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SmallHD DP7-Pro Series

Posted by Cricket Capucci on September 12, 2013

SmallHD’s new DP7-Pro field monitor has the look of a high-end smart tablet with capabilities that rival some of best field monitors available. The DP7-Pro series is SmallHD’s flagship line, boasting some significant improvements over their AC7 series and the former DP6 series. The DP7-Pro series improves the software usability, storage flexibility, and quality design aesthetics that provide higher intuitive functionality to production crews. The improvements SmallHD implemented with this upgrade warrant taking a serious look at this field monitoring option.

There are several models to choose from. The variations reference basic software functionalities, storage flexibility, and screen brightness. The DP7-Pro has a 7 inch display with a true HD resolution of 1280×800. The DP7-Pro offers three display options OLED, HB (High-Bright IPS-LCD), and SB (Standard Bright IPS-LCD). Choosing which option is best for your shooting style will be specific to your personal needs and preference based circumstances.

The Display

The OLED (organic light-emitting diode) display option would be great for those shoots were the color and tone of your footage is a high-priority. The OLED display produces a higher contrast and higher color reproduction with no backlighting. So the colors reproduced on the screen will be richer, deeper, and exceptionally accurate. The need for no backlighting will provide longer battery life due to the lower power consumption.

The HB (High-Bright) HD IPS-LCD (In-plane switching liquid-crystal display) display is a daylight-viewable HD monitor that’s designed to outmatch the brightness of the sun. The HB option has a luminance rating over 3x that of your traditional LCD monitors. The ability to match the monitor’s brightness to fit the environment you are working in eliminates a lot of issues that plague traditional field LCD monitoring. An example of this would be the glare on the screen from the brightness of the working environment. This can hinder the displays ability to produce an accurate representation of the footage being captured, and usually requires additional accessories like sun hoods to correct this usability flaw. The HB option can benefit the production staff by producing accurate representation of what’s being capture without the need for extra accessories on set.

The SB (Standard-Bright) HD IPS-LCD display is the base model option in the series. It will boast the same basic specifications as the other two options with regards to screen-size, and resolution. Unlike the HB model the SB doesn’t have the same screen luminosity that helps eliminate extreme lighting environment problems. The colors accuracy, improved viewing angles, and increased sharpness are all still very much a part of this option. The IPS-LCD technology still makes the DP7-Pro SB a strong candidate for accurately viewing those beautiful captured images in the field.



The Software

The DP7-Pro software is designed to enable operators to have a high-level of usability and flexibility over the footage being captured. The software ships with a slew of intuitive features that can be easily accessible by using the touch screen interface. Operators can utilizes these features to ensure quality and integrity of footage is upheld.


Core Software Features




    • High-resolution waveform that provides vital exposure data. It can be repositioned around the screen based on your specific needs.





    • Allows operators to keep an accurate measure of the color balance in their shot. Gain may be increased to magnify the vectorscope, to help keep those colors within safe broadcast limits.



Focus Assist/Peaking


    • Interface that help control the focus on the subject while maintaining image integrity.



Zebra & False Color


    • Customizable exposure settings and color control.



DSLR Scale


    • Full-screen 16:9 output ratio functions regardless of camera format.



Frame Guides


    • Intuitive framing assistance function.



Battery Level Indicator


Pixel Zoom


    • 1:1 ratio mapping that allows you to display 720p crop of your 1080p signal.





    • Conversion flexibility. Option lets you retain the 1080p image quality whether transferring HDMI-SDI or SDI-HDMI.



Full-Loaded Software: (SX Models)


Full-screen/Full-width Waveform


    • Expanded version of standard waveform monitor that allows for full-screen positioning. It also includes luma and chroma functions, and control over individual red, blue, and green channels.

Full-Screen Vector Scope


    • Offer full-screen positioning and more detailed color balance viewing capabilities.

Full-Screen RGB Parade


    • Full-screen displays individual RGB waveforms for increased usability over red, green, and blue channels. This is an exceedingly supportive option for those blue-screen and green-screen productions.

Full-Screen Histogram


    • Full-screen image exposure measurement tool to help images sit comfortably in IRE range.

Horizon Indicator


    • Image stability measurement tool.

Dual HD-SDI Camera Monitoring

    • Option that can provide a client/director viewing experience. Provides viewing capabilities for two HD-SDI camera feeds at the same time.




The SmallHD DP7-Pro has an SDI in and out, as well as a HDMI in and out for video synchronization and transfers. It has a built in CVBS/YPbPr audio terminal for external audio monitoring, or you can use the built-in speakers for audio playback. The DP7-Pro has a full-size compact SD card slot for saving personalized peripheral settings, and future firmware updates. You can expand the DP7-Pro’s peripheral capabilities with their optional X-Port I/O card. The terminals on these cards will vary and have yet to be announced. On SmallHD’s website they give an overview of some possible X-Port integrations, but nothing concrete to date.


Smart Touch

The eight smart keys placed around the frame of the DP7-Pro are there to give operators intuitive turn-key control over the interface parameters. The smart keys are programmable, and can be customized to fit the operators personalized preferences. You can safe-guard your preferences via the lock switch placed at the top of the DP7-Pro screen. The left and right click scroll wheels placed on the top corners are also available for easy parameter navigation and selection.

The DP7-Pro OLED-SX is available now for $2699, the DP7-Pro HB-SX will be available in later August 2013 for $2999, and both the DP7-Pro OLED ($1999) and SB ($1599) models still have no release date. We will keep you updated as we receive new developments.

So what are your thoughts on SmallHD’s DP7-Pro series? We love to hear how you think their solution stacks up against the competition and if you plan to use this gear on location in any particular spots.


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