January 10, 2013

Shoot Up to 600FPS for $1,000 with the New JVC GC-PX100

JVC has been rather quiet lately. The company has mostly remained out of the spotlight when it comes to filmmaking equipment over the last few years, but they've stayed somewhat on the cutting edge, especially with the first consumer 4K camera, the GY-HMQ10. Now they are coming out with a consumer oriented camera that might just find some use in your next film, the JVC GC-PX100. It's a 1920 x 1080 camera capable of 60fps up to 600fps, and shoots internally at 36Mbps. Click through for more on the announcement.

Here are some of the basic specs of the camera:

  • 1920 x 1080p 60fps at 36Mbps
  • Back-Illuminated 1/2.3-inch 12.8 Megapixel CMOS Sensor
  • 5 Shooting Speeds Up to 600fps, 12MP Still Images at 9fps
  • Built-In Wi-Fi
  • SC/SDHC/SDXC Memory Card Slot
  • 29.5mm F/1.2 Wide Angle Lens
  • 10x Optical Zoom & 16x Digital Zoom
  • 3" Touch Panel LCD
  • Optical Image Stabilizer with A.I.S.
  • K2 Audio & Zoom Microphone

Here's a bit from their press release:

With Wi-Fi connectivity, video and images can be wirelessly sent to and viewed on a smartphone or tablet. And for coaches and others with an interest in analyzing an athlete's performance, the free "JVC CAM Coach" app for iOS and Android allow annotations to be made on the playback image. Flaws in an athlete's form can be noted by drawing on the screen and easily seen by both coach and athlete using the large screen a tablet provides, and without the need to disturb the camera setup. There's also Twin View, which enables simultaneous side-by-side playback of two different video clips after they're transferred to a tablet, for comparative viewing. A Tagging function allows scenes to be tagged for easy access at any time, and the Scoring function allows the user to record a running tally of a game score as it progresses by tapping on a smartphone.

Videomaker posted this photo to their Twitter showing it rigged up with an EVF and microphone:

Clearly this is going to be aimed at consumers, possibly directly at sports teams and coaches for athletics, but the 600fps stat is interesting. There is no question it won't be capable of that frame rate at 1080p since they are not advertising it as such, but it's likely going to be 120fps at 720p and then 600fps at some lower standard definition resolution. I could see a lot of different uses for this camera, but it's probably not going to be an A camera in any narrative filmmaking capacity because of the smaller sensor (which is between 1/3" and 1/2").

It's pretty impressive that they've managed to make such a fast lens for a camera like this, so that will probably help in lower light situations since the sensor is so small compared to DSLRs. My only concern is how you're actually going to hold the thing to shoot, not just because it's so small, but because there doesn't seem to be any place to really grab on. Obviously this is aimed more at consumer applications, so it makes sense that size was one of the main considerations to make it appealing to those who don't want to carry around a bulky camera.

Either way, it's going to be capable of some serious slow motion, which could come in handy for a lot of people.

What do you guys think? How could you see yourself possibly using this camera?

Link: JVC GC-PX100 -- B&H

[via Engadget]

Your Comment

46 Comments

Seriously awesome! But would have been great if the 600fps was 1080p.

January 10, 2013

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Quobetah

would have also been 20 times the price, unfortunately.

January 10, 2013

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Waiting to see how the image looks.

January 10, 2013

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Ditto. If the images is good, it might be my next camera.

January 17, 2013

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Terence Kearns

It's definitely an interesting development - though hadn't Casio done something similar a few years back? Not sure if their offerings went up to 600fps but those still/video cameras were definitely consumer products.
In terms of using it in a production - it largely depends on what that 'A' camera is really.
If it's to be used in conjunction with a DSLR then it could probably work if the final deliverable is 720p.
My only concern would be whether the image quality and character would match or whether it would stick out due to a severe drop in quality at 600fps.
Still would be very interested in seeing some footage. Now that the resolution war is largely done, hopefully we'll be seeing something similar in extreme frame rate cameras :) I mean, Vision Research is largely uncontested in this field at the moment.

January 10, 2013

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Andreas Kopriva

Yep, I think Casio put out a number of cameras -- I forget the model names -- that shot up to 1,000 fps at low resolution. Repeat: 1,000 fps! Not released in all countries (for instance, I'm in Australia -- you'd have to import.)

Filmmakers might turn their noses up at the drop in rez, but the results are very YouTube-usable, especially around the 300fps mark.

January 10, 2013

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What's with JVC these days? It seems like every product they release is some strange amalgam of half-baked buzzword technology that I can't imagine anyone would seriously buy.

January 10, 2013

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Swested

This.

January 12, 2013

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Really can't see that this will be at usable frame rates, as much as I'd hope. Samsung have done this before as well as Casio. After the FS700 and then bringing 120fps to their Action Cam I reckon Sony will be the first to bring affordable framerates down to the consumer. Probably in their NEX stills cameras.

January 10, 2013

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Jim

Could be useful for the event and sport videographers out there I guess as the body looks professional enough not to make the client think they're being shorted and can grab it quickly enough for a quick slow mo shot here, begs for one of those manfrotto monopods with the base

January 10, 2013

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Chris Lambert

I'm curious why they don't release a camera with a super 35mm sensor - is there really still a need for 1/3' and 1/2' chips in prosumer cameras?

I'm curious how sales are of these cameras in the face of dslrs and all that? I assume sales of smaller chips have plummeted.

January 10, 2013

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Ed, sure there's still a need for smaller chip! It's more common for wedding videographers to use this sort of camera than to use DSLRs, for instance.

One advantage: deep depth of field. For instance, some brides complain when their friends are out of focus in the background. It also means that you can be pretty sure things are in focus when it comes down to the crunch -- no retakes of that kiss or cake cut.

Another advantage: you get something like an 18x zoom on the Canon XF300. But if you were stuck with EF lenses, you'd be lucky to get a x5 zoom. So if someone does something interesting on the other side of the room or close to you, you can capture it.

January 10, 2013

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Most wedding videographers use dslrs nowadays...the upper tier market appreciates the cinematic stuff more..so DOF and clean 1080p are more valued now more than ever.

January 12, 2013

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quobetah

Sometimes I really wish people would use less 35mm and full frame sensors for documentary stuff. There's a reason that 16mm and 2/3" has been established for years and years as a good documentary format. There's enough shallow depth of field when you want it, but you can also get totally sharp pictures when you need it.
I have seen too many truely sickening pieces of 35mm focus havoc when people try to cram that shallow dof look into a (tv) documentary. There's a reason even major movies with big budgets stop their lenses down to 8 for many many shots. You don't want a shallow dof look for everything, and it is not a sign of "true moviemaking" anymore to have shallow dof. Everybody can do it nowadays.
Now let's get back again to using the look that fits your movie instead of trying to be an artist by using a full frame with f1.4 on a documentary piece. I won't watch it anymore!

January 17, 2013

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Heiko

Hear, hear!

January 17, 2013

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RicJ

Personally I think an in-focus capture of the occasion has always been valued more than anything else.

I see no drama with using both. Put your small sensor camera on a tripod and capture everything with it. Make it your baseline shot whilst doing your short DoF acrobatics as an ancilliary thing.

If the image quality on this thing is good enough, I'm tempted to buy it and use it on the glidecam predominantly - in autofocus mode.

January 17, 2013

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Terence Kearns

Unlike other JVC cameras, I can really see a market for this. Tennis instructors, gymnastics teams, figure skating coaches...really any school athletic department could afford and benefit from something like this. These guys aren't looking for the large sensor aesthetic; they are looking for an edge on their competition. If the iOS app works well, this could be the new thing in sports training.

January 10, 2013

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JVC recently started shipping their GY-HM600 with dual sd and encoding options.

January 10, 2013

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Joe

That's a neat camera, I don't know that I'd have much use for it, but it's neat.

January 10, 2013

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Agent55

OFF TOPIC: NIKON D800 chosen over c300 to shoot Dexter series.
http://nikonrumors.com/2013/01/10/nikon-d800-shooting-dexter.aspx/#more-...

January 10, 2013

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vinceGortho

Along side the alexa*

January 10, 2013

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vinceGortho

The show has jumped the shark a few years ago and next season will be the last. That's what we call cutting corner$..

January 11, 2013

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FabDex

The phrase "jumped the shark" - jumped the shark years ago. I feel lame just using it.

January 13, 2013

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Steve

Actually the last season was quite good, which completely surprised me as it had gone completely down hill. The reason? The first few seasons were based on the books and were tight. Then they had to write episodes based on a never ending series of seasons, based on Dexter. Ya they weren't bad, but not great, just like any other TV show. Now that they decided on an actual ending, guess what? They are writing with purpose and reason. Closure is a writers friend.
So ya ignore all the "filler" seasons just like you should with any show.

January 18, 2013

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funkydmunky

How much did Nikon pay them to make the Technicolor people say they couldn't see much of a difference between an Alexa and a Nikon 800D?
It surely makes me distrust Technicolor in every other aspect, too...

January 17, 2013

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Heiko

Except the price, nothing else seems great, on this thing. Even the design is very user-unfriendly. Why would JVC try and shoot themselves, in the foot? Curious question. I am sure, he answer would be even more strange.

January 11, 2013

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zack

Looks like a whopping 320x176 res at 600fps http://av.watch.impress.co.jp/docs/news/20130111_581392.html

January 11, 2013

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Jim

Up until I read Jim's comment, I was really excited about this camera. Not that'd I'd use 600fps all that often. I'm a little tired of camera manufacturers not following through with the kinds of things that would sell their gear. Granted, I'm aware of the strains of affordability that come into play, but given that 600fps would appeal to a fair amount of people, having it shoot at 320x176 is kind of like spit in the eye.

January 11, 2013

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DIYFilmSchool.net

I'm agree with you, its so stupid for a camera manufacturer to introduce a camera with 600fps at 320×176, How can this be useful? and 120fps at 720p? com' on, the gopro do 120fps at 720p with 400$ rang...

January 11, 2013

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Didnt JVC come out with something similar 2 years ago? The px-10? 300fps I think.
Didnt sell too well.

January 11, 2013

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Mike

Seems useless to me - at 600 fps the resolution is 176p! What is JVC thinking? Only HD framerates really matter to filmmakers nowadays. The Panasonic LX7 (compact) shoots 1080p 60fps, 720p 120fps, and has an f1.4 lens, a bigger sensor, and costs only $300.

This JVC is no Phantom.

January 11, 2013

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Luke

I'm searching everywhere but can not see if this camcorder will do 24p. Can anyone speculate on this ?

January 12, 2013

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Saied

Love this camera. Yeh, you can buy the Sony nex fs700 with a better picture quality, but for the same price, you can buy 8 px100. Imagine what you can do with 8 streams, not only for sport events, but also in learning situations, interviews en round table discussions. Perfect!

January 17, 2013

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I would consider it if it were any other manufacturer but JVC. I have in my editing studio a $1500 DV editing deck from JVC that was defective by design. JVC refused to acknowledge that fact, their technicians could not repair it and they refused to replace it with a product that would do the job. It cost me major aggravation, $1500, and several jobs.

January 17, 2013

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Regius Brown

I would consider it if it were from any manufacturer other than JVC. I have in my editing studio a $i500 DV editing deck, model SR-VS30, that was defective by design. They refused to acknowledge that fact, their technicians could not repair it and they refused to replace it with a product that worked. I will never buy another JVC product, sorry.

January 17, 2013

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Regius Brown

Oh man, when I read the headlines, I thought it could do 600fps at 1080...

But like this, who needs a 1/3" chip camera with 600fps at 640x480 resolution? I certainly don't...

January 17, 2013

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Heiko

Oh gawd, I just read the resolution at 600fps is only 176p. Isn't there some cheap consumer photo camera that can do similar high framerates at ultra low resolutions. I can't remember the model but it sure as hell didn't cost 1000 bucks.

January 17, 2013

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Heiko

Yet another useless camera in a recent parade of useless cameras. No wonder some of the big players are losing Billions of dollars (Panasonic lost about 7 Billion last year; Sharp are almost gone...).

The technology allows 1080p at sensible high frame rates and at least 10 bit 4:2:2. Just bring out cameras that reflect what can be done at affordable prices...not useless gimmicks but with core technology from 5 years ago (i.e. 8 bit crap from HDV days). Even the GH3 is a total disappointment.

January 17, 2013

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Skeptikal

Hi Guys,

320x176y @ 600 fps is already far better than could have expected. Some notes...

Most CMOS sensors are read out line by line. To increase frame rate, you have to reduce the lines accordingly. In fact its only complete lines, reducing the length of the line doesn't alter read out, just changes settings for compression.

So here the math:

Line Speed:
1,080 lines * 60/s = 64,800 lines/s

Encoding Speed:
1,920x1,080y * 60/s = 124,416,000 pixel/s

The "whopping" 320x176y600p comes out as follows:

Line Speed:
176 lines * 600/s = 105,600 lines/s

Encoding Speed:
320x176y * 600/s = 33,792,000

So in turn that means:

The camera could go up to 105,600 / 1080 = 97p in fact.
However, the encoder will likely not be able handle that. Usually encoders have roughly a fixed pixel/s peak rate, so increasing the frame rate doesn't mean the encoder will hold up to it. But I bet the sensor can easily do a 1920x1080y96p output.

In turn, they should be able to increase the *horizontal* resolution of the high frame rate stuff like this:

124,416,000 pixel/s / 600/s / 176 lines = ~1178 pixels/line
So the encoder inside should be able to encode 1178x176y600p. However, thats a strange resolution with a 6.7 : 1 ratio... But I think you get the idea.

At best they would make a firmware that allows users to adjust the frame rates / resolution freely within some common restrictions such as width and height jumping in fixed steps like multiples of 4, 8 or 16 etc. and within the maximum line and encoding speed limits. Most industrial camera heads can do EXACTLY this.

So whoever around is disappointed:

If the camera were truly only a 1080/60p model, we would have seen a much lower resolution for 600p, exactly 1/10th = 108p. The fact it has 176p is already a POSITIVE thing. You need to understand that.

320/176 = ~1.81, so a bit wider than 16:9. If I were JVC I might have choosen at least to use a scope 2.4 : 1 format instead (pixel speed is plenty left for this). However, its their business.

Regards,
Axel

January 18, 2013

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Personally, I got no interest in *any* JVC product. Their output is pure crap. They do not believe in quality control. So far, I had three JVC products and all three were junk. This is not a serious manufacturer that is ready to compete with established Japanese and even Korean brands.

January 21, 2013

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Rob

I have been using 2 Casio EXF1's for the last few years for my Youtube channel. I've been eyeballing this camera and hope it may offer better resolution for the 600 fps setting. Another thing I am curious about is how long you can record for at 600 fps. Some cameras like the Nikon J1 only record for 3 seconds. The EXF1's will keep recording until the card is full.

The 600 fps resolution of the EXF1 is 432x192

600 fps is a decent framerate and is fast enough to capture bullets in flight. If performance of the JVC doesn't exceed the EXF1, I'm not interested in it.

January 28, 2013

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I have asked JVC Europe and the specifications for Europe will be:

100fps 640x360
200fps 640x360
250fps 640x360
400fps 320x176
500fps 320x176

I really had hope for 200 fps at 720p. Am I too demanding?

February 5, 2013

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Jan

If you were familiar with the camera you wouldn't say that. I've been shooting with the D800 for at least 9 months now and couldn't be happier with the quality.

February 13, 2013

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Various people have done research and demonstrated systems over recent years, including Philips and the BBC. For example:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/rd/pubs/whp/whp169.shtml

March 11, 2013

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The Monkey

You cannot compare the price of the LX7 to the price of this camera just based on the criteria you mentioned. There are plenty of other aspects to consider. Can you attach a microphone to the LX7? Or do you need to have external sound and sync it in post? Big difference there, no?

December 2, 2013

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panda

Author wrote: "My only concern is how you’re actually going to hold the thing to shoot, not just because it’s so small, but because there doesn’t seem to be any place to really grab on."

This is an uninformed statement.

First of all, it's quite clear from the photo at Amazon.com that there's a strap to hold the camera on the right hand side. Maybe you should have looked at the camera more closely before writing your review.

Second of all, I find it amusing that you seem to be so fond of DSLRs for filming, yet would criticize this camera for inability to grab on. Is the GH3 any easier to grab on? This camera seems to be longer than the length of most people's hands (at least from the photo). It has a strap. Sure, the strap may be a little tight for people with large hands, but at least it has a strap and a body shape conducive to hanging on, which is more than I can say for the plethora of DSLRs and point-and-shoot cameras people are recommending.

December 2, 2013

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panda