Buy Mike Recommended
edit systems & gear
from Silverado Systems
Buy Books, Software, & More
at HD for Indies Amazon Store
Buy New Movies from
HD for Indies Amazon Store
Or, you can also support
HD4NDs by contributing
to the tip jar...
Help Support HD for Indies
Great HD Links
- HD For Indies Home Page
- HD For Indies FAQ
- HD 24
- Bare Feats
- 24p Entertainment
- Light Illusion (was Digital Praxis)
- OneRiver Codec Resource
- HighDef.org Info
- Understanding RAID
- Video Systems (Reviews)
- DV Film (DV=>Film)
- Plus 8 Digital (vendor)
- Digital Cinema Society
- Texas High Def (local F900 guy)
- Creative Cow (news & forums)
- Philadelphia FCP User Group
- Los Angeles FCP User Group
- Cinema Tech
- DV Info's forums
- HVX User
- Pro App Tips
- Bluesky Media - Instruction
- little frog in high def
- VideoMaker Learning Section
- Stu Maschwitz's ProLost
- March 2004
- April 2004
- May 2004
- June 2004
- July 2004
- August 2004
- September 2004
- October 2004
- November 2004
- December 2004
- January 2005
- February 2005
- March 2005
- April 2005
- May 2005
- June 2005
- July 2005
- August 2005
- September 2005
- October 2005
- November 2005
- December 2005
- January 2006
- February 2006
- March 2006
- April 2006
- May 2006
- June 2006
- July 2006
- August 2006
- September 2006
- October 2006
- November 2006
- December 2006
- January 2007
- February 2007
- March 2007
- April 2007
- May 2007
- June 2007
- July 2007
- August 2007
- September 2007
- October 2007
- November 2007
- December 2007
- January 2008
- February 2008
- March 2008
- April 2008
- May 2008
- June 2008
- July 2008
- August 2008
- September 2008
- November 2008
- December 2008
- January 2009
- March 2009
- April 2009
- May 2009
- June 2009
- July 2009
- August 2009
- September 2009
- October 2009
- November 2009
- December 2009
- January 2010
- February 2010
- March 2010
High Definition Video for Independent Filmmakers
A How To Guide for Digital Filmmakers
Welcome all! This is my blog to share my latest research,
thoughts, etc. on utilizing HD for independent filmmaking.
YES, I am available for consulting
Contact me at email@example.com
All content copyright 2004-2007 Mike Curtis.
Friday, June 29, 2007
Joined friends in line at 4:30, had by 7, doodling now.
I have one.
Are you in California?
You can't get one yet as of this writing.
As BJ says,
No time, must PLAY!
MAYBE a Blogwad.....tomorrow....
UPDATE at 11pm - my articulate self earlier was a wee bit excited, to say the least. Waiting in line w/two geeky friends (BJ Heinley and Charlie Wood), he hung out for a couple of hours, ran over to Whole Foods across the street for sushi & beer, and enjoyed ourselves catching up on a warm but shady afternoon. We all got the phones we wanted (I got 8 GB model), we immediately went back to BJ's house nearby and hooked up, set up, sync'd up, and started to doodle. The UI is extremely elegant and cool, the screen looks good, we just hung out and geek revelled. As one of their wives put it - "You can go hang with your geek friends and beep."
Saturday Morning Update
OK, NOW that I'm sober and having passed through the giddy Day Zero Hype Factor, it is still cool.
A few things I'm noticing:
1.) They say you have to give the keyboard some time to get used to it. Clearly so - I'm hunting and pecking and missing a bit. Won't be routinely blogging from this sucker.
2.) Had trouble joining my home WiFi network - entered the password a zillion times that I've entered a zillion times before. I'd been on the WiFi at BJ's house no problem. Hmmm. Went in and changed the WEP from 128 down to 40 bit - then it worked. CRAP. This means I have to run my home network in a less secure fashion for the iPhone to work. Hopefully they'll fix that in a future release.
3.) Camera has no video capabilities. Seems like it should be able to shoot videos - would be so Apple. Drat, it doesn't. Maybe next version will have 2nd camera on front for video conferencing. : )
4.) Ringtones - YOU CANNOT LOAD YOUR OWN - there is no mechanism provided. LAAAAAAAAAAAAAME - clearly AT&T holding out for ringtone sales. This is lame beyond all recognitiion - you should be able to use a sound snippet from your iTunes library to do this. SO incredibly lame and frustrating.
5.) The camera - takes surprisingly decent pictures for a camera phone - 2 megapixels even! It doesn't rival my Canon S450, but it beats the snot out of my T616's camera (and what do I do with that inert little brick now?)
6.) The peeps turn out - as we're all waiting in line (I saw 2 other people I knew - my boss from 8-10 years ago (creative director at frogdesign) who had been waiting since 1pm, and Leah, who was an intern at T3 when I worked there in 1995 - fun to see all the geeky folks come out. And those two represent the target demographic - geeky guys and busy Moms (Leah gets double demographic points - she's a busy mom and works in marketing - I ran into her at MacWorld '05 repping my friend Patrick's game Stubbs the Zombie).
7.) iPhone snobbery is an evil, but fun, thing - as we're waiting in line (all 100+ of us at a small AT&T outlet) - somebody walks past the store minding their own business on a sleek little cell, like a Razr or something, and somebody says in a silly taunting voice - "Look at him, he's on a REGULAR cellphone!" and everybody busts out laughing. We're evil nurds.
8.) the unit itself - a beautiful little thing, and MAN you don't want it to get scratched! I thought I'd wait to figure out accessories like cases, but saw a DLO (Digital Lifestyle Outfitters) silicon rubber black sleeve, so I got that for $20. BJ got three different ones to try out since he can return them (he lives about 8 blocks from the store, so no biggie). He got the same rubberized sleeve I did, a clear plastic hard case with a belt clip, and a leather belt clip that completely encloses/encases/protects the unit. He said he has a friend with a Treo or Blackberry that leaves it in a case that has a flip-open top, and it never leaves that - the thing is sealed and protected when not in use. Not a bad idea. As is, the little rubberized sleeve I have leaves the glass front totally exposed - it basically just protects it from a drop (hopefully) but leaves all buttons and ports accessible. But this phone pretty much guarantees I'm wearing cargo type pants. When we discussed this in line, we realized we were ALL wearing khaki cargo pants, t-shirts, and sandals/Tevas. Yep - we're geeks, confirmed. Anyway, my lifestyle is pretty accomodating of large pocket pants, but come colder weather or Client Time, this is kind of a big thing to lug around.
Oh, more on the DLO case - it has a thing on the back to wrap up the headphones (the special iPhone ones with a microphone and call/answer/pause/play button) and it will tidily stash the earphones and the plug for toting around in "normal" phone mode - nice.
9.) The web - yep, it really, really works. Just small and slow. But hdforindies.com works! Just get ready to squint. You can do the pinchy/squeezy zoom in/out thing, and that helps. Turning it sideways for wide view helps too. Flash doesn't work though.
10.) Email - yep - pictures work. Haven't tried QuickTime yet, but I need to.
OK, somebody's coming over to work, more later...
Some pics from the iPhone camera: iPhoned
Notice BJ's pic looks not bad in terms of tonal range. Mine is taken in front of a glaring daytime window, and Charlie's was taken at night in the dark by parking lot lights.
Best cameraphone quality I've seen.
- you can't read email sideways - drat.
-calendar - NO TO DO ITEMS - EEK!
-calendar events can't be separated by type - you have to see ALL calendar events
-mail - a little funky to figure out what accounts you're reading/sending from - gotta study a bit
-calendar setup stuff - you pick which calendar events are to have been created on your iPhone from in iTunes - a pop-up shows the list. It defaults to Home, I tried to change to Work, but now it only defaults to the third choice, Work Sched, which is the one I least want it to use.
NO SIDEWAYS KEYBOARD IN MAIL! You can do sideways keyboard for URLs (or something, I remember noting wide keyboard mode somewhere), so the code is i there and working, but mail is strictly portrait not landscape at this point in time - that'll be a big 1.1 update feature I hope.
-pictures are scaled down to be about 2x res of the screen - so you CAN zoom in, some, for more detail. But not full rez pics, and that is probably a good thing 95% of the time - would chew up all your space! I look forward to 16, 32, 64, adn 128GB iPhones in the years to come.
-Many, many little details and lack of choices look like they were made in order to cut corners and get it out the door. Not much that feels overtly broken, just not as refined as I'd like. Very few things that seem like they might be unfixable in software (such as can the camera do video), but clearly when they bumped Leopard to October, they STILL crunched to get this out the door and stable, so they cut features instead.
MORE THOUGHTS SATURDAY NIGHT, AFTER USING IT TODAY:
-no copy/paste is a hassle - I had just written there is no easy way to share a link, but WRONG! There is a very nice feature - if you're looking at a web page, click up in the URL field then a "Share" button appears at top left - nice!
ACCESSORY COMPATIBILITY: I already had an iPhone dock charger and a tape cassette adaptor in my car - when I plug in the power adaptor, it puts up a message on iPhone that says something about this accessory not designed for iPhone, do you want to use Airplane Mode, Y/N? (no WiFi/Bluetooth/cellphone/EDGE functionality). Bleck. Worse still, the cassette adaptor in my car makes a horrible clicking/thumping noise about once a second when plugged into the iPhone headphone jack - UGH! Is this some signal that the microphone/pause/answer phone is supposed to respond to? Do I need to plug in a different way, such as through the headphone jack on the car power adaptor? I'd guess so, I haven't tried that.
And as long as we're talking about the headphone jack - it is so far recessed on the iPhone that MANY headphone cables don't go in far enough - such was the case with the one in my bathroom that I have hooked up to some speakers (what can I say, I geek that way - don't YOU crank tunes in the shower? Or at least listen to NPR podcasts, depending on the mood? I'm either childing, a geek, and/or old fogie - take your pick!)
AS A PHONE, THIS IS MISSING SOME EXPECTED FEATURES - my cynical friend David gleefully pointed out that most any decent cellphone over $200 has GPS these days. I don't track the market, but that sounds somewhat viable. No GPS on iPhone, even though we have Google Maps...dammit.
Also, BIG CRITICAL MISSING FEATURE - there is no Profile or Modes, uh, mode on this phone - I'm so used to two-button-press to get silent mode on my phone, and there is no equivalent here - I want Meeting Mode - vibrate only, no "beep" during button presses. I want Movie Mode - total silence at all times, dim screen. I want Outdoors Mode - vibrate AND loud ring from the get-go. There is NO WAY AFAIK to set these things in bulk - you've got to laboriously dig through the prefs and set them one at a time. This is bad Bad BAD!!! EDIT - just RTFM, Mike - the physical switch on the side is ring/silent - nice! But the modality question still lives on.
So...teething pains. The lack of some software features seems eminently fixable with upgrades, the accessory imcompatiblities is annoying, considering this is now my FOURTH iPod I've bought (original iPod (Dad has now), Mini (recently recovered from stolen, hallelujah), Shuffle (died..dammit), and Nano (still going strong jogging w/Nike+iPod widget). Now this one (which I went ahead and got because I heard that engraving wasn't going to be available any time soon). Distraction - point being, I have a bunch of existing iPod accessories, be nice to have good interoperability with iPhone to leverage that investment - I don't want to buy a new car charger, stereo adaptor, etc.
Also, a note on power usage - now of COURSE I am doodling with this thing constantly, but I went through an alarming amount of the battery percentage today.
QuickTime playback from websites - NICE! you get a little blue "play me" icon on any QT movie, and if you click on it, it plays back full screen (or at least, this was how it worked looking at QT's on Apple's on site). You can turn the iPhone sideways for fullscreen playback. This is SUPER elegant and slick and nice and WOW, everything cool about iPhone the way it is supposed to be. That said, some display pixel glitches watching one of Apple's own videos. Confirming on my laptop - is the iPhone playback, NOT the source file - probably a hardware H.264 decoder? I should make a test page to see what kinds of QT files this device can play back - betcha H.264 and not a whole lot else. More testing to be done....
...learning as I go - Apple is, of course, ready for iPhone, and has iPhone specific pages on its site, such as movie trailers - VERY nice! A great demo. Looking at some other pages with quicktime movies, if it is outside of spec, it won't play. Durn. So iPhone optimized pages and QT content matters. Doesn't play Flash video, predictably, either.
This is similar to what I got but flatter since no cable management:
The Apple Store (U.S.) - Incase Molded Rubber Case for iPhone (Black)
Static cling cover, protects from scratches etc. - this sounds like a good idea since almost all cases leave the front vulnerable. But these are guaranteed to still work w/multi-touch.
The Apple Store (U.S.) - Power Support Crystal Film Set for iPhone
The Apple Bluetooth thing looks sleek and nice (and black not white!) but is absurdly expensive at $129. The Apple Store (U.S.) - Apple iPhone Bluetooth Headset
STRESS TEST - KEY SCRATCHING AND SIDEWALK DROPPING - YouTube - iPhone's first scratch/crash test ever! -iPhone Stress Test
Some of the features may be fixed sooner than we think according to one rumor site:
AppleInsider | Apple planning host of iPhone updates before Leopard release - report: "A true instant messaging client described as a mobile version of iChat, will arrive 'very, very soon' and certainly before Leopard, the designer says. Customized ringtones were also set to appear within the same timeframe.
But fall 2007 is when the iPhone's features are set to expand in earnest, he adds. The iPhone will not only gain a disk mode for transferring computer files but should also receive a full-fledged file browser that lets users store and open documents."
HD video: iPhone interface complete walkthrough - Engadget
Apple - iPhone - Tech Specs
Video Apple - iPhone - Tech Specs: "Video formats supported: H.264 video, up to 1.5 Mbps, 640 by 480 pixels, 30 frames per second, Low-Complexity version of the H.264 Baseline Profile with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps, 48kHz, stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4, and .mov file formats; H.264 video, up to 768 Kbps, 320 by 240 pixels, 30 frames per second, Baseline Profile up to Level 1.3 with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps, 48kHz, stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4, and .mov file formats; MPEG-4 video, up to 2.5 Mbps, 640 by 480 pixels, 30 frames per second, Simple Profile with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps, 48kHz, stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4, and .mov file formats"
Gallery: iPhone Take-apart - they pry apart an iPrecious...the horror....the horror....
BareFeats analysis - Apple iPhone
Macworld: First Look: Up close with the iPhone, Page 1
For those without, simulate the messiness - Bram.us � My iSmudginator 0.2
iPhone Central: iPhone news, reviews, opinions and more from Macworld's Apple experts - MacWorld's dedicated iPhone blog - quite nice actually! They point out and expand on a lot of the tidbits I found over the weekend - the iPhone specific version of the Apple movie trailers page, the Bluetooth pros & cons (I paired my GPS to iPhone, so I can answer hands free in TWO different ways now)
Also, the Apple Bluetooth doohickey is NOT in stores yet, but is $130 and does come with a dual cable and dual dock (meaning you can charge iPod and headset simultaneously) and it DOES "MagSafe" click in to its charger, which is nice.
Daring Fireball: iPhone First Impressions - actually, this one is particularly nice - his version of this article, breaking down by category his issues with the various attributes of the iPhone.
Just checked - the Nike+iPod transponder does NOT work with the iPhone - you get a message to the effect that this device doesn't work with this accessory or somesuch - no go. But this could be a fixable thing in the future - just a software update. And of course, software updates are likely to occur via iTunes...which you'll be connecting to regularly anyway.
I had a couple of syncs take a looooooong time, and I've "crashed" the web browser a few times where it suddenly goes back to the Home screen. So a little bit of bugginess. But hey - 1.0, first weekend, could be addressed in 1.0.1.
OK, here's one for everybody - if the iPhone is supposed to be the best ever iPod for playing back video...where/how do we play back back video from it on a TV? Where's the cable, etc. to do this?
Other notes on iPhone - there is no way to Bluetooth beam or even email your contact info to someone. Feh.
You can't Bluetooth to use the iPhone as a modem for your computer. Double feh.
On the Go playlists either forget themselves entirely or I'm doing it wrong - twice I've spent time putting together playlists, and it is gone later. Grr.
Apple iPhone - Missing Pieces
Some complaints about missing features.
Tops on my list for iPhone 2.0: GPS, 3G, & video.
I'm hoping iChat, Bluetooth modeming, Bluetooth contact beaming, and a host of other issues can be resolved with software updates.
Protective Cover For iPhone : Incase Products - another good protective cover that leaves the front face open, but no cord management like the DLO one I got (Digital Lifestyle Outfitter's Jam Jacket for iPhone, can't find a web page on it as of a few days ago).
Griffin Technology: Headphone Adapter - Use your headphones with iPhone - looks way handy
Optimizing Web Applications and Content for iPhone - thanks to commenter Evan for pointing this out.
Ready for iPhone 1.0.1 update. Can has pleez?
Oh yes that's right, you use one to show an agent your reel in a bar at Sundance.
Sure, cause we can all afford an iPhone... Damn. (To be fair I am going to get one when they're available in Australia).
I picked one up too, actually waited in line for 2 hours at an AT&T store before they sent us on our way saying they were not getting any, so i drove 35 minutes to an Apple Store, and waited in line for an hour and a half, and managed to pick up an 8 GB model. Nice. I am synching now, can't wait to try this thing out.
But it is more about this is what catches my fancy, and frankly, this is a BLOG, not a magazine you pay for.
The Beauty of a blog is that one can write whatever one cares to, beholden to NO ONE.
If you don't like, sorry, nobody forcing you to read - feel free to go on your merry way and enjoy life.
I have a new gadget that is really cool and exciting.
Should I NOT get one? Should I sit it out? Should I spend all my time/effort on the blog for your benefit.
So beep on.
You can easily format your writing in text edit to opened correctly into Final Draft.... now that would be cool for us indies.... cheap portable laptop - much lighter though.
I'm also curious if I can Bluetooth connect to my TomTom 910 and fetch GPS info from it.
Barring that, manually enter in GPS coords.
Also, having trouble joining my home WiFi network - alarming.
YouTube works on EDGE w/no WiFI - kewl.
I myself am curious as to what Mike's three cents are on the iPhone.
Looking forward to your indepth review on the iPhone Mike
We're having trouble setting up the wifi here too. Pretty annoying, but other than that, this thing is sick. Would love to use this for shooting. Use it as a guide for script and storyboard.
I think it's relevent as hell. There's so many ways that you can use the video aspect of this little thingy. Who knows what's around the corner.
By the way it took us only 5 minutes to get the phone. It was easy as going to buy an ice cream sundae. Just as sweet and soothing. =)
Anyways, keep it up. This blog means alot to alot of people from all walks of the film/video world.
Take it easy man.
I'm excited about the iPhone and can't wait for Mike's appraisal of the thing.
I appreciate Mike's childlike enthusiasm and passion - it's one thing that makes this blog worth reading. It has a voice, and it's opinionated!
I'm a bit on tech overload right now. I got a new Mac Pro at work with FCP 6 and my studio is all tweaked and SAN'd, so I have lots of new toys to play with (sadly, no iPhone just yet).
I don't mind the iPhone coverage. Everything - nearly every topic - can relate to indie filmmaking in some way.
I watched a few of the youtube iphone line videos - by far the coolest was the Palo Alto line... it had Bill Atkinson... who - if you're a real mac nut - will know exactly who he is.... if not... one word - Hypercard.
Am also blown away by how good this screen looks on bright sunlight.
I also had a business acount, but for me iTunes just told me it was cancelling my discount and let me register.
Also, I'd imagine that could be why the headphone jack is so far in.
I had no problems with 128bit WEP. I have a HEX passkey and there's a button to switch to choose HEX or ASCII instead of a password.
I'm blaming you for my purchase of an iPhone at 9:05pm on a Saturday. The store was closing but I told them I knew what I wanted. I picked up my Mini-DVI to DVI connector and the sales guy asked me "if that was all". I replied, "do you have any iPhones left?". Well, if I have an iPhone now, you know what the answer was.
One interesting thing: I was able to take the registered SIM card out of the iPhone and successfully use it in my Moto RAZR. I'm now debating if I should find someone who wants my RAZR or keep it as a backup.
Thanks for the blog Mike.
How can the iphone play youtube movies if it does not play flash? Does it only play flv? is itt a special flv player? Is it a certain spec. of flash? Did they convert them all to quicktime?
Tried looking at my own reel online which I encoded for iPod and it worked just like trailers at apple site. Nice.
Another jiggle is that you can't move the cursor on the notes app which is totally lame, and they really need to add copy and paste.
I've had some trouble playing mp4 files I've posted online which, although not specifically encoded for ipod, should be within the allowable specs. I encoded them with MPEGStreamclip, and the only thing I can think of is that I had b-frames enabled - not sure if that's outside the ipod specs or not, but I believe quicktime doesn't use them when encoding. I plan to run some tests this week to see if I can figure out what works best.
One odd omission is the lack of video out - I'm hoping this isn't a hardware limitation but simply a matter of a future software upgrade. More than just watching videos on a big screen - seems like there's no reason you shouldn't be able to put your iPhone into a dock plugged into a tv, grab a bluetooth keyboard, and use it as a basic email/web computer.
I heard that the screen was originally plastic but they upgraded it to premium-grade glass at the last minute.
I heard that the screen was originally plastic but they upgraded it to premium-grade glass at the last minute."<<
I heard this news as well. It was announced at a point where they must have known all along that it was going to be glass. There wasn't enough time to change the specs and release this product on time.
It just looks good to the layman to say you've upgraded before the launch.
Read this for an interesting analysis why the iPhone does not play Flash - and probably will never. There's no technical reason for it.
That's what I want - QT video made for the iPhone on my 60" plasma. Yeah baby!
I kinda doubt you'll be powering your big TV's video with this puppy. At least not with any decent PQ.
In the Airport Admin there is a "Show Network Equivalent Password" in one of the menus (don't have it in front of me). Selecting that will show the full 128-bit password string, which should work. That should give you some touch-screen input practice too...
This is how it is with things like cell phones, Nintendo products, etc. Apple hides this aspect of wireless networking from you.
And yes, WEP takes about 20 minutes to crack if someone knows the exploit. WPA is better.
Designing Content For iPhone
that would be awesome -
oh and flash support would be good
Links to this post: