SONY PXW FS7 Cameras

Starting with 2015, Parcfilm filled up the production & video acquisition area with two more cameras, that Sony just launched: PXW FS.

Like any other people with a crush on video production, new equipment and launches, we were monitoring for some time now the news feeds and blogs, waiting for a camera that would sum up all technical characteristics that we were dreaming of, compatible with what we need: suitable for digital content, online commercials, documentary film or presentations movies.

For this production level, there are several things you need from your camera:

  • to film 4k. Why, as long as nobody is using it? Because there are advantages: from a 4k image you can crop an areas that you are mostly interested in (you can have foreground cuts even if you only have middle ground footage); 4K downsized la Full HD looks somehow better than a full HD shot footage; don’t even mention the show off! Even more, you’re “future proof”.
  • color space 4:2:2. More bytes, more color information, more possibilities to play with it in post-production
  • slow motion – up to150fps (PAL) in FullHD or 50fps in 4K
  • specially built inputs for sound, with quality pre-amplifiers, auto or manual settings
  • SDI and HDMI outputs for monitoring, external recorders etc.

All the above are to be found in Sony FS7. If you add the able bodieness, the quality of the entire construction and used codecs, you’re a winner. And we, all shame aside, we are double winners, ’cause we have two cameras like this!

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An advantage that some will enjoy when renting this camera is the opportunity to use Apple ProRes codec. This one can be used when the camera has an extension unit in the back, called Sony XDCA-FS7: it allows charging the camera with V-mount batteries.

 

Sony FS7 with / without the extension unit and V-mount battery

Sony FS7 with / without the extension unit and V-mount battery

With this extension unit, the camera gains approximately 15-20 cm in lengths and stability when it is held on the shoulder: it works as a great counterpoise that leverages the weight off your hand.

Sony FS7 with and without the extension unit and V-mount battery

Sony FS7 with and without the extension unit and V-mount battery

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The camera also has (you can not see it in the photos) a hand-held handgrab for shootings from the shoulder: it’s basically an extension of the camera to support it with the right hand and shoulder. It also has a cover for the view finder to help you monitor without any parasite light. From our experience, though, it’s not that necessary, because the LCD screen is pretty good, clear and luminous. But it’s very helpful for hand held camera filming by offering a third support.

For one of the cameras we also have a base plate from Vocas; this allows placing 15 mm rods for different accessories – follow focus, matte box. For the second camera we use an universal base plate, when we need it.

 

Sony FS7 almost fully equipped with SmallHD 7" monitor, extension unit, v-mount battery, two microphone wireless receivers, base plate, 15mm rods and follow focus

Sony FS7 almost fully equipped with SmallHD 7″ monitor, extension unit, v-mount battery, two microphone wireless receivers, base plate, 15mm rods and follow focus

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What kind of lenses can you use on Sony PXW FS7? Any kid, as long as you use an adapter.

We have a Metabones adapter for each of the two cameras. The first one is Speedbooster ULTRA, the other a simple adapter. You should pay attention, though: Speedbooster ULTRA increases the diaphragm of any lens by a stop and focuses the image on the sensor; this way, you have the same field of view as on a full frame sensor. In other words, a compatible full frame objective will create, using a Metabones Speedbooster ULTRA, the same image that a DSLR full frame sensor would create. The adapter cancels the crop factor. The adapters can be rented with the cameras and are included in the price.

 

To find out the renting price for a Sony PXW FS7, you can access the equipment list here.

To be able to offer quality solutions for more cinematography-oriented need, we also propose a renting package: Sony FS7 with a Metabones adapter, a complete set of Zeiss lenses and a SmallHD monitor for 200 euro. You can find more details on the page page mentioned before.

Just an artistic view of the Sony FS7 :)

Just an artistic view of the Sony FS7 :)

 

in this article, we didn’t pay attention to many specifications. And that’s only because there’s no better place for a full listing than on the producer’s page or on BHphotovideo.