Convergent Design’s Odyssey 7Q External Recorder + Sony’s FS700! A match made in 4K heaven?

December 5, 2014 |

Convergent Design, Odyssey 7Q, External Recorder, Monitor, 4K, For most people hearing the name 7Q, the first thought that comes to mind is an Audi motor car but in the film industry, we actually mean Convergent Designs Odyssey 7Q external recorder! Convergent Design’s (CD) Odyssey 7Q External Recorder was one of the most exciting announcements to come from the makers of the ‘Gemini 4:4:4’ and Nano Flash recorder, who unveiled their latest offering at  NAB Show 2013. CD’s latest offering was well received, even winning a DV Black Diamond Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Advancement of Video Technology!

CD’s Odyssey 7 series comprises of two models; the Odyssey 7 and 7Q which only differ on their recording capabilities. The Odyssey 7Q had been our main focus as it was touted as a versatile external recorder, capable of recording various codecs including 4K RAW! So what’s the big fuss? Well, the Odyssey devices boasts a 7.7inch 1280 X 800 OLED monitor with fantastic high end monitor display features like waveform, zebras, histogram, Vector scope, Focus Assist, False colour, Time code display, LUT’s, Audio level metres and 1:1 Pixel mode. The Odyssey 7Q is capable of adding options for recording to various camera formats including ARRI RAW, Canon C500 Raw, Sony FS700 and more.

The most popular camera probably to pair with the 7Q, has been Sony’s FS 700. Reason being, it’s the lightest, most economical, lowest power draw RAW recording solution for Sony’s FS700. At first, the 7Q and Sony’s FS700 RAW recording combo had been limited to 2K, which meant users had to buy Sony’s AXS-R5 recorder and HXR-IFR5 interface if you wanted 4K.  A feature missed by CD, was the ability to record compressed formats despite the benefits of RAW, FS700 users don’t want hassles of workflow and storage that come with it. Based on feedback, CD listened and announced they will support 4K RAW recording via a firmware update, provided the $795 Sony RAW option is installed. To accommodate users, Sony has officially given CD access to 4K Raw from Sony’s FS 700.

Check out CD official press info below:

Convergent Design, Odyssey 7Q, Sony, FS700, External Recorder

“Convergent Design’s Odyssey 7Q is the most capable portable monitor/recorder on the market. It can capture and display the signals from more camera systems than any other product. That capability will soon be increased even more as we announce that recording of the 4K RAW signal from the Sony NEX FS700 will be available in the Odyssey 7Q.4K RAW recording will be part of the FS700 record option on the Odyssey 7Q. It will be made available as part of the upcoming February 2014 Firmware update on the Odyssey 7Q. Any current owner of the FS 700 record option, will receive the 4K RAW capability as part of the firmware update and at no additional cost.”

At the time of press release, the firmware update had not been available but had been launched earlier this year. In 4K RAW you will be able to record continuously at up to 60P with high speed 120P in a four second burst mode. So what can you expect? This essentially means that the Odyssey 7Q can now capture all of the digital outputs of Sony’s FS700 along with the addition of Sony’s 4K RAW native. The highest resolution capable of the FS 700’s camera sensor is 4096 X 2160. 4K RAW is captured in Cinema DNG format as full uncompressed files onto the Odyssey 7Q’s SSD drives. The ability to use 4K DNG RAW with the 7Q is awesome but bear in mind that means limited recording times, extra storage space and a not so easy work flow process. CD’s Odyssey 7Q will soon accept the 4K RAW signal, transform it to 4k video and super sample it down to a quality 1080P HD Video. The HD video is then recorded into Pro Res in the 10-bit 4:2:2 HQ quality at 220 mbps, which is a huge improvement on the cameras internal 8-bit, 4:20 AVCHD at 25mbps. Another great advantage, is that up to 4 HD cameras can be connected to one recorder and then tether multiple recorders together,making it ideal for multi-camera functions and concerts! For more on CD’s Odyssey 7Q, checkout Mathew Allard’s in depth review!

To conclude CD‘s 7Q external recorder is quite an impressive piece of equipment, which is not just a quality external recorder but also a very capable professional portable monitor as well! The 7Q costs around +- R57 000 and can be found at Puma Video, Visual Impact South Africa and Time Slice Cinematography to name a few.

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