by Kevin Alexander | 15th April 2015
Convergent Design announced new features for the Odyssey7Q+ and Odyssey7Q at NAB Show 2015. Some features are available now via firmware upgrades, while others will be released over the coming months. The company has expanded Odyssey7Q+ and Odyssey7Q ProRes record frame rates to 60p for 4K or UHD and 240p for 2K or HD. Support for these high frame rates will be across all currently supported ProRes formats, including ProRes 422 (HQ), ProRes 422, and ProRes 422 (LT). The first cameras to be supported will be the Sony FS7 and FS700 for those using the Sony FS Record Option on the Odyssey 7Q and 7Q+. The RAW camera output from these cameras will be converted depending on the output signal. A 4K RAW signal can be converted to 4K/UHD/2K/HD ProRes up to 60p, a 2K signal will record at 2K/HD ProRes up to 240p, and a 4K RAW Burst signal will convert to 4K/UHD ProRes up to 120p. Future cameras to be supported include Canon C500 4K RAW, Canon C500 HD video up to 120fps), Sony F5/F55 4K or UHD video, and others as well. These new features will be available to current owners via a free firmware update. The next major announcement is the new Odyssey RAW Bundle. The five separate RAW Record options for the 7Q+ and 7Q total $6,775 when purchased individually. The Odyssey RAW Bundle includes all Record options for $995 or a daily rental fee of $99/day. Cameras supported by the RAW Bundle include the ARRI ALEXA, Canon C500 and upcoming C300 Mark II, Sony FS7 and FS700, IO Industries Flare 2KSDI, Indiecam indieGS2k, as well as upcoming support for the AJA CION and IO Industries Flare 4KSDI. The Odyssey RAW Bundle is available now. Convergent Design has also announced support for the CION camera’s AJA RAW file format on the Odyssey7Q+. Other file formats currently supported include Canon Cinema RAW, Sony FS RAW, ARRIRAW, and others. Another free firmware update for the 7Q+ and 7Q was also announced. Both models will receive a Custom 3D-LUT Display and Routing capabilities. Users will be able to create their own 3D LUTS, store them on the 7Q+ or 7Q, and then route the output to other monitors via SDI and HDMI. I spoke with Mitch Gross, Director of Communications for Convergent Design, about this today and he gave a great example of just one scenario for utilizing these routing capabilities. The applied LUT can be displayed on the 7Q+ or 7Q OLED screen, but then the output via SDI or HDMI can be customized. One output can be sent to one monitor with the LUT applied along with Image Analysis Tools like the waveform and histogram. Then another output can be sent to a different monitor with the LUT only without overlays. These new 3D-LUT Display features will be coming soon, possibly within the next few weeks. Also in the upcoming firmware update for the 7Q+ and 7Q is Dual-Stream monitoring and recording capabilities. The first feature to be made available will be Dual-Stream monitoring with recording of one of those streams. So while only one signal can be recorded, the two signals can be analyzed side by side to ensure consistency between the two shots. Recording of two HD streams simultaneously will be in a future firmware release (possibly later this summer), but will be at an extra cost ($995 for purchase, $99/day for rental). And lastly, Convergent Design announced support for two specific third party SSDs. Until now the company has used proprietary SSD drives for all of its recorders. Mitch Gross told me that they used those proprietary drives simply because no other drives matched up to the demanding specs that they required to ensure quality control. The company has now announced that Odyssey products will support the use of two specific Samsung SSDs, the Samsung 850 EVO 500GB and Samsung 850 EVO 1000GB. These two drives will be compatible with the Odyssey 7, 7Q, and 7Q+. Any other SSDs, besides the Odyssey proprietary drives, will still be unsupported. These new announcements are quite interesting, and demonstrate a willingness from the company to continue supporting their existing products. Again, it’s important to note that none of these announcements were new pieces of hardware, but rather updates to its existing line of Odyssey products. Some of these new features are available now as described above, but some of them will be released over the coming weeks and months. We’ll keep you updated on when these new capabilities are available, and will share more detailed information as it is released.Read more
Wooden Camera has released the Cage NATO Arm for Canon C cameras. Attaching to existing Wooden Camera products on the top and bottom of the camera it adds rigidity to your setup, as well as offering a NATO rail and threaded holes alongside the camera. The Top Plate has been available for some time; a neat little base that mounts to the hot shoe on the C100/C300/C500. This offers a sturdy platform for building accessories on, including the original camera handles/audio modules. The new NATO Arm extends down from the Top Plate, forming a half cage that adds rigidity to heavier rigged cameras. The NATO Arm ships with two lower components enabling compatibility with both Wooden Camera baseplates; the Quick Base and Fixed Base. As you would assume by the name, the NATO Arm complies with the NATO standard used by a variety of companies, opening up a wide variety of compatible accessories such as monitors or recorders. Furthermore it features an array of 1/4″ and 3/8″ threads. If you’re into serious production with one of the C cameras, or just need some extra attachment points and ergonomics, then these new accessories by Wooden Camera might just be the upgrade your camera needed.Read more
Late last year Canon Australia started a photography competition, the Canon Light Awards. They challenged photographers to come up with creative ideas, each month inspired by other photographer’s examples. The promo video itself (see above) is a very creative approach at interviewing a photographer and looking at the story “behind the image”. We don’t do many stories on creative filmmaking at cinema5D, but this promo caught my eye as it shows in a beautiful way what motion can do for a shot in terms of storytelling. Filmmaker Christopher Ireland from The Pool Collective directed three promo’s for Canon that add the depth of the photographer’s perspective to their images through an intriguing 360 degree setup. But it wasn’t the creative 360 degree approach that makes these videos work stand it out, it’s the fact that this movement tells a story. Videographers are increasingly using sliders and drones to add motion to shots or even interviews. At cinema5D we have lost track over the many many devices that have bombarded the market in recent years. The latest technology in filmmaking seems to be all about “motion”, but rarely these tools are used to actually add depth to a story, they are in most cases just an “effect”. Back in film school we learned that simply adding an “effect” such as tracking or dollying shots is actually very “uneffective” if they don’t also tell story. However if a technique is used in a purposeful way it can add strong depth and embed a message into your shots. This added dimension in filmmaking is increasingly lost and forgotten. The Canon Light Awards videos are a nice example of using motion to tell a story. It’s the “look behind the image” in the form of a video sequence. Check out the behind the scenes video that was published today. Who can spot the camera the videos were shot on? What do you think about adding “motion” to your shots as an effect vs. telling a story? Let us know your perspective in the comments. via cinescopophilia.comRead more
With the Canon C100 and the C300, Canon introduced two cameras that have become extremely popular with filmmakers around the world. Not so much with the C500, the C300’s 4K sibling. It started at $30,000 at launch in 2012, and has since dropped several times – now arriving at $15,999 with the latest price drop. The C100 was recently succeeded by the C100 Mark II (our review video here & side-by-side comparison here), with the original C100 still in the market – at a lower price. Canon just dropped the price again to $3,999. These latest price drops are just another sign for some new Cinema cameras to arrive from Canon sometime this year. The C300’s successor is long overdue and it has probably been kept in the market for the massive success it has become – yet with much more attractively priced competitors like the Sony FS7 (review here) in the market, it’s time for Canon to move.Read more
UPDATE (November 28): Canon pulled the update described below quickly after C300 owners discovered a weird color shift in their color balance. They have now released an updated version of that firmware update. Here are the facts: The new C300 firmware is now [November 28] available for download. CLICK HERE to download.Read more
Canon recently announced that they would release a major firmware upgrade for the popular C series line of their cameras (Canon C100 / C300 / C500) which would (among other things – read our detailed article here -) would unlock higher ISO values of up to ISO 80,000. So far, the camera topped out at a whopping ISO 20000. IBC 2013 – Canon C series High ISO from cinema5D on Vimeo. I have snuck a CF card into a Canon C500 on Canon’s IBC 2013 booth, where they have set up a dark room to demonstrate the high ISO’s. Of course they are hard to judge on the small screen and with Vimeo compression, so please head over to the Vimeo page and download the original ProRes footage via the Vimeo download link. Personally, I think this can be useful in extreme circumstances for documentary purposes, but of course these high ISO’s come at a price of highly noisy images – although it has to be said that the noise pattern is surprisingly even compared to the noise pattern we have gotten used to from older DSLR models. And that also means that it can be de-noised more easily (to a degree). In the end, it comes down to either getting a shot or not getting it at all. In the 2012 short film “Homophobia”, I have shot one scene at ISO 12,500 and even 20,000 on the Canon C300 simply because the daylight was disappearing quickly and there was no way we could reshoot the winter scene in the snow on another day, let alone light it to make it look like tusk. The scene shot at ISO 20,000 is around 09:00 in the short film – check it out, it’s come out remarkably clean after minor de-noising, and it really doesn’t stick out. With the bare eye it was almost impossible to see where you were walking, the camera already saw more with ISO 20,000. So it will be interesting to see where people will successfully use the ISO 80,000 … Here’s another test by SilvaStreet showing the ISO performance of the C100: https://vimeo.com/Read more
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