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JVC Launches Handheld 4K Camcorder: The GY-HMQ10

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JVC Professional Products Company, a division of JVC Americas Corp., just unveiled the GY-HMQ10, which they are calling "the world's first handheld 4K camcorder." The camera is based on JVC's Falconbrid large-scale integration (LSI) chip for high-speed signal processing and features a ½-inch CMOS imager with 8.3 million active pixels.

Edgar Shane, General Manager, Engineering at JVC Professional Products.
Edgar Shane, General Manager, Engineering at JVC Professional Products.
"We're particularly interested in 4K because we think it is the future for digital imaging," says Edgar Shane, General Manager, Engineering at JVC Professional Products. "Many industry experts agree that 4K is almost equivalent to the vision of the human eye. 1080P looks great, but we're still looking at gorgeous images. When you're looking at 4K, you're almost looking at reality."

The GY-HMQ10 delivers real-time 3840x2160 footage at 24p, 50p or 60p. Shane reports that the Falconbrid LSI processing takes raw image data from the CMOS imager and de-Bayers it in real time. The camera is also able to output 4K images to a monitor or projector in real-time with no latency.

"JVC has demonstrated 4K in prototype since NAB 2010," says Shane. "But before we showed live 4K cameras. This one is not only live but records on the same media as all JVC Professional camcorders do." The GY-HMQ10 records up to two hours of 4K video to SDHC or SDXC memory cards, using MPEG-4 technology and a variable bit rate H.264 codec that operates up to 144 Mbps. "The trick is that it records on four cards simultaneously," says Shane. "The amount of data is huge, so we need to have four cards running in parallel."

The GY-HMQ10's form factor is similar to JVC's GY-HM150 ProHD camcorder and includes a built-in F2.8 10x zoom lens with optical image stabilizer, a color viewfinder and a 3.5-inch touch LCD monitor with a new interface. Other features include manual level controls for audio, with audio metering in the LCD and viewfinder displays; a microphone holder and two balanced XLR connectors with phantom power on the handle; a built-in stereo mic for ambient sound pickup; JVC's Focus Assist and manual and auto control of focus, iris, gain, shutter, gamma, color matrix and white balance. Perhaps most surprising, the GY-HMQ10 will sell for a retail price of $4,995.

"We had the idea to bring in the equipment at an affordable price so people could experiment," says Shane. The idea has paid off, as many other sectors than traditional video have evinced interest in the camera. "We see interests from medical, industrial, government and surveillance," he says.

When it comes to the traditional video market, however, Shane notes that the camera is not aimed at the high-end market. "This camcorder isn't for those customers," he says. "But they did indicate to us that they're interested in using it for B roll, in places where it's impossible to fit a larger traditional camera."


JVC GY-HMQ10
The GY-HMQ10


Whereas the GY-HMQ10 has been shown under glass at the last NAB, at NAB 2012 it will be for sale. "This is part of a larger move at JVC to bring 4K technology to a wide range of customers," says Shane. What's up next? "We think the interchangeable lens and other special applications will be the natural progression of this technology," he says.

A 4K camcorder fits in the realm of the $100 2-terabyte hard drive: something that not too long ago seemed impossible is now actually on the market. JVC is making 4K technology to a market segment that could easily gravitate to it. It's another sign that 4K is indeed the future of resolution, from the high end on down. Is it the end of the struggle for ever-more resolution? That remains to be seen, as 4K is still making inroads. In any case, we'll all have our hands full in the next few years transforming the end-to-end workflow to 4K.







Comments

Re: JVC Launches Handheld 4K Camcorder: The GY-HMQ10
by Anthony Burokas
One main thought popped into my head... why RAID the image across four SD cards?

One glitch renders the whole 4k image unusable (yes, just the one quadrant, but you can't use 3/4 of an image) and there's no RAID-5 redundancy to regenerate lost data.

CF can do that speed, but at that data rate, you're not going to record too long.

a SATA drive can do that speed with ease (a SATA drive can do 800 Mbps) and have gobs of storage so you're not wrangling media all day.

And, lastly, "up to" 144/4 = "up to" 36 Mbps per 1080 quadrant/stream. That's good, but Canon's XF is doing 50 Mbps, hacked GH2's are doing even higher bitrates. And, whereas AVCHD does 17 Mbps for 1080p24 is 88.5KB/frame. 36Mbps for 1080p60 is only 75 KB/frame.
(36,000,000 / 8 (bits to bytes) / 60 (frames per second) = KB/frame)

Anthony Burokas ~ http://IEBA.com
Re: JVC Launches Handheld 4K Camcorder: The GY-HMQ10
by Benoît-Joan Clariana-Roig
Usually, when one card fails you lost the whole image. 3/4 of image is better than nothing. SDXC are very reliable.

With 4 SDXC 64 GB (400 $), you can record 4 hours of 4K video. If 128 GB cards are supported, you will be able to record EIGHT hours @ 4K, a whole shooting day. On a RED Cam, you must change the SSD each half hour/hour...

Canon XF is the old MPEG 2 compression. Don't even compare it to the latest AVCHD 2.0 using Mpeg 4.
Canon XF must also stores 4:2:2 data, pushing the 50 Mbps stream to his limits.
#Jan on interchangeable lenses
by Debra Kaufman
Hi Jan - I suspect this was one of the prototypes that Edgar spoke about....he said the next technology achievement to come is interchangeable lenses, so let's see how much JVC can get done by NAB!
Re: #Jan on interchangeable lenses
by Gav Bott
Without seeing any images it's maybe not fair to comapre - but with lens switch it sounds to me like the camera that many people wanted from the RED Scarlet.......

Very interested.

The Brit in Brisbane
The Pomme in Production - Brisbane Australia.
Re: JVC Launches Handheld 4K Camcorder: The GY-HMQ10
by Jan Becker
Hi everybody,
there was another Camcorder at the JVC booth at CES tucked in the corner, overseen by most: It was also a 4K camcorder but with a 1.25 inch sensor and exchangeable lens mount. Same recording workflow onto 4 SD cards. Another breakthrough product. I guess we’ll see more of it at NAB. I posted a photo of it on my twitter account:
@bluetreeprod
Jan


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