Today I had a chance to work with the Cineroid EVF and can I tell you it was a breath of fresh air. The Panasonic AF101 has a very crisp LCD and on the side of the camera you have a detail button which helps you while focusing.
The EVF in the camera is OK but for me far to small, it’s best to turn off the colour in the viewfinder and use the focus assist which gives you a red outline when you are in focus.
That said you can use a portable production monitor like the Sony 740 as seen above to check your focus but while on location you tend to hand your monitor over to the client to view your shots.
While filming today I discovered a great benefit while producing a high pull focus shot, the ability to see what I was doing remotely from the camera itself, fantastic.
As you can see from the picture above the colour rendition is very true which is essential if you are relying on your colour balance to be correct, the Cineroid is also as sharp as a tack and can easily be used for pull focus. You also get various functions like peaking in red or sharpness mode, zebra settings, monochrome, underscan, pixel mapping, 4:3 guide bar and the image can be rotated or mirrored.
CONCLUSION : It is well made, plastic construction, the battery compartment takes a nack to open it, looking at the picture above you slide the compartment to the right then it lifts off. The screen is as good as the Sony EX3 in both colour trueness and sharpness, it’s miles above anything you get with the Panasonic AF101 itself. Two minor details are the mini to mini HDMI cable supplied obviously meant for a DSLR but the AF101 has an HDMI socket so an appropriate supplied cable would be useful…mini HDMI to HDMI.
It takes one Sony like NP-F570 Li-ion battery which I am told will last you 3 hours, I am fortunate by having not only 2 F570 batteries but a Sony battery charger as well !
I found the power pins used to connect the battery a bit flimsy and I think with a lot of use may cause a problem but these are minor details compared to the quality of the picture itself…well recommended from HD Warrior.
UPDATE : Good news…the Cineroid EVF I have is a non production model and the battery pins have been changed for the production model due out this month (Jan 2011).
FURTHER UPDATE : Hello, my name is Spencer Doran at OCTICA. We represent Cineroid in the UK and offer full technical support for the EVF. The note regarding the centering of pixel to pixel mapping was reported to us yesterday and is being addressed. A software update has been developed at the factory and is currently being tested. We expect that it will be released at the end of this week once testing is complete. We will make it available to anyone who wants it as a free software update later.