Why New Video Cameras Cause Analysis-Paralysis
VIDEO TECHNOLOGY OVERLOAD
With so many new 4K video cameras and beefed up graphic cards coming out every year, it’s no surprise that people are feeling stuck creatively. Creativity has always been about facing challenges and solving problems, yet now it seems that all these companies have made it their mission to constantly work at not only solving existing problems, but anticipating future ones as well.
These days video hobbyists, enthusiasts, semi-pros and professionals have access to steadycams, gimbals, drones, GoPros as well as 24/7 access to the Amazon store where they can practically buy the all the parts to build the indie version of a soundstage inside their very home. And whether you’re a Mac or PC user, the once upon wide performance chasm has closed up over the last decade and made the difference in processing power between the two almost negligible. The only real difference of course, is still the higher price point of Apple products. However, if you’re not a tinkerer or someone who enjoys performing vivisections on your computer for the sake of curiosity or augmentation, the Mac is an investment worthwhile. Then again, I’m probably a little biased towards Apple products. With a few exceptions of course.
MORE OPTIONS OR LESS OPTIONS
So what causes this unfounded fear and anxiety of just picking out a camera and starting work on something new when all the tools are virtually laid out in front of us? After all, you’d think that having options would unlock the doorways to more creativity, not less. Yet the same thing happens when someone is presented with a restaurant menu that contains too many choices. The person sits there going over a seemingly infinite number of dishes, that if reorganized and compared would be nearly identical, plus minus one or two ingredients. Think about all the time wasted. When given a bunch of choices, most of us operate in one of two ways.
THE SATISFICE APPROACH
To satisfice or to maximize, that is the question. But more importantly, what is the difference between the two?
To satisfice simply means to accept an available option as a viable choice. This has the benefit of allowing you to make a decision quickly and move on to the next thing - in business or otherwise. This is the route of least resistance, as it requires less time, indecision, and ultimately less stress.
THE MAXIMIZE APPROACH
The other option is to maximize. Which means to evaluate all possible choices to find the best solution available and pick that one. This sounds really good, on paper. But if you’re in a time pinch and have to ship out a product or service, this shilly-shally is not at all beneficial. The Red camera can shoot 2K, 4K, 6K and 8K, so which one do you need?
This answer may come as a bit of a surprise to you, but most deliverables are still only 1080p - even today. Sure, it’s great to have the added real estate of 4K so you can reframe and stabilize your shots in post, but you don’t need a Red Epic to do that. You can use a camera like the GH5s or, the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, both which are very affordable and produce insanely good results. Add an Atomos external recorder to capture your footage in ProRes, ProRes HQ or ProRes RAW and get the added benefit of 10 bit depth and the lack of a need to transcode. This is especially handy if you’re working in Premiere Pro.
Last year, we’ve tested footage right out of the Atomos Inferno in ProRes HQ and dumped it into Premiere Pro to see how it holds up on an Intel i7 4 core processor with 32GB of 2333Mhz DDR3 Ram and Nvidia GTX 980 Video Card. The results were pretty impressive. Even with an older workstation, by today’s standards, which has rendered hundreds of hours of footage over the years, it was still going strong.
APPLE’S NEW MAC PRO
Okay, we all know Apple is planning to release a monster of a Mac Pro for video editing, and enthusiasts and professionals alike are going nuts over this. However, the price point won’t be geared towards consumers but production studios instead. But don’t fret. Because if you took anything away from this article, you know that you don’t need a shiny new toy to create video content. We’ve worked with 3D graphic designers abroad who are using PC builds that are so old, we probably wouldn't even think of using them to browse the internet! And yet, they were able to work and deliver amazing renders in 3DMax and Cinema 4D. Respect! 🤜🤛
Looking for more choices isn’t always the best answer to getting things done. A better approach is to do some light research, narrow it down to three choices and just pick one. That way you won’t feel overwhelmed by an excessive amount of information and likely will be able to avoid the analysis-paralysis of decision making. That’s all there is to it. Research. Decide. Shoot. Repeat.