Odyssey 7Q and 7Q+ can now record 4K/UHD up to 60P and HD up to 240P in Apple ProRes

By technical editor Matt Allard:

Screen Shot 2015-08-07 at 3.31.02 PM

Convergent Design have announced yet another firmware release for their range of Odyssey recorder/monitors. Firmware version 2015.8 offers Odyssey 7Q and 7Q+ users the ability to record high speed Apple ProRes contuniously in 4K/UHD up to 60p, and in HD up to an amazing 240P. According to Convergent Design, no other external recorder can record HD Apple ProRes at 240 frames per second – no camera, no standalone recorder and no computer capture card. High Speed Apple ProRes will initially be offered for the Sony FS7 (with XDCA Extension Unit) and FS700R. The Odyssey RAW Bundle (a paid upgrade) is required to access the high frame rate data from these cameras. In future firmware updates Convergent Design will add high frame rate support for more cameras with appropriate outputs.

In addition users of the FS700R can record a 4K RAW to 4K ProRes burst of just over three and a half seconds at 120 fps – the camera first buffers the RAW files internally and then outputs them to the Odyssey7Q+ over SDI. Sadly this function is not available on the FS7 as it doesn’t have the internal buffer.

These options are great news for owners of the FS7 and FS700. Being able to record the HFR output of these cameras directly to ProRes will certainly make post workflows and help with material that needs to be turned around quickly.

The Canon C300 Mark II
The Canon C300 Mark II

For potential buyers of the Canon C300 Mark II, the Odyssey7Q+ and Odyssey7Q will be able to record 4K & QHD RAW as long as customers have the Odyssey RAW Bundle. Convergent Design is currently the only monitor/recorder company supporting the file naming from the Canon Cinema EOS RAW cameras.

Other new features include Canon XC10 support and a new vectorscope with 15x zoom, plus several fixes and improvements.

This from Convergent Design:
While different camera systems output various forms of RAW data, for the most control with the greatest flexibility, RAW data is always the highest quality signal possible. RAW has the most available information from which to derive a desired image. However, all that information comes at a price; RAW data can be huge. It takes up a lot of SSD memory space, which in turn takes a long time to offload onto a computer, which then takes up that same large space on hard drives and lastly requires considerable processing and transcoding into a video format which also takes a great deal of time and more memory.

For many productions, Apple ProRes recording is ideal. It is a high quality video recording that uses a fraction of the memory space of RAW and can be loaded directly into most popular editing systems. Many cameras (including the currently supported FS7 and FS700) offer a LOG form of video that allows for much of the flexibility inherent in the RAW signal. A 4K RAW file is about three times the size of a 4K Apple ProRes (HQ) file for the same number of minutes of material. That’s three times the offload time, three times the computer storage time, and then the equivalent or greater of that offload time spent again processing the material to then be able to edit it. With high speed these differences are heightened as the faster the frame rate the more memory used.

Currently, the Odyssey7Q+ supports the Sony FS7 and FS700 cameras for high speed Apple ProRes. High speed capabilities are 4K/UHD60p and HD240p. For the FS700, the Odyssey7Q+ also features a short burst recording of 4K120p. Additional formats and cameras will be added in future firmware updates.

Several cameras can output high frame rates as RAW data. Utilizing the Odyssey RAW Bundle, the Odyssey7Q+ can currently record RAW files from seven different cameras with more to follow soon. Below are the top frame rates and resolutions for each camera in RAW.

ARRI ALEXA Classic 2.9K60p
Canon C500 4K/UHD60p
Canon C300 MKII 4K/UHD30p
Indiecam GS2K 2K60p/HD120p
IOI Flare 2KSDI 2K60p
Sony FS7 (w/ XDCA) 4K60p/2K240p
Sony FS700 4K60p/4K120p Burst/2K240p


Canon XC10 Support:
UHD Apple ProRes 23.98p, 25p, 29.97p UHD->HD SuperSample to Apple ProRes 23.98p, 25p, 29.97p (Camera trigger & HDMI timecode in HD Only)


NEW FEATURES (Odyssey7Q+, Odyssey7Q)
FS7/FS700 High Speed RAW -> Apple ProRes Support*

4K RAW -> 4K Apple ProRes, 50p & 60p added
4K RAW -> UHD Apple ProRes, 50p & 60p added
2K RAW HS -> HD Apple ProRes, 100p, 120p, 200p, 240p
(Only one SSD can be mounted for recording 2K HS Apple ProRes)
(Only Odyssey int. TC supported (Seed, Time-of-Day DF & NDF)

FS700 only:
4K RAW Burst -> 4K Apple ProRes, 100p & 120p
4K RAW Burst -> UHD Apple ProRes, 100p & 120p
(*Requires Odyssey RAW Bundle or Sony FS RAW Option)

Canon C300 MKII RAW Support:
4K RAW recording up to 30p
QHD RAW recording up to 30p
4K RAW -> 4K Apple ProRes up to 30p
QHD RAW -> UHD Apple ProRes up to 30p
(*Requires Odyssey RAW Bundle or Canon RAW Option)

NEW FEATURES (Odyssey7Q+, Odyssey7Q, Odyssey7)
Analog or Digital
Trace Trace display in green or color (true CbCr)
Variable Zoom 1.0x – 15.0x (Finger Drag left-right)
Zoom Presets 1,2,5,10,15x (Finger Drag up-down)

FIXED Audio issues in 1080i59.94 playback
FIXED 4K to 2K/HD Downscale Line at the bottom of image.
IMPROVED Odyssey Menu Font

NOTE: Updating firmware on an Odyssey monitor/recorder requires the use of an SSD. If an Odyssey monitor/recorder is currently running firmware version 5.10.100 (March 2015) or 2015.5 (May 2015) then a qualified Samsung SSD (see list above) as well as an Odyssey SSD can be used to perform the update. Samsung SSDs require the Convergent Design SSD Handle kit to mount in an Odyssey monitor/recorder. Odyssey monitor/recorders running earlier firmware versions must use an Odyssey SSD to perform the update.

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