DJI Phantom 3 from £899

Categories: Miscellaneous 2 Comments


There are two versions of the Phantom 3, firstly the Advanced as above and the Professional (below). If you only need HD the Advanced model is for you while the Professional model has a 4K 25p camera.


The shots these copters are producing are truly stunning, in fact the one nugget of information I did not know was that the CAA has no jurisdiction inside a building…but you better be a dammed good pilot, if your Phantom hits someone and your not insured…OUCH !

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

A solution for Sony FS7 owners who need HD-SDI down converted to SD (£350 plus vat)

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Once again this came about because the Sony FS7 only outputs UHD and HD from the HD-SDI sockets. I was filming a job during the week which ended with the need to produce a live link. I was assured there was an HD feed but sadly that was not the case. Out came the Sony X70 422 10bit camera with an SD feed straight from the HD-SDI socket. Having looked into it and some sage advice from Stuart from Holdan I  ordered the data video DAC-70. This will be a very useful tool as you can input SDI-HDMI sources and output to either SDI or HDMI in both HD or in my case SD.


Video Input formats

  • SD-SDI: 525i, 625i
  • 3G-SDI: 080p60/50, 1080p59.94
  • HD-SDI: 1080i60/50, 1080p30/25/24, 1080p29.97, 1080p23.98, 1080i59.94, 720p60/50, 720p59.94
  • HDMI: (YUV/RGB): 1080p60/50, 1080p59.94, 1080p30/25/24, 1080p29.97, 1080p23.98, 1080i60/50, 1080i59.94, 720p59.94, 720p60/50, 576p, 480p, VGA, 1600×1200@60Hz, 1400×1050@60Hz, 1366×768@60Hz, 1280×1024@60Hz, 1024×768@60Hz, 800×600@60Hz

Video Output formats

  • SDI / HDMI (YUV: 4:2:2): 1080p60/50, 1080p59.94, 1080p23.98/29.97/24/25/30, 1080i60/50, 1080i59.94, 720P60/50, 720P59.94, 525i, 625i

Supported Audio formats

  • SDI embedded Audio: Up to 8-CH, PCM 48KHz
  • HDMI embedded Audio: up to 8-CH, PCM 96KHz
    – Stereo audio input: 2-CH, PCM 48KHz


Holdan “The one mini converter that should be in every kit bag. Whatever kit freelancers or clients ask you to use for a shoot, this device will get you out of jail: up, down and cross convert; ingest VGA signals into an SDI workflow; embed stereo audio into a video feed.”

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

Canon XC-10…A 4K fixed lens 10x zoom for £1920

Categories: Miscellaneous 17 Comments


I like the look of this camera and at £1920 I think this will be the new C100. The 10x fixed lens is fine by me, mainly for a dust free sensor but its not a constant aperture lens in fact its f2.8 to 5.6 which is two stops of a difference…shame.


You can record onto SD cards for full 1080 50p HD 422 8 bit or CFast cards for 4k 1080 25p at 422 8 bit, once again quality at 4K is compromised running at 8 bit .


Love the handle obviously taken from the C300 and the petiteness of the camera overall. The 10x optical zoom is 24.1-241 mm (still images) and 27.3-273 mm (video).


I suspect the XLR unit for the C300 MarkII may fit onto the hot shoe for professional audio connections but as with Canon of old, don’t hold your breath.


Its got one ND filter, no specs yet and a 3.0” VGA+, 1.03 million dots (3:2), capacitive touch panel, vari-angle supported LCD. I think this camera would be a great “B” camera for a C300, C100 and the C300 MkII in 4K 25p mode.

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

Canon respond with a 4K C300 Mark II at a whopping price of £11,299

Categories: Miscellaneous 9 Comments


Canon responds to the Sony FS7 with a C300 Mark II but at an unappealing price of £11,299. You could be forgiven if you relate the C300 MkII price against the C500 at £14,299…a camera that never took off. Secondly Canon have just slashed the C300 down to £5,999 to half its original price.

A new body only Sony FS7 is £6,199 but still hard to get hold off, I told at least six C300 owners at BVE 2015 to hold off till Canon announce this new camera but seeing it from their eyes they have been dealt a double blow…very little second hand value on their existing C300 and a further £14,299 to find to upgrade to the new C300 MkII.

The last negative is the 4K frame rate of 25p against the FS7s 50p mode this is a deal breaker for me personally, if 25p is your bag then you will be happy with either camera.

Thats the negative part out of the way, what are you getting with the new C300 MkII…


You still get the “monitor unit” but Canon have also added an optional XLR unit that fits onto the hot shoe, a good idea as a lot of people will be using their own external viewfinders.


The EVF is now an OLED EVF with approximately 1770,000 dots (1024 x RGB x 576). It has a contrast ratio of 5000:1 vs 270:1 on the original C300. This is a vast improvement on the original LCD.


The colour range on the camera is also widened. The mkII is now capable of using the ITU-R BT.2020 colour gamut which is considerably wider than REC.709.

A 4K image can be recorded at 410Mbps in 10-bit 4:2:2 at up to 29.97 frames per second (fps) internally to CFast 2.0 cards using the new XF-AVC Intra codec.
2K and HD imagery can be recorded at RGB 444 in 10-bit at 210Mbps, or even 12-bit at 225Mbps to CFast 2.0 using the same codec.

The XF-AVC Intra is similar in concept to Sony’s XAVC Intra frame codec and Canon expects most major pro editing applications to support it by the time the camera ships. Lets hope Apple will add this into their up and coming FCPX update, possibly due this week ! The use of a modern I-frame codec should allow for excellent quality while maintaining manageable file sizes.

At the same time as the XF-AVC Intra file is being recorded to a CFast 2.0 card, a proxy file can be recorded in lower bitrate 8-bit 2K/HD 4:2:0 to a SD card. In some cases this may be good enough to be used as a deliverable where a file has to be rapidly sent to a broadcaster or client.

The 2K/HD high speed recording at 120 or 100fps (depending on the PAL/NTSC setting) is perhaps the most limiting feature of the C300 mkII compared to its nearest rivals. Additionally the C300 mkII needs to be set in a crop mode to attain these frame rates.

If you want RAW output then the C300 mkII can do that as well. It can output 4K 4:4:4 to an external recorder like the Convergent Design Odyssey 7Q or Atomos Shogun.

The shape and ergonomics of the C300 mkII remain largely the same as those of the mkI. The body alone weighs 1880g, slightly more than the original’s 1430g. With LCD, grip and handle it weighs 3.37kg compared to the mkI at 2.7kg. Overall, Canon claim the body is stronger and more durable. There are rubber seals on the buttons and more die cast components. The buttons on the side of the camera now illuminate in the dark to aid setup. The stock handgrip too has been upgraded and is more robust than the original C300 grip.

Even though they look similar there have been several big improvements. The redesigned handle attaches to a top helmet which has been added. The handle is much more sturdy, with a useful 15mm rod clamp added, along with several 1/4” 20 mounting points.

As I am working today I have taken this section from

So there you have it the new Canon C300 MkII 4K internal recording cinema camera, there is a lot more to flesh out but thats all I can tell you till I come back after a shoot. There is one other new Canon camera the XC-10 4K camera, more about this later.

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

YAGH for sale £450 plus postage (UK only) Updated – SOLD

Categories: Miscellaneous No Comments


It’s just been pointed out to me that Holden are now selling the YAGH new for £750 incl vat, but they are not selling a BPU regulated power adapter or 4 pin XLR cable adding a further £175 which I am throwing in as part of the deal.

The YAGH turns your Panasonic GH4 into a fully fledged Pro camera with XLR phantom power audio, HD-SDI output and full size HDMI output. Good as new, original packaging included.



If you want a bargain for your GH4 send an email to, postage will be extra sent Special Delivery. Note…UK residents only. Pay through PayPal (You don’t have to be a member of PP to use the service). Note no batteries included, you can buy them from DSM Broadcastpower.

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

Canon C300 drops like a stone in the US with a 4K C300 NAB announcement imminent

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Due to the imminent announcement of a new 4K C300 prices in the US have dropped dramatically to $6,499 (£4,380), considering this camera cost £12,500 just over 3 years ago,  £8,000 is a massive loss to anyone thinking of upgrading to the new version.


Strangely UK pricing is still around the £8,000 mark but this strange page appeared at the CVP web site declaring the the C300 was discontinued and was being superseded by a C300 with Digital Auto Focus ! Though the picture is in fact a C100.

I got just over £6,000 when I sold my C300 this time last year so I can’t complain but the second hand value this year will be a lot less, you will be lucky to sell a C300 for £3,000 after NAB 2015.

If you are planning to jump ship you are always advised to sell long before April to give yourself the best possible chance of a good return on your money.

Will Canon take some hard to get sales from Sony’s FS7…that will depend on price, specifications and codec.

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

Sony PXW-FS7 with 4Ch Audio using the Sony XLR-K2M (£425)

Categories: Miscellaneous 4 Comments


Thanks to the new V.2 Firmware update the FS7 can now record 4 channels of audio.


This is a great asset with one small problem, monitoring. You can monitor MIX ALL, that gives you all 4 tracks on your output which for most cases will be fine but adjusting them is down the the camera person.


The XLR-K2M has a Multi Interface Shoe and has been purchased to use with my Sony A7s but having the ability to use it on the FS7 for 4 channel sound is an added bonus.

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

Pre NAB 2015 “KineMAX 6K for under $10K”

Categories: Miscellaneous 2 Comments


6K RAW In-Camera KineMAX is capable of Capturing and Recording 6K RAW without external recorder. KineMAX is honoured as one of three cinema camera models in this planet. 6K RAW is recorded as KineRAW(.krw) codec which is compressed lossless RAW format developed by Kinefinity. For 4K and lower resolution, it can record Uncompressed CinemaDNG; for 3K and lower resolution, it can record Cineform RAW which is easy to be edited and graded in mainstream DI software.


6K RAW capturing and recording leaves very large room for reframing, trimming, and CG, especially for 4K delivery. At same time, it also features capturing and recording 6K, 4K, 3K, 2K, 1080p in both S35mm frame and crop mode: that means KineMAX can cover from 1080p to 6K, every mainstream resolution in one camera. KineMAX may be the most compact and powerful cinema camera for 6K&4K RAW capturing and recording now.

6K details and framing space is beyond imagination, > 18Million pixels in one frame: 9 times of Full HD/1080p, 2.25 times of UHD/3840×2160! Every single frame matches high-end DSLR RAW photo!


100fps SLOW-MO KineMAX has the power of capturing Slow-Mo up to 4K Wide 100fps . At HiSpeed S35, KineMAX supports 4K/3K/2K Wide Slow-Mo up to 100fps, while KineMAX supports 2K Wide to 144fps at HiSpeed M4/3. At same time, M4/3 (Crop mode) 4K Wide up to 48fps, S16mm (Crop Mode) 3K Wide to 60, 2K Wide up to 100fps.  As of undercrank/quick-mo, the lowest fps is down to 6fps under current firmware. You can set any custom sensor fps between lowest and highest fps, the accuracy is 0.001fps.


Colours of Culture Bali (by KineMAX) from Kinefinity on Vimeo.

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

Sony’s FS7 is becoming a lens nightmare…again…WHY ?

Categories: Miscellaneous 6 Comments


Just when you think Sony have got it right you discover its far from it…Many cameramen and women are still waiting for their FS7’s to arrive, meantime the question is…what lens to buy.

Sony Broadcast may have had a hand in the specifications of the 28-135mm f4 lens but someone in Sony should have noticed its severe lack of wide angle due to the 1.5x crop factor on the Super 35mm sensor taking the 28mm end to 42mm. Its become obvious that this full frame lens was never intended to be used with a Super 35mm sensor camera.

The reason the FS7 is so popular is many of us are fed up with the static manual lens DSLR “look” and want to get back to a camera that not only looks the part but performs with more than one function hence the run and gun problem.

You only have to look at the internet boards to see everyones dilemma, yet again, about which lens to buy for run and gun…this should not have been an issue if Sony Broadcast had a specific lens made for a S35mm sensor. The 28-135 works fine on a Sony A7s as this has a full frame sensor but is top heavy for such a small camera in my opinion.

We seriously need a WA zoom for this camera that does not cost a fortune like the Canon zooms at a ridiculous £25K. Sony have proved you can produce 4K servo zoom lenses for just under £2.5K.


As a comparison of a good run and gun camcorder lets take the Sony PMW-400K, this has a 2/3″ sensor and comes with a 16X lens with an acceptable 31.5mm wide angle, this is Sony’s stock lens for the 400 which is only £1,686 dearer with the lens and its a lot faster at f1.9 !

People have said “but look what you are getting for £2.5K” not realising for £1.7K Sony make a 16x 2/3″ lens so why can’t we get a 10x wide angle zoom for the Super 35mm sensor ?

Many of you say you can, its the 18-200 f3.5-6.3 lens as seen on the FS700…so why is it not marketed with the FS7 simple its not “professional” enough, they were designed for semi pro use and thats obvious by their design.


When Sony brought out the E18-105 f4 lens (£450) for the NEX-EA50, they made sure it was wide enough for the S35mm sensor.


Again the same scenario with the FS700 we get a Sony 18-200 lens (£900). In fact one of my readers has asked why not use one of the 18mm zoom lenses, that might be an option but the lack of aperture ring makes these lenses more awkward to use and manual focus is awkward.

Sony have been bringing out 18mm (1.5x crop factor 27mm) for the last two S35mm camcorders yet the one thats taking the world by storm and the most technically advanced is marketed with a full frame 28-135mm servo zoom…why has this been allowed, Sony must have known all along this lens would compromise the FS7 yet it has been allowed to happen…shameful Sony !!!

With NAB 2015 just around the corner lets hope Sony have a wide angle 4K 16mm – 150mm f2.8 servo zoom lens to show off or to be more practical an 18-135 f4 would hit the mark.

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

Look out Focus Pullers…Redrock Micro to introduce Auto Focus Tracking System

Categories: Miscellaneous No Comments


This seems a great solution for the vast number of manual lenses being used for large sensor cameras. My only problem with it is the extra meccano this introduces to the camera. The Movi is heavy enough but the advantages may override the extra weight.

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

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