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Sony Introduces Two New 4K Cameras

Sony PMW-F5 CineAlta 4K Camera - H 2012

New F55 and F5 models support feature and TV production.

Sony Electronics is expanding its 4K lineup with two new cameras that are slated to ship in February.

The new PMW-F55 and PMW-F5 are aimed at feature production including independent films, as well as television content such as episodic series and reality programming.

Sony views these cameras as filing what it says is a gap between its Full-HD PMW-F3 camcorder and top of the line 4K F65 camera.

The F55 and F5 use a new type of 4K Super 35mm image sensor with a 4096 x 2160 resolution.

Sony is also launching a string of 4K accessories for the camera system including a 30-inch 4K LCD professional monitor, new PL mount lens system, new “AXSM” Access Memory System for 2K and 4K Raw recording, and new versions of its SxS Pro memory cards.

By mid-2013 Sony intends to release a software developers kit for its F65 -- which uses an 8K sensor but currently supports up to 4K -- that would enable cinematographers to derive 6K and 8K images from the camera.

Pricing for the F55 and F5 have not yet been finalized, but if they do sit in between the F3 and F65, that would presumably mean it would fall between $16,000 and $65,000.

In related news, last week Red revealed its intention to reduce the price of its high-end Epic camera. “We are ready to lower prices on Epic,” Red’s founder Jim Jannard wrote in an Oct. 26 post on a Red discussion forum. “We have learned how to make Epics in quantity, lowered our assembly costs, found better suppliers and paid off our NRE (non-recurring engineering).”

Meanwhile, Canon is working toward its planned release of a Cinema EOS 4K camera. This pricing also has not yet been revealed.