Inspire 2 is a professional aircraft for aerial imaging, with newest image processing and storage system CineCore 2.0.

Inspire 2

Apple ProRes

ProRes is a line of intermediate codecs, which means they are intended for use during video editing. The benefit of an intermediate codec is that it retains higher quality while still requiring much less expensive disk systems compared to uncompressed video. It is also native compatible to apple platforms. More mainstream companies start to introduce ProRes recording into their products (free or add-on service), including ARRI 、RED 、ATOMOS、BMD etc.

However, as early as 2015, DJI has introduced ProRes into Cinelight, DJI’s material import software on Inspire 1 RAW.

ProRes

Now there are 6 different ProRes:

Apple ProRes 4444 XQ,

Apple ProRes 4444,

Apple ProRes 422 HQ,

Apple ProRes 422,

Apple ProRes 422 LT,

Apple ProRes 422 Proxy

The data rate of each format is not constant. It subjects to frame rate, resolution and content, here is Apple’s official statistics:

 Apple’s official statistics

Now Inspire 2 only supports Apple ProRes 4444 XQ(no alpha)and Apple ProRes 422 HQ. They have high data rates and keep much more details of image, thus, the file is huge:

data rates

ProRes 422 HQ is the most popular one in post-processing. It supports 4:2:2 format, after several turns of decoding and encoding, you can hardly tell any loss visually.

ProRes 4444XQ uses 4:4:4 format of sampling.

ProRes 4444XQ

In pictures above, each square represents a pixel. 4:4:4 format samples all colors of one pixel, taking biggest band width, while 4:2:2 format does not, it’s a compromise that keeps colors and saves band width.

CinemaDNG is the result of an Adobe-led initiative to define an industry-wide open file format for digital cinema files. RAW is widely used by a lot of companies, but each RAW has its own set of workflows. For example, ARRI has ArriRAW, RED has R3D and Sony’s got Sony RAW.

I made a Cinema DNG process according to my experience:

 DNG process

Basic steps are:

  1. Import material, finish project setting;
  2. Load LUT for each shot, tone roughly, transcode the original file and export proxy editing file;
  3. Edit on proxy file, then export editing solution
  4. Import editing solution (EDL/XML/AAF) to match original video;
  5. Tone precisely.
  6. Render and export.

H.265

H.265 is a video compression standard, one of several potential successors to the widely used H.264. In comparison to H.264, H.265 offers about double the data compression ratio at the same level of video quality, or substantially improved video quality at the same bit rate. It supports resolutions up to 8192×4320, including 8K UHD.

H.265 thus has higher demands for hardware. It would still take some time before H.265 goes very popular. There are not many software that support H.265 now. We believe as more companies are using H.265 codec, 4K video will become more popular along with it.

H.265
5.2k(5280×2972)12bit

Before 4K is widely used, many companies start to launch their 8K products. DJI has launched 5.2K CinemaDNG video with its new Inspire 2. DJI mentioned 10bit/12bit on Inspire 2’s product page.

CinemaDNG

12 bit here refers to bit depth that describes color. Bigger the number is, more details would the image have, and the color would seem more natural. Picture below shows the difference of 8 bit/10 bit in terms of color bit depth.

Picture

Picture

You can also see the color difference of the sky in two images above. Sky color in left one is not continuous.

Moreover, with higher color bit depth, more freedom is allowed for Cutout, toning and special effects.

SSD

The imaging processing system has been separated form camera and replaced on Inspire 2, making SSD on X5R no longer compatible on Inspire 2. New SSD comes available in 480G/240G/120G.

New card reader has shining appearance, uses USB3.0 Type B to USB3.0 Type A when connected to PC. It’s quite fast: you can copy footages of 200G within 10 minutes.

Recording time with a 480G SSD:

format resolution Frame rate/fps Recoding time with480G SSD
 

 

Cinema DNG

5280×2970 23.976 15mins
4096×2160 59.94 17mins
4096×2160 23.976 30mins
3840×2160 59.94 18 mins
3840×2160 23.976 20mins
ProRes 422 HQ 5280×2970 23.976 70mins
3840×2160 23.976 51mins
ProRes 4444 XQ 3840×2160 23.976 33mins

exFATFAT32 File System

When data rate, resolution, color bit depth and frame rate are high, the file would be huge. If you’ve used X5R with macbook, you will have to use DJI’s software CineLight to import footage. PC user needs another software, DJI Camera Exporter.

But now with Inspire 2, users can export footages into their computers directly. FAT32 File System is applied, it is quite popular and simple in features. exFAT is a compromise between FAT32 and NTFS, which might be available on DJI product in the future.

Files are named differently. Previously, they were named as DJI_00XX. To avoid files being accidentally replaced, a new method of naming comes available. A039 refers to SSD, C001 refers to lens, 20161208 is the date. New method makes it convenient to manage and search your files.

Conclusion

The improvements of image processing system on Inspire 2 are very eye-catching and professional. 5.2K/12bit CinemaDNG video and Apple ProRes, would bring users exciting and efficient experience in their work.

Although X5S and X5R camera use m4/3 sensor, X5S has got a few major updates: quick-release connector, 4.2Gbps bit rate and higher ability of anti-jamming, anti-thermal noise. The max resolution reached 20.8M pixels. SNR is also improved. Oversampling technology would provide more vivid pictures.

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