming video data is ideal for this application. If the P2's memory controller can sustain a 12.5MB/sec for each SD channel and interleave the data, writing one DWORD to a channel before cycling to the next, then there's more than enough bandwidth to go around. We're looking at 50MB/sec (400Mbit/sec), which is 4 times the bandwidth needed for the 100Mbit/sec DVCProHD100 and enough to saturate a Firewire400 connection and close to maximum for a USB2 connection for common external data readers. Due to the higher density fab process and higher rated speeds of most good 2GB SD chips, the speeds only goes up. Panasonic is claiming 640Mbps throughput, which is what the current crop of 180X SD chips would yield in a quad-channel arry and they very well could sustain that on read-only operations. For write operations, it will obviously be slower, however, we should still have at least 5X the bandwidth necessary for 100Mbps DVCProHD recording.

Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
Any low-volume, high performance product - computers, cares, boats, plane, cameras, classical guitars. Lower the volume, higher the performance, higher the price in a capitalistic system. Like the old cliche, there choices "Fast, Cheap, Good" - you only get two.
Precisely. So now that we're building a simple memory device in an already established and very common form-factor out of widely available commodity items, what's the problem?

I'm not an uber-engineer, but I am involved to some degree with components manufacturing. I think I have a pretty good idea of what a P2 card can be assembled and sold for... If not for the already licensed chipmakers on the P2 partners list, I would probably take a crack at it. At this point I'm just not sure if it's worth the gamble of the $150K in initial set-up costs out of my own pocket. If it works, great... I could probably expand my line and grow a new startup memory company. If it flops, my wife would be pissed and I'd have to sell all my camera and computer gear and get a second job to make back the money. It's a lot less brain damage for me to simply buy the cards that will be available. That doesn't mean I have to accept that Panasonic is charging a premium for their P2 cards.

Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
We are getting DVCPro-HD in miniDV form factor with awesome solid state storage for a tiny fraction of the cost of DVCPro-HD deck and we all gripe about it being too expensive.
Can't argue with that point at all. Hence why I'm still planning to buy. Although, I still see a discrepancy in the storage prices. And the other point you brought up about how a manufacturer will offer items cheaper if they can doesn't always apply... Look at the list price of Panny DVCPRO tapes vs. common price of the ones from Fuji or other third-party vendor. The format is around for years, but Panny still charges a premium when we all know good and well that they OEM their tapes from these same manufacturers who sell them for less. The one truth to economics that many people always forget (or never learn) is that all markets have a certain level of tolerance. We see this every day with countless items and all too often what a product costs to the consumer is indirectly related to what it costs to the manufacturer. Rather prices are determined more by what the consumer is willing to pay or whatever the market will tolerate. Once P2 establishes itself in a more mainstream fashion (which I fully expect it to do), you can bet that Panasonic will still be selling their P2 cars for 35%+ higher than third-party vendors like Viking, PNY, Transcend, etc... Even with that, Panny will probably still account for 30% or more of all P2 sales. This same methodology applies to most other large companies. Just look at what Dell charges for RAM or hard drives. Do they make these devices? No. But many Dell customers return to them time and time again to pay $250 for a stick of Crucial RAM that they could order direct from Crucial for $180 or from a discount vendor for $160.

Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
Sure, I would be happy to see P2 prices fall which they will of course and I would like to see Vegas support the cam. But other than that, there does not seem to be that much to pick about the HVX. Certainly no other manufacturer has stepped up to prove them wrong other than Canon's HD-SDI out which is a very cool feature at the price.
Yep. Although I'm curious to see how much pre-processing the video on the Canon goes through before hitting the SDI output. If it's a raw feed, then the Canon becomes a no-brainer for a $10K studio camera. If it has the usual pre-process enhancements, then how would it be any better than using the DVX or even the GY-DV100 cameras via component output? The only advantage the Canon really seems to have is that most HD capture solutions have an SDI interface, thus negating the need for a component to SDI converter. So Canon eliminated the need for a $350 component which most established HD capture workflows probably already have. It's also one less component (and power brick) to manage when shooting out of studio, giving a direct connection to a DVCPRO or HDCAM deck.

Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
The want the HVX to rule the low-cost DV world and have the impact the DVX series did and has. We shall see (and hope) that they can deliver.
I think the HVX200 will do this for HD to the same extent the DVX did for DV. Its top adversary will be the XLH1 and I'm seriously considering one of those too (probably in addition to the HVX) because I still miss my XL1 that I dumped in favor of the DVX100 and I occasionally have need for differnt lens options. It's nice to shoot video from multiple cams when I can too. And hey, I'm also eyeing Sony's new compact HDV cam... It has compact underwater HD written all over it. and I won't feel so squeemish about putting an $1800 camera undwerwater as I would with an HVX or XLH1. My insurance company won't be as dodgy about it either.
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Old October 28th, 2005, 01:16 PM   #36
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there seems to be a thought that we should just be happy that p2 cards cost what they do and be done with it...maybe you guys are right..

my point was that if you had the parts and know how you can make your own p2 card for significantly less money...err we don't have the know how... but there is a factory somewhere china thats just itching

4 gig p2 card msrp $400 vs actual bnh streetprice $ 2,099.95
(msrp per sd card 1gig 133xrated $124)

8 gig p2 card msrp $800 vs actual bnh streetprice $ 2,199.95
(msrp per sd card 2gig 133xrated $203)

16 gig p2 card msrp $2800 vs actual bnh streetprice $ NA
(pretec makes a 133xrated 4gig card $699msrp times 4 cards, not sure if its zero defect rated)

it was mentioned that the memory i listed is not zero defect rated, it is...

it was mentioned that why would panasonic hold back, and not sell the p2 cards as cheap as they possible could...well here are my reasons for that

they have a superior recording format and that is the premium you must pay to use it, they invented p2, and for all the rd you must pay a premuim for is expected that stuff with a pansonic label be priced well above cost, and it should other wise jwin or coby would have invented the p2 system

however lets not say that panasonic is making and selling p2 at cost, it is possible to make them at a lower cost, and i expect china is gearing up to to produce half price knock offs very soon, they will be using the hvx in china too right?

ohh and by the way p2 is just an intermediate format, you still need to archieve footage, so you can add $240 to every 200 gigs you shoot if you plan on using a about $120 per 200gigs you should by two for piece of mind...but $240 bucks per 200 gigs is nothing compared to $2,000 per 8 least with a vtr i know what i shoot is on a tape, i can hand it off to clients, and they can put it on there shelf, and view it in a year or two or more...i still think the biggest problem for folks like me that don't have the fortune of shooting movies but do all corporate work will be an archieve solution that makes all my clients and wallet happy...i may have to swallow that $20,000 pill anyway...

it could be worse the camera could have a removable lens and then we could complain about the cost of a wide to go with that tele...i suspect we should leave that the jvc and canon fanboys...
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