The Sony stand is always a safe bet if you want to get hands-on with new releases at IBC, and given the raft of updates they’ve announced over the past few months, we’re expecting things to get particularly grabby this year. For anyone who missed the original announcements, here’s a quick recap of what we already know is coming…
The PXW-Z100, X160 and X180 are already available on our site, with the tardy (but extremely pleasing) PXW-X70 due to follow them soon. This newcomer replaces the older NX70 and PMW-100, offering you a compact XAVC camera that can slot into a broadcast environment. It’ll also be able to stream directly to Ustream from early 2015.
Its 1″ sensor and fixed lens combo put us in mind of the RX100, and this is an ideal camera for anyone who likes to shoot with a shallow depth of field or who wants to make their talking head shots look particularly lush. Features we particularly appreciate include 3G SDI connectivity, its state of 4K readiness and the fact that its two media slots have separate record buttons, so you can shoot the entirety of an event on one card, then selectively record key takes to the other.
Another new addition we’re hoping to get our hands on at IBC is the PXW-X500, which we’re told will boast three 2/3″ CMOS sensors with horizontal and digital ALAC and will shoot up to 120fps in XAVC mode, or at standard frame rates (ie no slow or fast motion) when shooting in ProRes or DNxHD mode, both of which are available as leasable add-ons.
A nice feature to note on the PXW-X500 is that, while it records to SxS as a rule, there’s also an SD card slot that you can use to record proxies, and both your SD card and your SxS can be formatted to FAT, without the need for extra UDF formatting on the SxS card.
PXW-180 and PXW-160
The PXW-X180, which has gotten the most love from Sony in the buildup to IBC, offers 3x 1/3″ Exmor CMOS sensors, a 25x HD lens and a variable Neutral Density filter. The headline, however, is the fact that the X180 will be getting a firmware update to enable live streaming in early 2015, making it great for ENG and events.
Not one to be left out, the PXW-Z100 had bagged itself a pre-show firmware upgrade that “supports 4K/59.59p, 4K/50p, 4K/29.97p, and 4K/25p signal” and adds a slow shutter speed setting in Slow & Quick mode.
Not wanting to look like XAVC fetishists, we should also mention that the HXR-MC2500, a long-awaited follow-up to the MC2000. This new shouldermount model comes with full WiFi and newer field control, so it’s great for event videographers who want to be able to get the perfect angle regardless of whether or not there’s room for them behind the camera; they’ll also appreciate the MC2500’s whopping 14 hour battery life.
We’ve been promised better low light performance and a new, multi-interface shoe that will allow wireless audio in (this also comes with the X160 and X180).
And finally, the A-7S
If you’re more of a mirrorless/DSLR type, pin your IBC hopes on the A-76’s 12 megapixel Full Frame sensor. This means each pixel gets three times as much light as it would in your old A-7R (feel free to align that aside in disgust at this point). In a move we’re particularly pleased by, it offer direct compatibility with the Atomos Shogun, so you can record in Pro Res, though natively it records 50Mbps X-AVC-S interlaced and outputs S-LOG.
Timecode is available over HDMI; zebra and peak meters are included and you can use Canon lenses as long as you pair the camera with an NEX Metabones adaptor, although it is Full Frame, so we’d recommend you shy away from EFS lenses.