Sony has been relatively quiet about phones since the Xperia 1 II roll out. However, rumors have been heating up on the Xperia 5 II, which is a lower-cost alternative to the flagship phone but very nearly as capable without the best screen or construction but not skimming on features. The latest rumor mentions a spec sheet that makes it a 4k 120fps recording phone which may show that handsets still are seen as innovators when it comes to cameras since very few consumer devices in the camera world can record at that frame rate.
We were not very happy that Sony basically killed the super slow motion mode on the Xperia 1 II phone which kind of showed that Sony was putting stills and regular video at the forefront without making compromises in sensors that needed to shoot at higher frame rates. Sony chose to do cleaner regular frame rate video and stills that were better than any Sony phone before at the cost of not having a do it all sensor. Slow motion from Sony was all but killed but the Xperia 5 II now makes us second guess that fate…
With all the COVID 19/Coronavirus news it seems out of place to fret over smartphone maker decisions. However, we have to mention the latest Sony smartphones which prioritize photo and video quality with one gigantic omission. All of the new lineup from Sony the Xperia 1 II, Xperia 10 II, and Xperia PRO 5G lack super slow motion features. Yes, the 960fps 1080p mode is gone and the only spec remaining is a paltry 120fps 1080p Full HD pseudo-slow-mo frame rate.
If you recall in years past, the Sony brand was incorporating their Motion eye™ technology which pairs a sensor with ultra-fast memory on the same package to allow for large datarates and super slow motion capture. In the lab, the phones were able to shoot up to 1000fps at full 1080p HD with excellent quality. What came out in the Xperia phones was a somewhat odd translation of 0.1 seconds recording time at 1080p 960fps/1000fps which came out to be extremely short and a kind of useless feature. Now that has been abandoned.
There has been a lack of big camera announcements at NAB 2017, with more and more saturation and less camera replacement by TV studios and Filmmakers there is talk of good enough gear already purchased for 4k and 2k/1080p production. The Alexa, RED, Sony F55 and Varicam LT cameras released in the last few years already exceeds most delivery methods in quality and completely obliterates the compressed cable delivery streams for hove TVs.
However manufacturers like Sony & Panasonic have released information about new firmware updates that will improve high frame rate recording on some of their cameras as free updates. This in turn makes for a practical camera line refresh that gives more longevity to the existing hardware while permitting more high speed latitude to current owners.
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