March 3, 2014

Kinefinity Gets Serious with New 6K KineMAX & 4K KineMINI RAW Cameras

No that's not a typo. RED DRAGON is about to get some company as far as 6K is concerned. Chinese camera maker Kinefinity, who has so far produced two cinema cameras, the KineRAW S35 and KineRAW-MINI, has just announced that they are working on a brand new 6K camera, the KineMAX 6K, and a 4K version of the MINI. Check out specs and pricing for both models below.

KineMAX 6K RAW Camera

Many thanks to cinema5D and also to Newsshooter for finding this and putting this information together (more information is available at the Kinefinity site as well), here is some of what we know so far about the 6K camera:

  • 5760 x 3240 Super 35 CMOS Sensor
  • PL, Nikon, Canon EF, B4 Mount Options
  • 12-bit 6K up to 30fps
  • 4K High Speed Mode/3K 30fps/2K 100 fps
  • Cropped Modes: 4K 50fps/3K 60fps/2K 100fps
  • 1080p and 720p options as well
  • 800 Native ISO
  • 14 Stops of Dynamic Range at 6K
  • 16 Stops at Pixel-Binned 3K Resolution
  • Uncompressed CinemaDNG 6K to Two KineMAG
  • Compressed Cineform RAW to One KineMAG
  • Two SDI & Two HDMI Ports
  • Phantom Powered XLR/USB/Headpone Ports
  • OLPF designed to work with both 6K and crop/scaled modes
  • Price: Unknown, but Pre-Order is around $3,000

KineMINI 4K RAW Camera

And here are specs on the 4K KineMINI (more information is available at the Kinefinity site):

  • 4K Super 35mm CMOS Sensor (same sensor as original MINI)
  • PL, Nikon, Canon EF, B4 Mount Options
  • 12-bit 4K/ 14-bit 2K
  • 4K Uncompressed or Compressed CinemaDNG
  • 2K Cineform RAW
  • 4K RAW up to 30fps
  • 2K up to 96fps
  • 1080p up to 100fps
  • 13 Stops of Dynamic Range in 2K (Possibly less in 4K)
  • HDMI and SDI
  • 2 USB 3.0 Ports
  • Built in WiFi
  • Price: Body Only a little over $3,o00, and packages range from a barebones a little under $4,000 to full package a little under $6,000

If you got an original MINI or S35, there are upgrade options. From Newsshooter, here are some details:

...for old MINI users who bought the camera with promised 4K or RAW options the upgrade is $1990 US and for those who didn’t it will cost $2590 US.

The original larger KineRAW S35 camera, which was the company’s first, has not been left out either and can be upgraded to 4K and high speed too for $1990 US. It’s good to see owners of the older cameras are not forgotten. 

KineStation Transcoding Software

KineRAW also has their own software called KineStation:

KineStation™ is the core of Kine camera system. KineStation™ and KineRAW consist of hybrid digital cinema system to cover serious filmmaking and quick post workflow. Kine Cameras captures light and images which are RAW and remain native information as possible at frontend, while KineStation™ transcode the RAW images into the specific format based on post workflow which may suit for this shot or this team, at backend.

It is a software at backend, running on your DIT lap-top or workstation, and play key role in Kine Hybrid System (KHS).

So When Do We Get to See Them?

This is all very exciting news, and the specs on paper look great for the 6K camera. I know this comes up every time we talk about 6K, but it is not intended as a display resolution, but as a way to get sharper and better-looking 4K images (this is because each pixel only represents one color and the entire image must be interpolated from these pixels -- basically, the more the better when you're using a single sensor).

While we don't know the price for the 6K camera or packages, the 4K KineMINI is inexpensive considering its specs, but just like with RED, it's not very usable right out of the box, and will need some additional accessories that will add to the price (the 6K camera needs a few as well, but its settings can be changed right from the side of the camera). Neither camera will have built-in ND filters, but considering these should be much cheaper than equivalent cameras from other companies, I don't see that as a huge deal.

We will likely see something about these at NAB, but the biggest issue right now for the rest of the world is that Kinefinity has better support and relations in China and in Europe than they do in the US. In fact, I don't believe there are any US distributors for their products at this times, which means getting one isn't exactly easy (and their website isn't totally English-friendly).

I think it's probably best to keep expectations low for seeing these in any significant numbers in the US, but if somebody were to pick up Kinefinity in the States and not only distribute their cameras, but also provide support, they might become a lot more popular. While rolling shutter wasn't great on the previous cameras, the images looked good enough, as you can see in these videos below (NOT from the new cameras):

Read more about both cameras using the links below (and if you can read the slides, feel free to add any of that information in the comments so we can correct this post).

Links:

Your Comment

58 Comments

Yeah right. Talk to me when you have more than a spec sheet.

March 3, 2014 at 6:45PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Santa Clause

Kinefinity has been making cameras for years, just not necessarily for cinema. Both of their current cinema cameras exist and have footage online, so I see no reason why these won't also see the light of day sooner rather than later.

March 3, 2014 at 6:58PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Joe Marine
Camera Department

They're going to be at NAB, cameras out shortly after.
Amazed that no-one has picked them up to distribute here yet. That may change.
The original KiniRAW was a decent 1st try - if the colour science is improved (and hopefully the rolling shutter!)
then they'll become very attractive.
Still a couple of NAB surprises to come though.....

March 3, 2014 at 7:52PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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marklondon

It does seem that someone would pick up this business. Wish I could be at NAB!

March 3, 2014 at 8:06PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Gene

The rolling shutter is improved indeed. Check this out http://www.filmaker.cn/forum.php?mod=viewthread&tid=44253

March 4, 2014 at 8:17AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Jason Zhou

One of my friend is a owner of Kinefinity. Joe if you are interested I'd like to send you a KineMini 4K camera in April to review.

March 4, 2014 at 8:13AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Jason Zhou

Hey Jason if you have a few minutes could you email me? My information is over on the contact page: http://nofilmschool.com/contact/

March 4, 2014 at 9:20PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Joe Marine
Camera Department

I've been saving up to buy a camera for years now. But I think you'd have to be crazy to buy into any one camera system these days. I think I'm better off buying some good glass and just renting. Let the rental houses keep up with the madness.

March 3, 2014 at 6:57PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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CC

I guess you're right even though many rental companies only offer camera+lenses packages these days. I remember trying to rent CP2 lenses for a shoot a couple of years ago and everyone was telling me I needed to rent at least a Canon 7D (for an extra 250 euros a day no less) otherwise they weren't giving me the glass.

March 3, 2014 at 7:44PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Emiliano Ranzani

I live in Los Angeles and there is no shortage of rental options around here. Maybe in other parts of the globe this could be a problem. There are also a handful of web based delivery rental services popping up. Anybody tried one of those rental companies yet?

March 3, 2014 at 8:28PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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CC

Hey CC -

I've used Lensrentals.com and lensprotogo.com a bunch of times - in fact, being Iowa based, they're my go to rental, even when I'm traveling nationwide. Awesome customer experience.

Thanks to those rental companies, we've been able to do some productions on our documentary, Broke, Busted & Disgusted: http://igg.me/at/bbdthefilm/x/6383903

March 3, 2014 at 8:40PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Yes - i used borrowlenses.com last week to rent a Nikon DSLR and lens for an event with a really quick turn around. They were able to get me the gear overnight with the best 3 day rentals prices I could find. Big catch to all of these is you either need a pretty good business rental insurance rider or a credit card with a REALLY high limit to put a hold for the full value of the gear you are renting. They have great CP.2 and Canon Cine lens packages on the site, in addition to cameras. No need to do preset packages - everything can be built as needed.

March 4, 2014 at 12:40AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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If I've understood the Varicam article correctly, you'll be able to swap S35 and 2/3" sensor modules in the same system, so that might be a viable candidate for a buy in. It'd cost you, but Panasonic has always been pretty solid in my book.

March 4, 2014 at 8:14AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Pat

12 bit 6K at 30fps, 14s DR, 2 SDI's, phantom XLR, body for $3000.00...... W in TF!

March 3, 2014 at 8:04PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Gene

Yeah, doubtful the 6k version will go for $3k. More than likely that 4k version will go for $3k, and that will probably be utter bare bones; sensor in a box with a few buttons.

March 3, 2014 at 8:46PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Film Voltage

The $3000.00 might be a down payment for the 6K. If it really is $3000.00 it will be shocking, literally shocking.

March 3, 2014 at 9:19PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Gene

Dude, $3000 is for down payment.

March 4, 2014 at 8:24AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Jason Zhou

The line above says "Price: Unknown, but Pre-Order is around $3,000"

Maybe should say "Price: Unknown, but Pre-Order down payment is $3,000"

March 4, 2014 at 9:41PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Gene

FWIW, Chinese made audio amplifiers - mostly vacuum tube based, which can be very expensive in the US since many of them are hand wired - have a number of the US distributors or are sold on eBay. If KineMax shows a solid working prototype at the NAB, they should pick up whatever they need on the retail side without needing to go on eBay.
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As to specs, if one presumes this will work as advertised, one pretty much is set until the next generation format is introduced and that will probably be a medium format 4K cam rather than an 8K cam. For now. And this unit is here for the "middle class" price of well under $10K. As Yakov Smirnoff used to say, "What a country".

March 3, 2014 at 8:45PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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DLD

DLD

Yes, apparently China is now that "what a country."

.....................................

Did you see this new GH4K footage? It's the nicest I've seen so far. http://vimeo.com/87532648

March 3, 2014 at 9:24PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Gene

ya, I saw that a while ago ... not 4K ... presuming the sharpness holds though, not bad ...
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ps. Nikon released a H.265/HEVC "station" today ... I guess it's supposed to compress a live 4K footage into manageable sizes ... I wonder if 4K is in their plans ... it should be

March 3, 2014 at 10:09PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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DLD

It was rumored the next Nikon 1V will have 4K to the 30 minute limit. If they'd take off the 30 minute limit and add a headphone and microphone jack they'd get more sales. A post on NFS not too long ago didn't sound optimistic that Nikon is going to 4K in the higher end cameras. Maybe the next 5200 will have 4K with no 30 minute limit. Would be nice. :-)

March 3, 2014 at 10:18PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Gene

Ok, but you didn't see this one:

[ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2BoS3N45tR8 ]

or did you

March 4, 2014 at 12:44AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Gene

DLC, you got a link for the Nikon H265 station?
Don't seem to find anything about it.

March 4, 2014 at 2:28AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Henri

I guess this is just a software package - http://www.nikon.com/news/2014/0303_265ca1_01.htm
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PS. Yes, Gene. I saw that video a couple of days ago and thought it's pretty effin' cold in Hungary.

March 4, 2014 at 3:42AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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DLD

There's open water. It's not that cold.

March 4, 2014 at 9:45PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Gene

the very thought of 16 stops of dynamic range makes my cock extra hard, I'm sorry, I'm a camera geek!

March 3, 2014 at 9:25PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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t. cal

Thanks for sharing

March 4, 2014 at 6:48AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Billy Barber

Not to rain on the parade but a while back I can remember seeing the kineraw mini against the canon 5d mkIII RAW and the canon out did the kineraw big time. The biggest difference if I remember correctly was in the highlights, the canon held up considerably better.

March 4, 2014 at 12:36AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Anthony Marino

[ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aG6v3c4ibq0 ] -
looks fine to me graded but I can see why this wasn't even sold in the US. A year ago, one could get similar performance from a bunch of the Japanese made cameras and camcorders via the usual channels. Anyhow, I don't know if many folks remember this but, back in October, 2013, the Atomos CEO predicted about twenty different 4K products to be announced before/during NAB'14. Well, with a month still to go, there are Sony AX 1, Z 100, AX 100; Panasonic GH4 and Varicam; Kinemax 6K and 4K ... and that's only seven. With the BMPC4K announced in 2013, there are no new 4K cams from Canon or Nikon. No new 4K camcorders from Canon, Panasonic or JVC. Nothing from Arri. I doubt the primarily photo camera manufacturers like Fuji or Olympus will have anything in 4K in time for the NAB ... but undoubtedly there will be some new models announced in a month. I expect to see a lot of new stuff in the $5K-$15K range because you can't have the $2K cams and the $30K cams and absolutely nothing in between.

March 4, 2014 at 2:01AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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DLD

I eat my words and just another example how some tests don't do a camera any good. I'm impressed with this footage.

March 4, 2014 at 12:17PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Anthony Marino

EOSHD did the review, comparing the RAW outputs of the 5D and the S35:

http://www.eoshd.com/content/10525/kinefinity-kineraw-review

March 5, 2014 at 7:07AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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We are rapidly reaching a point where super awesome (can't think of a better descriptor, sorry) spec cameras will be released for literally disposable prices. Lovely!

March 4, 2014 at 1:41AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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God I love Chinese ripoffs. Madskillz, guys. Focus harder on better sensor technology and you will be taken seriously not just in the low budget area.

March 4, 2014 at 4:42AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Natt

Here is their website in ENGLISH.
http://www.kinefinity.com/?lang=en

March 4, 2014 at 7:02AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Daniel

Meanwhile...Sony is about to crap some pants. F55 in a DSLR FF body!!!! http://www.sonyalpharumors.com/4k-ff-camera-with-fz-mount-and-a-mount-ad...

March 4, 2014 at 8:02AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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quobetah

More like an F5. The key is the clearly the price. If one can get an F5 performance for under $5K, that'd be something. On the other hand, would you need the external recorder for 4K or would this record 4K internally at a reasonable bit rate? F5 can do only 2K internally but at an impressive 10-bit 4:4:4 440 Mbps max. 10-bit 4:2:2 internal at ~ 240 Mbps (Z 100 bitrate) would be a major step up from GH4's 100 Mbps.
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BTW, DxO reviewed the Red Dragon camera and found its sensor to have the highest EV rating of any current cameras at about 15.

March 4, 2014 at 10:41AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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DLD

Most likely this will use the consumer version of XAVC which is XAVCS for product differentiation pruposes. 4K 30p is 60mbps;8bit: 4;2;0

March 4, 2014 at 4:57PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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quobetah

It's possible but XAVCs (Long GOP) is for the lower end Sony cameras and this aims much higher with its full frame sensor, pro lens mountings and references to F5. This doesn't mean that this camera won't have the XAVCS option but that it should have the compressed internal 4K at 240 Mbps for 24p that Z 100 has at the very least. It would make sense price wise to make the 4K Raw available through their AXSR5 external recorder much like it is on F5. That way they could also keep a semblance of hierarchy on their FS-100 and FS-700 replacements. Z 100 is being currently sold at $5,500, lens included. With a similar set of features - but a FF sensor - this camera should slot around the same price point, give or take a grand.

March 4, 2014 at 5:31PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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DLD

What's up with that telescope antenna thingy on the left side? The rumor is a level 3, I'm sure Sony will come out with a 4k dslr style camera but I'm even more sure it will be nothing like the f55

March 4, 2014 at 12:21PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Anthony Marino

That's the thing where you strap the string when your measuring distance from camera sensor..all video cameras have them (FS100 onwards)

March 4, 2014 at 4:59PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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quobetah

If you are not Marcus and your name really is Gene then my apologies.

There's a commenter who uses several names, but mostly goes by the name Marcus, who has some kind of mania about 4K. He has gone so far as to use my ID to let everyone know how bitter he is about changes in the video world because of higher K's.

March 4, 2014 at 10:04PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Gene

Use a different name then. These are all anonymous anyway and you're wrong about who you think is using the same name as you. A million people read this site every month, if they want to use the name Gene, so what? What we do disapprove of is constantly using lots of different aliases and never contributing anything of use, and if it becomes egregious enough, we do take action against such people.

March 4, 2014 at 10:43PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Joe Marine
Camera Department

In this case I had a hunch it wasn't the same guy that had been following me around this blog. That's why I put a second comment about it.

But there was someone mimicking my name. When I did change my name to "Gene (not the 3 other Gene's)" he copied that too. And I did see his comments were deleted. I know it's time consuming to monitor every comment.

March 5, 2014 at 5:21AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Gene

is there any info on their Shutter ? Global or Rolling ?

March 5, 2014 at 2:02AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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With that DR, I would have assumed right away that it's rolling (but the whip pan effect isn't that bad, if you watch that Jason Zhou clip linked to earlier). New video processors give the sensors a faster readout - thus the high FPS capability as well - which minimizes the negative aspect of the rolling shutter.
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The funny thing about the BMPC4K is that, had they the picked rolling shutter, they could have gotten a high DR and may have also been able to achieve a sufficiently high frame rate, two of three holy grails of the camera connoisseurs. They went the other way with the global shutter, which gave them a low ISO, making it de facto only a studio camera with controlled lighting. But, if you shoot in a studio, how often do you need a global shutter anyway?

March 5, 2014 at 2:16AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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DLD

Rolling

March 5, 2014 at 9:42AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Jason Zhou

Jason, send me a KineMini 4K camera in April to review as well, please! Thanks! :-)

March 6, 2014 at 7:20PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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I see some issues in the highlights. Also the video is either poorly exposed or the highlights on the white statue aren't doing so well. I mean its not bad at all and amazing for the price if it is indeed as cheap as it appears to be. Other thing is I noticed purple edging around the bright areas I don't know if its Chromatic Aberration coming from the lens or something going on with the sensor itself. Still looks promising over all. Better the the BMC.

March 8, 2014 at 6:30AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Silton

Very curious about the images from these cams - as well as the first proper reviews! :-)

March 9, 2014 at 5:50AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Any chance I could get my hands on one as well? Or just set up a demo in NYC at a rental house to show off the system? I am an Epic owner and Phantom tech and am quite interested

March 9, 2014 at 11:03AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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brian merlen

a million? seriously?

March 9, 2014 at 11:11AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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brian merlen

The mini looks like it could be a good alternative to the FS700. Depending on the cost of getting a usable unit with ND's there could be a lot of value there. For me it would need to be a big savings like half the price of a ready to go 4k Sony Fs700.

March 9, 2014 at 11:13AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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ROFL..

March 9, 2014 at 4:16PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Archie

THNAKS for the reply but RollingShutter is a nightmare for VFX Works & VFX departments, that was why I asking...

March 10, 2014 at 11:41AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Great video Perry:This video quality was supreb. As far as the sound I had to have my speakers up to their limit in order to hear you clearly, but other than that it was FAB-U-LOOOO-SO!!!Nice to connect with you, it's been a long time!Roz

March 18, 2014 at 2:08PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Good question DLD! haha

May 14, 2014 at 3:43AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Daniel

This site was... how do I say it? Relevant!! Finally I've found something which helped me.
Thanks a lot!

June 3, 2014 at 9:40PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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