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Blackmagic Video Assist is now shipping!

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Best news I've read all day! The BMD Video Assist is shipping now. Very keen to see a head to head comparison vs the Atomos Samurai Blade which is also US$495 (am using a Ninja 2 right now on a music video shoot with a Sony F3. It is nice, aside from the low resolution screen and no SDI)

 

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

I asked about something on the BM forum - if you have an SDI input, can you get a converted output from the HDMI of the Assist? 

The answer was yes - good news to those who have a lot of HDMI gear but want to shoot with, say, one of the BM SDI-only cameras. If that answer is correct, anyway.

I have an HDMI viewfinder, a marshall monitor and a big HDTV on a roller stand for clients and whatnot. I also have a semi-regular muppets-type gig where we have HDMI splitters all over the set for puppeteers to see their moves (they bring their own HDMI TVs or monitors), so this is good news to me.

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Does the VA not have audio in or am I missing something???

Both SDI and HDMI carry an audio signal.

On another note, I just noticed that the VA comes 'bundled with DaVinci Resolve'. Am I reading that correctly? Is it the full version? Can't be. But I don't remember ever seeing the Pocket advertised as such. Can anyone add some insight?

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

From Blackmagic after months of trying to reach anyone:

-Has no monitoring features (peaking, zebras, guidelines, waveform, false colour, magnification), as on the ninja 2.

-It can monitor a UHD input yet recording is not a feature.

-Has no record/trigger function with Canons/nikon/sonys/panasonics, as on the ninja 2.

-Has a much higher power consumption and less working time vs the ninja 2 (surprise, a hungry BM).

-Single SD Slot vs larger and cheaper HDD media on the ninja 2.

-No Resolve is not associated in anyway with the bundle.

-Doesn't exist vs. the ninja 2.

 

So just cancelled pre-order. If it had just peaking and the UHD recording I'd have got it.

 

Anyway It's still good for: 

-60p HDMI option for the A7 series and C100 MKII, 

-Higher resolution LCD (but not great panels on either, at least you get peaking + mag. to focus on the ninja so it's probably a better overall shooting experience)

-The extra micro SDI support and conversion

but that it, otherwise the ninja is a better cheaper overall product as an HDMI Monitor + Recorder with higher camera compatibly and essential functions.

 

I'll pick up an Atomos Ninja 2 today from a store down the street instead of waiting 6 months for a product with no clear feature set or willingness to help the buyer find out. Good luck... 

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Ebrahim, DRAT.......  !!! If all of that is true, and they're not going to commit to a new firmware fixing this to come within the next few weeks, I reckon that kills the Video Assist as a viable option for me in 2015 :-( (maybe in 2016/2017.... once they've sorted out the software)

Atomos Samurai Blade it is for me!! Bonus of HDMI and 60fps FHD is all I'll be missing out on.

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Do you know if the Ninja 2 can start/stop on the Nikon d5500?

The Video Assist does not have zebras but it does at least have a histogram which I find less distracting. And it doesnt have peaking but again I find peaking distracting and would rather have a high res panel. 

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

A note: I just discovered Atomos makes a Ninja 2 with the Superb  5'' IPS Calibrated monitor of the Samurai, it's called the Ninja Blade. Atomos slashed the price from 1100$ to VA 499$ price, with all the features needed (tough break for the VA). Again just not 60p and the micro SDIs. 

http://www.atomos.com/ninja-blade/

This is definitely what I am getting now, the screen is fantastic (I used the samurai with the 1Dc) and it's one of the best 5'' panels out there with extremely accurate colours, plus has waveform/peaking/false colour/etc 495$ is insane. The ninja 2 is the same but 200$ less for the lower res, smaller LCD (great price at 295$ though, it's a perfectly usable panel)

Do you know if the Ninja 2 can start/stop on the Nikon d5500?

It should, it triggers my D5300 here, and probably all Nikon/Canon DSLRs. Just remember many Nikon DSLRs output only 30p unlike Canons. Annoying quirk. Make sure the D5500 outputs other frame rates (check the menus)

Hey Ebrahim are you sure it works at 60p with the C100? A couple of people at BMCuser were saying its only 60i.

Yes it does, not only 60i. 

Corona_1.thumb.jpg.32010df6c7d7a21fc1391

The C100II outputs a native, normal 60p signal so that will work,

however, when it comes to normal speed, the C100 signal is actually a bit unique, the camera only outputs a 1080p 50i stream which needs to be pulled down to 25p, there's no mention of this feature on the VA,

the Ninja 2 is especially compatible with the C100 for that reason and for the integration of start/stop trigger, it's designed with collaboration with Canon for this specific camera.

So I don't know if the VA will play nice with the normal speed PsF stream and whether it will trigger in the future. The BM Hypershuttle doesn't work well at all with the C100 signal and takes an extra post-production step for pull-down and needs to be pressed to record, the VA is probably the same since it's not a mentioned feature/spec. 

They'll never learn how to make and deliver reliably working products on time even after 4 years. Yes I am bashing them. Put shiny specs and remove essentials seems to be their motto since the first BMCC. 

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It should, it triggers my D5300 here, and probably all Nikon/Canon DSLRs. Just remember many Nikon DSLRs output only 30p unlike Canons. Annoying quirk. Make sure the D5500 outputs other frame rates (check the menus)

Are you absolutely sure the trigger works on your d5300? Because the website says it doesn't support it :/ http://www.atomos.com/cameras/

I will check the frame rates when I have the camera again but I at least remember seeing 50/60fps listed.

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I have heard mention by BM a few times now that the Video Assist can see a 4k input over HDMI and downscale that for high quality 1080p from 4K. I didn't think Atomos Ninja Blade could see a 4K signal to then downscale, unless they issued a firmware update that allows this now. Anyone here know...?

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Unless it's a new thing in the samurai, othervise no. I just used cheap 20€ 4k-2k downscaler and it worked. Ninja 2 or ninja blade seem to be the better alternatives now that the prices have droped. The screens arent the best out there but perfectly usable. 

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I don't know if this is full of crap or what... But... I found this and for the URSA Mini CFast 2.0 Cards.

https://www.cdw.com/shop/products/Transcend-CFast-2.0-CFX600-flash-memory-card-512-GB-CFast-2.0/3409093.aspx?cm_cat=GoogleBase&cm_ite=3409093&cm_pla=NA-NA-TR1_FL&cm_ven=acquirgy&ef_id=VgnU1QAAAWPfjyjx:20151002004042:s&gclid=CPaW_M7GosgCFQ8uaQodYJMDJA&s_kwcid=AL!4223!3!61836302899!!!g!82119857395!

I'm thinking of 24 hours of footage as if I was making a Bear Grills television footage at 4.6k. So here is the price if I was with those CFast 2.0 Cards: $4,920...

If that is not a scam then the Ursa Mini's storage would be cheap, one of you guys once you get the Ursa Mini take this risk for us. Come on bring in the teenage free spirit. ;)

What do you mean? It's just a link to a Cfast card? Half a TB goes for around 1k so it's nothing crazy about the price really...

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Best news I've read all day! The BMD Video Assist is shipping now. Very keen to see a head to head comparison vs the Atomos Samurai Blade which is also US$495 (am using a Ninja 2 right now on a music video shoot with a Sony F3. It is nice, aside from the low resolution screen and no SDI)

 

Ive been tempted to pick up an F3. Only thing holding me back is PL mount. Are you using a converter or PL glass?

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Underneath the PL mount there is the Sony FZ mount. Think of it kinda like the Sony E mount, giving you the freedom to adapt ANYTHING to it!! :-D


Except, think of FZ as the grownup big brother professional version of the E mount which is for consumer stills cameras instead.
Personally I'm using my Nikon lenses on my F3 with a cheap F mount adapter (it doesn't feel like adapting onto an E mount camera, but like a native mount F mount camera instead. Though without electronics). But sometime in the future, I'll probably get a positive locking F mount adapter (but they're pricey) and/or PL lenses as well so I can use my PL mount as well on the F3.

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

Are you absolutely sure the trigger works on your d5300? Because the website says it doesn't support it :/ http://www.atomos.com/cameras/

I will check the frame rates when I have the camera again but I at least remember seeing 50/60fps listed.

I am picking the ninja blade tonight so will confirm rather than go by my aging memory

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Underneath the PL mount there is the Sony FZ mount. Think of it kinda like the Sony E mount, giving you the freedom to adapt ANYTHING to it!! :-D


Except, think of FZ as the grownup big brother professional version of the E mount which is for consumer stills cameras instead.
Personally I'm using my Nikon lenses on my F3 with a cheap F mount adapter (it doesn't feel like adapting onto an E mount camera, but like a native mount F mount camera instead. Though without electronics). But sometime in the future, I'll probably get a positive locking F mount adapter (but they're pricey) and/or PL lenses as well so I can use my PL mount as well on the F3.

Wow. Good to know, as most of my glass is Nikon.

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