by Tim Fok | 24th February 2015
Sony FS7 Firmware 2.0 has been announced for release in March (next month). The update brings full resolution 4K recording in XAVC, ProRes recording via the compatible recorder as well as 4-channel audio input. Support for 4K (4096×2160) XAVC-I Recording Previously the Sony FS7 was capable of only recording UHD 3840X2160 internally (full 4K reserved for RAW via external out). Now, 4096X2160 resolution is capable internally using the robust XAVC I codec. This is possible up to 60p as per the below graph. Support for ProRes Recording We knew this feature would become available eventually as mentioned in the initial announcement of the camera. Firmware 2.0 will enable ProRes recording for the Sony FS7 with use of the XDCA-FS7 extension unit. So far, it looks as if only standard Apple ProRes 422 and Apple ProRes 422 HQ are available, no word on LT or 4444. There’s a limit on framerates also, you have your standard Interlaced rates but no high framerate progressive options, capping out at 30p. Support for 4-channel Audio Input and Recording There’s a bit of ambiguity around this update for me, as I can’t quite work out where the additional channel comes in. Someone please feel free to chime in, but for now I’ll quote Sonys press release: “The FS7 supports 4-channel audio input. In applications such as an interview, this function enables the simultaneous use of an external microphone for recording ambient sounds, the built-in microphone for voice memos by the operator, and two optional UWP Series wireless microphones for voice of interviewer and interviewee.” There’s then mention of expansion with is a nice touch, the XLR module that works with the Sony A7S also works for the FS7: “In addition, by the use of an optional XLR adapter “XLR-K2M” which provides additional 2 XLR inputs, possible applications are further expanded.” The Sony PXW line get a firmware update also, check out details on that here, as well as V5.0 for the F5 and F55 cameras that at a glance provide s interval recording, noise reduction for when recording in Cine EL, assigned button tweaks and simultaneous recording options.Read more
by Tim Fok | 12th September 2014
As anticipated, Sony got us off to a flying start at IBC. They have many new announcements, with everything from a new monitor, to two new cameras to a firmware update for the F5, all sharing the same theme – 4K. Lets have a look at what they brought us. Sony PXW-FS7 We have an exclusive hands on video of this camera. It’s everything a previous Sony camera wasn’t – an ergonomic dream. The FS7 is a super35mm 4K camera, capable of shooting 10-bit 4:2:2 60p in 4K, and up to 180fps in 1080p. The camera will sit between the FS700 and F5, replacing no camera in Sonys current line up. Check out our dedicated exclusive article here. Sony 28-135mm F4 G OOS lens This lens came in conjunction with the PXW-FS7 release. This is a professional e-mount zoom lens, with a constant aperture of f/4. The lens features optical image stabilization, hard stop focus ring, proper aperture ring, and zoom rocker. check out our dedicated article here. Sony F5 Firmware Update I must admit, when I first heard of the Sony FS7, it sounded like they could’ve closed the door of the F5, leaving the new camera to sit directly under the F55. But no, Sony has provided a firmware update to the F5 which will enable 4K recording internal. We knew the camera could do this, so it’s great to see Sony embracing the technology rather than just closing the loop hole others found! Below is Sony press on the upgrade, which will cost around $1000. Sony CBK-55BK Shoulder Mount Dock for F5/55 Further more on F5/55 news, Sony announced a new shoulder mount dock for the super35mm duo. The dock requires no cables, and adds ENG ergonomics by offering white balance, gain and shutter controls on the front block. The rear block provides balanced XLR audio in, headphone out and wireless audio. Sony are pushing this product alongside their B4 to PL lens mount to provide the ultimate 35mm ENG setup for news and documentaries. Sony PXW-X200 The Sony PXW-X200 is an update to the current workhorse PMW-200 that further embeds Sonys new XAVC codec across its entire line. This means the camera will record XAVC Intra/Long GOP recording in 4:2:2 10-bit. Also is a longer 17x zoom lens, providing 29.3mm to 499mm 35mm equivalent. The new 1/2″ 3CMOS camera will also feature a host of wireless connectivity including NFC (near field communication) and live streaming. The latter will work with a firmware update and additional USB dongle; Sony displayed this feature during their conference streaming to a presenter in Amsterdam centre; watching this stream through a stream left no grounds for judgement however. Sony BVM-X300 4K monitor Sony also released a new 30″ 4K monitor. The BVM-X300 is an OLED RGB 10 bit reference monitor, utilizing TRIMASTER™ technology. “Sony’s exclusive TRIMASTER™ technology architecture, achieving excellent colour and picture quality reproduction, which makes this monitor ideal for 4K cinema production (onset monitoring, dailies and editing), 4K live production (camera control, program preview) and real-time 4K presentation.” If you’re attending IBC, be sure to check out the Sony booth with their latest releases (if you can get to it through the crowds of people!). If you’re not, don’t worry we’ll be bringing you all the latest and most exciting news along with another series of our On The Couch show.Read more
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