CES is underway in the USA, this is the biggest consumer electronics show in the world.
If anyone has any doubts that 4k isn’t real and that 4k isn’t coming down on us like a steam roller then CES is where you need to take a look as 4k is one of the big features of the show with everything from 4k TV’s, 4k computers, and 4k cameras.
From Sony we have one new 4K camera and a major update to the ActionCam (as well as an interesting baby Sony Alpha camera that shoots HD). NOTE I INCORRECTLY STATED EARLIER THAT THE ACTION CAM WAS 4K. IT IS NOT, IT IS HD.
The FDR-AX100 is a compact handheld camcorder that boast 4k performance from a 1″ 20MP sensor (14MP in video mode) that sits behind a 12x f2.8-f4.5 lens. It even has built in ND filters. It records at up to 30fps using Sony’s XAVC-S codec, so that means it’s limited to 3840×2160 Quad HD.
One thing that surprises me is the recording media. My first thoughts would be that this would use XQD, but it does not. For XAVC-S recording it uses cheap SDXC class 10 cards!
There is a single large ring on the lens that looks like it can be switched between zoom control and focus control and then a small wheel for iris under the lens barrel.
Of course until I get my hands on one I can’t comment on the image quality, but if this sensor is similar to the one in the RX100 stills camera then it might be surprisingly good. I will be considering this camera as a grab and go companion for my PMW-F5. The price? Well Sony are marketing this as 4K for 2K, the price set to be around $2K USD and available at the end of March.
Another interesting camera is the HDR-AS100V. No it’s not 4K it’s only HD. This is a new addition to Sony’s Action Cam range. It appears to be exactly the same size as the AS-15 and AS-10 but now it’s white and now it shoots in HD at up to 60fps using Sony’s XAVC-S codec. The cameras body is now splash proof so you can use it for many applications without the waterproof housing.
The sensor is a new EXMOR-R back illuminated sensor up from 16 MP to 18 MP and boasting better low light performance and less noise. Like the previous models the camera has image stabilisation, which has always been one of the key point s of the Sony cameras for me. Wifi remote control and NFC are all included and coming in the summer is the ability to stream live from the camera. The price… well a very competitive $299 USD and available in March (just in time for storm chasing season).
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