Blackmagic Design just introduced their first 4K disk recorder / monitor, challenging the Atomos Shogun recorders with a high resolution 1080p display and SDI / HDMI connectivity at an impressive pricepoint of just $895. Blackmagic Design Video Assist 4K After Atomos surprised us with yet another version of their high end HDR disk recorder, the Atomos Shogun Inferno, Blackmagic seems to be right at their heels with the new Blackmagic Video Assist 4K. What is interesting about this 4K SDI / HDMI recorder is mainly its price of $895. In comparison, the original Atomos Shogun is still $1495. At this point, I should also mention that the while the Blackmagic Video Assist 4K shares the SDI and HDMI connectivity of the Shogun, the Atomos has gone through a year’s worth of numerous firmware updates that have made it a very feature-rich tool. Just like the original HD Video Assist, I presume the Video Assist 4K is still very basic in terms of its features. If you’re searching for basic functionality though, the Blackmagic Video Assist 4K looks like a pretty interesting deal. It also offers a few nice features: it records directly to affordable and compact UHS-II SDHC Media and can even record to both simultaneously for a quick backup solution. Also when one card is full it switches over to the next card for continuous recording. There are also 2 mini XLR connectors for audio, including 48V phantom power for microphones and last but not least LANC control and HDMI and SDI rec-trigger: a very important feature when you’re working in the field and want to be quick as a single operator shooter. The 6G SDI input will enable recording from some of Blackmagic’s new cameras for a higher data rate. In comparison, most other camera manufacturers still use 3G-SDI that cause problems when working with 4K footage, degrading external recordings like on the FS7. Blackmagic Video Assist 4K Key Features 7 inch LCD touch screen with 1920 x 1200 high resolution monitor. 10-bit 4:2:2 HD ProRes or DNxHD recording. Dual high speed UHS-II SDHC card slots. Dual recorders allow non-stop recording. 2 mini XLR connectors with 48V phantom power. -128dBV electrical noise floor. LANC connection for remote control. Auto start/stop recording using HDMI or SDI triggers. Includes slots for 2 hot pluggable batteries as well as 12V DC power input. Included kickstand. Includes 6G-SDI input. The Blackmagic Video Assist 4K is available now and retails for $895.Read more
Convergent Design announced a firmware update for their Odyssey7Q and 7Q+ recorders which enable continuous high speed ProRes recording in 4K, UHD and HD, at 60p (in 4K/UHD) and 240p (for HD). The free firmware update can be downloaded from their site but requires the optional Odyssey RAW bundle to work. Right now, the Sony FS700 and FS7 (only with the XDCA Extension Unit) are supported, but additional cameras will be added in the future. The update also includes RAW support for the new Canon C300 Mark II, enabling 4K and QHD RAW recording from the camera, at up to 30p. In this video, Convergent Design shows how to set up high speed ProRes recording: Here’s the full feature list of Odyssey firmware v2015.8: NEW FEATURES (Odyssey7Q+) Canon XC10 Support UHD Apple ProRes 23.98p, 25p, 29.97p UHD->HD SuperSample to Apple ProRes 23.98p, 25p, 29.97p (Camera trigger & HDMI timecode in HD Only) NEW FEATURES (Odyssey7Q+, Odyssey7Q) FS7/FS700 High Speed RAW -> Apple ProRes Support* [MORE INFO] FS7/FS700: 4K RAW -> 4K Apple ProRes, 50p & 60p added 4K RAW -> UHD Apple ProRes, 50p & 60p added 2K RAW HS -> HD Apple ProRes, 100p, 120p, 200p, 240p (Only one SSD can be mounted for recording 2K HS Apple ProRes) (Only Odyssey int. TC supported (Seed, Time-of-Day DF & NDF) FS700 only: 4K RAW Burst -> 4K Apple ProRes, 100p & 120p 4K RAW Burst -> UHD Apple ProRes, 100p & 120p (*Requires Odyssey RAW Bundle or Sony FS RAW Option) Canon C300 MKII RAW Support 4K RAW recording up to 30p QHD RAW recording up to 30p 4K RAW -> 4K Apple ProRes up to 30p QHD RAW -> UHD Apple ProRes up to 30p (*Requires Odyssey RAW Bundle or Canon RAW Option) NEW FEATURES (Odyssey7Q+, Odyssey7Q, Odyssey7) Vectorscope Analog or Digital Trace Trace display in green or color (true CbCr) Variable Zoom 1.0x – 15.0x (Finger Drag left-right) Zoom Presets 1,2,5,10,15x (Finger Drag up-down) FIXES & IMPROVEMENTS FIXED Audio issues in 1080i59.94 playback FIXED 4K to 2K/HD Downscale Line at the bottom of image. IMPROVED Color Bars IMPROVED Odyssey Menu FontRead more
If you are one of the alleged 15,000 Atomos Shogun users, you will be happy to know that Atomos will be manufacturing and distributing their own “add on accessories” for the popular 4k recorder. Further more, you can get the Action Pack for free if you choose to buy the full accessory Shogun version during June. The new accessories, together bundled as the Shogun Action Pack, include; • Shogun Armor Case. A custom bumper which gives extra protection to the recorder/monitor from knocks and scratches. • Matte LCD protection panel which reduces reflections protects against scratches and diffuses light eliminating polarization. • Lightweight and durable travel case. The perfect size for a camera bag in cases when you need to travel light. • Custom fit Shogun sun hood (available in yellow or black) which maintains LCD clarity even in bright sunlight Available to purchase separately or together as the Action Pack, Atomos are also sweetening the deal by offering the $240 Action Pack for free to users who purchase and register the full accessory version of the Shogun during the month of June. (The Bare Bones Version is not part of this deal). For more details, head to Atomos related deal page here.Read more
Sound Devices & Video Devices are known for their great Video & Audio recording devices. The new small 4K recorder they just presented at NAB 2015 seems like an ergonomic dream come true and has a lot of advantages over other products in the market. At an affordable price, with affordable media, it seems like this is one device not to be missed. The Video Devices PIX-E5 is compact and gets a 4K signal out of the Sony Alpha a7S among many other cameras. The design is very solid with touch-screen as well as tactile controls. There are many useful features in a bundle that looks and feels very professional. All inputs are locked down, no cables can pop out. The media solution is really impressive as well. It’s a USB3 enclosure that sits at the back of the device. You can use it with your own M-SATA mini drives and upgrade it at any time later on with affordable and very fast media. The enclosure itself comes with the device and an additional unit costs $59. We were intrigued by this product, it seems well made all around. The only limitation is the framerate that maxes out at 60p in HD. So no slomo recording with this one. Also there is no RAW, but the Apple ProRes 4444 XQ makes up for it. The PIX-LR is a screw-on accessory that provides the monitors with two XLR inputs and outputs, featuring mic preamps, LED level meters and dedicated transport and gain controls. At $1395 this small 4K recorder is much more affordable than an Atomos Shogun for example and at first glance seems better suited to cameras like the GH4 or A7S as well as in terms of usability, but of courses missed the slomo functionality. We will have a comparison between the two devices soon. The competition that is going on in this sector is seriously interesting. The specs at a glance: 5″ 1920 x 1080 Touchscreen Display Records 4K (4096 x 2160) up to 30 fps Records 1080p up to 60 fps All flavours of ProRes up to 4444 XQ (!!!) Uses a USB 3.0 SpeedDrive (The case is $59) 4K-Capable HDMI Input with Loop-Through 3G-SDI Input with Loop-Through Analog Audio Input Physical Buttons and Jog-Dial Controls Peaking, Zebra, Quick Zoom, FlaseColor, etc… The $1395 Video Devices PIX-E5 is available for pre-order HERE. The hdmi-only version is the Video Devices PIX-E5H and costs $1195. The 7″ version Video Devices PIX-E7 is $1595.Read more
Atomos has been incredibly prolific with new releases this year. Cine Gear last month saw them enter into the recording media market with their CFast card line, and earlier in April at NAB they announced two new on-camera recorders. Their 4K Shogun recorder was perhaps their highlight of the show, which is now available for pre-order. In case you missed it, here is an interview we put together with Jeremy Young of Atomos discussing the Shogun recorder. The Shogun gives us HDMI in/out, 3G SDI in/out as well as genlock and lanc peripherals. You can also get balanced XLR audio via a lemo breakout cable. mic/line level plus phantom power is also supported. It can record up to 120fps in FullHD 1080, and up to 30fps in 4K (3840 x 2160) Like all Atomos HD recorders we get all flavours of 10-bit Apple ProRes 422 and Avid DNxHD in 1080, as well as the same ProRes support plus Cinema DNG Raw in 4k. The Shogun has a slightly larger screen than other Atomos recorders, providing a 7″ IPS display. The screen is calibrated to SMPTE Rec. 709 with 100% gamut and D65 white point, and is compatible with the Atomos Spyder screen calibrator. Like all previous screen based Atomos recorders, the panel is touchscreen, and utilizes a 2.5″ bay for HDDs/SSDs. It’ll also take a 2TB RAID drive to deal with 4k data rates, holding around 2 hours of 4k footage. Users of Atomos recorders will be familiar with the start/stop recording control via SDI/HDMI. In addition the Shogun also offers control over wifi with smart devices. 3D LUTs are also introduced for acute monitoring control and viewing. I have an upcoming video review of the Ninja Blade and feel this was a missing features with the fullHD recorders. This product will be a great partner to the Panasonic GH4 and/or Sony A7S. In the perfect world a smaller screen would’ve been more ergonomic for smaller mirrorless cameras, but for 4K footage monitoring there needs to be a compromise. Early pre-orders of the Atomos Shogun get a free Atomos Spyder Calibrator.Read more
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