Sony announce the NXCAM HD Super35 35mm camera
Sony have announced yet another addition to their new lineup of Professional 35mm video cameras in the form of the NXCAM HD. This new camera was announced at the Sony Professional 35mm event that I was invited to on the 17th November and there was a camera on show, albeit in a glass cabinet…
This new camera should be available mid 2011 and features the same S35 sensor as the soon to be released PMW-F3. The cameras designer was at the event and was keen to point out that the sensor is a big improvement over the one used in the consumer oriented NEX VG10. The NXCAM HD uses a Sony E mount lens mount can also utilise Sony E-mount lenses via an adapter. One other thing that I’ve not seen from Sony before is a removable hand grip. The designer explained the reasoning behind the removable grip to be aimed at making the camera modular and adaptive to the environment it’s being used in. He felt that somebody running the camera on a tripod would prefer to have the grip removed whereas it would obviously be essential for handheld use.
A price of €6000 was mentioned at the event although it’s probably too early to put a hard price on the camera as even the PMW-F3’s price hasn’t been confirmed yet and that cameras a lot closer to release. Limitations that seemed apparent are only one XLR input and it will provide 24p or 25p framerate options depending on if you buy the US or European version.
For me the make or break deal with this camera will be whether or not Sony provide SDI or HDMI output options. If this camera were to include an SDI output and allow high bitrate recording to a nanoflash or similar then it would make it a viable alternative to the PMW-F3 at a third of the cost, albeit with less functionality and features.
There were no obvious outputs or card slots on the camera but the back plate had a big hole in it which would probably contain a battery and maybe a port for an external recording module as used in some of Sony’s other NXCAM models.
Here’s the official Press Release information from Sony:
Sony to expand 35mm large format sensor camcorder lineup
NXCAM HD camcorder under development, featuring E-mount lens system
Sony Corporation announced today that it is developing a new type of E-mount interchangeable lens camcorder for professional use that is equipped with a Super-35mm equivalent large format CMOS sensor. This new addition to Sony’s professional “NXCAM” line will be available in the middle of 2011.
Already a key player in the 35mm digital cinematography business with the highly acclaimed “CineAlta” F35 and SRW-9000PL for high-end digital cinema production, Sony has just strengthened its lineup in this category with the recent PMW-F3 announcement. In addition to this, with this new “NXCAM” HD camcorder now (still under development), Sony looks to further strengthen its position in the entry-level segment by providing an affordable yet highly capable professional solution for many applications including independent film, music video and corporate communications all looking for the cinematic look.
This “NXCAM” HD camcorder under development will be equipped with a Super-35mm equivalent sensor, a widely used film stock size in the film industry that is perfectly designed for capturing motion picture. This new sensor will have extraordinary performance in terms of picture quality and sensitivity, and is able to create rich “Bokeh” effect (beautifully defocused image) that is perfect for artistic story-telling in motion picture.
Thanks to the adoption of the E-mount interchangeable lens system that is identical to the “α” series NEX-5, 3 and “Handycam” NEX-VG10, the E-mount lenses will be compatible with this new professional camcorder. In addition, a very short flange back distance (the distance between lens mount surface and sensor surface) let various “α” A-mount lenses be mounted via a mount adaptor (LA-EA1). Furthermore, it is also possible to attach many other lenses using third-party mount adaptors*1. With such flexibility, users will be able to experiment with various creative expressions by exploiting the characteristics of different optics.
*1: Not all types of adaptors and lenses are guaranteed.
The recording format for this new HD camcorder will be AVCHD, a widely supported format by many non liner editing software vendors and the same format as HXR-NX5 “NXCAM” camcorder.
There is also a plan to implement 1080p (60p / 30p / 24p*2 or 50p / 25p) recording modes.
(MPEG4-AVC/H.264 compression will be used for these modes.)
*2: 59.94p / 29.97p / 23.98p respectively.
“NXCAM”, “α” and “CineAlta” are trademarks of Sony Corporation.
“Handycam” is a registered trademark of Sony Corporation.
“AVCHD” is a trademark of Panasonic Corporation and Sony Corporation