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Do I have potential problem?

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steve dann
Do I have potential problem?
on Feb 10, 2012 at 9:22:22 pm

Just noticed that I have firmware 1.04 on my EX3. I'm using, apparently successfully, Sandisk Extreme class 10 cards in a MXM adapter but have just read that SDHC use was added in firmware 1.10 All seems well but can't help worrying that sooner or later I'll havr a problem ... anyone else using SDHC in an adapter with early firmware?


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Marek Bilski
Re: Do I have potential problem?
on Feb 10, 2012 at 9:40:30 pm

Version 1.04 is pretty old firmware, and in firmware version 1.10 Sony has fixed SDHC compatibility issues. The repercussions of using an earlier version of v1.04 will be occasional media errors, that will also depend upon the memory card used as well. Not all memory cards are the same so it will be really hard to assess which latest memory card might work correctly with that firmware...

Our advice is to upgrade to atleast v1.10 so you can use any memory card available on the market. You can always email us and we can help you out.
Regards,
Marek

MxM Express


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steve dann
Re: Do I have potential problem?
on Feb 10, 2012 at 10:21:13 pm

Hi. Thanks for your reply. I would have hoped that either it works or it doesn't. It's not in the manual but do you know if there is a warning in the camera when there's a write error? I'm assuming not! I think upgrades from 1.04 have to be done by Sony so will have to check price.


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steve dann
Re: Do I have potential problem?
on Feb 10, 2012 at 11:23:54 pm

Supplementary question ... how does the EX3 tell the difference between a Sony SxS and an expresscard adapter with a SDHC card in it?


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Marek Bilski
Re: Do I have potential problem?
on Feb 11, 2012 at 1:57:06 am

SxS is using PCI-e express34 interface whereas, MXM adapters and SDHC memory cards use USB 2.0 express34 interface. The interface on SxS and MxM is the same express34 interface however, the pin configuration is different between SxS and MxM adapter, so yes, the Sony camera knows exactly if you have inserted USB 2.0 or PCI-e SxS media.

MxM Express


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steve dann
Re: Do I have potential problem?
on Feb 11, 2012 at 8:31:41 am

Interesting and surprising. Two obvious questions, how does a USB 2 interface cope with the 35Mb data rate (its no good for editing from an external drive) and why weren't adapters made with the same interface spec. as the SxS cards? Asking for trouble surely.


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Marek Bilski
Re: Do I have potential problem?
on Feb 11, 2012 at 12:27:19 pm

In regards to data rate, the camera records at maximum 35Mbs (mega bits per second - not mega bytes), it means 1MB/s = 8Mbs.
I know it sounds confusing but Sony camera's max. recording with sound is 4.5MB/s. So, you can edit from any SD memory card - no problems.
In regards to PCI-e interface, Sony SxS requires priority driver which Sony will not share with anyone. Think of Panasonic P2 cards, as no-one can manufacturer the media as Panasonic will not give or sell their own priority driver for P2.
However, Sony have enabled USB 2.0 interface, for their own hard drive recorder which subsequently led to our development of USB 2.0 express34 adapters!
Don't think that Sony were pleased with this idea of a company like us manufacturing adapters but they saw the opportunity to sell more cameras...

MxM Express


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steve dann
Re: Do I have potential problem?
on Feb 11, 2012 at 10:14:10 pm

Many thanks for the explanation. I like to try and understand what's going on and there's a shortage of good information on this topic caused mostly by Sony protecting their own interests.
I assume that my V1.04 firmware has USB enabled or the MXM adapter and Sandisk Extreme class 10 combination wouldn't work at all. So far on the basis of 4 hours and 400 clips recorded at 1080/50i all seems well and I can even overcrank to 54 fps (at 720/25P) before I get the expected media error which I find surprising given that the class 10 card is supposed to do 30MB/s. I assume that's to do with the USB interface not coping with a constant high data rate ... isn't it?


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Marek Bilski
Re: Do I have potential problem?
on Feb 11, 2012 at 11:28:02 pm

Hi Steve,
This is an issue with the firmware, because once you upgrade your firmware, you'll see you can overcrank all day long and have no media errors whatsoever.

We've been testing our adapters with various memory cards and gone through 6 Sony firmware upgrades and we know that every firmware version adds something or takes something away.

In regards to USB 2.0 interface not coping, when we started the business, we had only class 6 available and even class 6 were able to fully overcrank in the past (with the right firmware version and memory card).

USB 2.0 can sustain up to 30MBs in write mode which equates to 180Mbs. If you consider that Sony in full overcrank mode, will record at maximum 8MBs. Again that equates to 64Mbs.
So please upgrade your firmware so you can fully overcrank and have no unexpected issues.
Best regards,
Marek

MxM Express


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steve dann
Re: Do I have potential problem?
on Feb 11, 2012 at 11:46:18 pm

This is great background info and much appreciated. Thanks again.


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