Sony’s XDCAM-EX & HD1000u & more!
YES, there it is. Sony’s XDCAM-EX in full motion-picture regalia- yours truly at the helm.
I just got back from Sony’s XDCAM-EX event at Sony Pictures Studio in New York City, Manhattan to be precise, and let me tell you, it was worth the drive into the city- something I try to avoid if at all possible.
At the event there were dozens of press from around the world. We were treated to Sony Pictures’ plush screening room, complete with surround sound and 4k digital cinema projection for the introduction of the EX as well as Sony’s new overarching marketing strategy under the new HDNA (HD in their DNA) branding.
After the polished show, which included a Spanish language section for the international press, I had some significant hands-on with both the XDCAM-EX, now the PMW-EX1 camcorder. Lots of photos. Sony also had the HVR-HD1000u camcorder there so I took the opportunity to pour all over that camcorder and take lots of photos.
Here’s a quick, late night report…
First, there are features of the EX1 that everyone will love.
The “Under $8000” price (i.e. probably $7999 list, lower street price) is pretty nice for the feature set. I found out several, heretofore unmentioned features… including the lower of the two bit-rates the EX camcorder records has been designed by Sony to be HDV compatable- making it usable immediately by any non-linear system that currently handles HDV. Sony did not have this on-hand to show (mixing tape HDV and EX’s HDV in the timeline) so we’ll have to take them at their word until I receive a review unit and can test it with my existing HDV library footage. But, if true, it would be an incredible boon to production because people could immediately start using the EX1 in HDV mode and then move up to EX as their NL systems add support for it.
They had a breakaway of the EX1 under glass showing the imaging block and the way they packed the circuitry inside the body of the camcorder. Take a look:
On the left you can see the three CMOS imagers.
On the right, the two Expresscard slots and the audio level controls amids numerous circuit boards.
I had an opportunity to poke around the menus:
The screen is very customizable and here you can se just a few of the EX1’s on screen indicators, including stereo audio, how many minutes of record time left on each SxS (pronounced S by S) card, time code, format, power supply, and several others that any professional can read for themselves. I don’t need to walk you through everything.
I also caught sight and took a few photos of a completely unannounced product.
Here’s a hint:
More on that when I write the full report.
(Be sure to subscribe to this blog so you know as soon as I post it.)
Lastly, another teaser, but I have more than 25 detailed photos of this baby in a new post:
Also, in case you missed it, there’s a nice comparison of the HD1000u versus the camcorders that came before it.
There will be lots of information hitting the web soon from all sorts of media outlets.
As a professional videographer and nearly 20 year veteran in this industry, I will be presenting the news as viewed by someone who uses these camcorders and needs to see, or expects to find, certain features and capabilities. If you have specific questions, just hit me with a comment and I’ll be sure to include answers to your questions in the extended reports.