In 2011 there was several first generation “Super 35mm” sensor cameras released by major manufacturers. It’s 2012 and those cameras have become increasing popular. So where did the manufactures go from there? Well, Sony’s decided to go higher and slower, higher definition and slower motion that is. Their latest release of the NXCAM line of camera is the Sony NEX-FS700. This is an upgrade from last year’s popular Sony NEX-FS100 but with two major additions. First, the NEX-FS700 has a future 4K upgrade for its EXMOR Super 35mm sensor. The EXMOR Super 35mm sensor is the same sensor that is in the NEX-FS100. With the future availability of the 4K upgrade, the FS700 is also equipped with a 3G HD-SDI output to support it. This means that you will be able to turn this versatile camera into a high-end 4K camera. The second upgrade is that the NEX-FS700 can now handle slow motion. The FS700 can shoot up to 960 frames per second and up to 240fps at full 1920 x 1080 resolution, which is a vast difference from the max 60fps at 1920 x 1080 of the FS100.
But what makes the FS700 upgrades worth purchasing? First, 4K is becoming increasingly popular and the Sony NEX-FS700 makes shooting 4K reasonably inexpensive. The NES-FS700 retails at around $8000 without the upgrade, but the 4K upgrade will give you a camera worth at least twice the cost. For a freelance director of photography, the FS-700 could offer an excellent camera at mid-level pricing as well as a high-end camera for the clients looking for better image for their buck. Also slow motion has quickly become a popular element to camera manufacturers. As the sensor technology evolves it makes it possible for better images at higher frames. Imagine shooting industrial b-roll and offering the option to a client producer that you can shoot some of shots at 240fps at full 1920 x 1080. This is one application that can make that corporate video project more exciting without the need of a specialty camera.
The Sony NEX-FS700 just starting shipping in late June. Do you own a Sony NEX-FS700 or plan to purchase one? Please share your experiences with us.