May 30, 2013

Uncompressed RAW Novo 2K Camera Being Unveiled at Cine Gear by Radiant Images

Novo2KRadiant Images, a rental house based in LA, but with other locations around the country, introduced a modified GoPro HERO3 a few months ago called the Novo. Developed with help from View Factor, the modification introduced interchangeable lenses and manual exposure options to the tiny compact camera. Now, at the Cine Gear Expo event in Hollywood, Radiant is introducing a brand new Novo that is capable of shooting uncompressed 2K RAW images, which should far surpass the quality of the previous camera based on the HERO3.

[Update]: This has been confirmed as an SI-2K mini in a new housing, so specs should reflect the previous SI-2K models that Radiant has been renting out:

The Novo 2K is a re-imagined SI-2K updated from Radiant's Nano camera. Housed in a rugged outer shell, it shoots uncompressed RAW and features an interchangeable lens mount.

Here is Radiant Images on the old and new cameras:

Novo2K

Key features of the Novo include a C-mount lens system plus a PL mount adapter, back focus adjustment, and exposure control capabilities that open up a wide-range of artistic possibilities for cinematographers and camera operators. The auto exposure function standard with the GoPro can be disabled on the Novo, permitting cinematographers to use the lens to manually adjust the aperture. The Novo achieves this while retaining all the key functionality, versatility and accessories of the GoPro Hero 3.

The tiny Novo, released in February, won a coveted MARIO Award for innovation at NAB 2013. The camera is available for rental only at Radiant Images in the U.S. and new European rental partner P+S Technik,

This weekend at Cine Gear, Radiant Images will unveil an updated version called the Novo 2K. By shooting 2K uncompressed RAW, the Novo 2K enables filmmakers to have full control of latitude, exposure and color renditions, for example, giving them another powerful tool at their disposal.

It's unclear if this is based on the HERO3, but in order for Radiant to get the HERO3 shooting uncompressed RAW, they would have to unlock the firmware and write their own, as well as the hardware support behind it. This could be the case, but it's probably more likely that they've taken a pre-built industrial camera and have repurposed it for their needs. Or perhaps this is just another mod which takes the somewhat aging SI-2K senor and puts it in a new body. That actually seems like the most likely scenario, as Radiant probably has quite a few SI-2K cameras around.

Plenty of you didn't understand why anyone would want a GoPro HERO3 with an interchangeable lens system, but it's a specialty rental item, just like the new Novo 2K will likely be. These are great when you need to squeeze a camera into a very small space, or mount a number of them on a vehicle with more control than the GoPros and other action cameras usually offer.

Uncompressed 2K RAW will mean pretty high data rates, so it will be interesting how they plan on recording the image. It may be that the camera has to be tethered, and if that's the case, it would certainly limit its usefulness. We should find out more specs in the next few days as Cine Gear gets under way.

Link: Radiant Images to Unveil Novo 2K – a Novo that Shoots Uncompressed RAW – at Cine Gear Expo this Weekend

Your Comment

28 Comments

Their website's mailing list pop-up thing won't disappear, I tried the X and subscibing, still pops up. Annoying.

May 30, 2013 at 10:56PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Nate

I've searched for test footage of this. Haven't found any. Does anyone know of any footage from this?

May 30, 2013 at 11:51PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene

Holy smeg! Everyone and their mother, onto the 2k raw gravy train!

May 31, 2013 at 12:59AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Radi-ain't

... why must you use that word!!!!

May 31, 2013 at 3:26AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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RAW?

May 31, 2013 at 5:50AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Tulio

Smeg?

May 31, 2013 at 9:10AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Jeff Waweru

gravy?

May 31, 2013 at 10:01AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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grma

train?

May 31, 2013 at 11:44AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Aaron G

Lulz -_-

May 31, 2013 at 12:09PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Kraig

bird?

May 31, 2013 at 3:28PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Chris Lambert

"These are great when you need to squeeze a camera into a very small space, or mount a number of them on a vehicle with more control than the GoPros and other action cameras usually offer."

The original NOVO was used to shoot the entirety of 127 Hours, not just tight scenes. I never thought in all my life I would see so much detail of James Franco's face.

May 31, 2013 at 1:15AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene

Well they used the SI-2K, which I didn't even think about could probably be the sensor in the 2K Novo. I don't think they ever called their SI-2K rigs Novo, but they also used the SI-2K extensively in End of Watch.

May 31, 2013 at 4:46AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Joe Marine
Camera Department

And of course for Slumdog Millionaire - I believe they shot 60% of the movie with the SI2K

May 31, 2013 at 6:54AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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mariano

I'm curios too what they did to build this 2K camera.

I heard an interview with the man that thought of the idea for the NOVO. He said he couldn't change anything of the GoPro guts for legal reasons. Here's the interview. It's from two months ago and he only talks about the NOVO. There's nothing in at about the 2K.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SLSpSOwerGI

May 31, 2013 at 9:31AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene

"I don’t think they ever called their SI-2K rigs Novo"

I think you're right, I don't think they did.

May 31, 2013 at 10:13AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene

Since GoPro people are really smart I believe they will launch a kind of B-cam or crash cam that you could buy with less than the rental of a week of these Novos.

They could offer a modular system, kind of RED, but very small, a microRED, with raw 4K, perhaps at less than 1000 $.

May 31, 2013 at 4:34AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Simon

I've been thinking the same thing. The Sony chip in the Hero3 supports 4K at at least 24p -- I doubt 60p is far behind. Or they could go up to a somewhat larger form factor, maybe something like the Nikon V1, which uses an Aptina sensor capable of 4K at 60p, and with a decent (~12-stop) dynamic range. GoPro is in a unique position in that they could incorporate CineForm RAW without all the "but they'd have to pay licensing fees" BS generally offered as a reason that BMD didn't use it on the BMC.

May 31, 2013 at 8:18AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Stenbolt

I called GoPro a couple months ago asking if they were thinking of making a second line of cameras that had the HERO3 Black guts in it but had some traditional camcorder features and changeable lenses. The tech department guy on the phone said it was a good idea and they likely would do it if enough people requested it. Some GoPro users I've seen commenting about it on the internet are strictly against the idea because "GoPro is an action cam, only!". But an even larger percentage of GoPro users were excited about the idea since they could get the same GoPro picture for weddings, parties, and such. I like the GoPro a lot because of the picture, color, resolution, and low price. Plus, it's such an interesting camera. There is another camera that has a picture with nicer color, though I can't tell without a test which picture has better resolution. It's the Sony RX100. It does 1080p at 60fps. BUT, it doesn't have a mic jack, or a headphone jack, or clean HDMI. :-(

But I agree, GoPro has more potential than being just an action cam.

This is a video made with the RX100: http://vimeo.com/45682834

May 31, 2013 at 9:50AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene

meant to say, "There's another low price camera that has a picture with nicer color."

May 31, 2013 at 9:56AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene

and price???

May 31, 2013 at 7:06AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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You're not the only one asking that question. They say because the camera is built by hand, not mass produced, the price may be high. So for now they will just be renting it.

Since the first week they started renting the NOVO, the 2K predecessor, all of the 25 cameras they built are constantly out, rented in use. They built a few more and those too are constantly rented. Seems like it would be a good seller.

May 31, 2013 at 10:07AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene

This is a little off topic but there's a new clip showing skin tones of the BMPC.

May 31, 2013 at 12:38PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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David F

May 31, 2013 at 10:58PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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bruno

Great! I thought graphene would be great for sensors. Graphene is sheet of graphite one atom think. It would take a stack of 3 million sheets of graphene to equal one millimeter thick stack. If a pixel can be made from grahene we would see resolution way beyond 4k.

This is a 6 minute video explaining what graphene is:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EX8ClPVkD1g

June 1, 2013 at 12:51AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene

"...... image sensor from graphene that promises to improve the quality of images captured in low light conditions. In tests, it has proved to be 1,000 times more sensitive to light than existing complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS)...... graphene sensors will be up to five times cheaper than camera sensors today...."

http://www.gizmag.com/graphene-imaging-sensor/27718/

June 1, 2013 at 1:00PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene

Saw it today. the images on the monitor looked pretty fantastic. Its REALLY small.
They'll do good business with this. Their large stand was packed.

June 1, 2013 at 3:05AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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marklondon

Did they say if there's footage from it on the internet?

June 1, 2013 at 12:18PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene

This is how they put it in the description of a video just put up on YouTube:

"The Novo 2K is a re-imagined SI-2K updated from Radiant's Nano camera. Housed in a rugged outer shell, it shoots uncompressed RAW and features an interchangeable lens mount."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNHatdOZQbk

June 1, 2013 at 7:04PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Gene