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Thanks for the link. With the HDCAM SR's introduction, mentioned some months back here, I got the impression it was aimed more at cinema use than broadcasting. Don't have the numbers at hand, but recall it has a higher bit rate and eliminates the >1440 filtering of the HDCAM.


Curious, though, this extra fidelity is being adopted to a format restricted to 1280X720p instead of potentially extending the fidelity of 1080i sources. Then again, if recent discussions saying professional Panasonic HD D5 machines restrict telecined films to 800-1300-pixel resolvable detail are valid, perhaps it doesn't make any difference whether the HDCAM SR is applied to 1080i or 720p. Hmm. Looks like it's time for a HD D5 versus HDCAM SR spectrum-analysis shootout. There's still two final fidelity 'gates', though: prefiltering/lossy MPEG-2 compression at stations, and resolution limits with most HD displays. -- John
 

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The primary interest in HDCAM SR for broadcasters is the 12 audio channels. HDCAM only has 4 and that's not enough to carry the required audio tracks these days. Even with Dolby E carrying the 5.1 on one AES track, three tracks left is not enough. NBC is also rumored to be adopting this format for network delivery.


This is by no menans the death of HDCAM. Audio layback is the last step in the post production process. Most prime time HDTV will continue to be transferred/captured and edited on standard HDCAM. The final network delivery dub will be to SR format where required. Like it or not, HDCAM is quite sufficient for eposidic television production that stays in 422 space and then compressed to ATSC.


On the other side, the SR can record 444 RGB at 440mbs. This has advantages in effects compositing and digital cinema applications where HDCAM doesn't cut it.


Clearly this is Sony's response to Panasonic HDD5. HDD5 sports 8 audio channels and 220 mbs bit rate on tape. A loaded HDD5 also costs $100K. The HDCAM SR tape stock is being priced the same as HDD5. Sony traditionally has had much better serveice and support for their broadcast products. Panasonic has failed in this area time and time again. HDD5's current success in feature mastering has been mainly to it's higher bandwidth. HDD5 will continue to be the studio mastering choice for some time but unless Panasonic comes out with an uncompressed VTR, it's future is limited.


Why would Fox invest in the highest performance HD VTR now? Well JMO, but Fox is just breaking into wide spread HDTV broadcasting. They presently have little HDTV infrastructure. Why not leap frog the other big 3 and have the highest performance tape infrastructure at the same cost as HDD5.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Glimmie
Why would Fox invest in the highest performance HD VTR now? Well JMO, but Fox is just breaking into wide spread HDTV broadcasting. They presently have little HDTV infrastructure. Why not leap frog the other big 3 and have the highest performance tape infrastructure at the same cost as HDD5.
Agreed.
 
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