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    AJA Cion - summer is weeks away
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    Senior Member hscully's Avatar
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    I'm due an upgrade this year and have been saving up. I'm ready. Considerations include the FS700 with 7Q, also a Scarlet. Last week I shot a short film with the Scarlet and it was great to shoot with and the footage looks great. The workflow is a bit of a bear. I'd have to get a used one. I can't swing the Dragon.

    I'm still hoping for the CION. I saw some footage at AbleCine that fairly knocked my socks off. The multiple versions of ProRes right up to 4K 4:4:4 may make raw unecessary. I will still need the raw option, which it has, but an onboard recorder has not shown up. The thing is I need HD much more right now than 4K or raw and the CION does all that. I can use the rest of my accessories with it and I know from contact that Opitek is working on a Nikon mount which I need for my Duclos ZFs.

    So, anybody else waiting on this camera with me?
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    Senior Member hscully's Avatar
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    wow... just me? I thought this would be on a lot of people's list
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    I'm intrigued by it. The ergonomics are inviting.
    Kinda waiting to see what flavor of log recording they decide to implement- if any.
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    #4
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    We all broke.

    If I were one of those cameramen who got full-time work shooting documentaries, commercials, and so forth, the kind who didn't rent but needed to own his own camera, then I would be looking hard at this camera. There's a lot they got right, and the price is about right. There are a few things that give me pause. For one, are AJA Pak cards really necessary, instead of CompactFlash? Another is shoulder mount. It's not my cup of tea, I think the handicam style is closer to my way of shooting. And the PL mount, I love it because it is so uncompromising. We're gonna use real lenses, baby. But I wonder how many will be willing to spend tens of thousands of dollars on lenses. I mean, for the ENG professional I was just describing, most likely he'll want a zoom with a decent range. Is there anything except something like the Cabrio for like $40,000? And if you're the kind of guy who doesn't blink at spending that much money on lenses, then chances you can also afford an Alexa, and might go with it just because it sort of sells itself ("Yes, I have an Alexa") and requires less explaining to do ("It's the Cion. . . . By AJA . . . They make accessories and stuff").

    Then again, they say there will be third-party mounts. And if the image is what some say it is, it won't matter after a couple of years that it's not an Alexa, especially if the rest of the execution is good and there are no quirky surprises, but that it's reliable, does what it says it will do, etc. (much easier said than done, by the way ;)
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    Senior Member hscully's Avatar
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    I'm happy to shoot with whatever anyone will rent, especially cinema lenses because I sure cant afford them ;) There will be mounts. I emailed the manufacturer whose ones I like best and they're on it.

    I'm competing with other owner operators with Scarlets which are now $20K and C300s which are $14k. You can get a used Scarlet for around $10K. I figure after media, a mount, a battery system and an EVF the CION will cost me $12K. At least I can use my monitor.

    I like the Scarlet but I think the ProRes options on the Cion are going to please a lot of people. It's global shutter, HD, 2K, 3K, 4K, all variants of ProRes including 4:4:4 plus a RAW option that is a bit mysterious to me still. The C300 can't get there.

    I'm also kind of impressed that they aren't hyping the sh*t out of it - maybe letting it speak for itself. I dunno. The thing is, I saw some stuff they shot with it on a nice 2K monitor at AbleCine and it looked freakin' smashing. The highlights and skin tones, the richness of the color and the deep blacks (kinda like the blacks on the F55, which I for one LOVE). I thought I noticed something pretty nice about the motion and global shutter, but I'm not sure. It could be the power of suggestion working. There was one shot of a kid jumping in water in sunlight and the drops of water in the splash looked awesome, distinct, crystal clear. Anyway...

    Really it's still in my wheelhouse. I've sold some lenses and some audio gear, saved a few grand and I'll figure out the rest and hopefully succeed in obfuscating the whole operation from the wife! Actually she knows... I can run but I cannot hide ;)
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    Quote Originally Posted by combatentropy View Post
    And the PL mount, I love it because it is so uncompromising.
    It's shipped with PL mount, but they're interchangeable - it's open for third party manufacturers that will come up with different mounts.
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    the CION looks amazing especially if you consider the price vs specs vs picture quality and compare it to the competition.

    There are 2 things that's stopping me from putting down a deposit myself, albeit I'm nitpicking a lot here. 1) The APS-C Sized sensor. With a camera that comes in with a PL mount standard, you'd expect a camera with a Super 35mm sensor and not something with a 1.2x crop when using PL mount Super 35 lenses. 2) The 12 stop dynamic range. Just saw some demo footage from the A7s, ergo I had to bring this up. But 14 stops of DR is something I'd like having.

    Still, the CION the only camera that I'd really like to own both for smaller, budget friendly projects as well as a B Cam on projects where Alexas, Epics or F55s are used.
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    I think the Cion is a really tempting package. It has the right ergonomics, however the big issue is the sensor.
    It's the same sensor as in the Blackmagic 4K and it's only 12 stops. They have probably optimised it better than BM, but my F3 still beats it in terms of DR and roll-off.
    I think if they can update the sensor, as BM plans to do (God I wish BM would hire a real industrial designer for their cameras - they are so amateur in this department and it shows) then I think AJA will have a contender.
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    Senior Member hscully's Avatar
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    I get it about the 12 stops but until I'm out in the blinding sun, I'm usually dealing with around 8 stops max. When I'm in that 14 -16 stop range out in the sun, it's a choice - protect the highlights or hang on to detail in the shadows. Here's where I need the camera to do well, especially at the higher bit rates. If I get pleasing highlights that blow out to white, which is what I've seen, then I'm happy. If the shadows, under conditions where I'm letting them go are clean and capture detail that can be bumped slightly in post, then I'm happy.

    I guess the better the sensor the better, and if they have the capability of upgrading the sensor (why not?) then that's very cool, but I really don't think that 12 stops of DR is insufficient to producing excellent images in all but the most hostile conditions. Just my 2 cents.

    Is it really the same sensor? I don't know how we've arrived at that. Not that I have a problem with the sensor and I sure don't know enough about them to judge. I think it's in the treatment of color that these cameras do well or not and what I saw was pretty good.
    Last edited by hscully; 06-02-2014 at 05:21 AM.
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    For some reason this thread is beginning to sound very familiar. Oh: http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread...post1986426248
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