Is Your Brand New Camera Obsolete?

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camera_F65It’s only a week after Christmas and your new camera probably still smells like wrapping paper. Testing the limits of its full-frame HD video capacity remains today’s top — and maybe only — priority. Is it even possible to think that this magnificent new toy — er, tool — could be e-Bay fodder by next Christmas?

Very possible.

HD video may soon be going the way of SD.  Ultra-high definition, or UHD, may soon be coming to the consumer market via cameras equipped with Sony’s IMX117CQT sensor, which boasts a 4K video mode. At a manufacturing rate of 40 million sensors per month, it’s clear that Sony has brought a once expensive and time-consuming process down to a mass-production level, with stated plans to integrate these sensors into consumer technology. The result? HD video – so highly prized today – may be obsolete tomorrow.

Not only could your average teenager with a Smartphone soon be shooting in Spielburg-worthy resolution while they’re snapping gum, they could be watching it too – not at the theaters, which monopolize UHD showings today, but in their own living rooms via a REDRAY player, also set to ship in early 2013. At $1450, it won’t be an instant household item, but as UHDTVs, such as Samsung’s prototype 4K display, become more popular and affordable, you can be sure that 4K will become the new standard. In fact, RED is already anticipating the trend with its REDRAY distribution network, set to distribute 4K projects through the cloud like a next-era Netflix.

What does this trend mean for independent filmmakers? On the one hand, there has never been a better time to be indie. No longer will prohibitively high prices for film development or a premium camera rental bar the starving artist from the silver screen. It’s conceivable that soon even students will be shooting films as visually stunning as the best Hollywood offerings of today – at least in terms of resolution.

But with this democratization of the craft comes a challenge – what will separate your content from the sea of media soon to flood the theatrical market? When stunning resolution ceases to be stunning, filmmakers will once again have to face the fact that storytelling — a craft that remains underdeveloped by most indie filmmakers — is still the essence of what filmmaking is. No amount of technology can save a story poorly told. In the end it will be talent – not toys – that separates the elite from the masses — the ability to transport every man, woman, and child in the theater to a place where their minds are thrilled and their hearts are touched. Will yours make the cut?

[Note: If storytelling is an area you would like to improve (and we all do!) make sure to sign up for our free updates to keep abreast of our screenwriting webinar schedule!]

See you at the theater!

References:

http://www.sony.net/Products/SC-HP/cx_news/vol70/np_imx117cqt.html

http://cinescopophilia.com/2013-sony-brings-high-frame-rate-2k-and-4k-to-consumer-cameras/

http://news.doddleme.com/equipment/red-announces-pricing-on-4k-redray-player/

http://news.doddleme.com/equipment/samsung-to-showcase-award-winning-85-4k-hdtv-at-ces/

http://news.doddleme.com/equipment/red-drops-another-bomb-with-news-of-red-ray-distribution-network/

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