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Sony Unveils Extensive Updates for F55 and F5 4K Cameras

Sony, Amsterdam, 16 September 2014: Sony is announcing a range of updates to its 4K large sensor camera line, enabling new features, powerful performance and more flexible production capabilities. The new updates, all direct results of customer feedback, will be available as hardware and firmware upgrades.

We continue to offer powerful firmware updates along a consistent development timeline for the F5 and F55 cameras,” said Nick Buchner, Senior Product Manager, Professional Solutions, at Sony Australia and New Zealand. “With the rapid advancements in technology and growing adoption of 4K production, we’re introducing upgrades to our existing cameras in the CineAlta range, making it as easy as possible for our customers to protect their technology investment while staying current to meet the production requirements of their industry.”

Since their introduction, the F55 and F5 have been in constant use, shooting feature films, TV dramas, documentaries, reality shows, commercials, music videos, live events and more. With these new updates, Sony now offers the most comprehensive range of 4K tools to meet any production need.

Two options for the F5 to upgrade to 4K

Sony is giving F5 customers an opportunity to extend their creative reach and maximise their technology investment, with a comprehensive optional hardware and firmware upgrade that transforms the F5 camera in to an F55. This hardware package includes the same image sensor as the F55, with integrated frame image scanning, and ultra wide colour filter array. The upgrade package also includes firmware to enable on-board 4K recording and live signal output via 3G-SDI, HDMI, and simultaneous recording with XAVC 4K and MPEG 50Mbps 422. This major upgrade must be performed by a Sony Service Centre and a target price of around AU$15,400.

Sony is also offering a 4K upgrade option that will enable: XAVC 4K/QFHD recording and playback, 4K SDI and 4K HDMI output, and simultaneous recording (XAVC 4K/QFHD) with MPEG 50Mbps 422. This option is activated by a licence key (CBKZ-55FX), and can be installed by the end-user. Target price for the upgrade is around AU$1,100 and availability is scheduled for December 2014, coinciding with the Version 5.0 firmware release.

CBK-55BK shoulder mount ENG/documentary dock for F55 and F5

With Sony’s CBK-55BK shoulder mount dock, users can quickly convert an F5 or F55 into a run-and-gun ENG/documentary camcorder, and then easily return it to a traditional production-style Super 35 camera.

When the camera slides into the dock, users have external White Balance, Gain and Shutter controls in their familiar positions, as well as inputs and outputs including balanced XLR audio, headphone monitoring and slot for a DWX wireless audio receiver. The padded shoulder arch adjusts fore and aft to balance perfectly with a large range of lenses, and with the VCT-14 quick-release tripod adapter built in, locks easily onto an equipped tripod. Target price is around AU$9,800 and availability is scheduled for December 2014.

Apple ProRes and Avid DNxHD onboard recording

F55 and F5 users now have more codec choices than any other camera system. In December 2014, Sony is scheduled to release a new option board (CBK-55PD) to enable these cameras to record in Apple® ProRes and AVID® DNxHD®. Files will be recorded internally to the F55/F5 via Sony’s SxS Pro™+ memory cards.

The F55/F5 cameras have established codecs including 10-bit XAVC™, 10-bit HDCAM SR® 444, 422, MPEG 50Mbps 422, and 16-bit RAW using the optional AXS-R5 RAW recorder. This upgrade will offer even more workflow flexibility. Target price for the CBK-55PD is around AU$2,500 and availability is scheduled for December 2014.

PMW-F55/F5 firmware upgrade V5.0

Continuing the consistent development path for the cameras, the newest firmware upgrade for the F55 and F5 will enable powerful new features, including: interval recording, simultaneous recording with HDCAM SR 422 SQ with MPEG 50Mbps 422 59.94i, support for the optional CBK-55PD Codec Board; support for the optional CBK-55BK shoulder mount dock and more. Version 5.0 firmware is scheduled to be available in December 2014 at no charge.

Sony will continue the development of the F5 and F55 CineAlta range of cameras, with more feature enhancements planned. At IBC 2014, Sony has also announced new technologies to complement the flagship F65 camera’s performance.

PWS-4400 server version 1.2: for delivering truly powerful 4K/HD

When coupled with the F65 4K CineAlta camera – the camera with the highest resolution in the motion picture industry – the new PWS-4400 server is capable of delivering 4K 120p video shot on an F65 4K CineAlta camera. Combined with the F55, the server can offer both 4K and ultra-high-speed HD imaging up to 360 fps, ideal for shooting and presenting sports highlights. The new version of the 4K/HD server, scheduled for release in November, will add optional support for the PWS-CD401 codec, enabling compliance with DNxHD® formats.

Super Resolution de-mosaicing processor: workflow solution for ‘Beyond 4K’ production

Sony’s Super Resolution De-Mosaicing Processor can develop 8K x 4K 60fps video from RAW data shot on an F65 camera. A cut-out function offers free resolution and free aspect ratio live-action content production. It can be used to drive giant-screen displays through multiple 4K projectors, and to project onto multiple screens freely configured into panoramas or vertical displays.

Catalyst Browse and Catalyst Prepare: support for next-generation workflows

Sony’s development of Catalyst Browse follows industry momentum around the XAVC codec, to place it alongside RAW as a major recording format. The new platform combines the capabilities of conventional RAW viewers and content browsers, with upcoming support for a wide range of formats, including RAW, MPEG4 SStP, XAVC, MPEG 2, AVCHD, Apple ProRes and Avid® DNxHD®. Catalyst Browse will work with Sony CineAlta and XCDAM lineups (PMW-F55 PXW-FS7, PXW-X500, PXW-X200 and other cameras), and will come as standard on Sony NXCAM units.

The new Catalyst Prepare optional software package enables secure and efficient management of recorded assets, enabling smooth workflows from shooting through editing. This package includes Catalyst Browse capabilities, and adds verifiable copying, file conversion, and EDL output support.

About Sony: With a diverse portfolio of businesses across electronics, music, film, gaming and telecommunications, Sony is uniquely positioned to be the world’s largest technology and entertainment company. Sony Australia Limited and Sony New Zealand Limited are wholly owned subsidiaries of the Sony Corporation of Japan, a leading manufacturer of audio, video, communications and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets. Committed to producing innovative and quality electronic products, the range includes BRAVIA TVs, Cyber-shot digital cameras, Handycam camcorders, α digital SLR cameras, Walkman MP3 players, READER eBook Readers as well as professional broadcast and production equipment. For more information on Sony Australia, visit www.sony.com.au or for New Zealand visit www.sony.co.nz

Product Information: For further Sony professional and broadcast and production product information or stockist details, readers can contact Sony Australia on 1300 720 071 or visit pro.sony.com.au. For Sony New Zealand call 09 488 6188 or visit pro.sony.co.nz

Images: Product images can be downloaded from the Sony Australia Flickr site www.flickr.com/photos/sonyaustralia

For situational images, please contact Nick Buchner at [email protected]

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