Win a Sony PXW-FS5

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Want to win a PXW-FS5 or A7s? Sony are running a free to enter global competition to win a PXW-FS5. All you have to do is create a 2 min short film with the theme “No More Limits” upload it to YouTube and enter via the entry form by 31st October. The videos which receive the most YouTube ‘likes’ from the 1st-15th November will form regional shortlists, an Independent expert from each region will select their favourite. These regional finalists will each win a Sony A7S (or equivalent), and will be entered into the global final to win the PXW-FS5. The global winner and regional winners will be announced during a webinar on 17th December…a free FS5 has got to be worth a 2m short film.


Get your form here :

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

Panasonic DVX-200 micro 4/3″ Sensor Revealed

Categories: Miscellaneous 1 Comment


Its taken long enough to find the information but initially I was under the impression that the new Panasonic DVX-200 was built round the GH4 sensor bloc, in fact it was one of Panasonic’s team that revealed this during an interview.

It is actually built round the Lumix GX8 sensor which is more up to date than the GH4 sensor, leaving far more room for future firmware updates and features.


Panasonic have been very cagey about revealing this to the outside world but with the camera due within the next two weeks we are at final production firmware, taking out a lot of niggles seen by many of us over the last 6 weeks.

One major annoyance was the eye sensor turning the LCD off at very inappropriate times…that has thankfully been fixed to an assign button, switching it on or off manually.

me BW

V-LOG has also been updated to give less noise in the shadows as seen by a few bloggers during our seminar at the Groucho club. The last piece of the puzzle will be its low light capabilities, a lot of users are banking on the DVX-200 for low light work, that will be revealed in my comprehensive review once a get a DVX-200.

Image_GX8_Sensor copy

GX8 20MP

I had a reader telling me that the DVX-200 was sporting a 12MP sensor, the information above straight from the manual tells us otherwise.

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

Taking pictures fast enough to slow light itself !

Categories: Miscellaneous 2 Comments

Light v2

We all want slow motion with our cameras…180fps, 240fps but this video shows us how from the early 1960s a 2000mph bullet was caught in mid air to todays technology that is now fast enough to capture the same apple sequence but it would take a year to watch.

A new camera developed at MIT can photograph a trillion frames per second. Compare that with a traditional movie camera which takes a mere 24 fps. This new advancement in photographic technology has given scientists the ability to photograph the movement of the fastest thing in the Universe, light. In the video below, you’ll see experimental footage of light photons traveling 600-million-miles-per-hour through water. The actual event occurred in a nano second, but the camera has the ability to slow it down to twenty seconds. For some perspective, according to New York Times writer, John Markoff, “If a bullet were tracked in the same fashion moving through the same fluid, the resulting movie would last three years.”

It’s impossible to directly record light so the camera takes millions of scans to recreate each image. The process has been called femto-photography and according to Andrea Velten, a researcher involved with the project, “There’s nothing in the universe that looks fast to this camera.”

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

New Full 4K RED RAVEN from RED Digital Cinema …Price $5950 body only

Categories: Miscellaneous 2 Comments


Converting the price for the UK this RED RAVEN is about £4300 plus vat which is direct competition for not only the new Panasonic DVX-200 but the new Sony PXW-FS5.

Equipped with a 4K RED DRAGON sensor the unit is capable of recording REDCODE RAW in 4K at up to 120fps and in 2K at up to 240fps. It can also record Apple ProRes at the same time, but only at 2K.

  • RED RAVEN uses a DRAGON Sensor, Shoots Max 4K
  • Sensor Size: 20.48mm
  • Crop factor compared to full-frame 35mm is 1.87x
  • 4K Up to 120fps
  • 4K 23.98 at 5:1 Compression
  • Takes Mini-Mags
  • Same body as WEAPON
  • All WEAPON modules work
  • There is at least one model with Canon EF mount
  • Built-in WiFi
  • Built-in Scratch Microphone
  • Price: $5,950 Body only

Red_Raven_1280_3 copy

RED RAVEN BRAIN ONLY – $5,950 ($500 deposit) – ships February 2016

RED RAVEN JETPACK PACKAGE – $9,750 ($1,000 deposit) – ships February 2016
Includes a RED RAVEN BRAIN, JETPACK, Battery Belt Clip, RED MINI-MAG 120GB, 4.7” LCD, AC Power Adaptor, and DSMC2 Outrigger Handle.

RED RAVEN I/O PACKAGE – $9,950 ($1,000 deposit) – ships March 2016
Includes a RED RAVEN BRAIN, Base I/O V-Lock Expander, RED MINI-MAG 120GB, 4.7” LCD, AC Power Adaptor, and DSMC2 Outrigger Handle.

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

FREE Sidewinder worth £215 plus vat before 9th October

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This is an offer you can’t refuse…a FREE Sidewinder worth £215 plus vat from Production Gear, H Preston Media or participating reseller when you buy a SmallHD monitor.

Buy the SmallHD 502 SDI/HDMI or the 501 HDMI only, before the 9th October 2015 and get a FREE Sidefinder.

Watch my recent review…

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

New 4K YouTube footage filmed with the Panasonic DVX-200

Categories: Miscellaneous 2 Comments

Panasonic AG-DVX200

Some more footage emerges from Japan using engineering samples from the Panasonic DVX200. Panasonic seem to be throwing endless amounts of money producing well shot footage.

Panasonic “The first official footage of Panasonic’s new AG-DVX200 4K camcorder, that was shot by two engineering samples of DVX200.
4K monitoring was used by a new FZ-Y1CH TOUGHPAD 4K that is the world’s first tablet PC equipped 20” 4K resolution LCD touch panel and HDMI 2.0 input.

Recording format/mode: UHD (3840 x 2160) 29.97p / MOV (100Mbps, SD card recording) and VFR120p on FHD (1920 x 1080) 29.97p / MOV (50Mbps, SD card recording)

V-Log L (Beta version) was used over full length. (Grading tool : DaVinci Resolve)”

This is the YouTube version make sure you watch it in 4K.

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

8K Eighty five inch television on sale…October 2015…£86K

Categories: Miscellaneous 3 Comments

8K v2 title

Once again there is no enthusiasm for 8K but Japan is driving forward with an 85″ Sharp television in October this year. The best of it is the Japanese who are always the early adopters of new technology don’t have enough space in their houses for an 85″ screen which could seriously limit sales.


In the UK alone the majority of TV sales are with HD ready televisions with about 1% of the market selling 4K to an audience of zero ! Its laughable when we have no 4K DVDs or TV channels that are even contemplating 4K let alone  8K.


Both Canon and Ikegami are working on an 8K cameras but once again 8K for editing down to 4K or even HD will look spectacular but is there a need for it.


With my example below you can see how the security services would welcome 8K surveillance cameras.

100 v2

Take this 8K picture out of 16 full HD pictures you can crop at 100% to identify people in a protest.


So why is there a push for 8K when there is such a limited market, we are already seeing 6K productions coming out in the cinema filmed on a 6K RED Weapon like The Martain.


Camera manufacturers are into every marketplace and the more HiEnd the production the better publicity they can make from it.

Digital Cinema is the one place RED have got their teeth into and you only have to look at their web site to see a ton of major films and TV productions being made with RED cameras.

Personally I think 8K is positioned firmly at the digital cinema marketplace though it is very limited and RED won’t want to give up their stronghold without a fight.

Heres a look at a 10K video that I have shown before but its so good a second look won’t go wrong…

10328×7760 – A 10K Timelapse Demo from SCIENTIFANTASTIC on Vimeo.

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

A look at a new Hi-End stabiliser from Sachtler

Categories: Miscellaneous 12 Comments

Art title

This is an interesting take on the update of the now dated “Steadycam” type vest and arm. Many shooters including myself have moved on to the DJI Ronin for our productions. The artemis from Sachtler is more for hi-end productions but very interesting to watch.

5D logo

My thanks to Cinema 5D for producing this video at IBC 2015…

Sachtler Artemis Trinity – Mechanical Stabilizer / Electronic Gimbal Combination from cinema5D on Vimeo.

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

FREE V-LOG for GH-4 users and its not a hack !

Categories: Miscellaneous 3 Comments


I don’t need V-LOG but would like to try it out for journalistic purposes, at £79 many GH-4 users are hacked off that Panasonic are charging them for  the addition of V-LOG.

This morning I got an email from one of my readers telling me that Panasonic had goofed up the new v2.3 FW by allowing you to download it and by using Panasonics image App, you can store the V-LOG settings to C1 on your GH4. As usual I thought this was too good to be true but it works.

Needless to say FW v2.3 is no longer available at Panasonics web site but fear not its freely available at various web sites.

V LOG via GH4

Remember although the GH4 is set to C1 you can record video from this setting and it works in both HD and 4K mode.

V LOG corrected 800 v2

Had this been a hack I would not have publicised it but as it is a genuine cock up by Panasonic. I would like to thank the person who discovered this mistake and had the brains to try it out. Note: You load this into your GH4 knowing that the next FW from Panasonic will no doubt disable the free V-LOG V2.3 from working.

One of my readers makes a great point…”Glad I’ve had a chance to try the V-Log via the workaround. It’s certainly helping me decide whether or not I’d buy the official activation key. Why? Shooting Log is difficult. It’s harder to focus and expose correctly. Not only that – I’m having trouble finding any V-Log LUT’s that can be used with LUT Buddy in FCP7.
If Panasonic sold the activation code with a set of LUT’s then that would be a good incentive for those who do find V-Log useful – to pay up.”

The link that points you towards the software is here…Note: Use Firefox as Safari won’t work properly.

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

From the FS7 perspective…”Is the Sony PXW-FS5 going to be a good second camera”

Categories: Miscellaneous 5 Comments

FS7 owner

As you know I am lucky enough to own a Sony PXW-FS7, its been interesting to watch the reaction to Sonys new FS5 camera. The main gripe seems to be lack of 10bit 422 especially in 4K.

It depends where you are coming from when you are viewing the good and bad points of a new camera, as an FS7 owner I’ve got all the 10bit 422 XAVC I frame rates right up to true 4K.

As a person looking to buy into the FS5 from lets say a DSLR stance, things might look different. Lets say you have a Panasonic GH4 would moving over to the Sony FS5 bring you any benefits.

The form factor alone between the GH4 and FS5…The GH4 will always look like a photographic camera no matter how much metal work you add to it. What about picture quality…the GH4 films 4K 25p (8bit 420) at 100Mbps onto a micro four third chip and gets noisy at around 2000ISO. The FS5 shares the same chip as the F5 and FS7 so we are looking at a super 35mm chip and films 4K 25p (8bit 420) at 100Mbps so the only difference will be a lot less noise on the FS5 at higher ISOs.


The GH4 with YAGH is cumbersome to say the least, you soon get sick of the umbilical cord between the camera and the power supply I hope Panasonic address this in the GH5.


With the YAGH comes two phantom powered XLR inputs plus SDI and a full size HDMI. I was delighted with my GH4/YAGH but the 4pin power XLR cable is like going back in time to the 1980s.

XLR v3

The Sony FS5 has both phantom powered XLRs on the camera, as it should be and looks the part.

FS7 and 5

I love the smaller body of the FS5 but I know my clients who use me for broadcast work would not want 1080 25p Long GOP although its 10bit 422. Sadly it seems to be down to their editing facilities, probably an older AVID. Thats a small negative thats out weighed by all the major strengths of the FS5…

1920 x 1080 50p 422 10bit onto far cheaper SDXC cards.

Same lenses as the FS7

Far easier for run and gun than the FS7

250fps slow motion versus 150 fps on the FS7 (PAL)

A wee note to all you concerned about 4K on the FS5…Oh no its only 8bit 420 “what a disaster”. 4K 8bit 420 was explained to me by a Panasonic engineer. 8bit 420 on 4K is not the same as 8bit 420 on HD why…you have 4 times the picture area in 4K and if you stick to the same old rules by editing 4K onto a 422 HD timeline then your 4K 420 8bit picture compresses down to an effective 444 10 bit picture on your HD timeline.

Apart from high end drama who don’t care for anything less than a Sony F55 no one is outputting 4K direct to our clients so lets not get our nickers in a twist over 422 v 420 when you will be editing onto a 422 HD timeline for 99% of all your corporate work.

Alister Chapmans take…”The FS7 can produce a better 4K image because of XAVC-I which is 10 bit 422 compared to the 8 bit 4K of the FS5. But 8 bit is great provided you don’t want to do heavy grading. In HD both are pretty much the same.”

Its the old story if you need 422 10bit 4K footage then you buy the FS7 but if you need a fantastic companion to your FS7 and can’t justify the cost of a second FS7 the FS5 will fit the bill. Most of my corporate filming is done on HD, having two perfectly matched cameras both filming 10 bit 422 in HD would allow so much more scope…and you only need to buy the body… job done.

Latest info from Alister Chapman from IBC…

So far I can tell you: It’s 10 bit 422 in HD, it 8 bit 4:2:0 in UHD. The 8 bit is actually quite good and can be graded, but you really need to get the exposure just right with the 8 bit. It’s the same sensor as the F5, so similar noise and grain. There are still questions over the native ISO. The cameras that are here at 3200 ISO look nice and clean. It looks like this will be the native ISO for S-Log2/3 but other gammas will have lower ISO’s. The cameras at IBC are still very much development models and the final image quality is still being worked on. The electronic variable ND is fantastic. It does not introduce any artefacts. In essence you have two ND filter states: No ND filter, where the ND filter system is raised clear of the sensor and ND ON where the variable ND is in front of the sensor. Once the ND is in place you then have 3 preset ND settings (which are programmable) and set by the filter wheel. You can set a max and min and then ramp between the two. The remote is standard LANC, so all your existing LANC accessories will work with the FS5. Super Slow mo is just the same as the FS700, so full sensor scan at up to 240fps. At 480 fps it’s only half resolution vertically, at 960 fps I believe it’s half vertical and half horizontal resolution, but it’s also very grainy. The variable ND is currently manual only but an auto function will be added in a firmware update. 

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