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Camera World - What are we really paying for? - Discuss!

Discussion in 'FILMMAKING, INDUSTRY, TECHNOLOGY' started by Village-Boi, Sep 24, 2012.

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  1. Village-Boi

    Village-Boi Well-Known Member

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    A short while back I had a conversation with Vince in which I jokingly mentioned that camera maufacturers would charge double the price of a camera for adding a line of 'software code'.

    The conversation went as follows -






    My question is why do firmware updates cost so much? Why do camera maufacturers purposely 'cripple' cameras that can easily handle much higher bit rates?... and then later sell updates to us as idiots for a high price?

    Why am I asking these questions? - About 4 days ago or so Canon confirmed that the £10,000 EOS-1D C DSLR is the EXACT same hardware as the £5000.00 1D-X DSLR all that is different is a 'jack' plus the addition of 4K firmware... oh and of course a tiny red plastic button - of course this pretty much caused a bit of online yawa (The US price is also double).
    The key things to look at are the 1D-C has full HD uncompressed out via HDMI with a 4-2-2 colour space at 1080 50/60p with internal (to CF cards full 4K resolution) while the 1D-X manages purported 1080 24/25/30p 4-2-0 dropping to 720p to get 50 or 60.

    Even The BlackMagic Cinema Camera guys are hinting at a firmware updates to 'add' certain things... (even as good as their amazing camera is straight out of the box).
    The Arri Alexa has an 'actual' 3.5K sensor size but outputs a 1080 image, you can buy a 'software key' for almost a grand & half to 'unlock' 120fps capability. So basically EVERYONE cheats the 'consumer'.

    For quite a while we were led to believe that cameras couldn't perform A, B or C because of hardware limitations, however, with the work of MagicLatern (the Canon hackers) and Vitaly (the Panasonic hacker) we found out that it's not really 'that' true. Of course a firmware update will not change certain things but...

    Makes you wonder what a simple basic off-the-shelf camcorder is 'really' capable of! What do you all think? Any other views?
     
  2. vince

    vince Well-Known Member

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    That is how they make the extra buck, bro. They have always been billing the buying public exorbitantly for these firmware updates (especially if the devices are for professional users) since the beginning of time. Another such example can be found in the PC world. The debate between gaming video cards and their professional oriented siblings still rages on as the latter cost a lot more while it uses, at best, the same hardware as the consumer cards. What is the difference between the two? You guessed it. FIRMWARE!!!
     
  3. Kala Lou

    Kala Lou Well-Known Member

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    I still say we put too much emphases on gear...
    I see stuff shot in the 90s on video that hold up better than some of these hi tech hd stuff of today, like the movie, Third World Cop was probably shot on a 3ccd video cam, long before all these HDSLR craze. We don't spend enough time learning how to use one gadget properly before we start hunting for the next best thing..

    wonka-meme-dslr-red.jpg

    P.S. I'm in the process of hacking my GH2....don't know if a higher bit rate will eliminate the pixelation I sometimes get in low light..
     
  4. Village-Boi

    Village-Boi Well-Known Member

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    Lol, that's the joy of consumerism... gotta have a pleasure in life :-)
     
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