At last weeks Broadcast Asia trade show in Singapore, Sony revealed that they are working on a new highly compact XDCAM camcorder. They showed a prototype camera that was under a glass cover (which was a working unit).
Very few details are available at this time. The camera shown appears to be based on either the Sony AX100 4K camcorder or the similar CX900 HD camcorder. These both use a 1″, 20MP CMOS sensor that produces really rather good images (although it does suffer from a fair bit of skew/rolling shutter) and have 8 bit XAVC-S recording to SDXC or SDHC cards in 4K and HD in the AX100 and HD only in the CX900. This new camcorder will be able to record using 10 bit 422 XAVC long GoP, probably at 50Mb/s like the new PXW-X180. Whether it will also be able to record the XDCAM Mpeg2 codec is less clear, personally I suspect not.
This camera follows on from the Sony tradition of taking a top end compact consumer model, tweaking the recording codecs, adding a few more pro style features and adding an XLR input. So it’s no surprise to see this really. Given the great images from the CX900 and AX100 I would imagine that this new camcorder will pack quite a punch for such a small unit. The AX100/CX900 have a 12x optical zoom with image stabilisation and the ability to digitally increase the zoom range to 18x in 4K(AX100) and 24x in HD with very little loss of image quality.
EDIT: I Note that 1: There are no 4K badges on the camera body as the AX100 has. 2: The zoom range is noted as 24x on the camera body. This makes me suspect that this camera will be HD only.
Here are some pictures of the unit shown in Singapore.
Just an update on the progress of my light weight, modular 3D mirror rig, the Genus Hurricane Rig. In many countries, including the USA and UK the rigs will be available through Manfrotto accredited dealers. To ensure the very highest quality of service and support I am assisting Genus and Manfrotto with a global dealer training programme. In most cases dealers will already have 3D knowledge, but in order to sell the rig they must attend one of our workshops and demonstrate a good understanding of 3D and the Hurricane Rig. The rig was on show on the Canon and Manfrotto booths at the recent BVE show in London where it attracted a large amount of interest. In the UK you will be able to order rigs directly from me via the hurricane-rig.com web site. The advantage of purchasing this way is that I will be able to ensure that the rig will meet your needs and provide after sales support and training if required.
I recently spent a few days in Singapore training the lecturers at Singapore Poly to use the Hurricane Rig. The polytechnic has purchased a rig as a teaching aid for stereoscopic 3D classes. They will be using it with an EX1R and EX3 as well as a convergent design Nano3D. This makes a really good light weight and low cost system. The Nano3D will output an anaglyph output so a conventional 2D monitor can be used on set to align the rig and for monitoring. This can be a big cost saver as 3D monitors are expensive items.
Cinematographer and film maker Alister Chapman's Personal Website