Nikon Japan has been busy creating the next generation of 1″ stacked sensors. The latest is a 17.84 Megapixel stacked design with hyper-fast memory interconnect that shoots up to 1000fps at 4k resolution which is no slouch. The sensor is still in development but it will be a possibility to see it in a camera that could compete head to head with the Sony RX series which now dominate prosumer P&S sales. It was announced at ISSCC (International Solid-State Circuits Conference) held in San Francisco, February 15, 2021.
The sensor works by shooting in buckets of 16 x 16 pixels as one block, and then subsequently 264 x 264 pixel blocks (4224 x 4224 pixels) are conformed to form the final image at nearly 18MP. It is unclear at this time if 4k video will be a windowed resolution or a supersampled then reduced final image from the full sensor. The market for this sensor goes beyond consumer cameras as it is aimed at other applications like self-driving cars and production lines.→ Continue Reading Full Post ←
It is that time of the year again, to save on that coveted piece of kit that you have been eyeing for the better part of the year. We have gathered the deals that contain the slow motion camera capable gear so that you can browse fast and save time. Remember that with every link you support HSC at no added cost to you.
Warning: The parent company of FPS cameras “The Slow Motion Camera Company Ltd.” went out of business and entered liquidation proceedings. No further development of cameras is expected. More information here on Google Search!
It’s been a while since we’ve covered the fps4000 camera mainly due to development time taking longer than initially estimated. However, Graham Rowan the engineer behind the camera has now posted the first 4k 480fps footage shot in RAW on the fps4000 camera which uses a sophisticated memory arrangement on the onboard super-fast flash RAM to be able to record lengths of time unimaginable before on slow motion cameras at high resolution.
This camera is a very different kind of technology from regular high-speed cameras that record to volatile DRAM. The fps series records to flash chips that are soldered to the mainboard and allow a variety of frames rates and resolutions depending on the sensor used but all is saved on the flash memory as a non-volatile stream of data. Modern SSD chips are so good at re-allocating reading and writing bits that the life of the components is now measured in decades of regular use instead of a few years. The fps4000 is using this technology fully to enable memory bandwidth magnitudes greater at a significantly reduced cost.
fps4000 first 480fps 4k Footage:
First UHD video from the fps4000 3840 x 2160 resolution 480 frames per second
The Blue & Yellow Macaw video above shows the quality you can expect from full RAW DNG capture on the fps4000 camera at it’s higher-spec of 1280GB SSD £5,000 British Pounds plus Shipping and taxes. The fps4000 in 4kis also sold as a 1/2 speed 250fps maximum 4k UHD camera with 640GB SSD at a lower price of £3,500 British Pounds plus Shipping and taxes. You can clearly see the 4/3 sensor used is delivering excellent quality even with 3.9µ pixels. Notice the 720 version on the same sensor size has a 13.5µ pixel size which should prove to be outstanding in low light.
Also, note that the camera is able to record 60 full seconds of slow motion at 4k UHD 480p full resolution. This type of recording length is unmatched in any professional high-speed camera solution. We have only seen this type of rec length on custom lab camera systems and it usually involved a fast SSD disk array with fiber channel connections.
Here are the fps4000 configurations:
The lens options are varied with the Micro 4/3 mount as you can use any m4/3 adapter to Canon, Nikon, Minolta, Pentax, and other systems.
We should be able to test a review fps4000 unit in the not so distant future. Shooting 4k 480fps will create a mountain of data that will probably need an expanded drive array. The quality, however, will be worth every bit of space. -HSC
The slumbering Nikon has awakened to the mirrorless present and future and has shown their cards in a very strong but not class-leading mirrorless product line. The Nikon Z7& Z6 are nearly identical bodies with changes in the sensor and AF. The more expensive and higher resolution Z7 screams pixels with a 45.7MP Full Frame sensor ISO 64–25600 range which should be a direct replacement for D850 users. The other Z6 is a better low light camera geared more at wedding shooters and videographers at 24.5MP which should produce outstanding low light ISO 50–204800 with ISO expansion.
There is a lot to like in these cameras like a real 5 axis (5 Stop) IBIS stabilizer on the full frame sensor which also works on adapted lenses and works with Nikkor VR lenses from DSLR cameras to increase the 3 stops to a real 5 stops hybrid stabilization feature. The video modes offer 4k at 24, 25 and 30p which is so 2014 as is the 120fps full HD 1080p slow motion mode. AF also changes between models at 493 points on the Z7 and 273 on the Z6.
As you can see the Nikon Z series is all about taking the wind out of the sales of Sony Alpha Mirrorless cameras and to a lesser extent from Olympus and Panasonic. The cameras do have an Achilles heel when it comes to storage as the trend now is dual card slots on professional cameras. Since these only have a single slot, many professionals will not be able to use them in the field which may be a protectionist move to still keep DSLRs alive a little longer. This is a completely wrong move in our opinion as it cements Sony’s leadership in reliability.
Others point out to the lack of Eye AF which is a Sony feature that uses your eye to track subjects you are looking at in the frame. This is a minor omission but one that Sony users have become accustomed to using for dependable subject AF tracking in the viewfinder. Battery wise it should be a good set of cameras as the 300 shot spec when tested yields much more in normal use which is standard for mirrorless cameras.
Nikon Z Slow Motion Features?
Right off the bat, there is no 4k UHD 60fps or 48fps or 50fps which have been used successfully in current high-end video mirrorless cameras for over two years now. This is a big omission as the Z6 should be able to do this with the lower MP count.
The new Laowa 24mm f/14 Probe Lens with included LED lighting at the tip is a really interesting lens for high-speed shooters that would like an edge in their shooting style. The lens looks like a gun barrel but it is really a snake tube-cam-like lens that permits focus at just 2cm from the front element and also shoots at a fairly long distance from the subject.
The Kickstarter campaign project seen here was asking for just $9,999 USD in funding but as of right now with several days to go has reached an extremely impressive $811,113 USD which translates to about 650 lenses to be delivered to backers. The footage that the campaign was able to provide is really amazing at showing what can be achieved when creative minds are able to freely utilize an innovative lens like this.
Laowa 24mm Probe Lens Main Specs:
close focus (2cm @ 2:1)
24mm f14 Maximum Aperture
F40 minimum aperture
7 aperture blades
Min Focusing Distance 470mm
Min Working Distance 20mm
Dimensions: 38 x 408mm
wide angle ‘Bug Eye’ view (84.1°)
Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony FE, Arri PL mounts are available
LED Lighting at the Front
MSRP $1,499 After campaign is over.
The magnification ratios can be seen below in this image:
The Video Shooting Macro seen below by Macro Room has to be the ideal selling promo for this lens. It mixes great editing with clever lens placement for a really fascinating visual feast.
Birthday Cake (Credit to Packshot Factory Ltd) Laowa – Venus Optics Shows the benefits that can be translated to Slow Motion footage:
This lens is really something unique and special. It allows you to really get as close as possible to the subject with the added ability to actually have some usable depth of field compared to super macro lenses that have extreme shallowness. The fact that you can adapt it to almost any mount and camera means that you will be able to use it for video and photo without any constraints. The Maximum aperture of F14 might sound too restrictive but if you have enough light while using the included LED ring at the front you will be able to forget about light needs and experiment freely.
Nikon has either gone crazy or has analyzed a market that is actually alive and well when it comes to all in one prosumer compact cameras. The P900 was a best seller for several years in the segment with an 83x optical zoom formula of 24-2000mm equivalent. Now the new P1000 increases that range by 1000mm to do a previously ludicrous spec of 24 wide-angle to 3,000mm telephoto range or 125x optical zoom.
The sensor is tiny at 1/2.3″ the same as small compact cameras and just slightly larger than the typical phone sensor of 1/3″. This is what makes it possible for the camera to create such a zoom range without the lens being larger than a Napoleonic war artillery cannon. The video modes are decent with 4k 30p but the high-speed modes are lackluster which is a shame considering this camera could be used effectively for extreme wildlife shots in super slow motion.
Nikon P1000 Main Features:
Lens Focal Length 4.3-539mm (angle of view equivalent to that of 24-3,000mm lens in 35mm format)
125x optical Zoom-NIKKOR ED glass lens.
Effective Pixels (Megapixels) 16.0 million
Image Sensor CMOS Sensor Size: 1/ 2.3 in.
Image Size (pixels) 4608 x 3456 (16M)
RAW Stills Mode
ISO 100–1600 & ISO 3200, 6400 (available when using P, S, A or M or Movie manual mode)
Weight : 49.9 oz. (1,415 g)with battery and memory card
There is no denying the power of the zoom range but do not expect image quality to be outstanding even with all of that ED and Super ED Glass trying to fix the chromatic aberration and softness. There is, of course, the fact that a small sensor in the 1/2.3″ size will mostly use the center of the glass to gather its light so, in theory, it should be able to use the sharpest part of the elements to get the image quality up to a good standard.
The camera will not be stellar in low light and the full moon if you have ever shot it is so bright that you can safely shoot it at 1/200 to avoid overexposure. Good luck shooting bats or other night creatures with any sort of acceptable quality. Appart from the moon or well lit night scenes or flash shots, this camera should be mostly used in the daytime to get acceptable quality.
The P1000 Camera will only shoot 120fps in VGA 640*480 mode and up to 60fps in Full HD. There is no ultra-high-speed mode like in the Sony RX series cameras. we are disappointed as this was a true competitor option to the Sony RX10 series in a similar form factor. Quality on the tiny sensor will also be lacking so any higher frame rates should be grainy and prone to artifacts.
This is an interesting camera for Nikon that cements their product line for extreme telephoto enthusiasts. However, if the quality is what you seek, you are better off with an RX camera with a 1″ sensor or a Micro 4/3 camera with a 400mm lens which will in EX Teleconverter mode be a good match to this one without having such a small sensor. a GH4 or GH5 camera would be a better fit with a 400mm lens and a teleconverter, plus it will be less heavy when attached to a 14-140mm lens for example. Cool camera but could have been so much more in the video department. -HSC