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a99II 4K overheating solved.

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Photosopher View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Photosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: a99II 4K overheating solved.
    Posted: 11 July 2018 at 05:27
Not how you want to hear it, but I've successfully run a99II in 4K video for back to back 1.5hr clips on battery, and 3.5hrs on AC power, without ever getting the overheat icon. And I can do it with Remote Control ON, PlayMemories Camera Control ON, MIS Audio, drawing additional power from camera.

Initial tests proved bad, and a99II would overheat just like without an external recorder. But I found a menu option that stops all data writing to SD cards when using HDMI out to 4K. That was the trick.

Now I get hours and hours of interruption free 4K, both with battery or AC power, and while using Remote Control alongside Play Memories simultaneously.

There are other unexpected benefits too. Will update as I go, but separating 4K from camera allows more camera controls available that would otherwise be locked out during recording, like switching PASM mode or switching between FF/APS crop mode. During recording, I can access full camera menus and even engage PlayMemories camera control... while recording. This only works if starting record from the Atomos.

Another benefit of combining the Atomos with the camera AC power adapter. Normally with a99II, the AC adapter causes LCD screen to engage brightest viewing, and it locks out controls to change it. But when pushing the 4K over HDMI, the camera LCD goes back to normal brightness with AC power adapter. Odd but welcome.

One thing I don't like is the dual battery grip for camera does not transfer the power from batt 1 to batt 2. I'm doing more testing on this, but it seems at the moment that it just shuts the camera down until a restart. The Atomos continues to record so it picks back up when the camera revives.

If you question the need for an external recorder, I understand. But the benefits it brings with ultra bright monitoring, supreme exposure and focus tools, extended times, and native ProRes codec is invaluable to me. The cooler camera is an additional benefit. Uses same battery charger as AMount batteries.

That said, the second I install, and engage SD card recording alongside HDMI recording, the a99II goes back to its hot running overheating ways. Too bad, because my a7RIII can record 4K HDMI externally, and on both SD cards for three recording copies, without shutting down from overheat. This is not because it runs cooler. a7RIII gets very very hot. Perhaps hotter than a99II. But Sony gave the a7RIII a less critical overheating plan. Wish they give it to a99II as well.

EDIT: My a99II overheating woes are from 4K only. It runs very cool and is invincible during HD recording.

Edited by Photosopher - 12 July 2018 at 03:44
 



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amrep View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote amrep Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 July 2018 at 07:08
Thank you for your thorough investigation into this problem and for documenting a highly relevant workaround!
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Photosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 July 2018 at 16:37
From This Thread...
Originally posted by Miranda F Miranda F wrote:

If the battery is getting hot because it is absorbing heat from the camera, then removing it will make the camera get hotter ...


Hi Miranda, are you saying the battery would act like a heat sink?

I'm testing a99II + AC adapter with Atomos external recorder, both with and without battery installed in camera, and also with the vertical battery grip. The goal is to discover a hot swappable battery solution, like the original a99 can provide.

I'd appreciate your opinion on what I'm thinking. Since no one makes an external battery solution for AMount AC plug, or dummy battery, I'm thinking to hack something together...

Need cable/plug from this AMount AC adapter.. Have it.

Install or put adapter end to fit this type of NPF battery plate.... Or this guy did it with a charger sled for his Canon batts to Sony. These NPF style plates are widely available. Some with fixtures for mounting.

It's all 7.4V so should be straight connect. Leaving battery inside camera would allow hot swap from the AC port battery.

Doing this would consolidate all my video batteries to the Sony NPF970 style. The Atomos, the a99II, and the video lights would all run from same batteries. Even Sony's own 5" video monitor takes AMount native, and has the AMount style AC adapter plug.

Edited by Photosopher - 11 July 2018 at 16:42
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Photosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 July 2018 at 16:48
Update...

The vertical battery grip successfully transferred power from batt1 to batt2 while recording HDMI out to Atomos.

The difference from my OP comment was that first test was done by engaging record from the Atomos. This successful test was accomplished by engaging record from the camera.

It looks to be extending the life of the camera battery. I got one hour 4K on a 43% battery.

Edited by Photosopher - 11 July 2018 at 16:55
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Post Options Post Options   Quote SteveMRose Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2018 at 01:58
OK- I am thoroughly confused, and probably being really dense. The a99ii does not take CF cards.
Card slots:      

    Memory Stick Duo
    PRO-HG Duo
    SD
    SDHC
    SDXC
    Eye-Fi

So, are you saying there is a setting deep in the menus that allows writing to a card that the camera doesn't even take when you say " I found a menu option that stops all data writing to CF cards when using HDMI out to 4K."

Can you please clarify and tell us where in the menus we will find this?

Thanks
Steve Rose
Steve Rose
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Photosopher View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Photosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2018 at 03:32
Heh, sorry, and thanks for correcting my old timer lingo. SD cards, not CF cards.

And yes, there is a setting in the 4K output menu that stops data writing to the camera card, no matter what kind it is.

Setup Menu 3, fourth item down. 4K Output Select. It becomes available when external recorder is plugged into the HDMI.

Choices are:
Memory Card+HDMI
HDMI Only (30p)
HDMI Only (24p)

EDIT: I've changed the OP to read SD instead of CF.

Thanks Steve!



Edited by Photosopher - 12 July 2018 at 03:45
 



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Post Options Post Options   Quote mirthseeker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2018 at 03:52
Originally posted by Photosopher Photosopher wrote:

Doing this would consolidate all my video batteries to the Sony NPF970 style. The Atomos, the a99II, and the video lights would all run from same batteries. Even Sony's own 5" video monitor takes AMount native, and has the AMount style AC adapter plug.
Maybe you have seen this? One thing I noticed is that some NPF970 plates have undercharge protection.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote tqlla Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2018 at 04:17
Originally posted by Photosopher Photosopher wrote:


There are other unexpected benefits too. Will update as I go, but separating 4K from camera allows more camera controls available that would otherwise be locked out during recording, like switching PASM mode or switching between FF/APS crop mode. During recording, I can access full camera menus and even engage PlayMemories camera control... while recording. This only works if starting record from the Atomos.


Hmmm sorry if I am confused, so you are saying the A99ii will output clean 4k to the atomos, even while in the PASM modes?

Also, may I ask what memory card you are using? Sometimes overheating issues are caused by using cards that are higher spec than the camera's specs.
Sony A850 | Sony A65
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Photosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2018 at 04:33
Originally posted by mirthseeker mirthseeker wrote:

Maybe you have seen this? One thing I noticed is that some NPF970 plates have undercharge protection.


Yes, very informative thank you.

Originally posted by tqlla tqlla wrote:

...so you are saying the A99ii will output clean 4k to the atomos, even while in the PASM modes?


Yes. And functions change depending upon if you engage video from Atomos or camera. And you can still stop recording from either device, regardless of which one it started on. Starting from Atomos requires two pushes from a99II to stop recording.

It's kind of weird actually. There are so many more things you can do if starting from Atomos. Like engage AF after starting record in MF. Shift between Full Frame and APS-Crop while recording. Still discovering.

Originally posted by tqlla tqlla wrote:

Also, may I ask what memory card you are using? Sometimes overheating issues are caused by using cards that are higher spec than the camera's specs.


My main cards are ProMaster Rugged SDXC-1 U3. But I experience identical issues with Lexar SDXC-2 and Sandixk Extrem Pro SDXC-1 U3.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Photosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2018 at 04:38
One real unexpected benefit that others had touted, but I underestimated, was the efficiency of the ProRes codec.

Editing 4K from camera card download and import to Adobe Premiere is taxing. I couldn't get any responsiveness unless editing at 1/8th monitor resolution. But ProRes imports and edits at 100% resolution without stutter or hiccup. And I don't even have to download the clips. Just edit from the 1TB SSD drive that moves from Atomos to USB sled.

Feels like I got a new computer.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote tqlla Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2018 at 04:57
Originally posted by Photosopher Photosopher wrote:


Originally posted by tqlla tqlla wrote:

...so you are saying the A99ii will output clean 4k to the atomos, even while in the PASM modes?


Yes. And functions change depending upon if you engage video from Atomos or camera. And you can still stop recording from either device, regardless of which one it started on. Starting from Atomos requires two pushes from a99II to stop recording.

It's kind of weird actually. There are so many more things you can do if starting from Atomos. Like engage AF after starting record in MF. Shift between Full Frame and APS-Crop while recording. Still discovering.

Originally posted by tqlla tqlla wrote:

Also, may I ask what memory card you are using? Sometimes overheating issues are caused by using cards that are higher spec than the camera's specs.


My main cards are ProMaster Rugged SDXC-1 U3. But I experience identical issues with Lexar SDXC-2 and Sandixk Extrem Pro SDXC-1 U3.


Wow sounds like great news. I will have to save up for an atomos, just to play around with controlling aperture while shooting video.

About the SD cards, it may sound crazy, but maybe you will have less overheating problems with a good UHS-1 card.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Miranda F Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2018 at 08:49
Originally posted by Photosopher Photosopher wrote:

From This Thread...
Originally posted by Miranda F Miranda F wrote:

If the battery is getting hot because it is absorbing heat from the camera, then removing it will make the camera get hotter ...


Hi Miranda, are you saying the battery would act like a heat sink?


I don't have the camera and haven't seen this issue, so I can only speak from my knowledge of basic Physics, but yes.

I agree that in theory the battery could be getting hot because of the current it is supplying, but in this application virtually *all* of the power it produces is being used by the camera (not sent elsewhere) and all of this power turns to heat in the camera. This is a point that poeple sometimes forget!*

Given that the internal resistance of prismatic lipo batteries is very low (at least when they are not nearly empty), the heat generation inside the battery will be much less than that in the camera.

Strictly speaking you should compare the ratio of the internal battery resistance to the camera load resistance to the ratio of the battery and camera heat capacity, in order to work out which way the heat is flowing (into or out of the battery), but that's finessing the point too much.

If the camera is overheating then you need to cool it. You can do this by bolting it to a heatsink or putting heat pipes into it or blowing air over it (the easiest and cheapest way) but if you're generating a lot of heat and don;t like the temeprature rise, then you need to extract the heat more effectively.

*I had endless arguments with my wife about turning off the lights or using CF bulbs instead of old incandescent ones. The filament bulbs may have been only 20% efficient at generating light but they were 100% efficient at generating heat. And when you have electric heating with a thermostat, it doesn't really make much difference whether the heat is produced from a fire or a light bulb! But then I am convinced that 90% of the population don't understand the operation of a simple thermostat.


Edited by Miranda F - 12 July 2018 at 08:57
Miranda F & Sensorex, Sony A58, Nex-6, Dynax 4, 5, 60, 500si/600si/700si/800si, various Sony & Minolta lenses, several Tamrons, lots of MF primes and *far* too many old film cameras . . .
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Miranda F Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2018 at 08:53
Originally posted by tqlla tqlla wrote:


About the SD cards, it may sound crazy, but maybe you will have less overheating problems with a good UHS-1 card.


Maybe not so crazy if the camera processor has the ability to shut down parts of itself which are not being used (to cut dissipation), which most modern chips have. It has to enable the card buffer drivers to write to them, and those buffers need to be very fast and therefore high-power to write to the fastest cards. If you use a slow card then they have to be active longer, and the longer they are active the more power is being used so the more heat is dissipated.
Miranda F & Sensorex, Sony A58, Nex-6, Dynax 4, 5, 60, 500si/600si/700si/800si, various Sony & Minolta lenses, several Tamrons, lots of MF primes and *far* too many old film cameras . . .
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Photosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2018 at 13:16
Originally posted by tqlla tqlla wrote:


Wow sounds like great news. I will have to save up for an atomos, just to play around with controlling aperture while shooting video.


Don't need Atomos for that. Unlike EMount... AMount provides clickless aperture control on every lens. Just set the front multi controller for AV and clickless. Works in Manual and Aperture Priority modes. Must use manual focus. Atomos doesn't change that.

Originally posted by tqlla tqlla wrote:

About the SD cards, it may sound crazy, but maybe you will have less overheating problems with a good UHS-1 card.


Inserting my PNY UHS-1 cards, in 4K, the camera reads:
"Cannot record in this setting. Either switch to UHS-1 U3 card or change the record setting."
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