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    HDX900 External Recorder recommendations
    #1
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    I work for a company that wants to keep shooting on HDX900s that they own. However, they pretty have run out of DVCPRO HD tapes stock and can't find it worldwide. Can anyoone recommend good external SDI recorders? I am looking for an emphasis on memory space and being light weight, over monitoring or tools. Thank you for any suggestions.

    -Dan


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    #2
    Senior Member Run&Gun's Avatar
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    The CD Nanoflash was the standard for a while, with some places actually modding they cameras to trigger them to roll with tally confirmation, but they have been out of production for many years now.

    I wish someone would make a tiny external sdi recorder, today, that just recorded. No space wasted with a monitor.

    They appear to have stock.

    https://tapeonline.com/categories/dvcpro


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    #3
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    New: maybe a BMD Video Assist
    Used: maybe an Atomos Ninja (one of the 5" or smaller that they discontinued a while back), or maybe even a Convergent Design Nano Flash (very rugged and reliable, but also very old school... would complete the look for your HDX900, too!).

    As I recall with that cam, however, you are still going to need to record to DVC-Pro tapes if you want to use the SDI trigger to work on the external recorder. I think the Nano Flash uses a different protocol to trigger recording stop/start (that I cannot recall the name of) by means of separate cabling to the "remote" port on the camera. Anyway, if you want to use the Rec stop/start buttons on the camera to trigger the external recorder, you will need to actually record to a tape to do so. Else, you will have to start/stop from the external recorder, itself.
    Last edited by Seanik; 11-19-2019 at 11:20 AM.


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    #4
    Senior Member Run&Gun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seanik View Post
    New: maybe a BMD Video Assist
    Used: maybe an Atomos Ninja (one of the 5" or smaller that they discontinued a while back), or maybe even a Convergent Design Nano Flash (very rugged and reliable, but also very old school... would complete the look for your HDX900, too!).

    As I recall with that cam, however, you are still going to need to record to DVC-Pro tapes if you want to use the SDI trigger to work on the external recorder. I think the Nano Flash uses a different protocol to trigger recording stop/start (that I cannot recall the name of) by means of separate cabling to the "remote" port on the camera. Anyway, if you want to use the Rec stop/start buttons on the camera to trigger the external recorder, you will need to actually record to a tape to do so. Else, you will have to start/stop from the external recorder, itself.
    Macie(and maybe some others) made a mod that would allow you to trigger it from the lens without having to have a tape in the camera to roll. I believe Panasonic forced them to stop so they wouldn’t lose their authorized service status, but the info on how to do it may still be out there.


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    #5
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    There is also the idea of just reusing the same dozen or so DVCPro tapes to record with... just using them for backup, really, which you will want/need eventually because I guarantee there will be a time when you thought the recorder was rolling when it wasn't. There are no convenient ways to monitor the recorder, and things do happen: I have had the Ninja (that was on a 900, actually) suddenly run out of battery when only 30 seconds before it said it was fully charged. I have also had the Nano Flash (that was on a PMW-350) remote/trigger cable short (probably in part because it was split off to a small LED tally that was gaffer-taped to the outside of my EVF... f-ing bush engineering, ftw!). The tape/SxS card in the camera was the saving grace. You really should have some stock of these, anyway, even if it never gets handed off at the end of a shoot.


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    #6
    Senior Member Run&Gun's Avatar
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    One of my first shoots I used a Nano on after buying it, the tape "back-up" in my VariCam saved my ass. There was an issue with the Nano's, that if you used the pre-roll function, you got a click/pop in the audio every few seconds, in a repeating, regular interval. You could even see it in the audio waveform. After the shoot, I had to play the tape back out into the Nano in real-time, because they needed files instead of tape(turned the pre-roll off from then on out).


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    #7
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    Somewhere I have a photo of my favorite insane camera mod. Someone ripped out the deck mechanism in an HDX900, removed the door and inserted an original PIX240 in its place. Actually fit nicely. That’s commitment!

    I would suggest getting one of the cheapest Atomos of BMD recorders you can, as long as it has SDI it’ll record anything your camera can output. Recording formats are superior to the nanoFlash.
    Mitch Gross
    Cinema Product Manager
    Panasonic System Solutions Company


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