Gear review: Atomos Assassin 4k recorder

In this video I cover the following topics:

The ports on the outside of the unit

What ships with it?

Tour of recording features

Inputs

Codecs

Device

Power options

Timecode

Audio metering

Waveforms

Monitor Assist

Focus zoom

Cut and tag

3D Luts

Playback

Review

Loop in Loop out

Final thoughts

 

What’s in the box?

To be honest- not much!

The box itself is really like a wrapper for the carrying case.

The carrying case is a soft shelled zippered case.  Inside we have two compartments. On one side, theres the Assassin, on the other side, theres a velcro flap holing behind it a quick instruction guide, a hard drive caddy, an ac adapter, and various attachments to make it work in a variety of countries. Thats it.

By not including a battery, you are forced to have it plugged in to use it at all. Thats one thing i really wished they had been able to include in this package. it has “Almost” everything you need to get up and running right away.  The good news is it will use Sony NP series batteries.

Additionally you can use an Atomos dummy battery with a different power option. I’ll have another post talking about my rig build in the very near future.

What else do I need?

Other than power you will need a compatible SSD.  This is actually one of the things that sold me on the Assassin over the odyssey, or picking up a Black Magic Ursa. With the Ursa, I need cfast 2.0 cards, which are very expensive still at the time of this writing. With the odyssey, i need proprietary drives, and with the assassin, I can pick up a decent sandisk ssd pretty inexpensively.

As mentioned the assassin comes with ONE ssd caddy that locks it into the device. You will need additional caddies to use more ssds.

The last thing you will need is a SATA connector.  Atomos makes one that has some mixed reviews, and i was able to pick up this USB3.0 to SATA pretty inexpensively.

My favorite features:

Theres a LOT of features of the Assassin, and if you’re looking for all of them in print form you should check out the atomos website for it:

http://www.atomos.com/ninja-assassin/

But my favorite features have got to be:

  1. The screen. Everyone is right- the screen is gorgeous., its light, its responsive, its intuitive. doesnt get too hot.
  2. Focus assist. Something I wish every camera had. I know it was one of my favorite features of the Black Magic Ursa. Makes getting the shot a lot easier.
  3. Waveforms/vectorscope. Much like the focus assist this is something I’ve found to be a great asset in getting the right look.
  4. LUTs. Being able to preview different luts right on the device is a great extra tool.

Is it worth it?

Its a great preview monitor that just happens to record in 4k. can be used as a playback device, you can tag your footage and export XML with it, and only a few hundred more than a traditional preview monitor.  For me and for anyone with a 4k capable device, I would highly recommend it.