As you may have spotted on our homepage we can now offer bundle pricing and a FREE Petrol bag on Canons C100 and C300. The accessories have been chosen with these specific cameras in mind and will allow you to get shooting right away.
Canon Eos C100: £4,800.00 (+ VAT)
Canon EOS C300 EF/PL: £9,800.00 (+ VAT)
These offers are AVAILABLE NOW so give one of our helpful staff a call on 0208 995 4664 or visit our Chiswick Showroom for more information.
Finance is now available for these bundles:
Further information is available at www.photolease.co.uk or call 020 7613 0633
Or you can apply now at: http://www.photolease.co.uk/offers/photolease_prokit.html
Here is another update on the camera shipments.
Some good news. If you have read my other posts about the causes of the camera delays then you know we have been dealing with a problem with our sensor supplier related to contamination of the glass that’s bonded on the front of the sensor. It’s not been clean and so we had to stop production of cameras.
There have been two issues here we have been dealing with, the first that the sensor supplier has not been able to see the contamination because their tests were not good enough, and secondly that they need to find a way of bonding the glass on the sensor without contamination.
The good news is that we got a small shipment of sensors that the sensor supplier had tested with their new test setup and they were all ok when we built cameras with them. This is good because they will now be able to see sensors that are contaminated and not ship us anything that’s unable to be used to build a camera.
Also, the sensor supplier has done a small run of sensors at the new company that’s bonding the glass and they got almost a 100% pass rate, which is also great. This means they finally have a solution to bonding on the glass that looks like it will work.
The plan at the moment is to do a small production run this week and we hope to get those sensors next week where we can build cameras using them and see how it all goes.
But things are looking quite good. This run of cameras next week will test the sensor supplier’s ability to build sensors without contamination and to also be able to test them correctly so we only get good sensors. If that’s all ok then we look like we will be able to move back into production.
I will update everyone next week when we know. I also hope to have more info on how fast they can ramp up with this new supplier and the new test.
I hope this update helps.
Well this is exciting. Very exciting, in fact.
When DSLR shooting went nuclear over the last few years, there has been a clamour for Canon to take the large sensor of DSLR and optimise it for video shooters. The C300 was the first answer to this, but with its 50 mega bit per second recording and £9K price tag it was squarely aimed at shooters working for broadcasters. There was a sense within the DSLR community that the camcorder wasn’t quite the low price/large sensor camcorder that would allow them to progress to a fully-fledged video camera.
Well, DSLR people…your time has come. The Canon C100 is slated for release in mid-late November and represents the ideal step up from DSLR shooting. Here are the key features:
So those are the features: What of the design and ergonomics? Well, it looks like a condensed C300 body with the LCD screen incorporated into the body itself rather than being a separate module. The handle incorporates the XLR inputs which then connect to the body just like the C300. I’m a fan: It makes the whole package nice and compact whilst still maintaining the modular nature of the rest of the Cinema EOS range.
Speaking of “the range”…the Cinema EOS range feels complete with this new addition. You have the C100 now right at the beginning of the range and designed for the post-DSLR shooter, the C300 is for the broadcast crowd who need the higher bitrate, and then you have the upcoming C500 for the commercial and cinema sector. Add to this the curious full-frame/4K motion JPEG 1DC and you have quite an arsenal now from Canon. And to think this all started with adding video to a DSLR!
We now have the C100 on our website with some preliminary pricing. We hope to get our hands on a pre-production model at the IBC Exhibition next week!
Today’s blog by Stuart
The Canon XF300 and XF305 are BBC approved handheld camcorders, shooting at 50 mega bits per second to compact flash card media. They are ideal actuality and documentary cameras for anyone wanting to travel and shoot for broadcast.
Canon are also gving a 2 year warranty on XF300s and XF305s bought through this offer.
So if you’ve been putting off your next broadcast-legal small camcorder purchase – now is the time to buy.
Want to know more about the Canon XF range? Then check out our guides on the Prokit Learning Resource, where you’ll find workflow guides, video Masterclasses from Canon experts and much more.
Welcome to the first of our post-NAB reports! We saw so much it’s hard to know where to start, but we may as well start with the product type that got the most attention: The small matter of new cameras…
The Large Sensor Camcorders
In the large-sensor arena, this year’s NAB saw the genesis of low-cost 4K acquisition in the shape of new models from Sony and Canon, and the curious 2.5K resolution debut of Blackmagic’s Cinema Camera. Let’s deal with these one by one…
Sony’s latest large sensor camcorder has been designed around the body chassis, layout and lens mount of their FS100 model, but the similarity really ends there: The internal specifications of FS700 make this a different beast altogether.
First of all we have totally new sensor capable of delivering 4K resolution via the 3G-SDI output when using an external recorder. The 4K output will not be active straight away, and will become usable with a future firmware upgrade. Although there is potentially a 4K recorder coming from Sony in the future, this NAB saw the launch of some third-party 4K capable external recorders which I shall cover in more detail next week.
So if 4K for the FS700 is a “future” capability, then what of the specifications on release? Well, as you may have read in previous blogs, the FS700 is set apart from closely priced rivals by its unique framerate capabilities. To quote the marketing blurb from Sony: “The camcorder delivers Full-HD quality images at 120 and 240 frames per second in an 8 or 16 seconds burst mode respectively. The NEX-FS700’s high sensitivity and low noise shooting capability makes super slow motion shooting more convenient without additional equipment. 480 fps and 960 fps rates at reduced resolution are available for faster frame rate recording.”
We saw some slow motion footage of the Bellagio fountains in Las Vegas shot by Alister Chapman, which you can see for yourself by clicking here. The YouTube footage doesn’t really do it justice: We saw it on Full HD OLED monitors on the Sony stand and it looked brilliant. There really isn’t another camera even remotely in this price range that has this kind of capability when it comes to frame rates and scalable resolution. Another nice touch is the inclusion of ND filters built into the front of the camera. Yes, that does mean increased girth at the lens mount end but it’s worth it if it means being able to knock down light at the flick of a switch.
All sounding good? Well, it gets better because the handgrip incorporates a zoom rocker. We all know what that means: Sony are planning a motorised servo zoom lens, meaning that the FS700 isn’t just for prime lenses and other fast optics. With the addition of a zoom controlled by the rocker, you’ll be able to use the camcorder in much the same way as a standard small sensor camcorder but with all the added benefits of the FS700’s impressive specification and capabilities (great low light performance, high framerates etc).
All in all the FS700 excites us. It’s scalable in terms of resolution, offers unique features at an excellent price and the eventual introduction of a powered zoom lens make it a great all round camcorder that will be ideal for accomplishing both cinematic and televisual aesthetics. And we’re taking pre-orders now…
Canon’s follow up to the wildly popular C300 gets their 4K ball rolling in a similar way to the Sony FS700 by equipping the camcorder with a sensor capable of 4K and a 3G-SDI output that will send out the 4K stream. So – like the Sony – no 4K on board but instead you’ll able to get that huge resolution onto the imminent range of 4K capable external recorders.
The C500 differs to the C300 in other ways as well. The 3G-SDI output will be capable of 10bit output, allowing you to go to recorder capable of that bit depth and technically extending the limits of what is possible in the post production grading process. Moreover, on-board you’ll be able to record up to 120FPS, making it a powerful slow-motion camcorder that will likely be broadcast legal due to the 50MBPS bitrate. In a necessary chassis design change from the C300, the C500 foregoes the side grip found on the C300 in order to make space for what looks like a heat sync/vent. One imagines that when in 4K mode, it gets a little hotter inside than its 8 bit/1080P relation.
Just like the C300, the camera will be available in the choice of EOS or PL mount. We’d love to know what you guys would put on the front: Would you be inclined to use feature and commercial level PL glass on a camera capable of such a resolution? Or would you stick it out using EOS glass from your DSLR days? It’s an interesting question, and we’d like to know your answers.
So enough of the tech talk on the Canon C500, onto what the footage looked like…
We saw a demonstration film played on Canon’s insanely impressive 30” 4K monitor (yes, I did say 30” and 4K in the same sentence) and put simply: It was quite beautiful. It probably helped that it had clearly been shot by a very talented crew, but what was striking was how sharp and “filmic” it was. I’m not normally one for the occasionally vague language employed by some of the online production community, and I would never say “filmic” unless I was attempting to convey the textural quality of celluloid itself, but in this case I can’t really find another adjective that really nails the feel of the C500 footage. Even then, it wasn’t so much texture on its own in a tactile sense, but more the way it interacted with the movement, colour and latitude around it. It was a type of aesthetic I hadn’t seen since I first looked at a Red R3D file with the RedSpace setting switched on: Full of detail, colour and punch, but without ever feeling like the OLPF-compensated sharpness of other camcorder footage. Of course, a demo real made to look brilliant through talented crew, high level grading and then displayed on a 4K monitor was always going to look great, but even if you’ve taken all that into account and the hairs on your neck still stand up…then surely you’ve just seen something that is just a little bit special.
The camera will be arriving sometime in the last quarter of this year. I can’t wait.
Blackmagic Cinema Camera
At a broadcast exhibition, always expect the unexpected. The unexpected can come in various forms: At last year’s IBC exhibition in Amsterdam, a man in a gorilla costume demonstrating a very strange piece of camera suspension kit casually sped past me with the aid of rollerblades. This year at I saw a middle-aged businessman singing “My Way” at a dedicated Karaoke tent (yes, really) outside the North hall. His audience? Nobody in particular, just exhibition attendee’s walking past.
Of course, the unexpected can also come in the form of a new product…
This year’s unexpected product was the Blackmagic Cinema Camera, which judging by its pricing, ergonomics and capabilities is directly aimed at the DSLR filmmaking community.
It’s intriguing, curious, it looks seriously weird…but boy could it be a neat little B-camera if it does what the specification says. We’ve blogged this already but I’ll run the important specs past you one more time: a 16mm (or ½”) sized sensor/EOS lens mount/touch screen interface/big range of recording options including uncompressed, Avid DNX and Pro Res/records to removable SSD drives. And the cost? About £2,000.
I have seen no footage to wax lyrical about like the aforementioned Sony and Canon cameras, and my experience so far has been limited to peering at this strange, silver, miniature monolith through the glass cabinet you can see in the picture above (which, in a way is kind of apt: the camera looks a little like a science project or an experiment). It essentially feels like a recorder with a sensor and lens mount installed, and of course the 16mm sized sensor will mean a 2x crop over 35mm. Still, the planned capabilities are impressive, and it will be interesting to see a company more famed for converters and recorders make their debut in the world of large sensor camcorders.
The camera is due for release in June.
The Small Sensor Camcorders
Sony expanded their range of small sensor camcorders with the introduction of two new models. They are actually covered in detail in a previous blog which you can read here. Suffice to say we saw them in action on the (enormous) Sony stand and they both look good.
The first model is the NXR-NX30, which is a like a cross between the MC50 and NX70. That means small and neat, recording onto internal memory or onto SD card in the NXCAM format.
The second model is the 50MBPS recording PMW-100 camcorder, which uses SxS cards. Think of this as a 1/3” sensor sidekick to the larger, shoulder mounted PDW-500 camcorder.
Pumping bass. A racing car. Lots and lots of people. It could only be the Go Pro stand.
Last year GoPro acquired a company called Cineform, who create RAW codecs for high end recorders. It may have seemed an odd choice for an up and coming point-of-view camera company primarily concerned with extreme sports, but our visit to the Go Pro at NAB 2012 pushed a little logic our way and now we get it.
The result of the partnership is threefold: An upcoming flat/LOG picture profile to get the most dynamic range possible out the GoPro 2, the ability to shoot at a datarate of 35mbps (just under double the existing data rate) and their new “Protune Software” (basic version is free, fully spec version you need to pay for) which allows manipulation of footage, application of simple LUTs and some 3D manipulation when having shot stereoscopically.
The introduction of a higher data rate and flat picture profiles will make the GoPro 2 a more flexible and powerful tool than it already is, and make it easier to match the footage from the diminutive shooter to other high end camcorders.
So folks, that all for today. This week we’ll have blogs on camera grip, lighting and the latest on external recorders.
Today’s blog by Stuart Dennis
This is your last chance to act if you’re looking to take advantage of some great promotions Sony and Panasonic are running across their range. Here are all the details again:
Panasonic HPX-250: Please note that these offers expired 19/03/2012
Panasonic AC-130/AC-160 Please note that these offers expired 19/03/2012
As always if you need any more information, give us a call on 020 8995 4664, or drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last week the Prokit team were on hand for advice and product demonstrations at the Prokit stand at the BVE Expo exhibition at Earls Court 2…
The BVE Expo exhibition takes in all aspects of video production: from cameras to lighting, from vision mixers to post production software and everything in between. It’s a great opportunity for you guys to get your hands on kit that you wouldn’t ordinarily have easy access to, and speak to a range of manufacturers and dealers about the latest equipment.
Our exhibition stand is always busy, and this year was no different. We had a comprehensive cross section of cameras and lighting on display…here are the highlights:
Our Canon C300 was the star camera of the show and gathered the most attention of anything on our stand. We had it set up with the popular 70-200mm L series Canon lens and the whole package sat proudly on the sturdy and lightweight Miller Compass 25 tripod. Next to that was the least-expensive BBC-approved handheld camcorder, the Panasonic HPX-250, which uses the popular P2 cards system and has a cracking 22x optical zoom. You currently get a Kata bag, long life battery and a book on the camcorder when buying a new Panasonic HPX-250 from Prokit.
We had a seriously pimped Sony FS100 on show (complete with mattebox, follow-focus, Sound Devices PIX 220 recorder etc), which was great as Sony were doing a cashback deal on new FS100’s for show attendees who registered on the Sony exhibition stand. Sony are currently running two pretty cool promotions on the FS100, whereby you can get £340 towards accessories until the 31st of march, and 24 month interest free finance on new FS100 camcorders until the 14st March.
Not to be overshadowed by the larger camcorders, the diminutive Sony NX70 also attracted attention, and in no small part because it sat on the super smooth and well-built SmartSlider 800 system. We have the SmartSlider system on demo here in our Chiswick showroom as well as in stock, so if you missed the opportunity to move it back and forth at the show then feel free to pop down to our offices and have a go.
At Prokit we are big on lighting, and at BVE we had a good selection of LED technology on display, including the Lowel lighting’s large LED debut, the Lowel Prime. We had the 400 and 200 tungsten models, and visitors were impressed by their rugged construction and high output. On our Litepanel 1×1 head, we had Chimera’s dedicated softbox, which diffuses the hard output of LED heads into a beautiful soft light. On top of all this we had some Shape rigs, Petrol Bags and Ikan lighting as well as much more on demo for anyone to come and play with.
Away from the cut and thrust of the Prokit stand, our dedication to top quality advice and guidance found a focused and amplified voice in the shape of our seminar “Fathoming The Fundamentals Of Formats”. Held in the Production Theatre on the Tuesday of the exhibition, the session focused on making sense of the large number of camera formats and indeed the camcorders themselves. The session was well attended and everyone walked back into the exhibition with a firm knowledge of the current camcorder line up from the major manufacturers. We’ll be doing something similar next year so look out for details on our website and the BVE Expo website in just under a year.
Further out into the exhibition a couple of things caught our eye. We particularly liked the graffiti art design of rental house Promotion’s exhibition stand as it was such a change from the usual stand designs you see at big exhibitions, the massive Technocrane at the back of the hall was pretty hard to miss, and spotted yet again was the upcoming LED Dedo head – this time dressed in Dedo black-and-yellow colours.
This year’s BVE Expo marked the end of the road for the exhibition at Earls Court 2 Exhibition Centre. Next year the exhibition is moving east to the Excel Exhibition Centre in the docklands, which although further away for some does promise to be a bigger and better venue for an exhibition that seems to grow larger each year.
The Prokit team always enjoys these exhibition and we hope you did too. Thanks for seeing us and remember to register for next year’s as well. For more info on any of the products you saw at our stand, give us a call or pop into our showroom.
Today’s blog by Stuart Dennis
Here’s the lowdown on the offers and some accessory ideas:
Buy the NEX-FS100EK model and get £340 towards any accessories you wish
Buy the NEX-FS100EK model and get £340 towards any accessories you wish.
You could put your £340 towards:
…or anything else you want!
Yes, that is both versions of the F3 camera: with or without lenses. You could put your £600 towards:
…or anything else you want!
The offer is open until 31st March. Speak to us about the options available: we are here to help.
By Stuart Dennis
We will have a working Canon C300 here on our 35mm Open Day on Thursday 8th December.
Yes, you did read that right. As part of our 35mm Open Day on Thursday 8th December we will have a working Canon C300 camcorder on demo for the day. This could well be the only C300 in the country so if you want some hands-on time with this highly anticipated addition to the world of digital 35mm, get down to our West London showroom on the 8th of next month.
You can read my initial thoughts on the C300 here, but lets recap on the important features of the C300:
We will have a Canon representative on hand here to talk you through the camera, as well as a bunch of lenses to try it with. Still no word on which type of mount the demo camera will have but be assured that there will be glass (EF or PL) for you to try.
Even more awesome is that you’ll be able to see the camera alongside fearsome rivals the Sony F3, Sony FS100 and Panasonic AF101. A large selection of accessories will also be on display for these cameras.
Come and play!
Remember, this Open Day is FREE but please register your attendance by emailing email@example.com or calling us on 0208 995 4664.
By Stuart Dennis