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Hard decision for my EX1r... the nanoFlash, Gemini, or Ki Pro Mini

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    Hard decision for my EX1r... the nanoFlash, Gemini, or Ki Pro Mini

    I wish I knew more about this stuff despite the amount of time I read these forums. My brain hasn't wrapped around all the tech stuff yet to fully understand it.

    For me, size, weight, and battery longevity are more important than cost. So all of them are within my budget. But the max quality I can get for possible big screen documentary showings is the main reason I'm getting one.

    I was set on the nanoFlash but then realized it's 8 bit and my EX1r can output 10 bit, so although the quality is much better than my stock EX1r it's still limiting its potential compared to what these recorders can provide. But the praise and industry-acceptance of the nanoFlash holds a lot of weight.

    The Ki Pro Mini sounds great too and can record 10 bit, and I have an AJA Kona 3 card and I love that company too, but the size of the thing is a bit of a concern although probably doable.

    Now comes the Gemini that can record even more than my EX1r can output. It's a little bigger and heavier but still appears acceptable for multi-day backcountry use. CD also upgrades software regularly and adds features so it seems semi-future proof.

    It would be cheaper and lighter to just get the nanoFlash (would be great if they dropped the price a few hunnerd bucks when the Gemini comes out, but you never know), and the quality would still be great , so I'm asking you guys who know much more than me...

    Would you choose the Gemini over the nanoFlash if shooting primarily handheld in the backcountry for extended periods of time (days) with only an EX1r in mind. Is the quality difference significant enough for the extra cost and weight for this camera, keeping in mind you hope to have some footage projected on large cinema screens (don't we all have that in mind?). Thank you.

    #2
    gemini is overkill for ex1r. wait for the atomos samurai. $1500, with pulldown, and hd-sdi.

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      #3
      10bit seems to be the way to go but make sure your NLE is 10bit all the way through! Otherwise you will not see the entire benefit. I would like to see the difference between in-camera, Nano & 10 bit in a variety of scenes.

      Comment


        #4
        Just wanted to confirm that both the Atomos Samurai and the Ninja are 10 bit.

        Dave
        Atomos

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          #5
          I've never heard of this Atomos Sanurai, I'll have to consider it too, thanks. I don't know if it's solid state or harddrive, but I definitely need solid state for the locations I'll be in.

          Comment


            #6
            Buck, the Nano is excellent, it's tiny, and one thing that it really has going for it when used with an EX1 is that you can use one battery to power them both. Swit makes a battery that has a DC power socket on it, and you can get a cable from nanoflash.net that will go from that battery to the recorder. I just got a comparable battery & cable for my AF100/Nano combo and it's the ultimate in hassle-free portability.

            The Ki Pro Mini looks like an excellent unit but, for your purposes, maybe not so much. Yes it's 10-bit, but it requires 12v power and 15-18 watts, which means its power draw is about 5x more than the Nano. That means you can't power it from a camera battery, you'll have to get something like a 12v battery belt or some Anton Bauers Dionics with a PowerTap cable, and that all means bringing big heavy batteries and a separate charger system, which complicates your ability to travel light and it also means an extra pound or two on your camera rig.

            I wouldn't bother with the Ninja for your use, I don't know if you have an EX1 or EX1R (the EX1 doesn't even have HDMI out so the Ninja wouldn't work anyway) but I think the EX1R does, so the Ninja might be an option. However, HDMI is just not what you want to be using for your recorder if you have any other alternative, especially for handheld or rugged work. The Samurai would be most likely the far wiser choice if you're looking at an Atomos product; it's 10-bit, it's HD-SDI, and it's half the cost of the Nano. Of course, it also isn't on the market yet, so you have to factor that in. If you want to get set up in the next month or so, I'd highly recommend the Nano, it really is great and while it won't have those extra two bits, it's debatable on whether the EX1 outputs a clean enough signal to truly benefit from 10 bits anyway. If you're in no rush and can wait for the Samurai to come out and be field-tested, it might be very appealing to you (10-bit and SDI) but I don't know what the situation would be with powering it or mounting it. Olof is making a Nano bracket for the EX1 that should provide a good solid mounting solution.

            As for the Samurai and solid state, I believe it uses off-the-shelf SATA drives, so you can choose to use a cheap spinning hard disk or you could spend more for a solid-state SSD. The Nano and Ki Pro Mini use CF cards.

            Also, Sony makes a CF recorder, I don't know if it's made to integrate with the EX1 easily but it's yet another option you might want to look into.
            Last edited by Barry_Green; 03-27-2011, 11:07 PM.
            ..
            The AU-EVA1 Book - The DVX200 Book - The UX180 & UX90 Book - Lighting For Film & TV - Sound For Film & TV

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              #7
              Thank you, Barry, for the detailed reply. I have read about the EX1r's signal not being the cleanest and anything over 100mbps Long GOP actually shows the noise more, so perhaps the nanoFlash is the best choice as the 10 bit stuff might not return the desired results with this camera. The low battery requirements and small form factor are huge plusses. Super gracias.

              Comment


                #8
                I obviously would say this, but don't write off the Ninja just because of the HDMI. We're getting good, consistent results with locking cables and proper cable management. And it has a monitor screen. And it has very low power consumption. And it includes up to 5 hours-worth of batteries and a smart-dual charger. And it uses commodity-priced storage. And it has a touchscreen. And a USB 2/3/Firewire800 docking station. And it's completely upgradeable. And it's cheaper. And it includes everything. And it comes in a nice case that you can jump up and down on.

                It's 10 bit as well. Even if your camera's noisy, it's better to record the noise than summarily truncate it. Often noise acts in a good way with a limited-resolution signal by "dithering" the contours that you see with inadequate quantisation resolution, but you'll only get this benefit if you record the sum of the noise+signal accurately.

                Dave Shapton
                Atomos.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Thanks, Dave, I will definitely consider it, especially the Samurai if it comes out soon enough. Gracias.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Samurai is hot off the presses, so to speak: http://www.atomos.com/press/SamuraifirstPR.pdf

                    I was considering the Ki Pro but if the Samurai does all that it says it will then I may choose that option. It is definitely a much better package on paper than the Ki Pro. The high wattage of the Ki was a big turn-off. The fact that you can use solid state drives with the samurai is awesome.

                    Will it have what I call "record button synch". So when I press record on my EX1 it automatically "rolls tape"?
                    Last edited by adamr316; 03-29-2011, 11:41 AM.
                    Freelance Camera Operator/Editor/Photographer/Audio Dude

                    Sony EX1 | Nikon D300 | Sennheiser EW100ENG G2 Wireless Kit | Home Recording Studio

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Will it have what I call "record button synch". So when I press record on my EX1 it automatically "rolls tape"?
                      Yes, we're aiming to have remote-record through SDI/Timecode.

                      The power consumption is minuscule - you get up to 5 hours record time with the batteries we include in the price. And of course it has a high-res monitor/touchscreen thrown in.


                      Dave Shapton
                      Atomos

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by David Shapton View Post
                        Yes, we're aiming to have remote-record through SDI/Timecode.

                        The power consumption is minuscule - you get up to 5 hours record time with the batteries we include in the price. And of course it has a high-res monitor/touchscreen thrown in.


                        Dave Shapton
                        Atomos
                        Awesome! And I appreciate that you are selling a full package not something that is cheap on paper but requires accessories to get a working product. Those business practices remind me of the camera shops who sell the camera without the battery. So that their prices appear to be cheaper than the competition but in the end aren't.
                        Freelance Camera Operator/Editor/Photographer/Audio Dude

                        Sony EX1 | Nikon D300 | Sennheiser EW100ENG G2 Wireless Kit | Home Recording Studio

                        Comment


                          #13
                          dave - i like the look of the samurai, but which drive does it come with? the spinning disk or the solid state? it's a great package if it comes with one of each.
                          Sony PMW-350 with a proper lens
                          Sony Wireless
                          Lowell Lights
                          and a lot of other stuff

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                            #14
                            dave - i like the look of the samurai, but which drive does it come with? the spinning disk or the solid state? it's a great package if it comes with one of each.
                            The strength of the product is that it is designed to give professional performance from commodity IT storage that you can buy from the local computer store or from the web. We don't supply any with the unit because you will almost certainly be able to buy it cheaper than we can supply it. For example, a Hitachi 500GB Travelstar is US$61.17. For physically challenging work, an Intel 120GB SSD is US$231.34.

                            So it doesn't come with either, and it's still a great package, because, over time, you'll save thousands of $s on storage.

                            Dave Shapton
                            President
                            Atomos EMEA


                            Comment


                              #15
                              Hi Dave,

                              What is the word length for the Samurai's embedded audio? 16-bit or 24-bit? That's one thing I couldn't find on the tech specs. Anyone know what word length is coming out of the EX1/1R/3?
                              Freelance Camera Operator/Editor/Photographer/Audio Dude

                              Sony EX1 | Nikon D300 | Sennheiser EW100ENG G2 Wireless Kit | Home Recording Studio

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