Now that NAB 2015 is out of the way lets have a serious look at what each camera manufacturer had to offer in the 4K stakes.
Panasonic brought out a 4K run and gun camera called the DVX-200 at £3500 this camcorder should sell well.
4K filming at 200Mbps onto SDXC cards (C10 U3)
13x 4K optical f2.8-4.5mm, 5 axis stabilised servo zoom lens in 4K 29.5mm – 384.9 or HD 28mm – 365mm (35mm equivalent)
4/3″ large sensor giving a reasonable shallow depth of field and low noise at higher ISO.
422 10bit output from HDMI socket
4K 50p recording onto SDXC cards (C10 U3)
Very stylish with all the usual professional switches, XLRs etc.
Price £3500 or less
Not so useful…
Records 420 8 bit internally…possibly the one feature that will curtail AF101 type sales figures.
Again Panasonic are throwing caution to the wind with this fantastic 4K offering with all the features a professional could ask for. This is the first non interchangeable 4K camcorder with a 4/3″ chipset and unlike Sony’s PXW-Z100 does not rely on expensive proprietary card media. With most of Sonys latest offerings being 422 10bit, including the PXW-X70, I was disappointed in the DVX-200 only being 420 8bit though taking the same principal as the semi pro HC-X1000 it will produce cracking downscaled HD footage from 4K.
Canon delighted its followers with the next generation C300 Mk11 with 4K internal recording, at £11,300 its going to have a rough ride aside Sony’s PXW-FS7 priced at £6,200.
4K internal recording up to 410Mbps using XF-AVC intra for 4K, and XF-AVC Long GOP for 2K and Full HD.
Interchangeable lens mount from the default EF Mount, to EF Mount with Cinema Lock, or to the industry standard PL mount, as a service option.
Super 4K 35mm sensor
422 10bit internal or 444 12bit external.
Not so useful…
4K 25p maximum frame rate
XLR’s not on the body itself, as requested by C300 owners.
Relies on expensive CFast media
I think Canon have missed a trick with the latest C300 Mk11 offering, they are hard up against the Sony FS7 at almost half the price and also records up to 4K 50p !
Because of its price it won’t fly off the shelves and the upgrade to CFast media also makes it an expensive 4K recording media, £676 for 128G Sandisk card.
Another 4K camera from Canon this time the smaller XC-10. At the street price of £1600 I think this will be a good seller amongst C300 Mk11 owners looking for a good run and gun “B” camera.
Record 4K footage at up to 305Mbps 422 8 bit with Canon’s XF-AVC H.264 codec
10x zoom with optical image stabiliser
1.0 inch Canon CMOS sensor
One ND filter
4K filming to an internal CFast 2.0™ memory card and Full HD video or stills to a separate internal SD card
10x fixed manual zoom…Video Mode: 8.9 – 89mm (27.3-273mm 35mm equivalent)
Stills Mode: 4:3 – 24.1 -241mm,/ 3:2 – 25 – 250mm, /16:9 – 27.3 – 273mm (approx.)
Not so useful…
No optional XLR accessory
Expensive CFast media for 4K
4K 25p maximum.
I think this will undoubtably be a great success for Canon, its petiteness and keen price will take the place of the C100 as a “B” camera for all of Canons cinema camera range.
Blackmagic have come a long way in camera manufacturing in such a short time, this NAB is no exception, one of their new camcorders is the 4K URSA mini, a reflection on the disgruntles made of the original 7.4Kg URSA the URSA mini is a mere 2.27Kg.
Plus points…4.6K EF model
The 4.6K sensor features global shutter up to 30 frames per second and rolling shutter up to 60 frames per second with 15 stops of dynamic range
Compact and lightweight digital film camera
12G-SDI output with optional “V” lock adapter
5” fold out monitor
Dual CFast media card slots
No so useful…
Viewfinder is optional at £1079
No ND filters
Using expensive CFast media
I think this is by far the best value for money 4.6K camera on the market, once again Blackmagic have pulled a rabbit out of the hat and set the bar even higher. The URSA mini is three times cheaper than the Canon C300 Mk11 and half the price of the Sony FS7. Even the Canon XC-10 has one ND filter…to bring out a professional large sensor camera in 2015 with no ND filters is stupid as it will clearly affects sales.