Many will see the introduction of the new PMW-F5 and PMW-F55 models as filling a gap in large-sensor acquisition between Sony’s 4K ready entry level NEX-FS700 camcorder and PMW-F3 and its 8K sensor-equipped F65 CineAlta Premium camera. Both new cameras are aimed at feature production as well as television episodics and reality programming and will give content creators new levels of flexibility and creative options for HD, 2K or 4K acquisition.
At a glance
The PMW-F5 and PMW-F55 feature a modular and compact design for easy configuration together with a 4K Super 35mm image sensor offering 4096 x 2160 resolution (11.6M total pixels) Both cameras also offer multi-codec support featuring Sony’s new XAVC MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 format, the SR codec (MPEG4 SStP) and the industry-standard High Definition XDCAM 50Mbps 4:2:2 codec.
In-camera recording is on Sony’s New SxS media (SxS PRO+) which can be used to record XAVC in HD High Frame Rate and in 4K at up to 60fps in the PMW-F55, and XAVC HD High Frame Rate in the PMW-F5. In addition both the PMW-F55 and PMW- F5 can also be connected to the new AXS-R5 RAW recorder which in turn can capture slow-motion imagery at up to 240fps in the PMW- F55 and up to 120fps with the PMW- F5 as 4K RAW files (pending firmware updates)
Flexible Lens Options and Accessories
The PMW-F55 and PMW-F5 both include a PL-mount to allow users to choose lenses from a range of leading manufacturers including Angénieux, ARRI, Canon, Carl Zeiss, Cooke, FUJIFILM and Leica, or for attaching Sony’s soon to be launched own range of six, cost effective second generation PL mount, 4K certified prime lenses. Shooters can in addition use stills lenses by removing the supplied PL-mount adaptor to reveal the native FZ mount – compatible with commercially available adaptors for third-party lenses, including Canon® EF, Canon FD, Nikon® DX, Nikon G, Leica® M and even 2/3-inch B4 lenses. A third option is the use of Sony FZ-Mount lenses with auto focus servo zoom (model SCL-Z18X140.)
Additional accessories for the PMW-F5 and PMW-F55 include a new series of high-quality OLED and LCD viewfinders; a new RAW Recording System (the AXSM™); new Recording Media in Sony’s enhanced SxS PRO memory cards, the “SxS PRO+(PLUS)” series; a new longer life Battery and high speed Charger; and an ergonomic, lightweight Shoulder Rig
According to Olivier Bovis of Sony Europe, both cameras are scheduled to be made available towards the end of January 2013 with suggested list pricing to be announced in November 2012.