Video Devices and their PIX-E series 4K recorders have been solid performers on hundreds of sets and making life easier for a lot of productions. And Video Devices have also been releasing a steady stream of firmware updates such as the simultaneous H.264 recording and 6G-SDI support. And as we know, the PIX-E series are not just high quality recorders but also world-class monitoring devices as well.
Charlee Harrison is a Camera Op and Camera Assistant that often is faced with the challenge of finding creative video solutions for the various types of productions she works on. One of her recent gigs was a 1st AC on the upcoming feature “Ghost Team”, starring Jon Heder, Justin Long, and Amy Sedaris.
Harrison used multiple cameras for the film, including the lightweight Sony A7s II with the production’s Steadicam Tango rig for specialty shots. In order to record high-quality footage and match it to the production’s cinema-style cameras, she turned to the Video Devices PIX-E5.
“I most often work with the PIX-E5 for recording specialty shots — gimbal, overhead, Steadicam, etc.,” says Harrison. “It’s lightweight, which makes it perfect for mounting directly onto built camera rigs. The best part of recording to the PIX-E5 is that the monitor is high-quality enough for the Steadicam operator to use in composing shots. The usability makes working with it fast and efficient on set, and the record quality makes shooting with it appropriate for theatrical release.”
She stared using the PIX-E5 about a year ago so far has found the performance of the unit to be impressive.
“I have been very impressed with the monitor quality of the PIX-E5,” adds Harrison. “As an AC, I feel comfortable confirming focus with the monitor. I have never had a complaint from an operator in using it to frame. It is sharp, and the playback is fast and easy. Personally, I really enjoy the mix of touchscreen and real buttons. The PIX-E5 doesn’t get cluttered with big touchscreen menus and has real buttons to navigate the menu. All of the tools are highly customizable. On the PIX-E5, you can dial-in exact frame lines, which is great when shooting something that the production company wants to pull stills from.”
Video Devices PIX-E5 Features
- 5-inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) Touchscreen Display
- Record DCI 4K (4096 x 2160) up to 30 fps and 1080p up to 120 fps
- Simultaneous 4K ProRes and 1080p H.264
- ProRes 4:2:2 and 4:4:4 Encoding
- Uses mSATA SpeedDrive Media
- 4K-Capable HDMI Input with Loop-Through
- SDI Input with Loop-Through
- Analog Audio Input
- Physical Button and Jog-Dial Controls
The PIX-E5 SpeedDrive USB media carrier and file delivery accessory is another feature that Harrison found to be very useful “The SpeedDrives are well-built, small, light, and reliable. The ability to change the media within the custom enclosures is a great cost-effective feature. In addition, by using the PIX-E, I am able to bring on one camera operator for multiple camera recordings. The PIX-E fits seamlessly into my workflow.”
For those unfamiliar with the SpeedDrive media that the PIX-E5 and PIX-E7 recorders use – it is a custom-designed PIX-E accessory that streamlines the file-delivery process by eliminating the need for special card readers or docking stations. When connected to the rear of the monitor, the SpeedDrive’s USB 3.0 interface automatically switches to a SATA interface. Users can simply remove it from the back of a PIX-E and plug it directly into any USB computer port to transfer data at very fast USB 3.0 rates.
“For single camera recording, I would recommend the PIX-E Series, hands down,” says Harrison. “With its capabilities of recording H.264 to an SD card and ProRes masters onto the SpeedDrive, it significantly reduces time and money in post-production. The PIX-E5 is an effective and reliable tool that I’m sure I will be using again in the future.”
You can find Charlee on Instagram here. To get your PIX-E5 4K recorder/monitor follow the links below.