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Storage requirements for the X5R shooting 4k raw

Discussion in 'Zenmuse X5' started by The Editor, Sep 13, 2015.

  1. The Editor

    The Editor Moderator
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    One thing I have not seen mentioned anywhere by DJI is the storage requirements for shooting uncompressed 4k at 25 fps which the X5R is capable of. Note that the X5R CANNOT shoot full 4k at 30fps as resolution is limited to UHD at this framerate.
    Anyhoo, back to the storage requirements.....
    By my calculations, with a VBR of 1.7 - 2.4 Gbps and assuming an average of around 1.9Gbps (assuming 16 bit color depth) the supplied 512GB SSD will last you around 12 minutes of video.
    Better stock up on those SSD's because you are going to need around one per battery and since they look proprietary, we have no idea of the cost of them yet!
     
  2. damoncooper

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    At a constant bit rate of 1.7Gbps (212MB/s) you can store 41 min of video on a 512GB drive.

    The X5R can do Ultra-HD 4K (broadcast / display defacto standard) RAW at 30fps, which should quench some pretty thirsty quality wonks in the production pipeline.
     
  3. Ezookiel

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    Still may want to stock up on SSD anyway; I fly a lot over water, so I change SD cards when I change batteries, so that if the aircraft takes a swim and can't be readily retrieved, then I've only lost the last lot of footage instead of all of it.
    I'd want a similar routine with the SSD.

    With the expected cost of them though, I'd probably only own two and have my ground crew copy each one over to the laptop while I'm flying with the other. Painful, but until I know how dear they're going to be, it's an option.

    And actually, that option has another advantage - If there's sufficient room on the SSD that I won't have to clear it after each flight, that then also gives some redundancy in that I now have the footage on both the laptop and the SSD, which is peace of mind should something else go wrong before the footage gets home.


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  4. damoncooper

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    One thing's for sure: at 1.7Gbps, you'll probably not want to record a lot of "slop" footage :).

    With the X5R the days of hitting record before and stopping after flight are probably over :)
     
  5. Ezookiel

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    I came to the Inspire from a P2 with GoPro, so I'm so used to having to start the recording pre-flight, and then only stop it afterwards. So much so, that now that I can record at will, I forget it's not always recording and forget to start the damned recording at all. Had to redo SOOO many things while learning that it's up to me to start the recording :(

    It is REALLY nice not having to go home and prune out all the extraneous crap though.
    I can see time spent in post, being vastly improved.


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  6. The Editor

    The Editor Moderator
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    But the X5R doesn't record at CBR, it is VBR that tops out at 2.6gbps. Since nearly all aerial work is moving motion between frames it is unlikely to remain at 1.7gbps very much.:)
     
  7. Scotflieger

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    Unless you are in the movie industry delivering for the big screen with the right IT support and masses of storage, I don't think you should be looking at the X5R. Simply processing the 'raw' 4K will require multiple processors to do the pre-processing and final rendition.

    For my 36MP Nikon D810 DSLR I use for my photography and the X3 4K output I have a 20TB 5 x 4TB disk Drobo which I have just had to just update 2 disks to 6TB. I also use a Mac Pro for editing the large files. I will stick with the X5 for the 16MP stills it offers with interchangeable lens.

    You will need very deep pockets to cover the in air and on ground costs to go the X5R route.
     
    #7 Scotflieger, Sep 14, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2015
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  8. damoncooper

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    Is that a typo? Did you mean 20TB disk array?

    I have a 12TB disk array at home just for my movie and music collection and a 6TB drive array for editing aerial footage. Time to upgrade my friend. Disk space is cheap!
     
  9. damoncooper

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    Fair enough. Let's say 25-41 min then
     
  10. Scotflieger

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    Well spotted and corrected thank you.
     
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  11. jb.

    jb.

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    Archiving RAW footage is definitely a concern. Even a big 12TB array is going to fill up quickly if you're shooting a lot of RAW.

    And don't forget, data needs to exist in two (preferably three, one off-site) places at all times. Two is one, one is none.

    Many people are vastly underestimating the impact of RAW on a post workflow. It's massive. Storage is cheap, but when you're filling a half-terabyte every 30 minutes of footage, you're dealing in a whole new level of magnitude for storage and it ISN'T cheap.

    Not to mention those $60 1TB portable drives on USB3 aren't exactly going to cut it to play back 1.7Gb/s (212MB/s). That means your disk has to be able to push out around 225-250MB/s to even PLAY BACK on stream of the RAW video. For that, you're looking at RAID of some sort if you want to use spinny disks... probably RAID 5. My G-SPEED Studio R 16TB (12TB usable) was $1800 and will hold about 6 hours of that RAW video. That's not exactly a great $/min of video ratio.

    Not to mention the CPU requirements when it comes to transcoding the RAW data stream (unless you have hours to let your computer sit and crank on the transcode).

    RAW is wonderful... until you have to actually USE and ARCHIVE the footage. :)
     
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  12. damoncooper

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    The new DJI tool can transcode though to a more manageable format while maintaining high quality (ie 150-250Mbps). You can toss the RAW after you transcode and bring it in.
     
  13. jb.

    jb.

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    If you're going to immediately transcode to a lower codec, there's about ZERO reason to use RAW to start with. If you need RAW, you're going to want to keep the RAW around for the future (when you want a different grade, a different codec, etc.).

    ie: If I'm going to only save the 200Mb MP4 out of the DJI tool, what benefit am I really getting from shooting in RAW to begin with?

    Do you know of any photogs who shoot in RAW then immediately process their RAW files to JPGs and throw away the RAWs? Neither do I.
     
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  14. damoncooper

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    No, you've missed the point. RAW to transcoded 150Mbps-250Mbps is far beyond the max 60Mbps of the X5.
     
  15. jb.

    jb.

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    How is that relevant to a discussion of the storage requirements of X5R RAW video?

    I sure wouldn't spend $5K on a RAW-capable camera just to get 150Mb h.264... And if I'm shooting RAW in my camera, it would be silly to only archive a baked in transcode.

    My point is RAW video is a beast to store (and transcode) which is one reason it's frustrating your two choices for video on the X5 platform are a GoPro codec or 1.7Gb RAW with nothing in between.

    Would you like a Vespa scooter or a dump truck?
     
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  16. Kilrah

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    But many will, precisely to have that "happy balance" between 60Mbps and ridiculously high amount of data. Not all work requires best ever possible quality (and if it did you'd probably fly a RED instead).

    By the way I don't think anybody said what format the transcode tool will put out. Might get some nice 400Mbps ProRes that's really enough for most purposes yet still takes only 1/5th of the size.
     
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  17. damoncooper

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    It's relevant because I for one (and I'd venture most X5R folks) won't be "storing" 4K RAW video. I'll import / transcode it into a high quality format and delete the 4K RAW when import / transcoding is complete.

    (How is that not relevant to a discussion about 4K RAW storage requirements?)

    DJI has anticipated this exact workflow with their companion transcoding CineLight software for the X5R.
     
    #17 damoncooper, Sep 15, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2015
  18. damoncooper

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    ProRes, CinemaDNG, and TIFF:

    ImageUploadedByTapatalk1442317207.085931.jpg
     
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  19. B-Scene Films

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    My wife's Ursa that shoots 4K raw generates an 8.5MB file per frame.
     
  20. jb.

    jb.

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    If you shoot in RAW, you're going to want to archive in RAW. That's the WHOLE POINT of shooting in RAW... except in cases like this where DJI has decided to shove you into a RAW workflow if you want better than GoPro-level bitrate.

    Guys with D810s don't shoot NEF just to come back, convert to a JPEG and throw the NEF away. This is EXACTLY the same thing.

    If you dispose of the RAW video immediately after transcode, you're handicapping yourself if you ever want to go back and apply a different LUT or re-grade the footage to match another camera, etc. It's not wise to throw out your highest-fidelity, first-generation version of an image.