So this is interesting. Sony have launched a new shoulder camera at NAB, the PXW-Z450. On the outside it looks much like any other ENG style shoulder camera, it’s almost a clone of the recently launched PXW-X400.
On the inside though this is a UHD, single chip (I believe), 2/3″ CMOS camera. It records to SxS cards (or XQD via an adapter) using the XAVC codec in UHD and HD at up to 60fps as well as MPEG2 HD422 (XDCAM HD422) up to 30fps.
As the sensor is a 2/3″ sensor (Exmor R, back illuminated) it takes regular B4 2/3″ ENG lenses, but being a 4K sensor you are going to need a really, really good lens. You don’t want to be using some old SD lens on this camera.
It will have full wireless capability including streaming over WiFi or via a 4G dongle of XAVC proxy files and even has an “Online” button for live feeds. There’s a slot for a drop in radio mic receiver and 4 control dials for the 4 audio channels.
There’s an SDI input for recording from external sources, so great for news pool applications where you may need to record footage from other cameras or sources.
It will be supplied as a body only and can be used with the HDVF-EL20 or HDVF-EL30 Oled viewfinders.
It won’t be available until the end of the year (which is possibly why there isn’t too much PR for this particular launch) and the camera at the show is a very early pre-production unit, so difficult to asses what the final image quality will be like at this stage. However the camera includes S-Log3 and Hybrid Log Gamma for HDR productions, so clearly the engineers are expecting the dynamic range to be very good.
In addition next year (2017) there will be an upgrade kit to convert the PXW-X400 to UHD. I’m assuming this kit will include a new optical block to swap out the sensor as well as new firmware for the X400 to enable UHD recording.