Video Card Confusion

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We don’t feel like it’s the best time to invest a lot in 4K.  Take video cards for example.  With HDMI 2.0a, HDCP 2.2, h265, and several other factors in the mix (e.g., is your 4k60fps, 4:2:0 color space sampling or is it capable of 4:4:4?) there is a lot for the consumer to understand and figure out.  A lot more of this will be standardized and resolved in 2016.  There are still a lot of software bugs and decoding issues too along other kinds of annoyances that won’t stop someone dedicated enough.  But it’s not a straightforward experience yet and early adopters may be punished in various ways.

That said, if you want to try and future proof your video card purchase for right now then we suggest Nvidia graphic cards based on the Maxell 2 platform (GTX 980 Ti, GTX 980, GTX 970 and Titan X).

Canon EOS C300 Mark II Impressions

Canon’s video offerings often cost more ($16,000 in the case of the C300 II) than the competition and their specs doesn’t always justify the cost. Yet Canon often gets a lot of things right, their products just work, and the image looks better than the specs would lead you to believe. Pros will have an easier time rationalizing the purchase than amateurs. For best value we still feel that Blackmagic’s new Ursa Mini’s will be the best.

Blackmagic Design URSA Mini 4K First Impressions

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News Shooter has an article up summarizing Daniel Peters first impressions with Ursa Mini 4K.  Worth a look if you’re considering this camera.

Although not shown in Daniel’s videos it is clear that the URSA Mini 4K version does not come close to the a7S II in low light. It only has 200, 400 and 800 ISO settings and unless you have a very fast aperture lens you will need to light scenes in darker conditions. This is probably the camera’s biggest stumbling block and may be enough to prevent many factual shooters from adopting the camera. We’ll have to wait and see how the sister URSA Mini 4.6K version fares when it finally come out – we still have no date for its release.

Sony A7S II Test

Note this test is by the same person who in our last post tested the Ursa Mini 4K. He brought both cameras out at the same time. Thus it makes for a useful comparison.

“But grading compared to the Ursa, you can see the AS72 falls apart a bit in the skies, some banding due to it being 8 bit. I’m interested to see what recording to a 10bit recorder will look like.” – Daniel Peters

“Also, it doesn’t matter how good the steady shot is….the rolling shutter is quite bad and looks worse handheld then the Ursa Mini. (in my opinion)” – Daniel Peters