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  • Regarding built in ND...The Alexa offered it with the XT.

    Know how many XT bodies Ive been in the field with that have them?

    ZERO.

    Having internal NDs throws the back focus and requires you to have an optical flat in front of the lens to correct for it...I don't know of anyone who really wants to deal with that.

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    • Originally posted by Telecinese View Post
      The impression I got is that BMD is betting on CFast being the future, not consumer-grade SSDs, and dumping the 'old' tech without warning or remorse, Apple-style. Maybe they decided SSDs were too unreliable/fragile/short-lived/slow or whatever for future-proofing for the upcoming generations of sensors?

      I do have the feeling BMD's main aim with this camera was to create a more credible RED competitor by adding every bell and whistle a derisive imaginary professional might have felt lacking in the smaller cams: xlr inputs, 'camera-shape', scopes, and so on. Who's to say 'rock-solid professional media' wasn't a larger concern than size?
      Agree 100%. No way to move into a more professional arena... even if their main demographic are film students or hobbyists like me, without adding a certain level of consistency and safety to the way media is recorded. SSD's recording high frame rates in 4k? Eh... I can imagine more than a few people chancing it on crap SSD's and then complaining about how the camera drops frames left and right. There's no way BMD is going to include something that could potentially cause such a massive headache for them down the road.

      That said... I still want SSD recording lol. I'd definitely buy only the recommended SSDs, and would go into it knowing the risk... because seriously... $1200 for 20min... yikes. That is some serious cash right there. At those prices, it's actually pretty easy to think about going with the Atomos 4k recorder.
      Test footage Vimeo page: https://vimeo.com/romanalaivi

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      • Originally posted by SergeSmArt View Post
        ..so, for me, personally, I don't see any reason to waste my hard earning money into the camera with the same sensor, resolution and the same shooting speed and without BUILD-IN ND-Filters..
        Why not keep the camera you already have precisely as a B-cam for slider/gymbal/etc use even if you do find a reason invest to in the larger 'A' camera later? This is what I'd do, precisely because the sensor is exactly the same so you know the images will match. If many TV/commercial productions are happy enough with the image quality of the Pocket to use it as a crash cam for the Alexa, I'm sure the URSA/BMC4K combo would be even better.
        telecinese.com twitter vimeo

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        • Originally posted by Roman View Post
          Agree 100%. No way to move into a more professional arena... even if their main demographic are film students or hobbyists like me, without adding a certain level of consistency and safety to the way media is recorded. SSD's recording high frame rates in 4k? Eh... I can imagine more than a few people chancing it on crap SSD's and then complaining about how the camera drops frames left and right. There's no way BMD is going to include something that could potentially cause such a massive headache for them down the road.
          Imagine how embarrassing it would be if they come up later with a 120fps 15-stop dynamic range 8K sensor or whatever but can't use it because SSDs are not compatible? It would completely negate their 'future-proof sensor swap' sales pitch.

          If 60fps 4k is already pushing the limit of cheap SSD speed or reliability (not saying it is, just guessing), then what chance do the awesome future sensors have to work with them? Maybe the CFast thing was more of a necessity than people think.
          telecinese.com twitter vimeo

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          • I'm happy to see them include dual memory slots. Dual recording has been confirmed right? I feel that having a backup recording is extremely important on any paid shoot. It's too bad CFast cards are so expensive, but prices are sure to come down.

            I prefer SSDs for now for all of the reasons that have been stated. Also, I can mostly get by with just a 1080p backup so adding an external recorder is a good option for me. I was really hoping that we were going to see a hyperdeck shuttle mini though. Something similar to the Ninja Star. Basically a pocket camera with SDI in but no sensor or mount.

            The Ursa is a pretty cool camera, but I think the future is modular. I'd guess that to design and build a fully modular camera system would take more time and effort than they had so we have the BMD ONE for now. I'd bet later we'll get the modular BMD Epic. Probably much later though.
            www.motionplaces.com
            andrewjulian

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            • Originally posted by Telecinese View Post
              Imagine how embarrassing it would be if they come up later with a 120fps 15-stop dynamic range 8K sensor or whatever but can't use it because SSDs are not compatible? It would completely negate their 'future-proof sensor swap' sales pitch.

              If 60fps 4k is already pushing the limit of cheap SSD speed or reliability (not saying it is, just guessing), then what chance do the awesome future sensors have to work with them? Maybe the CFast thing was more of a necessity than people think.
              Are CFast cards faster than SSDs right now? I would guess that going forward CFast cards are going to have a difficult time keeping up with the latest SSD tech.

              I'm honestly asking because in my mind the biggest advantage to CFast is physical size. All media can fail, that's why you backup. What am I missing that makes CFast cards so much better than quality SSDs other than physical size?
              www.motionplaces.com
              andrewjulian

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              • Originally posted by Telecinese View Post
                Why not keep the camera you already have precisely as a B-cam for slider/gymbal/etc use even if you do find a reason invest to in the larger 'A' camera later?
                This is what I'd do, precisely because the sensor is exactly the same so you know the images will match. If many TV/commercial productions are happy enough with the image quality of the Pocket to use it as a crash cam for the Alexa, I'm sure the URSA/BMC4K combo would be even better .
                "LATER" !! this is an answer! .. I just forgot to say " FOR NOW" in my post.. and I ready correct it! ...
                I'm agree, that URSA/BMC4K combo would be perfect.. but NOW I think, that investment into stuff like Slider, Skater, Gimbal and new good Lenses GIVE ME MORE in my footage, then new URSA ...
                What I'm trying to say is: I PRE-ORDER BMPK4K in April 2013 ... because I was in need a "film-look-like" image...
                but I 100% DON'T NEED to pre-order URSA ( United Republican State of America ) ..... and will wait until we will get RAW in BMPC4K and until URSA get more options.. like SLOW-MO, I had in FS700

                Comment


                • Originally posted by Sarlacc View Post
                  Regarding built in ND...The Alexa offered it with the XT.

                  Know how many XT bodies Ive been in the field with that have them?

                  ZERO.

                  Having internal NDs throws the back focus and requires you to have an optical flat in front of the lens to correct for it...I don't know of anyone who really wants to deal with that.
                  Would you be so kind to tell me more about it, please? .. I never heard about it and want to know the details!

                  Thanks in advance!

                  Comment


                  • Is dual simultaneous recording confirmed? As in to get a back up at the same time. I know the chain (to get continuous recording) type has been confirmed.
                    Darren Scott
                    Freelance Director/Director of Photography


                    https://vimeo.com/jambredzvisions/videos

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                    • Originally posted by Telecinese View Post
                      Imagine how embarrassing it would be if they come up later with a 120fps 15-stop dynamic range 8K sensor or whatever but can't use it because SSDs are not compatible? It would completely negate their 'future-proof sensor swap' sales pitch.

                      If 60fps 4k is already pushing the limit of cheap SSD speed or reliability (not saying it is, just guessing), then what chance do the awesome future sensors have to work with them? Maybe the CFast thing was more of a necessity than people think.
                      All the more reason why I think my sensor-in-a-box camera "design" makes more sense than BMD's URSA.

                      Since at least last year, if not 2-3 years ago, building monitoring and recording into a pro camera is, um, ... unnecessary.

                      I prefer RED Epic style modularity, but because RED uses such proprietary accessory/components, they're stupid-expensive. Again, unnecessary, at least from a customer perspective.

                      There are so many excellent monitor, EVF and recording solutions already in existence -- and new ones being released fairly frequently -- so in most cases it no longer makes sense to design them into cameras.

                      For some users the traditional "all-in-one" cam design is totally appropriate. But given the ready availability of superior separate components (now and in the future), the traditional approach more and more becomes the "special" case. It's all good.

                      I understand that having redundant hardware can sometimes be a good thing in a pro on-set workflow, but adding a 4th or 5th monitor and/or EVF to an URSA just to make it usable is clearly a stupid waste of money and resources, period.

                      The excuse of using CFast because it's small is also stupid. SSDs aren't much bigger, SSDs will always be significantly more cost effective, just as fast or faster, highly-reliable, and there'd be plenty of room for them in an URSA if the cam didn't include _3_ f*cking monitors.

                      I strongly disagree that this situation is anything like the BMCC/BMPC-4K cam's built-in battery ... as if people like me simply aren't getting the brilliance of the URSA design. I'm a huge fan of the BMCC/BMPC-4K built-in uninterruptible power supply battery feature. The URSA's triple monitor design isn't anything like that. The URSA's 3 monitors don't add "invisible" convenience and security with little or no downside or cost.

                      The only thing I like about the URSA cam better than my design is that the URSA features a user-upgradable sensor and mount assembly. That's a really great feature. But they should jettison at least 2 of the built-in monitors (or all 3) and the CFast recorder, too.

                      And, oddly enough, if URSA didn't have built-in monitors and recording, there'd be room for a built-in uninterruptible power supply battery. Funny that.

                      One last thing: I totally "get" the value of pumping-up the price of a camera as a way of pricing-out wanna-be whiners like me (grin), and just as importantly, as a way of financing a very necessary pre-sale and after-sale support network for pros. I get that. However, pumping up a cam's price by adding stuff that no longer makes sense these days (let alone a couple of years ago) does no one any good.
                      Last edited by Peter J. DeCrescenzo; 04-09-2014, 09:36 AM.
                      www.peterdv.com
                      Blog: http://HereForTheWeather.wordpress.com

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by SergeSmArt View Post
                        "LATER" !! this is an answer! .. I just forgot to say " FOR NOW" in my post.. and I ready correct it! ...
                        I'm agree, that URSA/BMC4K combo would be perfect.. but NOW I think, that investment into stuff like Slider, Skater, Gimbal and new good Lenses GIVE ME MORE in my footage, then new URSA ...
                        What I'm trying to say is: I PRE-ORDER BMPK4K in April 2013 ... because I was in need a "film-look-like" image...
                        but I 100% DON'T NEED to pre-order URSA ( United Republican State of America ) ..... and will wait until we will get RAW in BMPC4K and until URSA get more options.. like SLOW-MO, I had in FS700
                        Gotcha. And amen to slow motion. If I've been keeping up correctly the very best 'reasonable cost' cameras are promising us is 4k/60fps, not-quite 1080p/96fps or 720p/120fps (Sony A7s, Panasonic GH4, GoPro, etc). We want more!
                        telecinese.com twitter vimeo

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Andrew View Post
                          Are CFast cards faster than SSDs right now? I would guess that going forward CFast cards are going to have a difficult time keeping up with the latest SSD tech.

                          I'm honestly asking because in my mind the biggest advantage to CFast is physical size. All media can fail, that's why you backup. What am I missing that makes CFast cards so much better than quality SSDs other than physical size?
                          I actually have no idea of the comparative advantages of CFast vs. SSD. Heck, the URSA announcement was the first I've heard of CFast. Every wild-ass conjecture I've presented was based on inferring that BMD's engineers wouldn't make such a decision without good reason (and 'making the camera a tad smaller' does not convince me as their main motivation in such a large camera, regardless of what the salespeople have said).

                          So I'm guessing they're guessing CFast will sooner or later be a more reliable and faster alternative to SSDs. And hopefully not so expensive. Computer memory costs have been falling astoundingly fast in the last couple of decades (apart from proprietary RED media, apparently), so who knows if 'CFast expense' will not become less of a problem fairly soon. For instance, this chart suggests that good old CF card memory has become about 4 times cheaper from 2007 to 2013, and almost 4000 times cheaper since the tech's circa 1995 introduction.

                          What I do know is that consumer-grade SSDs like our 'gold standard' Sandisk Extreme 240gb or 480gb are much, much more likely to break if dropped than CFs, and probably are less absolutely reliable in other ways as well (fabrication defects, overheating, number of formatting cycles it can take, etc). CFast should keep this unbreakability if they know what's good for them.

                          Your speed question did make me curious, and from a Sandisk press release I found the world's first CFast card has around 450mb/s write speeds (only 350mb/s for another size card), which is about the same as our 'approved' SSDs. But this is of course the very first model of the very first generation of a new technology that big guys like Arri and Canon helped develop and seem to be betting on long-term. I'll be surprised if this technology doesn't improve quite a bit in both price and performance before going the way of the Zip Disk and we move on to holocubes or whatever though. Think of how cost-effective was a 1995 CF card compared to a 2014 one, it's what I'm saying.

                          A couple of quotes from the press release:

                          The SanDisk Extreme Pro CFast card is the first to utilize the CFast 2.0 specification. This specification was a collaboration of leading CompactFlash Association members to meet the demanding requirements of professional video and photography applications. Early adopters and endorsers include SanDisk, Canon, ARRI and Codex. The result of this alliance is the CFast 2.0 specification, delivering a new level of performance for next generation professional video and photography cameras.
                          Stephan Schenk, general manager of ARRI's camera and DI systems business unit said, "SanDisk's new SanDisk Extreme Pro CFast 2.0 cards deliver tremendous performance, allowing professionals to record ProRes 4444 up to 200Fps with AMIRA, and up to 120Fps with ALEXA XT/XR cameras, on cost-effective recording media."
                          This new high-performance card format is reliable and equipped with a durable form factor. The SanDisk Extreme Pro CFast 2.0 cards are created to withstand real-world exposure to temperature, shock and vibration, and include a pinless design, which lessens the chance of damaging the card or camera while changing cards.
                          We'll see.
                          Last edited by Telecinese; 04-09-2014, 09:02 AM. Reason: Added the 350mb/s bit.
                          telecinese.com twitter vimeo

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                          • 350MB/sec write speed

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                            • Originally posted by Peter J. DeCrescenzo View Post
                              All the more reason why I think my sensor-in-a-box camera "design" makes more sense than BMD's URSA.

                              Since at least last year, if not 2-3 years ago, building monitoring and recording into a pro camera is, um, ... unnecessary.

                              I prefer RED Epic style modularity, but because RED uses such proprietary accessory/components, they're stupid-expensive. Again, unnecessary, at least from a customer perspective.

                              There are so many excellent monitor, EVF and recording solutions already in existence -- and new ones being released fairly frequently -- it no longer makes sense to design them into cameras.

                              I understand that having redundant hardware can sometimes be a good thing in a pro on-set workflow, but adding a 4th or 5th monitor and/or EVF to an URSA just to make it usable is clearly a stupid waste of money and resources, period.
                              Your points on the advantages of a modular design are clear and hard to disagree with. I'm sure this path RED is pioneering (and more generally, Apple with the Mac Pro as the heart of an external system of plugged-in parts you can plug and play to upgrade) is going to please many pros and, depending on its market success, be attempted by Blackmagic Design eventually.

                              What I have to disagree with is the 'because this is not right for me it's not right for anyone' stance. In my current workflow style, job requirements and financial circumstance I'm happier with a 'all in one' $6000 product that's larger and heavier because of the extra built-in parts than a $4000 one that requires an extra $5000 worth of extra monitors, field audio recorders, SSD recorders, batteries and chargers. Not to mention the extra bulk, fragility, small-things-going-wrong-factor and particularly time needed to assemble and disassemble the rat's nest of flexible arms, cables and batteries needed in the rig when working with a small crew and time-sensitive subjects.

                              Yes, the 'big heavy block that does everything' is super old school and not as flexible or upgradeable as the 'choose your own parts around the core' ecosystem for maximum personalization, but there are plenty of advantages as well for people like me that think that a camera should indeed include media recorders. I actually think there's a place in the market for both approaches. We'll see what BMD thinks.
                              telecinese.com twitter vimeo

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                              • Originally posted by Telecinese View Post
                                Imagine how embarrassing it would be if they come up later with a 120fps 15-stop dynamic range 8K sensor or whatever but can't use it because SSDs are not compatible? It would completely negate their 'future-proof sensor swap' sales pitch.

                                If 60fps 4k is already pushing the limit of cheap SSD speed or reliability (not saying it is, just guessing), then what chance do the awesome future sensors have to work with them? Maybe the CFast thing was more of a necessity than people think.
                                At the moment SSDs are waaay faster than CFast cards.
                                High grade ones are now at 700MB/write speed and price is not much different than CFast for the same size. If anything go faster it will be SSDs not Cfast cards !
                                Enterprise SSDs are 2x faster than CFast, cost about the same and have also very high reliability and endurance.

                                The point is not to use cheap and crap SSDs, but decent ones. This is the reason why BM could make BM Pack (tested and good SSD), which would have good price and reliability. This is what AJA and other manufactures have done.
                                CFast cards are great, but they are rather match for Alexa, not BM.
                                Last edited by Andrew_HD; 04-09-2014, 09:09 AM.

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