Sony PDW Series camcorders have been designed with special consideration for heavy duty field acquisition, providing excellent picture quality, operability and reliability inherited from the Sony BETACAM™ family of acquisition products. In addition to these impressive capabilities, Sony PDW Series camcorders also provide numerous innovative features that take full advantage of the benefits of non-linear disc media. These unique features offer a completely new style of field operation, adding flexibility and efficiency to those operations where quick program completion is a top priority.
New “Non-linear” Recording Medium
Professional discs have a natural advantage since they suffer no mechanical contact during recording or playback, making the format ideal for continuous use and re-use (up to 10 000 times!). The Professional Disc is also highly resistant to dust, shock and scratches, packaged in an extremely durable and dust-resistant cartridge. It is resistant to heat, humidity and X-rays– factors that make the Professional Disc ideal for use in harsh field environments, and also allows for long media life and long-term storage (50 Years). Finally, despite all its inherent benefits - Instant access, high speed transfer and exceptional reliability - professional discs still cost the same price as a tape and consequently can be perceived as a media.
Ultimate in Acquisition Convenience
Sony XDCAM camcorders take full advantage of the new optical media. Recordings on professional discs are automatically made on the empty area of a disc, relieving camera operators’ concerns about accidentally over writing other confirmed ‘takes’. Furthermore, because acquisition is an ongoing process of shooting and reviewing, this eliminates the burden of searching for the correct position to start the next recording, meaning the camera is always ready for the next shot. Operators can also review their latest take immediately, with a simple press of the ‘Return (RET)’ button. If a take is not good, it can be easily deleted from the disc before moving onto the retake. This way, you not only save disc space, but you can also prepare a disc that contains only your OK takes, boosting the efficiency of subsequent editing processes.
With all Sony XDCAM products, a thumbnail is automatically generated to represent each recording made. As is common in non-linear editing systems, these thumbnails allow for instant access and playback of clips. The Essence Marks used in Sony XDCAM products are also a very useful form of meta data, and provide a most effective way of searching for recordings via thumbnail pictures. Essence Marks can be set during the shoot either manually or automatically. List of available metadata :
• Manual marking
• Automatic marking (White balance, Filter wheel, Gain, etc…)
Benefits of Proxy AV Data
Proxy AV Data is a low-resolution, MPEG-4based version of the full-resolution MPEG IMX/DVCAM stream. When a recording is made, a Proxy AV stream that is time code synchronized with the full-resolution stream, is also recorded automatically on the disc. This Proxy AV Data, which is smaller in size, is easier to work with and can be transferred over common networks at much greater speeds. Proxy AV Data is highly effective for tasks where video and sound quality are of less concern, but content delivery speed is essential. The typical benefits of its use include ‘Remote Content Browsing’ and ‘Proxy Editing’.
In the Sony XDCAM Series of products, recordings are made as data files – one for each video or audio clip. This allows material to be handled with great flexibility in an IT-based networked environment – and easily available for copying, transferring, sharing and archiving to other IT-based devices. This file-based recording system also allows material to be viewed directly on a PC linked to the XDCAM decks or camcorders via an i.LINK (file access mode) connection –just as a PC reads files on an external drive.
Seamless Integration into Current VTR-Based Systems
In order to achieve seamless integration into current tape based systems, a great deal of thought has been put into the development of Sony XDCAM products. A range of conventional AV interfaces including SDI, analogue video and analogue/digital audio I/Os allows easy connectivity to current equipment, including a wide variety of VTRs, linear and non-linear editors, and audio mixers. Also, for the first time at this level a camcorder features i.Link In/Out interface (both AVC and FAM) allowing to use the camcorder for ingest as well as recorder.