As many of you may already know or should know…4K is here to stay! That’s right…each year the past several we’ve been hearing and seeing more and more 4K buzz at big expos like CES and Nabshow especially. So far we’ve seen the 4K TV and Professional Monitors hit market each year but at a very high buy in price. Though more recently the hottest screen for the money is the the Seiki 4K going for around $1499(or less…I’ve seen them sell for as little as $1k on ebay). This has been one big issue with 4K still taking a long time to be embraced outside of the local Movie Theaters like Regal, AMC, or for me locally Cinetopia have all upgraded screens to 4K. This past Nabshow we also got another curve ball. Blackmagic Design introduced a 4K Cinema Camera to follow last years 2.5K for $3k camera. The exciting part is it’s only $4K for 4K(you can learn more about it on my Blackmagic Booth vid). The other issue have been how do I play it out. Well more recently various companies are offering you options. Nvidia have several offering that will output 4K, Matrox as well with their 4K Mojito Card(also check out my booth vid for Matrox with Dan discussing their new 4K card), and again Blackmagic with their New DeckLink 4K Extreme so as you can see you have options!
Unfortunately I can’t offer you any ideas to build your own 4K i/o card, camera, or monitor…but if you’re like me and are looking forward to a World In 4K…then one other major piece of the puzzle outside of a fairly beefy machine like my HP Z820 which is my Workstation of choice(you can also follow my journey switching from Mac to HP here). As of now the fastest machine for your A/V needs is the the HP Z820…only time will tell how the new MacPro performs next to a pimped out Z820(I would love to put it to the test Apple…you can learn more about the new 2013 MacPro here). So it’s pretty clear all the companies are bringing 4K hardware to market sooner than later-reality is…it’s already here). It really only comes down to money. There really isn’t a compromise. In time all tech gets better, faster, cheaper. I only expect to see more in the coming years!
So what does that all this above have to do with anything. Well in my blog post I like to not just give you one idea…I like to let you in on the variety of stuff you might need. One area I think can be easily forgotten is how you plan to store all this data, play it back, and have a backup. Well when it comes to 4K it’s a ton of Data. I myself own a Red and shoot everything in 4K. I outgrew my 8-bay iStoragePro iT8MIS. Nothing against their bigger 16 bay raids….I just hit a bottleneck in my workflow with my old 3GB/s Atto R380 and iStoragePro solution. I needed bigger, better, faster. I priced it around and iStoragePro had a nice enclosure but at this point in time out of my budget. I believe it sells for around $2k(by itself with no drives). If you don’t have the time to tackle a DIY raid I highly recommend their solutions. Another company that a lot of Red users use is Maxx Digital. They have a sweet soluiton but is pricy. I priced out a 32 TB solution at $12.5K I believe. Not all of us including me can afford that(at least not at this time). So I started looking into a DIY solution. Doing some basic searches I really didn’t find any info on creating such a raid. Since I’ve been up against this challenge and no good documented solution I figured this might be of great interest being that the transition to 4K is getting to be a lot more possible(this 4K do we need it or not debate is not what this post is about-it’s for users who want to or need to and need a bigger, better, faster raid they might be able to build themselves-but I assure you this applies to anyone really. This will work with any format smaller or bigger…it’s just storage…but not all storage can handle 4K so that’s why I’m sharing how you can build your own)!
So after a fair amount of research and some bad information I ended up building my own the hard way buying stuff, trying it, and buying different stuff cause the retailers didn’t exactly give me the correct info(won’t name any companies names). So I’ve taken the guess work out. I can’t give you an exact step by step but I’ll give you the basics. Since I am using an old SCSI enclosure we gutted out giving you an exact step my step to build the exact raid I built would be a bit pointless since it’s an old box and likely impossible to find the exact one. The good part is rack mount enclosures abide to a specific spec to fit the rack. So good news is likely any old rack will work. Just search ebay like I did and you’ll likely find one. All you need to look out for is that it’s tall enough to install the hot-sway boxes, is deep enough to house all the cable and SAS controller, and have a single or dual or even triple power supply like mine..! You can also just pick up a really large extended computer tower case…just be sure you can install all the hot-swap boxes in the front without any issues. Power supplies are fairly cheap and hard drives don’t require much power at all. Since I built a rack style raid I will focus on that scenario but I’m just mentioning it if you can’t find one or don’t want a rack style raid you can just use a computer case and install the same hardware in it.
First off I’m going to provide the Parts List for 4K DIY Raid:
(Note: * Reference pic of DIY 4K Raid – Inside View; pic below for detailed breakdown)!
- Qty 1 – Enclosure(I found one on Ebay and gutted it leaving just the Power Supplies)
- Qty 1 – Raid Card Areca 1882x external mini-sas hookup(they also have internal cards too)!
- Qty 2 – 1m SFF-8088 to SFF-8088 External SAS Cable(two cable for faster throughput)
- Qty 1 – Astek A33606-PCI(past 8 typically need an expander depending on your Raid Card)
- Qty 1 – 5.25″ cage for Astek expander enclosure to mount above Astek card
- Qty 4 – 1m SFF-8087 (host) to 4x 7 pin SATA (device) Internal SAS/SATA Fanout Cable to connect AMS internal sata/sas ports to the internal 8087 miniSAS Astek ports
- Qty 3 – 3.5″ x 5″ AMS Backplane Module Model #DS-3151SSBK
- Qty 16 – Western Digital HD(WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5″)
- Qty 1 – Optional Kingwin SATA Mobile Rack(to use all 4 ports x 4 cables = 16 drives)
So lets get started..!
Internally we had to create a small aluminum riser plate so we had something to mount the Astek card and cage to(you could do this a bit more crude by just finding some small pieces of aluminum at a hardware store and glue it. To cut use a wood saw or get a blade that can cut metal, table saw, or band saw-basically use whatever you can get your hands on. worst case scenario use a some strong glue. Again this will differ greatly depending on what enclosure you find).
Pic below is a shot of the old SCSI backplane bottom plate we remove from old hot-sway modules(note the spacer/riser plate to mount to the new AMS Backplanes Modules(note bought this before Sata III-but they work. If you buy a new one it states Sata III, SAS, etc.)..!
- Enclosure(I bought a used enclosure on ebay with shipping): $ 100
- Areca 1882x $ 779
- 2-1m SFF-8088 to SFF-8088 External SAS Cable $47 each $ 94
- Astek A33606-PCI SAS Expander Card $ 415
- 5.25″ cage for Astek expander to mount above card $ 25
- 4-3ware CBL-SFF8087OCF-10M Fanout Cables $15 each $ 60
- 3-AMS Backplane Modules Model #DS-3151SSBK $99 ea $ 297
- 16-Western Digital HD WD1002FAEX 1TB $99 each $1594
- Kingwin SATA Mobile Rack $ 19
Dan May President of Blackmagic Design on New Features Coming in Resolve v10..!
Hollywood’s most powerful and creative color correction!
DaVinci Resolve uses node based image processing where each node can have color correction, power windows and effects. Nodes are similar to layers, but more powerful as you can change the connections between the nodes. Join nodes sequentially or in parallel to combine grades, effects, mixers, gaussian blurs, keys and custom curves in any order for mind blowing creativity. You can reconnect nodes in any order for all types of exciting and cutting edge creative looks.
The World Leader
DaVinci Resolve is the world’s most advanced color grading system and with DaVinci you get the system that’s used on more feature films and television programming worldwide. DaVinci Resolve is the difference that makes high-end work so breathtaking! Invented in partnership with Hollywood studios for high-end feature film work, DaVinci Resolve is also perfect for episodic television production, commercials, independent films, music videos and more!
Award Winning DaVinci Resolve Colorist Control Surface
True Real Time
Computer based solutions are normally limited to a single GPU or a single computer. DaVinci Resolve smashes this limitation because it lets you add extra GPU cards or even clusters of multiple computers for super computer power! This means you get the real time performance you need when you’re in a room full of clients. Add dozens of primaries, secondaries, power windows, multi point tracking, blurs and more. Then just hit play, it always works!
DaVinci Resolve’s Powerful Node Display
Wide Camera Support
With an incredible range of digital film cameras available, DaVinci Resolve includes more native camera file support so you can grade directly from the camera files to get the best results. Grade direct with CinemaDNG RAW files, ARRI Alexa™ RAW files, RED One™, EPIC™ and Scarlet™ R3D files with premium de-bayer including 5K, monochrome and HDRx with image blend. Also supported is Cineform™, Cineform 3D, Phantom™, GoPro™, Canon™ C300, C500 and 1D, 5D, 7D and Sony™ F65/F55/F5 RAW and XAVC and many more!
Fast Creative Features
Unique YRGB Colorspace
All image processing is at the deepest 32-bit floating point YRGB so all corrections are always operating at the highest bit depths in real time. Deeper bit depths combined with YRGB colorspace mean you get dramatically wider color correction range and can generate “looks” that simple NLE color correction cannot match. DaVinci’s YRGB processing means you can adjust the luminance gain without rebalancing the color of your whites, mids or blacks so you’re not chasing the correction you’re aiming for!
DaVinci Resolve’s powerful Curves Pallete
Optical Quality Processing
DaVinci’s high quality image processing is so revolutionary it won an EmmyTM award for contributions to the television industry! All image processing is at the deepest 32-bit floating point and the unique DaVinci correction algorithms mean you get a more optical feel to corrections. When pushing grades, whites blow out in a more subtle and delicate way without the horrible clipped look. Then, when you need to resize, reposition or zoom any shot, the full quality is retained and all in real time!
for an independent film-maker”
Upgrade as you Grow
Start with Davinci Resolve Lite for free!
DaVinci Resolve comes in three powerful solutions. Start with DaVinci Resolve Lite that you can download for free! It’s extremely powerful with unlimited correction nodes, layers, quality and file types. Then when you need extra power for noise reduction, multi GPUs, film resolutions and 3D tools, simply purchase DaVinci Resolve Software for only US$995. When you need the speed and power of the elegant DaVinci control surface, then the full DaVinci Resolve can be purchased!
Fast Creative Features
DaVinci Resolve has been designed by colorists for colorists! Get the same powerful features and real time performance that’s the force behind Hollywood post production! Read more >
Efficient Project Workflows
Edit with Apple Final Cut Pro, Avid Media Composer and other leading applications and simply move your projects in and out of DaVinci Resolve for color correction! Read more >
Complete Hands on Control
The elegant DaVinci Resolve Control Surface lets you make fine creative adjustments over every aspect of your picture, without taking your eyes off the screen! Read more >
|DaVinci Resolve Lite|
Entry level DaVinci color correction software for use with third party panels.
|DaVinci Resolve Software|
Award winning DaVinci color correction software for use with third party panels.
Award winning DaVinci color correction with full DaVinci Resolve Control Surface.
Dan May President of Blackmagic Design gives us the scoop on their newest and coolest cameras from the BMD Pocket Cinema Camera $1k(with DNG Raw for $995), or the new BMD 4K Cinema Camera for $4k($3,995)shipping begins in July 2013.
Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera
A true Super 16 digital film camera
that’s small enough to take anywhere!
Features an active MFT lens mount and high resolution 3.5″ LCD.
Shoot True Digital Film
The digital film camera
that’s always with you!
Wide Dynamic Range
Retain more image detail for more color grading power
The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera delivers a true film look because it captures a super wide dynamic range of 13 stops, so your images look truly cinematic. This means you retain all sensor data for DaVinci Resolve color grading!
The technology of a digital film camera packed into a tiny size
Precision engineered with state of the art technology, the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera takes all the high quality features of a professional digital cinema camera and packs them into an incredibly small size. This premium quality design features a solid magnesium alloy chassis, an MFT mount for interchangeable optics, Super 16 size sensor, 13 stops of dynamic range and high quality ProRes 422 (HQ) and lossless CinemaDNG RAW file formats! Every aspect of the image path has been totally optimized for quality!
Micro Four Thirds Lenses
Flexible lens mount for all types of quality glass
Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera lets you use the most incredible range of lenses. With the Super 16 size sensor you can use a wide range of adapters for film quality Super 16 lenses, or use commonly available low cost Micro Four Thirds lenses and more. With full electronic control of your lens, you can simply point and set iris all on command! The Micro Four Thirds lens mount also gives you the flexibility to adapt to PL or other lens mounts as required.
Record to SD Cards
Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera features a built in SD card recorder that captures stunning ProRes 422 (HQ) and lossless compressed CinemaDNG files to fast SDXC cards. As an open format, it’s compatible with most popular NLE software so you get a digital camera that’s perfectly designed for post production workflows. When you’ve finished recording you can easily mount the card straight into a laptop, ready for editing. You can even color grade direct from the card with the included DaVinci Resolve Lite! SD cards are commonly available and can be formatted for either HFS+ or exFAT, making them compatible with either Mac OS X or Windows.
Open File Format
Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera records into high quality ProRes 422 (HQ) and lossless compressed CinemaDNG files so you retain fine image detail with wide dynamic range for amazing images. This means that Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera is one of the few cameras to support true open file formats, so you’re not locked into a strange file format that your editing software can’t handle. You get two dynamic range settings, film Log or video REC709, so you can choose the right dynamic range for your project. Using DaVinci Resolve Lite you can color correct files natively or transcode them into a different file format to suit your post production workflow.
Ultra Portable Design
Lightweight and incredibly strong
Designed as the world’s most compact digital film camera, the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera features a lightweight, elegant design that fits into your pocket. Produced from magnesium alloy for incredible strength, it includes a high resolution LCD for precise focusing and a built in SD recorder, so you get a complete solution without the need to buy expensive accessories. That’s vital in such an ultra compact design! With integrated stereo microphones you can also capture great quality sound. The removable rechargeable battery can be swapped quickly, so is perfect when you’re on the run!
High Resolution Display
Crystal clear view of your work
The extremely high resolution 3.5” LCD allows you to monitor while shooting and review recorded files on the SD card. The high resolution screen makes it easy to focus accurately and lets you zoom in to 1:1 size so you focus precisely every time. Camera status displayed at the bottom of the screen shows record status, shutter angle, time lapse interval, aperture setting, ISO, battery level and record time. Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera even includes built in metadata entry.
The professional connections on the side include a micro HDMI out with optional overlays for easy on set monitoring. You also get a standard mini jack microphone input that’s compatible with common AV style microphones, plus a mini jack headphone socket for audio monitoring using headphones. A LANC control input is included for remote operation, and you can power the camera and recharge the removable battery with the 12V DC input.
Using an MFT lens adapter you can mount almost any professional lens.
Crafted from super strong magnesium alloy, the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera’s incredibly compact design is tough and stylish.
With 13 stops of wide dynamic range, Super 16 size sensor and high quality ProRes recording you get a true digital film look.
Perfect for a wide range of shooting styles, the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera can be taken almost anywhere.
Loads of Accessories
The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera can be used with a huge amount of lenses and third party accessories.
|Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera|
Features Super 16 size 1080HD sensor, 13 stops of Dynamic Range, MFT mount, SD recorder and display.
Blackmagic Production Camera 4K
World’s most portable 4K
digital film camera!
Shoot Ultra HD TV or 4K feature films with the new Blackmagic Production Camera 4K. You get a large Super 35 size sensor with professional global shutter combined with precision EF mount optics, high quality visually lossless compressed CinemaDNG RAW and Apple ProRes 422 (HQ)™ file recording for a complete self contained solution. The built in touchscreen lets you monitor, change settings and enter metadata directly on the camera!
Stunning Beauty of 4K
Utilize the power of 4K resolution in your work
Compact solid metal design
The Blackmagic Production Camera 4K is precision engineered for quality in an incredibly small size. You get a beautifully crafted design featuring a machined aluminum chassis, EF lens mount for interchangeable optics, high resolution 4K Super 35 size sensor, global shutter, visually lossless compressed CinemaDNG RAW and ProRes 422 (HQ) file format. With built in uncompressed audio recording you can record professional audio straight to the ProRes files and totally eliminate separate audio syncing during post production.
Large Super 35 Sensor
With a large Super 35 size sensor you get familiar framing and behavior from the lenses you already own! The sensor features a global shutter so you get perfect panning and with minimal crop factor you also get beautiful wide angle shots from your wide angle lenses. If you’re working in HD you’ll love the freedom to reframe and zoom into shots without any resolution loss, and when down scaling from 4K to HD you get incredibly smooth and clean images.
EF Compatible Lens Mount
Supports the world’s best lenses
Super Fast SSD Recorder
Capture 4K ProRes™ directly
to a removable SSD!
With a built in SSD recorder, Blackmagic Production Camera 4K easily captures 4K in ProRes 422 (HQ) and compressed CinemaDNG files. You get a 4K camera designed from the ground up to be part of your post production workflow! Capturing to a removable SSD means that once you’ve finished shooting you can simply connect the SSD to your computer and edit or color correct your shots straight from the disk! Disks can be formatted in either HFS+ or exFAT for Mac and Windows compatibility.
Open File Formats
Standard files for your NLE
Unlike traditional cameras that record obscure file formats that take time to convert before you can start post production, the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K records directly to files that are compatible with your editing software. The wide dynamic range of the Super 35 size sensor can be mapped into the quantizing range of the file, so you can color grade shots with greater detail in highlights and shadows. If you’re working fast, simply select ‘Video’ and shoot in regular REC709 color space.
Beautifully Crafted Design
Machined from solid aluminum for strength and beauty
Easy to Use Touchscreen
Enter metadata on the camera
Use the capacitive touchscreen to access menus to change settings such as recording format, shutter angle and more! Double tap the screen to zoom into the image for fast and accurate focus. Tap once on the screen to display the metadata entry page where you can enter information such as shot number, search tags, scene number, timecode and more. You can even set shot number and other data to increment automatically! This metadata saves directly into your files and is compatible with popular editing software. Managing your files in post production is now much simpler!
Higher image quality means even more grading power
No need to buy expensive
Blackmagic Production Camera 4K uses standard connections, so you never need to source custom cables! It includes a 6G-SDI connection for Ultra HD resolution or down converted HD output over a single SDI cable. The built in Thunderbolt connection lets you plug into a laptop computer and use the included UltraScope software for real time waveform monitoring. There are 1/4” jack mic/line inputs for recording the highest quality uncompressed audio, plus a 12V to 30V DC input, a 3.5mm headphone input socket and LANC remote control!
Blackmagic Production Camera 4K includes advanced technologies for high resolution Ultra HD TV and 4K film production.
With its machined aluminum chassis, the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K is both elegantly styled and super tough.
Shoot Ultra HD
Use the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K for feature films, documentaries, live events and more!
Loads of Accessories
Use the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K with a wide range of lenses and third party accessories.