Fast Foward Video called me up a couple months back asking if they could send me a SidekickHD for evaluation. I responded that I wasn’t in the market and was happy Cindeck user and they said, “That’s great, but we’d love to have you check one out anyway.” I obliged. I finally opened it up last week and put it on the EX1. I’m tired filming test things in the studio so I decided to take it down to Montana Cycling and Ski and film Cory doing a ski tuning.
My thoughts? Not much to say really, it does what it’s supposed to, record to an editing codec via HDMI or HDSDI. It doesn’t have any portable power! At least not easily obtained and that’s a major deal killer. It only records to ProRes right now (although they tell me other codecs will be available for an extra cost), and it was randomly stopping on me and refusing to record again in the middle of things. I had to reboot it several times. The interface was wonderfully straight forward, but at the same time a wee bit buggy. It’s wonderfully small, light an pocketable but at the expense of a very plasticky feel. It records to off the shelf SSDs which is great. However, I found several times, it said there was no SSD inserted and I had to re-seat the drive. The screen functioned just fine, had great visual quality and was plenty bright.
In summary, it does what it’s supposed to do and I’m sure future software and firmware builds will fix the bugs.
I believe there’s a glut of onboard recorders on the market now at this price range that essentially do the same thing: 10bit 4:2:2. The only thing you’ll be shopping for at that point is the device you enjoy using the most. So try ’em all out if you can. This one’s nice, but needs a bit of refining.
Here’s the vid. I have a few photos but can’t find my card reader at the moment.