Pricing is currently approx. $1700 for a 4GB card. I expect
this to come way down by the time the camera is released, perhaps
to the $1200 ball park and the 8GB card will fill the $2000
position. Now before you have a heart attack, remember that
this is not tape, you must look at the cards as part of the
camera, as a reusable storage medium. $1700 is a lot of money
sure, but 2 months ago I shot a HDCAM feature where every 60
minutes of tape cost us $100. We spent $3200 on tapes, which
are now sitting on my shelf and probably will never be used
again. P2 Cards can be re-used 100000s of times, without any
loss, and archiving can still be on tape or even better, on
Hard Drives. One Large Hard Drive can hold a whole shelf worth
4 minutes? are you nuts? Everyone will be mad waiting
for me to offload!
Welcome to Hollywood. Film cameras use rolls of film, and a
400 foot mag just so happens to hold 4 minutes of footage as
well, so many productions are used to waiting for a reload.
In dramatic content a take usually only lasts less than a minute,
so it wont be disruptive to the flow. If you have 2 cards, There
should be no problem rotating cards, shooting with one while
dumping the other. If your project requires constant recording
for longer than 4 minutes, You will be able to rent additional
P2 cards from rental houses, the savings of not buying tape
will offset this expense.
Unload? How do I transfer the video?
are many options, but since the P2 cards are PCMCIA cards in
design, they can slip right into your laptop on set and you
can unload them. Panasonic also makes a USB2.0 docking bay that
can mount externally or into a 5 1/4" drive bay on your
desktop editing system. Another option is Panasonic's new portable
HD bank, which has a P2 Slot and a HD about the size of a small
paperback that you can use to transfer an entire P2 card in
less than 4 minutes.
So what happens when I plug the card into my system?
P2 card shows up as a Drive, just like when you slide in a small
SD card. On this card is MXF files, a folder based format that
contains folders for each clip, and in the folders are separated
video, audio, voice memo, timecode, and all sorts of other clip
Folders? How do I review clips? Will me NLE see it?
Panasonic ships with a viewer program to view the MXF clips,
and there is a codec to play the video only within windows media
player. AVID and APPLE's NLE's will recognize MXF clips right
out of the box, and untill the other NLE's support MXF, you
can use Firestore's format converter to convert MXF AV files
into normal NLE formats.
P2 Flash presentation
P2 Series Information PDF
P2 magazine ("Beyond") |issue
1| |issue 2| |issue
P2 Workflow forum
Final Cut P2 support PDF
P2 Support Press Release
P2 in Athlens Video