Sony Announces the FS7: A Documentarian's 4K Dream

Sony's answer to many filmmakers' dreams comes in the form of the refined, lightweight, portable, and ever-enabling PXW-FS7. The FS7 offers internal 4K recording at 60fps and 1080p at 180fps, with a single extension unit and external recorder required to shoot 4K RAW footage. In addition to an ergonomic smart grip with customizable controls and a built-in, four-position ND filter to allow you to shoot truly on-the-go, the FS7 also makes use dual slots for a new 128GB XQD G-series card that supports 440MB/s read and 350MB/s write speeds.All of this comes in at under $10,000, with the FS7 available on its own at $8,000. For "less than $2,500" more, the XDCA-FS7 expansion unit will allow shooting in the Apple ProRes HQ 422 codec through a firmware update in early 2015 and will also open up 4K/2K RAW@60fps or Full HD@240fps recording to a supported external recorder, including two of Sony's own.

The 5.2-pound body also supports an external wireless transmitter that doesn't require its own power supply, as it draws power directly from the camera.

The 11-megapixel Super35 Exmor CMOS sensor is complemented in a kit configuration with Sony's new E-mount 28-135mm f/4 G OSS lens that is the world's first 35mm full-frame, interchangeable power zoom lens. Available separately for a suggested retail price of $2,500, the lens will be sold with packaged with the FS7 for "less than $13,000." Finally, a VCT-FS7 light-weight rod support system will be available for a suggested retail price of $1,200.

The body should ship mid-October while the extension unit and other accessories falling in around mid-November and December, respectively. At these prices, the FS7 almost the same price as the FS700 while offering similar features to the doubly expensive F5. There's no doubt the FS7 is poised to steal the glory in its category while it undoubtedly makes some FS700 and F5 "veteran" adopters a little uneasy.

Key Features

  • Sony’s Super 35 Exmor CMOS Sensor
  • Native E-Mount; Compatible with A-Mount lenses (LA-EA4 A-mount lens adaptor required), 18 mm flange back distance
  • On-board UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) and Full HD (1920 x 1080) recording
  • Wide choice of recording systems
  • XAVC (Intra/Long GOP)
  • MPEG HD, 4:2:2, 50 Mbps (HD only)
  • Apple ProRes codec (with future upgrade and extension unit, sold separately)
  • RAW recording (with extension unit and outboard recorder, sold separately)
  • Slow & Quick Motion for over-and under-cranking
  • Dual XQD card slots
  • 16-bit analog-to-digital converter
  • ISO 2000
  • Supports S-Gamut3Cine/S-Log 3 encoding
  • Die-cast magnesium frame
  • Environmentally sealed electronics
  • Wireless operation with CBK-WA100, sold separately
  • GPS
  • 5.2 pounds without battery or lens

Via [NoFilmSchool]


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Adam works mostly across California on all things photography and art. He can be found at the best local coffee shops, at home scanning film in for hours, or out and about shooting his next assignment. Want to talk about gear? Want to work on a project together? Have an idea for Fstoppers? Get in touch! And, check out film rentals!

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This will be killer. That's just an amazing combination and form factor at that price. If it lives up and doesn't have any weird sensor quirks or anything, this could be one of the new top pro cameras. Canon needs to do some catching up... Big time.

I also predict some rather upset F5 owners...

Exactly. And you said it. I think the form factor with this combination of features is what's particularly amazing. The weight and mobility with the quality -- that's always the goal, right? Pretty impressive...

As someone who had the oppertunity to actually hold and 'use' it at IBC I can tell you that big forearms are not needed whatsoever. The camera is suprisingly light, well balanced and even without the optional 15mm rod/shouldermount accessory really quite comfortable on the shoulder in combination with the standard grip. I wasn't all that convinced by the new lens that was attached to it, so I cant really comment on the actual picture it produces, but ergonomics wise its really pretty decent.

I actually think the ergonomics look quite impressive on this. It looks like just the thing that people have been wanting. Granted, I can't comment on weight/balance without holding it, but it looks like it should be pretty comfortable.

My goodness that is sexy......i've always loved the look of old Aaton motion picture cameras.....they just look so good and ergonomic, this is like a total throwback to those in a way....

Hmmm, I wonder how soon before these cameras break $5000. Nice package overall.

Like the ergonomics, camera features and battery. Not sure on the media, but I have no experience with it (I’m sure it’s fine and expensive). Sucks no Pro-res in-camera, but I hear their new codecs are nice. This will be nice competition for the Canon C500 at a C300 price point.

This is a dream!

Makes for some upset FS700 + Odyssey 7Q owners too.

The FS7 isn't quite a game changer but it is an evolutionary leap - they've taken the sensor and slo mo DNA from the FS700 and combined it with the technological advances made in their new 4K consumer and prosumer PXW models with the record section and improved on the heavily criticised ergonomics (rightly so) of the original FS700.
Basically it seems to address many of the shortcomings of the FS700 - no broadcast quality internal codec, lousy ergonomics, poor monitor, no internal 4K recording (well that was always the case). Hard to say at such an early stage but they have not incorporated a global shutter by the sounds of it, so that one is still outstanding.

I would like to see some more challenging dark scenes to see how the blacks hold up at 2000 ISO SLOG3.. which is probably the native for that profile. But apart from that I thought Den did a fantastic job to demo the features of the camera on a pre-production camera.