Back in March 2008 a big splash in affordable Hi Speed arrived with the Casio EX-F1 Semi Pro camera. It promised to finally deliver the frame rates that were the realm of cameras in the tens of thousands of dollars but for the not to shabby price of $999 US.
NAB 2014 has already started to look like a 4k camera and UHD workflow oriented show from all angles. Manufacturers seem determined to push 4k at all costs and it seems looking at the product ranges that it will probably be adopted fully by the production crews of major TV Shows and News outfits. There are definite advantages to shooting 4k as opposed to 3D which is really a specialty format for limited uses. 4k can be used to create incredible looking crisp FHD 1080p that far out-resolves any 1080 camera to date, plus use footage as a canvas for re-framing and stabilization from wobbly shots.
What this means for slow motion cameras is that, as hardware has become 4x as powerful in order to capture and encode four times as many pixels as FHD 1080p, we get to reap the benefits in lower resolution modes. 4k capture permits lower resolution modes to jump as a side effect of more camera power as follows:
Looking at the current crop of portable devices that offer slow motion is hard and it’s pretty much a mine field. Lenses differ, sensor sizes are varied and distortion can creep up.
The Memory card brand Transcend has entered the SDXC I U3 market for 2k and 4k video cameras with two low cost offerings:
- 128 GB High Speed 10 UHS-3 Flash Memory Card 95/60 MB/s TS128GSDU3
- 64 GB High Speed 10 UHS-3 Flash Memory Card 95/60 MB/s TS64GSDU3
Both offer a minimum sustained write speed of 30 Megabytes / second which is the minimum spec for U3 and 2k, 4k video recording. These cards should alleviate the pockets of new 4k consumer camera owners at $54.99 for 64GB and $119.99 for 128GB.
The newest line of Panasonic camcorders announced at CES are a step forward in the codec department with up to 50mbps at 60p but the feature that caught our attention is that both the HC-W850 and HC-V750 can record 120 frames at 1080p plus interpolate to 240p by using pixel motion algorithms.