Still No Review of the JVC GY-HC550

Categories: Miscellaneous 3 Comments

After a week and no review…? Whats going on. As you remember I had a major problem with my last iMac and it was replaced. We now have USB3 which is so much quicker than USB2.

After day one filming with 4K 50p 422 HQ and that was only about 5m of footage, not all usable footage, I got a real shock when ingesting the SSD camera footage from the camera. It was taking almost 2-3 minutes for about 1m of footage to ingest. Then I thought I had solved the problem I was using USB 1 C cable instead of USB 2 C cable.

It was better but USB 3 is 10x faster again now 2G of footage takes 10s to ingest.

If you have never produced a video review about video cameras there is a mountain of work from filming, editing, music and voice over not to mention graphics.

I am about half way but need more footage so I have sent an email to JVC hoping to get a camera next week to do a small bit of outdoor filming, weather dependant.

Please bear with me there is no urgency to get this job done after all the camera itself has already been delayed almost a year so what’s a further couple of weeks delay.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

A Proud picture from my birthday

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As you may realise from my last post it was my birthday recently and I invited all my colleagues I have worked with over the last 40 years to a bash in my local golf club.

Everyone in the picture above either works in TV or Video production.

An update on my JVC GY-HC550 review…I have ordered a new iMac as my other one is on its last legs. As soon as I have swapped over FCPX and all its effects the edit should not take long.
Tomorrow I will be back on the case and hope to have a review done by the end of this week.

My wonderful talented daughter-in-law Diane made this wonderful cake capturing the essence of my life so far as I am a big fan of outer space and TinTin.

My thanks to all who attended my birthday bash and now I can look forward to more blogging and video reviews.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

JVC GY-HC550 Review update

Categories: Miscellaneous 7 Comments

Sorry its been a while since my last blog, the GY-HC550 is back at JVC and I should be editing it.

My 27″ iMac has been playing up this week with lots of beach balls so much so it’s depressing switching it on.

The weather in Glasgow last week has as usual been abysmal, limiting my exterior shots. I set up 2 interviews one with my cousin and his new 2 week old puppies and one with DOP Ron Seeth.

Ron is a DOP on BBC Scotlands “River City” has a passion for local radio and produces a weekly nostalgia show from a room in his house.

One of the few moments without rain testing the 20x servo zoom lens.

I will perceiver with my iMac but have to take time off tomorrow…for my birthday.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Day TWO with the JVC GY-HC550

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Today was a 4K day and a lot more testing, I was a tad disappointed in my 4K shots till I discovered that I was viewing them in HD. After switching the output to 4K the pictures jumped out of the 55″ Samsung QLED TV.

I tried the face detection (FD) this afternoon and it works a treat, once again there are 3 flavours of FD…High, Middle and Low. So far I have only tested it in the High position.

I will be interested to see how face detection performs in the other two positions.

4K Frame taken from JVC GY-HC550 (Filming myself)

A note for using face detection you need eyes, nose and a mouth in your frame, I hid my mouth and it no longer had the square box round my face.

A further note you also need to set up a User Switch to activate it off and on. I used User Switch 7 on the 550.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Day One with the JVC GY-HC550

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Spent the morning with the JVC HC550 at a local bird sanctuary.

You get 3 flavours of 4K 50p, Apple ProRes 422 HQ or Apple ProRes 422 or Apple ProRes 422 LT since firmware V.0110. Recording in 4K 50p you have to use the SSD drive there is no backup onto SDXC at 4K 50p.

I made such a basic error last night ingesting 4K footage with a USB-C cable that had USB 1 at the end and could not understand why my 1 minute of footage was taking 2m 37s to ingest till I woke up this morning and had a eureka moment to make sure my USB-C cable was indeed USB 2.

I assumed all USB-C cables were the same as USB-C is so new it must be USB 2 compliant…sadly they are not.

There you go I was lucky with the Scottish weather this morning to get a couple of hours filming in HD.
Tomorrow it will be the turn of 4K 50p assuming no rain off.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

JVC GY-HC550 Video Review coming soon

Categories: Miscellaneous 4 Comments

Yes finally I can reveal we have the latest Connected Cam from JVC the GY-HC550 to produce a video review.

Any questions send them to and I will endeavour to answer them in the review.

Meantime I will get to know the camera and all it has to offer and hopefully start filming by the weekend.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

The best use of 360 I have seen to date.

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“Age 34, I’ve been an airline pilot for 12 years. My tenacity, my creativity and my desire to achieve a global perspective of our world have allowed me to fulfill my nomad dream. For many years, I’ve been creating videos, in an endlessly quest for beauty. Finding key words, brainstorming and creating stories to captivate your emotion is my passion. Sharing my dream with my 300 000 followers is my number one goal.”

This video is best seen on a smartphone or a standalone Virtual Reality Headset. I have contacted Guillaume asking him about the 4K cameras he uses, its a Sony A7 III with a 14mm lens. Note : Do not use this video link to watch the footage in VR use the link below.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

The SONY electric car, could this become a bloggers car?

Categories: Miscellaneous 1 Comment

While browsing the internet for video info from CES this caught my eye. An electric car from Sony. It’s not surprising to see Sony having a hand in the newest electric car technology as a great part of this falls into Sony’s remit.

As you can see the Sony electric car is full of cameras probably HD cameras. If Sony were even more inovative you could add a few HDMI ports to allow you to blog live from your car…as long as you don’t take your eyes off the road.

Love all the screens in this car though great as long as they don’t break down.

As an additional safety measure, internal sensors will monitor facial expressions and body language to gauge concentration and alertness. Sony says that the sensors are also for comfort, and will adjust the temperature as needed.

Edit car…now there is a thought. Have a link from a laptop or iPad in the back of the car allowing editing facilities.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

New smaller Pro camcorders from Panasonic at CES 2020

Categories: Miscellaneous 1 Comment

Live from CES 2020 in Las Vegas, Panasonic has launched three of the industry’s smallest and lightest 4K 60p camcorders: HC-X1500, HC-X2000 and AG-CX10. Packed into a compact body to offer the mobility and portability demanded by professionals, the new models enable high-quality 4K 60p recording and achieve high-spec optical performance with a Wide-Angle 25mm Lens and 32x i.ZOOM (4K recording).

Interesting features from these small professional camcorders like 4K 50p and 10bit 4.2.2 internal recording with 1/2.5 type (inch) MOS Sensors.

The CX10 and the X2000 are almost identical apart from the CX10 has micro P2 for a more professional recoding codec.

An optional Handle Unit (VW-HU1) is easily detached and equipped with a 2-channel XLR Audio Input, audio control, and LED light. Operation of the zoom lever attached to the Handle Unit maintains a constant zoom speed, which can be set in 7 steps from the menu.

I think Panasonic have excelled themselves with this new line up of smaller 4K camcorders. Giving what many of us have been asking for DSLR sized camcorders with a professional zoom recording 4K 50p, 10bit 4.2.2 internally.

The Venus Engine, the same technology used in the LUMIX cameras is incorporated in these camcorders. This enables 4:2:2 10-bit internal recording with a maximum 29.97p in UHD and a maximum 59.94p in FHD.

When set for 10-bit recording, the cameras can output 4K 60p 4:2:2 10-bit over HDMI. The HEVC recording (LongGOP/10-bit 4:2:0/MOV) is also supported for recording 59.97p at a bit rate of 200 Mbps. As for file formats, in addition to MOV, MP4, and AVCHD, the AG-CX10 also supports P2 MXF for Broadcast applications. The AVC-Intra100/50 codec support is planned for the future. Recording by all P2 formats requires a microP2 card.

In FHD mode, slow-motion recording at 120 fps (for 59.94 Hz)/100 fps (for 50 Hz) is possible. 10-bit recording is supported, and full-frame images with the image area uncropped are obtained even at high frame rates. Autofocus can also be used even during Super Slow-motion Recording.

The cameras have both SDI and HDMI outputs except the X1500 which looses the SDI output.

The HC-X1500, HC-X2000 and AC-CX10 all support 4:2:2 10bit Internal Recording and the new, high-efficiency HEVC codec, and built-in Wi-Fi supports HD Live Streaming without additional equipment.

In addition, the AG-CX10 supports the broadcaster-targeted P2 MXF File Format. Ethernet HD Live Streaming and an NDI|HX(*5) compatible IP connection function are equipped, and connectivity is provided for use as a live camera.

The new models will be available to purchase at the following recommended retail prices Inc. VAT: AG-CX10 at £2,299 RRP (available from April 2020), HC-X2000 at £1,849 RRP, and HC-X1500 at £1,449 RRP (both available from March 2020).

Here is a introduction video from Holdan, sadly it does not show us any video footage.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

BlackMagic ATEM mini a powerful tool. A scoop at £305

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I finally got my BlackMagic (BM) ATEM mini and here are my findings.

First thing to remember DO NOT put an external mic into any of the mic input ports on the back of the ATEM mini and expect synchronous sound.

This was my first mistake, fortunately I was running all 3 GH5s with SD cards so this was not an issue.

You must set the main camera as your sound source in my case with the Panasonic XLR unit on the GH5.

There are 2 ways to preview your incoming shots the 1st is to set up your ATEM mini via the software via a laptop the second is via a second monitor with a loop through HDMI socket. There is no multi preview on the ATEM mini as it stands.

The 1st way relies on the USB-C output (Webcam out) via a computer so in my case not a practical way of doing things.

I have two BlackMagic Video Assist 4K monitors, using one as a preview and one as a recorder. The preview monitor only allows you to preview one camera but thats better than nothing.

I am not recording anything LIVE and all the 3 cameras are setup and static. A live recording would present a lot more difficulties in terms of preview. It has been suggested that BM may develop a multi camera output for the ATEM mini via software that would be a big improvement but as long as the lighting stays the same and you are not filming a theatre production the ATEM mini is a great tool.

It upscales all HDMI inputs to your chosen output via the BM software, in my case 1080 50p.

Although I have not used it yet it seemingly has a terrific chroma key facility once again driven via the BM software.

To work the software you need the following ports. A spare USB socket and an ethernet socket. Dont worry if your laptop does not have an ethernet socket as you can buy an ethernet to USB adapter online for about £15.

The only cable that comes with the ATEM mini is the 12v power adapter.

You have to supply your own USB to C adapter cable and the ethernet cable if you want to control the ATEM mini from your laptop.

The software also gives you access to the audio with a lot more control than you get with the ATEM mini itself. The controller is well made and does not come across as a cheap £300 mixer. To me this is a scoop at the price for anyone producing any form of HD programming.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

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