Sunday, April 10, 2011

Sony NAB Announcements

Sony held it's NAB news conference today, and as expected, announced a 4K camera; the F65. (And expect the price to be very expensive...)

You can see the product page here: Sony F65

Sony F65

F65 Features:
  • Industry's first 8K 20M-Pixel CMOS imager for digital motion picture production
  • From this imager, the F65 will derive brilliant HD, 2K, True 4K resolution, and higher
  • 16bit Linear RAW output
  • F65 adheres to 1.9:1 aspect ratio, DCI Projection standard (4096 x 2160 or 2048 x 1080) Choice of picture composition as needed: 1.85:1, 1.78:1, 1.66:1, 1.33:1, 2.35 spherical, 1.3x anamorphic, or 2x anamorphic cropped
  • Wide dynamic range, low S/N ratio, and high sensitivity
  • Optional SR-R4 on board SRMemory recorder
  • HD-SDI Monitoring outputs with viewing LUT's
  • The camera can shoot 1 to 120 fps
  • 16 bit-RAW recording in SRMemory™ card (sold sep.)
There might be some confusion about 4K and 8K and so on.

The pixels of the sensors in CMOS (and CCD) chips can't measure color, only brightness. To measure color, a color filter is placed over the top of each sensor pixel, but it can only measure one color; either red, green or blue. Ideally, you'd have at least one sensor pixel for each of the primary colors (the Sony F35 has a single chip with two sensor pixels per color, per final pixel, but it's intended to create a 1920 x 1080 image.) With three pixels per color you take 4096 x 2160 (x3) and find you need a 26M sensor.

Many chips only use one sensor pixel per final image pixel, and use the Bayer pattern to recreate the color. But when you do that, your color accuracy is compromised.

The F65 camera has 20M pixels according to the current literature [Note: in an earlier talk, Sony implied it was 17.7M (See: Welcome to 4K Sony, Seriously).] The RED Mysterium as another example, has 11.5M pixels.

Sony is careful to say that this camera "is the first in the industry that has full 4K output on the green channel, luminance." So it doesn't have three pixels for each final pixel, and it doesn't have just one; and it doesn't use the Bayer pattern. It uses a different pattern, with one green sensor pixel for every pixel in the final image (See: Film & Digital Times article contains a diagram showing the pattern.)

On the projection side, Sony said that there is already an installed base of more than 7000 4K digital projection systems world wide.

Sony also announced the PMW-TD300 a 3D shoulder mount camcorder, and small handheld 3D camcorder, the HXR-NX3D1.
Sony HXR-NX3D1

The HXR-NX3D1 looks like the professional version of the previously announced consumer HDR-TD10.

The HXR-NX3D1 includes:

  • Removable Audio Pod with XLR connectors
  • Time Code recording
  • 3D Worldcam 50i/60i compatible
  • 3D Recording Mode: 50i/60i/24P (28Mbps)
  • 2D Recording Mode: 1920x1080/60p, 50p, 60i, 50i, 24p, 25p
  • SD Recording Mode: 720x480 60i, 720x576 50i
  • Automatic or manual parallax correction

The primary hardware difference appears to be the audio module (I assume it's detachable.)

NAB Sony Product Page: HXR-NX3D1

The PMW-TD300 is a much larger, shoulder 3D camcorder.

Sony PMW-TD300

  • Dual three 1/2-inch type Exmor Full-HD CMOS sensors
  • Dual lens system
  • XDCAM EX recording
  • SxS card slots (L/R x 2)
  • 3D/2D recording modes
  • Intuitive convergence control with a dedicated dial feature
  • Viewfinder with 3.5-inch type color LCD
  • HD-SDI out (L/R dual stream, audio and TC embedded)
  • HDMI out (3D/2D) for viewing on consumer 3D displays
  • Genlock in & TC in/out for integration with multi-camera systems
NAB Sony Product Page: PMW-TD300
PMW-TD300 Brochure [PDF]

Sony also announced the SRMemory Recorder and new OLED screens. Also mentioned at the event; Zach Jarosz of Freemantle said that The X Factor will be the 1st TV show to shoot with the Sony PMW-F3

Film and Digital Times latest issue covers these announcements in huge detail: FDTimes [PDF]
NotesOnVideoWelcome to 4K Sony, Seriously

[UPDATE 9:00PM: The explanation of the sensor pixel pattern of the F65 was rewritten.]

No comments: