by Olaf von Voss | 22nd November 2016
Since the annual Inter Bee (International Broadcast Equipment Exhibition) is taking place in Sony’s home country, it’s time to catch up with the company and chat about their latest developments. How about X-OCN – their new compressed raw codec – announced half a year ago, for example? Sony’s X-OCN Codec It’s been a while since its initial announcement, but the newly developed X-OCN codec by Sony seems to be very promising. The first and only application for this codec for the time being is with the so-called AXS-R7 recorder module, which is designed especially for the Sony PMW-F5 and F55 range of cine cameras. You can read all about this recorder in this article. As a tiny refresher, X-OCN stands for eXtended tonal range Original Camera Negative, and if you’re thinking of RED’s signature compressed RAW workflow called REDcode, it’s actually not that far off. X-OCN offers 16-bit of latitude straight from the sensor but it’s capable of outputting significantly smaller filesizes than pure RAW footage. The Sony F5 camera with an AXS-R7 recorder attached. For now this is the only way to record X-OCN. As time went by, news about X-OCN quickly became quiet. Blackmagic announced DaVinci Resolve support for this new codec, but other than that, nothing. At this years Inter BEE – taking place in Chiba City, Japan – our very own Johnnie Behiri took the opportunity to talk with Sony’s Yutaka Okahashi about this promising codec and its possible future applications. X-OCN in Mirrorless Cameras? Since X-OCN is a high-end codec, it seemed unlikely to see this technologly implemented in Sony camera models further downstream, such as their popular mirrorless lines of cameras. Anyone interested in a Sony A7s II with compressed RAW recording? Well, Mr. Okahashi mentions exactly that… after a little push from Johnnie. But it seems it could be possible to implement such high-end technology in the somewhat lower end cameras (from a F5 perspective) in the future. For now, though, these models live in a X-AVC universe. This codec comes in different flavours, caters 4K as well as HD and is widely implemented in NLEs. But it is a compressed format, far off from RAW. If we think of the $7,000 Sony AXS-R7 recorder as a proof of concept, maybe things will get interesting in the not too distant future. What about forgetting compressed formats altogether and going all in, with the full sensor latitude in a pocket-sized camera? Now that sounds like a bright future, indeed. Let’s hope that Sony is listening. As Johnnie puts it: The rule is very simple. If you don’t make it, somebody else will make it.” What do you think about his type of codec? Does it seem promising to you or are you happy with the current compressed formats available in mirrorless cameras? Let us know in the comments below.Read more
by Tim Fok | 18th November 2016
A few months ago, we saw the announcement of the Manfrotto Pro Light Reloader-55: a new international carry on camera bag. We caught up with them at Inter BEE 2016 to check out the new roller. Manfrotto has been steadily upping its bag game since absorbing Kata some 2 years ago. The Pro Light Reloader-55 is one of Manfrotto’s newest roller bags, built to the maximum of international carry on sizing. As expected with any bag of its kind, the main compartment is well equipped with padded dividers, and the red flexi sections make it particularly easy to spec up the inside to your exact requirements. Despite being billed a carry-on roller, the Reloader-55 still features a TAS approved lock for added security. Travellers will also appreciate the well-built wheel system that can also be easily replaced should any breakage occur. The Roller is water repellant, and also features a rain protector for harsher weather conditions. You can squeeze up to a 17” laptop and 10” tablet in separate compartments, and the exterior side has a pocket and anchor points for connecting small tripods and light stands. The lid has a host of interior pockets, some of them webbed to quickly identify contents. The lid is also supported with two removable strap supports. There’s not much else to say about the Pro Light Reloader-55, except a few specifications on size and weight which you can find at the bottom of this page, along with links on where to get it. Here’s also what Manfrotto has to say about some possible setups this case can hold: “It fits typical DSLR camera sets (e.g. 3 bodies with 8 lenses), super-tele DSLR set (e.g. 1 body with 400mm f/2.8 lens attached and 3 more lenses) & camcorder with lighting set (e.g. disassembled Canon C100 with 2 light kits)” Specifications for the Manfrotto Pro Light Reloader-55 External (HxLxW): 55x35x23cm Internal (HxLxW): 48x32x18cm Weight: 4900g/10.8 lbs. Laptop Compartment (HxLxW): 40x32x2.5cmRead more
by Johnnie Behiri | 16th November 2016
Tascam’s latest recording creation, the Tascam DR-10C was presented to us earlier today during Japan’s largest broadcasting exhibition, Inter BEE 2016. The DR-10 family of recorders is continuing to grow, and by doing so is trying to cater the different needs of different users. Besides being extremely small and versatile, the core feature of these recorders is the ability to record in a dual level adjustment mode. This help protect audio levels, which is particularly useful as these body pack sized recorders are intended to be carried by the interviewee and can’t be monitored remotely. I’m yet to be convinced that this is indeed a safe enough way to work, and haven’t completely let go with my audio recordings yet, BUT the new Tascam DR-10C is actually trying to solve a completely different problem. Have you ever been is a situation where you used your wireless audio device and suddenly had some sound “drop outs” or interference? Well, it has happened to me, and obviously in a situation like this you are faced with two options. You either stop the video recording and politely ask to do the whole sequence again (not always possible if it is a documentary-style shooting), or move around until you find a spot that doesn’t break your sound, a useless exercise in most cases. Here’s where the Tascam DR10-C comes to the rescue. Simply connect it to your lavalier microphone, then connect the Tascam recorder to your wireless transmitter. By doing so, you will get a clean audio copy on that mini portable recorder regardless of any possible interferences further down the signal chain. Neat solution for a very common problem. At this stage, the Tascam DR-10C is only available in Japan and Europe. For full specifications and native wireless device compatibility, please head over to Tascam’s page. What do you think? Could this be the device that will save the day? Let us know in the comments section.Read more
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