The familiar EOS-1D C isn’t the only Canon camera to make its public debut ahead of NAB. The Cinema EOS series welcomes a third model to the collection this week, with looks that nearly match last year’s C300. Unlike that model, which you can already pick up through e-tailers and at specialty shops, the C500 has a long way to go before it gets a shipping nod — it may not even make it to market in 2012. The $30,000 price tag may pose an even greater barrier to entry than its to-be-announced availability date, however, and may in need of some tweaking before it’s ready to compete with already established models, like the much less expensive RED Scarlet. Like the 1D C, the C500 can shoot 4K video — the most apparent upgrade from the $16,000 C300. To that end, boosting its price tag may be the only way for Canon to avoid cannibalizing that less-abled flavor, since many cinematographers would otherwise pay little attention to the C300, due in part to its 1080p-limited shooting capabilities.
Sony’s otherwise dull pre-NAB press conference yielded one gem — the NEX-FS700 cinema camera — which the company announced earlier this month. The FS700 doesn’t include 4K shooting functionality out of the box, but it is 4K capable, with the appropriate software coming later in the form of a firmware update. The camera includes the familiar Sony E-mount, bringing with it compatibility with interchangeable lenses, including the standard 18-200mm lens attached to the demo camera at today’s event. There’s also a trio of ND filters on board — 1/64ND, 1/16ND and 1/4ND — along with some impressive slow-motion capabilities, ranging from 120 to 240 frames-per-second in 1080p, going all the way up to 960fps if you’re willing to sacrifice full-HD resolution. Company reps confirmed that the camera is expected to retail for “under $10,000″ when it hits the market in June, while that 4K update should hit before the year is out, once Sony’s external recorder becomes available. The body itself looks very similar to its predecessor, the NEX-FS100, and is lightweight enough for comfortable handheld shooting. Jump past the break for a closer look live from Las Vegas, with Sony Senior Vice President Alec Shapiro.
When is full 1920 x 1080 footage not really HD? When a broadcaster rejects it for not meeting its 50Mbps bitrate criteria. There’s only a few handheld cameras that can capture video with such gentle compression, and a lot of those require a third-party add-on recorder to achieve it — but not Sony’s new XDCAM shooter, the PMW-100. It has a 1/2.9-inch Exmor sensor sitting behind a 40-400mm (35mm equivalent) zoom lens and outputs 1080p, 1080i, and 720p at up to 50Mbps using MPEG HD422 compression. SxS cards are the primary media, but there’s HD/SD-SDI output too should you still need it. Sound recording is equally data-heavy, letting you hear interviewees dodge questions in four channels of glorious 24-bit uncompressed 48kHz audio — unless of course your diminutive kit fools them into thinking you’re harmless. The PMW-100 should start shipping in May for an as yet undisclosed price, but in the meantime you’ll find more specs in the PR after the break.
Sure, you could get yourself a 3D-capable phone to handle your three-dimensional recording needs, though with all the new svelte superphones coming out, we can understand why you wouldn’t want to. But, just because your phone can’t satisfy your need for 3D, that doesn’t mean you have to go without. Vivitar, favorite of cost-conscious cinematographers everywhere, has unleashed its DVR 790HD 3D camcorder with 16MB of built-in memory and a 5.1 megapixel fixed-focus shooter. It records video in three dee and 720p at 25fps, and stores all your gift-giving triumphs and gift-receiving disappointments on SD cards (not included) up to 32GB in size. The price? A mere $99, which leaves you plenty of leftover dough for your holiday shopping — sure, it’s the thought that counts, but we bet your significant other thinks diamonds are farmore thoughtful than cubic zirconia.
Vivitar’s latest addition to the groaning shelves of adequate cameras is the 690 HD, a small and very cheap waterproof camcorder.
At $60, you’re probably not expecting much in the way of features, and Vivitar doesn’t disappoint. That’s not to say the camera is bad — just stripped down to the bare basics. There’s no auto-focus, no HDMI-out and no optical zoom, but everything important is included.
Video is motion-JPEG in an AVI wrapper, recoded at 720 x 1280 and 25fps. It is recorded onto an SD card and powered by its own rechargeable lithium battery. There’s a big LED lamp around the lens for shooting in the murky depths, and a 2-inch LCD screen to view your masterpieces. You can also hook the camera directly to a TV via an AV cable.
Not bad, right? And remember, nobody will care about the fixed focus or anything else, because all of your movies will be shot underwater. Up to ten feet under, to be precise.
As I said, the 690 HD is just $60. At that price, its hard to argue against grabbing one for your vacation. Available now, in a rainbow of color choices.
Sure, we’ll never see dreams of a 3D Cisco Flip realized, but Sony’s offering the next best thing: the Bloggie 3D. The latest addition to the company’s line of pocket camcorders was quietly made available this week for $249.99 a pop — $80 more than the recently released Bloggie Duo HD, because extra dimensions ain’t cheap. The camera takes a cue from Nintendo’s latest portable, with a 2.4 inch 3D display that eschews the need for glasses. Or, if you’re not in the mood to squint and don’t mind the eyewear, you can output the video to a 3D-enabled HDTV.
Cisco may not have seen a bright future in the pocket camcorder business, but it seems that Samsung would beg to differ — it’s just announced its new W200 Pocket Cam, which it proudly boasts is “multi-proof.” That means it will hold up in harsh conditions and keep on working underwater (up to three meters deep, at least), and capture some full 1080p video in the process. You’ll also get 5 megapixel still images from the camera, a microSD card slot to store them on (no internal storage, it seems), a 2.3-inch LCD ’round back, and the usual built-in USB connector. Still no word on a price, but Samsung says this one will be available sometime next month. Full press release is after the break.