Sonyalpharumors has brought to light a source claiming to have unlocked the recording limit on Sony Alpha, RX and NEX cameras as well as lifting the language menu fix on region bound cameras, such as bodies bought in Japan. Here’s some information about this latest Sony Alpha Hack—and a warning to those of you that are tempted to try it. Sony Alpha hack – proceed with caution It seems that user ma1co on Personal View has dabbled in Sony hacking in the past, now claiming this practice has been put to good use in removing the 30minute recording limit of Sony cameras like the A7S, A7R, RX100, and A6300. It’s done by reverse engineering the Play Memories app, meaning any camera that utilizes the Sony software can benefit from this hack. Click here to see the full list of compatible camera bodies, but in a nutshell, the A7S, A7R II & IIs, as well as the A6300 and RX bodies, are all in there. Some filmmakers will be well acquainted with hacking cameras; Magic Lantern was (and still is) a tremendous asset to Canon DSLRs, packing a shed load of extra features into the otherwise outdated camera bodies, not to mention the Panasonic GH2 hack for increased bit rate recording. This should be taken with a caution, however. Firstly, we have no first-hand confirmation that this hack works, there is simply a sufficient amount of feedback on the Personal View forums for us to think it’s worth notifying you, the readers (including the above picture) as this could develop into something great.* *Update – I’ve had a good body of users & peers come forward to confirm that this does in fact work. Secondly, hacking any camera comes with significant risk and voids any manufacturers warranty. This applies to the Sony Alpha Hack, too. What works for one camera line and their respect hacker is completely different to another (particularly a brand new source). And lastly is a warning on the actual feature itself. The recording limit is in place to allow the Sony cameras to fall into a different, cheaper tax band, but many users will know that bodies like the A7R II can suffer badly from overheating and will shut down long before the recording limit is reached. As an occasional video user of the Sony Alpha cameras in B/C/D unit form, I rarely record clips on the A7R II or A7S II longer than a minute or two, therefore, won’t have any use for the Sony Alpha hack in its current state. However if there is anyone out there that is in a position to test out the hack, do let us know how you get on. This is certainly something to keep an eye on, with the potential of other features opening up as the hack develops. Via SonyalpharumorsRead more
FilmConvert is our film look plugin of choice for many of the review videos we shoot here at cinema5D. It’s easy to use, there are integrated versions for Premiere and Final Cut Pro X as well as a standalone version, and in our opinion, there isn’t an easier and faster way to achieve a very sophisticated film look without much more effort (and no, this is not a sponsored post … I just like it!). One of the qualities of FilmConvert is that they develop their presets specifically for each camera, which makes it actually easy to match different cameras across models and even manufacturers using the plugin. On the other hand, you need to download these profile packs individually. Luckily they have become quite fast in implementing new picture profiles for new cameras. There’s the two fairly new Sony RX100 IV and Sony RX10 II cameras, (small sensor, fixed-lens cameras) that have gained popularity among semi pro filmmakers as B-cameras or quick always-in-your-pocket tools. The amount of possible movie mode adjustments in these cameras make them viable tools also for professionals – just look at my colleague Johnnie Behiri’s great video reviews of the RX100 IV as well as the RX10. To make grading easy with these cameras, head over to FilmConvert to download the appropriate plugin pack for free (if you already own the software).Read more
by Henry Shephard | 21st September 2015
Guest Post by Henry Shephard Times are precious, especially when you have kids, and being a filmmaker and a recent first-time dad I’m guilty of wanting to document everything. Therein lies my obsession of looking out for the latest gear to give my films that extra edge. Super slow-mo has been on that list for a long time! Until quite recently, if you wanted to shoot with frame rates in the region of 480fps and above, you had to have over $60,000 in hand for a Phantom camera – but in steps the Sony RX10 II and Sony RX100 IV! I ended up purchasing the Sony RX100 IV for the pocketability factor. The fact that you can leave this camera in your pocket and have it on standby for anything worth recording is incredibly useful. With all the excitement of the slow-mo capabilities of this camera, immediately after purchase, my wife and I used it to film this video of our daughter, to remember the fun of giving her a bath! You quickly realize that water in slow motion equals absolute gold! Here are 5 tips for Stunning Slow Motion on the Sony RX100 IV 1. 480fps max Avoid shooting above 480fps: The loss in quality from 480fps to 960fps is not worth those extra frames. 250fps with a sensor readout of 1,824 x 1,026 effective pixels is ideal for quality shots. 2. Use ‘End Trigger’ This camera allows you to shoot the previous 2 seconds of action upon pressing the record button. This can be found within the menu options. This way, I can wait for the action to happen first and then hit record. Note it takes the camera 20 seconds to save the video file to the card when using high frame rates. 3. Use natural light (lots of it!) Natural light will help avoid flicker that is often associated with high frame rates and different light sources. You also need a lot of light when shooting at these high frame rates. Remember when shooting at 480fps, you need your shutter speed to be 1/1000th (180 degree shutter) which takes away a lot of light. 4. Slog-2 can enhance your image The Sony RX100 IV might look like a hobby camera and has limitations especially when it comes to shooting slow motion, but it also comes with the famous Slog-2 Gamma Mode that can enhance your image. When Picture Profile 7 (PP7) is enabled your image becomes much flatter thus increasing dynamic range, providing a better highlight rolloff and making it easier to apply Slog-2 LUTs in your editing system for great colors. 5. Use water or particles to make your shots more stunning If you’re looking to shoot with water, dust or even produce underwater shots without the big price tag, use the Aquapac small camera case 418 (like I did). It’s $20! It will give your shots another edge. Not only do we at henjofilms.com see the uses for this camera in our personal lives, but professionally as well. Filming that one special shot at weddings or for something unique in our corporate work, can bring the production value of the video up a few notches! To sum up, I totally recommend this camera to anyone looking to add that extra special something to their films. For a more in-depth look at the camera check out cinema5D’s Sony RX100 IV REVIEWRead more
Earlier this month Sony announced a bunch of new 4K cameras and the RX100 IV is the first to land on our desk for a test. Sony RX100 IV footage is nice because the camera has internal 4K (UHD) video and slow motion up to 960fps. Before continuing, it is important for me to note, that all the slow-motion footage you see in the video above was upscaled to 4K in order to match the rest of the 4K footage on the timeline, so obviously it is softer. Also, the “flickering” when recording slow-motion is NOT a camera malfunction but is due to the electric circuit’s frequency. This can usually be overcome by using “flicker free” light fixture. At the location I wasn’t allowed to turn off the shop’s lighting. Back to the camera. When you look at it you know this is one of those modern super compact wonders. 4K internal recording, various slow motion speeds (the 250fps with a sensor readout of 1,824 x 1,026 effective pixels is my favourite), a good lens, nice EVF and good LCD screen just to name the big ones, but if you look closer you will see that here’s another camera by Sony that suffers from an “identity crisis”. Mostly it looks like Sony haven’t decided what they want this camera to be. If it is a photo camera, then why bother with pro features like S-log2 and internal ND filters? On the other hand, if it is a tool for the serious video shooter be it an advanced hobbyist or a pro, why is there no proper audio connectivity and only internal audio recording? It is only when starting to use the camera, that one will notice the RX100 IV will function best as a “home shooting device”. The advanced user will suffer the shortcomings and limitations as soon as the shooting requirements get a bit more demanding. If you decide to use this camera in the field you should be aware of the following: Battery life is very limited. If you intend to use HFR (slow-motion) mode, the battery will drain even faster. It is not possible to connect the camera to the mains and continue recording while the battery is “dead”. Due to extensive processing, the camera has to buffer the recorded slow motion images. This prevents you from recording the next desired shot immediately. You will always have to wait until buffering is complete. When entering “slow motion buffering mode” no further adjustments in manual mode are possible. You cannot change aperture, focus or ISO. There’s evident rolling shutter in 4K. There’s a limit of up to 5 minutes recording time in 4K. The camera has the tendency to overheat. During my test I got a “warning”, but the camera did not stop recording. Last but not least is the horrible connectivity/battery/SD card placement this camera has to offer. You can clearly see that it was not designed with the filming experience in mind and probably a mindset of “why do we need an external HDMI connector anyway?”. Otherwise I could not explain the awkward placement of those. Note that the REC button functionality can be set to button “C”, but still the HDMI placement on the right hand side is a design flaw in my opinion. On the positive side: (in no particular order) 1 inch sensor size (16mm equivalent). Although the camera is somewhat limited in zoom range (24-70mm), the lens is fast (f1.8w-f2.8). Custom button placement is possible. Lowlight recording is fine for a 1 inch sensor. Pop-Out EVF. Additional professional video features like Zebra, peaking, built-in ND filter, S-Log2/S-Gamut. Minimal moire in the Sony RX100 IV footage. Various slow motion rates all being recorded in 1080p. Note the effective pixel readout of the sensor reflects the true picture quality which degrades with higher frame rates. In “Quality Priority”: 240fps/250fps (1,824 x 1,026), 480fps/500fps (1,676 x 566), 960fps/1,000fps (1,136 x 384) In HFR mode you can choose ‘start trigger’ to begin recording once button is pressed or ‘end trigger’ to record footage up until the button is pressed. The ‘end trigger’ mode lets shooting begin 2 to 4 seconds before the movie button is pressed so you can actually record “lost moments” in slow motion after they happened. 100 Mbps 4K recording (3840×2160) and 50 Mbps during full HD. “Take anywhere with you” sized camera. PAL/NTSC switchable. FN button is highly customizable. Final thoughts: Personally I have no problem with the 5 minutes 4K recording limitation this camera has as I can not see myself shooting anything lengthy with it. The slow motion this camera offers is its main selling point! In the right lighting conditions it can produce beautiful effects. For the money, this is the best option currently available. I love working with small cameras and despite its weaknesses, I will buy the RX100 IV because of its pocket size, 4K recording and slow-motion capabilities. It can serve as a great family companion and “throw in the bag” second camera for my productions. After all, life in slow motion never looked so beautiful before (for less than $1000) … Camera settings for the above video: File format XAVC S 4K, 25p, PP7 (S-LOG 2), ISO 1600 (camera default present in this mode), HFR settings: 25p 50M, frame rate 250fps, Quality priority, For those who would like to experiment grading Sony RX100 IV footage: (download the 4K version). Edited in Adobe Premiere CC 2014. LUTs: Rocket rooster. Music: The music bed, What a day SUHONEN Special thanks to Ilya and Ivan from Brothers’ Barbershop Vienna. Johnnie Behiri is a freelance documentary cameraman/editor/producer working mostly for the BBC and other respected broadcasters. He is also co-owner of cinema5d.comRead more
Hot on the heels of announcing the new Sony A7rII, here comes Sony with a 4K upgrade for two additional popular cameras. The Sony RX10 II and the Sony RX100 IV. Both cameras will feature the following: 1” sensor (new CMOS sensor enabling faster processing and readout) XAVC S codec and 4K (3840×2160) resolution recordings Super slow-motion, 960 fps, 480fps and 240 fps (Always in a 1080p wrapper) minimise “rolling shutter” effect The cameras utilize full pixel readout without pixel binning to ensure minimal moire and ‘jaggies’ Video recording at a high data rate of 100 Mbps during 4K recording and 50 Mbps during full HD Picture Profile, S-Log2/S-Gamut Dual video recording functionality, allowing shooters to capture 16.8 MP still images during 4K video recording High-contrast XGA OLED Tru-Finder Upgraded Fast Intelligent AF system that enables high-speed, high-precision contrast detection of a moving subject Note that both cameras have different 4K recording time. The RX10 II can shoot 4K video up to 29 minutes in the US (strangely the 29 min was always a European recording limit due to tax rules regarding “video cameras”), while the the RX100 IV can shoot 4K clips at up to about 5 minutes in length. (I guess this limitation is to prevent the camera from being fried)… Lens specifications for the Sony RX10 II: ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 24-200mm (35mm equivalent) F2.8 lens. Lens specifications for the Sony RX10o IV: ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm (35mm equivalent) F1.8-F2.8 lens Sony RX10 II specific: Dust and moisture resistance Pricing and Availability: The new cameras will be available this July for about $1000 (Sony RX100 IV) and $1300 (Sony RX10 II). Pre-sales for each model will begin on June 17th. For more information, head to Sony’s official press release Super slow-motion resolution: 240fps/250fps (1,824×1,026), 480fps/500fps (1,676×566), 960fps/1000fps (1,136×384) Super slow-motion samples: Sample videos: Sony RX10 II: Sony RX100 IV:Read more
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