Sony's has just announced their latest shoulder camera - the PXW-X400. Build specifically for the broadcast camera professional, the PXW-X400 is stunning piece of intelligent engineering.
It is the most affordable professional 2/3-inch type camcorder they've released striking a perfect balance between performance, practicality, advanced functions such as wireless streaming, sophisticated codecs, and the power of Full HD 1080/60p imagery, combined with the nuances of 10-bit recording and the beauty of 4:2:2 colour.Sony PXW-X400 Key Features
- Three 2/3-inch type CMOS image sensors
- Full HD 1080/60p resolution 10bit 4:2:2 recording in XAVC Intra and XAVC-Long codecs
- Excellent sensitivity: F12 in 1080/60i mode, F13 in 1080/50i mode
- Superb picture clarity: 62 dB signal-to-noise ratio
- Perfect front-rear balance optimized for use with popular ENG lenses
- 960 x 540 color LCD monitor with 1,555,200 dots
- Wi-Fi remote control from a smartphone or tablet and, in a future firmware upgrade, NFC one-touch communication
- Sony's Quality of Service (QoS) wireless streaming maximizes picture quality on a single, affordable cellular channel; transmits to Sony's PWS-100RX1 receiver Note: (QoS streaming via Wi-Fi is to be offered in a future firmware upgrade, expected early 2016)
- De facto standard MPEG TS wireless streaming to compatible receivers and PCs
- RJ-45 LAN interface for wired 100Base-TX Ethernet, particularly useful for connecting to third-party bonded cellular transmitters
- Smartphone remote control via Sony's Content Browser Mobile app
- NFC one-touch communication with compatible smartphones and tablets (in future firmware upgrade, expected early 2016)
- ONLINE button for easy network operations; depending on the context, triggers Network Client Mode on/off, Auto Clip Transfer on/off, or Streaming on/off
- Two SxS® card slots compatible with Sony's high-speed, high-reliability professional media cards
- Choice of codecs includes XAVC Intra, XAVC Long, MPEG2 HD 422, MPEG2 HD 420, MPEG IMX®, and DVCAM® (MXF wrapper) recording
- Proxy Recording on an SD card slot creates a lightweight asset for fast file transfers from the field to the station or production office
- Pool Feed input for events where only one camera is permitted in the room; 1.5G SDI input
- Interval recording for powerful time lapse effects
- 50-pin interface supports live production via Sony's CA-FB70 fiber adaptor or CA-TX70 triax adaptor, sold separately
- 26- and 20-pin viewfinder interfaces support a full range of Sony's viewfinders, sold separately; these include spectacular, OLED viewfinders with Full HD resolution: the HDVF-EL20 and HDVF-EL30
- GPS module captures locations as metadata in HD recordings
- Standard Gamma, HyperGamma and User Gamma modes for powerful control of grayscale and effective highlight handling
- AES/EBU digital audio inputs
- 5-pin XLR audio output
- Wireless mic receiver slot for Sony's DWX Series receivers, sold separately; enables the camera to control mic attenuator and low-cut filter; enables viewfinder display of transmitter battery status
- x2, x3, x4 Digital Extender gets you even closer to the subject with no sacrifice in sensitivity
- Low power consumption, just 22 Watts, body only
The PXW-X400 is a properly designed ENG camera, which means that your right hand helps aim the camera, trigger recording and operate the lens. But it doesn't need to bear much weight. When properly balanced, the camera places the main weight on your shoulder – not on your wrist. That's exactly what the PXW-X400 accomplishes. Of course, fine-tuning the balance by sliding the shoulder pad for a custom fit is also possible.
The PXW-X400 also features Sony's unique Quality of Service (QoS) technology which improves the clarity that's possible on a single, affordable cellular channel significantly. You can stream de facto standard MPEG-TS and transfer proxy or full-res files with bit-for-bit accuracy. The camera connects to outboard bonded cellular transmitters via the Ethernet port.
Camera professionals can also now control the camera right from a tablet or smartphone. NFC one-touch communication functionality is also planned with a future firmware upgrade, expected early 2016.
You can make the best use of your existing HD 2/3-inch type B4 lenses, a long standing standard in the broadcast industry, thanks to the superior Sony 2/3-inch CMOS sensors at the heart of the PXW-X400. The 3x CMOS sensors enable Full HD 1080p recording and a high signal-to-noise ratio (62 dB) and high sensitivity (F12 at 1080/60i).
The PXW-X400 is the latest evolution in the XDCAM range further with sublime 10bit 422 colour sub-sampling, which is twice the colour information compared to 4:1:1 or 8bit recordings at 4:2:2. Sony's latest and highly efficient XAVC Intra and XAVC Long codecs is able to capture incredible imagery at money-saving data rates (as low as 25 Mbps). For compatibility with legacy production systems, the camera also offers MPEG2 HD 422, MPEG2 HD 420, MPEG IMX®, and DVCAM® (MXF wrapper) recording.
Pricing for the UK is yet to be confirmed, but if the US price of $16.500 is an indication, then you'd be surprised how cost effective the PXW-X400 may turn out to be for your productions.