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.
The new Sony PXW-FX9 XDCAM 6K Full-Frame Camera is what Sony fans have been waiting ever since the APS-C cameras Super 35 cameras like the FS5 and FS7 made the rounds. It is all that those cameras offered but now on a state of the art Full Frame sensor with Dual ISO capable of 800 and 4000 depending on the needed use. By being extremely sensitive the camera needs ND filtration and it doesn’t disappoint on that feature either by including a ramping – smooth increments ND filter from 1/4 to 1/128 which adjusts on Auto Mode depending on the scene without ruining the shot. An industry first.
On the Slow Motion front, the camera is consistent with Sony pedigree with now offering 120fps Full HD and with a promised firmware update 180fps Full HD and also 16-bit raw 4K/2K footage up to 120 fps to an external recorder. This is close but not quite what the FS5 is capable of in FHD which includes 240fps. The FS7 has in contrast 240fps @ 2K RAW Ext Rec & 180fps 1920*1080 Internal. Much closer to what the FX9 is capable of doing.
Sony continues to recycle the same features over their phone lineup with a slightly dumbed down Xperia 1 phone which is their flagship with the same camera arrangement, screen, and main features. The 1080p 960fps mode is still here with a duration of 0.1 seconds and at 720p of 0.2 seconds. The resolution and quality are not real 1080p as we have discussed before and the reduced time makes it nearly unusable.
However, the feature many are calling a bad omen is the disappearance of the 3.5mm headphone jack. The phone is slimmer and smaller than the Xperia 1 but shares the best traits at a lower price. For many, it will not be enough to counter the popularity of other phones that are more full-featured and offer a vast array of video modes.
The recently announced Canon 90D, Canon EOS M6 II, Sony a6100 and Sony a6600 are cameras that refine everything that is already a current technology but bundle it in a lower price package with great performance. However, it is clear from the spec sheets that high frame rates have stagnated for the past few years in these camera lines with a maximum of 120fps at 1080p.
Sure some of them offer full-time autofocus in slow motion modes and face tracking which in the case of Sony is so good that you may not even match it if you had the best focus puller in the business hired for your shoot. But the frame rate war seems to be left to other camera lines and brands. Panasonic, for example, offers up to 180fps in their new S1H camera which should be in theory the best Panasonic mirrorless camera ever made and it should also allow for outstanding quality in 1080p 180fps.
We have a few developments to share in the high speed camera world. Things have been somewhat quiet in the phone front as the high speed component feature was relegated to a footnote in 2019 after a great 2017 and 2018 main spec treatment. We may get much better phone slow motion as memory size and speed increases while maintaining the same price range thanks to the fast pace of electronics development.
Sony just announced their latest RX VII camera which means that an RX10 and maybe a new RX VA version will show up before the year is over. We were not happy with the feature being stagnant in resolution and speed on the RX series for 3 years in a row now. Sure AF and overall speed have increased when it comes to other parts of the camera but the high frame rates remain frozen in 2016 specs. In the meantime, we have a few new things to show you.
The Sony RX100 VII or also known as the RX100M7 is the latest in the stacked 1″ CMOS sensor line from the company in what amounts to another evolutionary incremental step without a real revolution. New is the impressive real-time AF technology from the Sony a9 professional camera now miniaturized into this pocketable beast with up to 20fps at full resolution and up to 90fps in high burst mode but for only 7 shots which is kind of a letdown as it is very limited.
The HFR mode in previous RX series cameras have been one of our favorites among the cameras released in the past few years by including truly usable 240p, 480/500p, and 960/1000p depending on NTSC or PAL mode selection with also the ability to trigger a pre and post record time to not miss the moment. This ability is akin to what a real dedicated serious slow motion camera can deliver. The problem is that the RX cameras are severely time-limited at 4 seconds quality priority time and or 7 seconds in shoot time priority.