In Review: Convergent Design nanoFlash

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Quality Control: The nanoFlash offers exceptional portable video recording options.

I’ve had dealings with many companies in my years in the biz, but I’ve never before encountered a company like Convergent Design. Its principals are available whenever you need them. Buy one of their products and you get the cell phone number of the support engineer and even the owner. You can call them 24/7 (really). They participate in online forum discussions. I sometimes wonder when they actually have time to develop and ship products! That pride of their device and concern for customers should alone recommend the nanoFlash.

The nanoFlash is a two-card version of CD’s larger Flash XDR, and is both less costly as well as less bulky, representing an optimal-size unit for on-camera use.

The nanoFlash answers the basic question of “How can I get the maximum possible quality from my camera?” And not only does it address the issue of “maximum quality,” but it seeks to resolve that need through codec efficiency.

Note that much of what I say here will also apply to Convergent Designs $4,995 Flash XDR model. But the popularity of the nanoFlash means that firmware updates to add capabilities now appear first for it and then for the Flash XDR.

The nanoFlash weighs less than 0.5 lb. and fits in the palm of your hand. It’s equipped with SDI and HDMI I/O as well as connectors for remote and power. It records to two CF cards. Thus far, Convergent Design has qualified 16GB and 32GB cards from SanDisk and 32GB and 64GB cards from PhotoFlash. Any camera which outputs SDI or HDMI may be used with the nanoFlash. Additionally, the SDI out allows a connection for monitoring what is being input to the device. It draws power either through a battery tap or any external power source that can provide at least 12 volts. Convergent Design sells optional battery packs as well as an optional wired remote start/stop/record device. The nanoFlash can also be used as a playback deck, playing out its contents via SDI or HDMI. Note, however, that for live playback to work, all clips on the card must be recorded in the same format. If the media is merely to be transferred to computer for editing, then you can record any combination of formats to the card. read more...

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