New AXS-R7 raw recorder for the PMW-F55 and F5.

workshops-275 New AXS-R7 raw recorder for the PMW-F55 and F5.
axsr7_3q_160219_011-1010x1024 New AXS-R7 raw recorder for the PMW-F55 and F5.
AXS-R7 dual slot raw recorder.

After a brief teaser campaign Sony have now released details of a new raw recorder for the PMW-F5 and PMW-F55 cameras.

The AXS-R7 is a new more rugged dual slot recorder that works with A series AXS cards (that’s the newer smaller size, not the original large size cards). Being dual slot it should allow for relay recording.

axsa1ts48_front_160219_051-300x300 New AXS-R7 raw recorder for the PMW-F55 and F5.
New A series AXS cards.

The new recorder has a lot more processing power than the original to support new functions such as cache recording up to 30 seconds and has a more rugged housing with dust and moisture filters. One of the new features coming with this recorder is the ability to record at up to 120 fps in 4K raw. For this new faster AXS cards will be needed and these will be released at the same time as the recorder this summer.

To support the new recorder the F5/F55 cameras will get new firmware. Version 8 will also introduce the ability to record XAVC class 480 which in 4K is 480Mb/s at 24/25/30p and 960Mb/s at 50 and 60p.

So all in all a series of significant upgrades for these cameras that continue to just get better and better.

axsr7_others_160219_031-1024x769 New AXS-R7 raw recorder for the PMW-F55 and F5.
AXS-R7 docked with PMW-F55

Here’s the full Sony press release:

Basingstoke – February 25th, 2016: Sony’s next generation of CineAlta products provides enhanced features for production professionals now shooting in 4K RAW with large sensor cameras; handling large files can be done easily while maintaining the highest levels of image quality.

The new products include an upcoming RAW recorder, the AXS-R7 for the F55/F5 and higher-speed AXS memory cards. These are complemented by the newest firmware (Version 8) for the F55 and F5, continuing Sony’s development and support of the CineAlta platform by adding new features and capabilities directly based on user feedback.

“These new technologies answer the question of ‘why shoot in 4K 16-bit RAW’? And, demonstrate Sony’s commitment to the F5 and F55’” said Ainara Porron, Marketing Manager, Cinematography, Sony Professional Solutions Europe. “Working in 4K RAW and High Dynamic Range (HDR) opens up new creative possibilities for production professionals who are not prepared to compromise on image quality.”

New RAW Recorder

Compared to previous Sony 4K recorders, the new recorder doubles 4K RAW recording from 60 FPS up to 120 FPS from the F55 camera. For shooting at higher frame rates, the recorder captures 2K RAW at up to 240 FPS from the F55 and F5, for playback with 10x super slow motion.

With the recorder, 4K shooters can take advantage of RAW cache recording at 23.98p for up to approximately 30 seconds while in standby mode, an important feature in documentary or wildlife production where capturing spontaneous action is required.

The new recorder is designed for rugged field performance. A metal filter separates and seals the recorder’s ventilation shaft from the electronics to prevent the entry of dust and water. The recorder’s camera connections are more secure, with a large top bracket that accepts four widely spaced 1/4-inch screws.

AXS Memory

The additions to the CineAlta line also include new high-performance versions of Sony’s AXS memory cards (1TB and 512 GB capacities) with sustained read and write speeds of 4.8 Gbps, and 44 minutes at 59.94p or 22 minutes at 120 FPS. The dual-slot recorder also accepts current A-series of AXS media, but the new cards are designed to support the write speeds required for 4K RAW 120 FPS recording for those who require that level of performance.

PMW-F55/F5 Firmware Version 8

The latest firmware update (Version 8) for the F55 and F5, upgrade license installed, enables support for XAVC 4K Class 480 recording at 23.98p, 24p, 25p and 29.97p. Leading third-party vendors already support XAVC 4K Class 480, for those creative professional requiring a higher data rate version of XAVC.

“These newest additions and updates to our CineAlta platform are all the direct result of user feedback,” Porron added. “It’s no longer about simply delivering a product. It’s about delivering the right products that can grow with a customer and fit within a workflow that is constantly evolving as production requirements change.”

For a full list of features and capabilities, visit pro.sony.eu/cinematography

Planned availability is as below:

[if !supportLists]·       [endif]AXS-R7 New RAW recorder: Summer 2016

[if !supportLists]·       [endif]AXS-A1TS48 Media (1TB): Summer 2016

[if !supportLists]·       [endif]AXS-A512S48 Media (512 GB): Summer 2016

[if !supportLists]·       [endif]Firmware version 8: Summer 2016

More details will be announced at NAB.

7 thoughts on “New AXS-R7 raw recorder for the PMW-F55 and F5.”

  1. That square on the top…. looks like it won’t fit onto my 55 as I have a top cheese plate. I can’t be the only one. Is this going to be a problem? I can see some screws, but hard to tell from pics.

  2. Alister,

    I hope you will give me your thoughts to help me decide between the FS7 and the F5. I’m coming from a EX1r and am ready to jump not just to 4K but to the n X the level in the camera. I was zeroing in on the FS7 for the price and picture quality, then I considered the Canon C300 mark II when the price dropped, now I found the special promo package on the F5.

    Here are my thoughts: the F5 can be had for 14k with the OLED viewfinder, 4K license, and even comes with the bridgeplate/rails. If you subtract the cost of those it about matches the FS7…and here is the big one for me, it allows an upgrade path to a much better camcorder via the AXS-5 or 7 (allowing 16 bit raw) and even now the sensor can be upgraded. I certainly can not afford an F55 but built in to my purchase is the option down the line.

    1. If you can afford the F5 package I say go for it. Overall it is a better camera, the 16 bit raw is amazing and it’s also much easier to use than the FS7 due to the side display that tells you what is going on.

      Having said that do consider media costs. You can use XQD for either for regular recording, but the raw media is fairly expensive. Also the F5 with raw recorder and V-Lock batts is a lot heavier (but better balanced) than the FS7 so you may need a larger tripod.

      1. Thanks for your thoughts Alister. How do you use the XQD cards without the raw recoder? The pro+ card prices are certainly a negative.

        Any thoughts on when Sony may come out with a replacement/update to the F5? I see it is about 3 1/2 years old. Would Sony go beyond 4 years? I know these are modular but that is getting old.

  3. The raw recorder uses AXS cards.

    XQD cards can be used in the F5 by using the Sony SxS – XQD adapter.

    I would expect that there will be a replacement for the F5/F55 some time in the next couple of years. Exactly when I don’t know.

    What you have to ask yourself is can I make enough money from the camera I buy to cover it’s cost? Even when a new camera comes out it can take a year or more before it becomes a widely accept piece of kit. The F5/F55 took almost 2 years to become as widely accepted as they are now. The F5/F55 have a lot of life in them yet. The new R7 raw recorder and X-OCN will ensure that.

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