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The best part of the show for me is seeing all of my friends and the many bovines that come out to the desert for a change of scenery, the food, and yes, all of the new tools. Rather than start with my top picks, I am going to highlight the cameras in ascending order as I see their importance in the overall market, saving my favorite for last. From there, I'll take a look at some of my favorite lenses and support gear.
While Panasonic's AG-3DA1
camera was in wide use at the Panasonic booth, I did not see any additional models anywhere else on the show floor. [For more on the AG-3DA1 see Steven Bradford's coverage of that camera in his article.
] With limited controls for interaxial adjustments and convergence, I imagine that a lot of bad 3D will be shot with this camera to start. Hopefully people learn quickly that having less control while shooting means that you need to plan for control to be exercised in post.
SONY HDCAM SRW-9000
Jeff Cree from Band Pro touted the new Sony HDCAM SRW-9000 by pushing it all the way to the Las Vegas Convention Center's North Hall and back to the South Hall on a J.L. Fisher dolly. This update to the CineAlta line is now available with a 35mm-size sensor and PL lens mounts. Recording to HDCAM SR tape, the 9000 is a rock solid addition to an increasingly tapeless world. It has actually replaced 16mm for many of the episodic shows being shot on the East Coast. I expect it to be a mainstay in episodic TV for quite sometime , allowing productions to continue with their familiar HDCAM SR workflows, and also maintaining the shallow depth of field from film-style lenses and production techniques.
VISION RESEARCH PHANTOM FLEX
Mitch Gross of Abel Cine Tech brought in two different beauties, the first of which was the Vision Research Phantom Flex®. This new addition to the top of the line of my favorite line of cameras offers a maximum frame raster of 2560x1600, with capture of 2800 fps @ 1080, and 6100 fps at 720p. It is the first of the Phantom line to offer automatic black balancing, a mechanical shutter, and, finally 4:4:4 Dual Link Video and Timecode outs from the camera. That Auto Black Balance is a big deal, freeing Phantom users from the tedious task of constantly having to black balance before every shot or suffer an annoying static pattern noise in the footage.
Vision Research Phantom Flex
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