Anyone who’s held a shoulder mounted camera knows how unweildy and uncomfortable they can be to use. Sony has a new plan to tackle that with it’s latest addition to the PXW series, the PXW-X400, with a new weight-balance distribution.
The company has redesigned the inner structure of the X400’s body, which it says has drastically improved the weight balance and handling capabilities of the camera. The camera’s design also combines a newly introduced manual lens (optional) with the balanced body, which is said to resolve any front-heavy issues and dramatically reduces the load for users on the right-hand.
Ergonomics is an oft forgotten aspect of camera design and something that Sony it seems to have taken on-board. It’s recent release of the PXW-FS7 4K when reviewed by RedSharkNews was described as “like having a veritable cat sitting on your shouler”.
So, this is great news to those who regularly shoot either ENG (electronic news-gathering), documentary or on-field productions. No more aching shoulder and right arm.
“This new camcorder combines all the capabilities pro-shooters need – connectivity, ergonomics and high performance – into a true production workhorse,” said Anthony Kable, Senior Product Manager, Sony Australia.
Now onto the other features of the X400, which include HD and SD recording, along with XAVC 50/60p (60p is in XAVC-Long only) and is low-powered at 22W.
The camera also incorporates pool feed functions in HD/SD SDI, which allows recording of a 1.5G HD-SDI external signal onto an SxS card. Along with an ethernet interface (RJ45 connector) for direct connection to the users’s network for file transfer, live streaming and even control from a web browser. Which might come in handy and opens up the possiblity of customer-controlled shooting for say, a sporting event or for performance artists.
Other features include an NFC chip, allowing a one-touch link between the camcorder and a mobile device, connecting users to an app that allows them to preview or remotely control camcorder settings and various menu functions. There’s also a dedicated ‘Online Button’ allowing users to bypass the menu for direct on/off control over transmissions, auto-uploading of proxy files to cloud services and FTP servers, and on/off control over Sony’s PWS-100RX1 network server while shooting.
The X400 is sold as body only, without lens or viewfinder. But there are lens options available, both of which include 2/3” 3-chip CMOS image sensors.
The first is the PXW-X400KC model, with a Canon 20x Manual Focus Lens, a 3.5-inch LCD CBK-VF02 viewfinder and short gun stereo microphone.
The second is the PXW-X400KF model, with a Fujinon 16x AF (auto focus available via an update in June 2016) Lens, a 3.5-inch LCD CBK-VF02 viewfinder and shot gun stereo microphone.
The camera also supports Sony’s new HDVF-series Full HD OLED Viewfinder (model HDVF-EL20/EL30). Along with the new URX-S03D, a 2-channel portable slot-in receiver and the new UTX-B03HR bodypack transmitter, which uses Sony Digital Audio Processing.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
The PXW-X400 camcorder is scheduled for release in February 2016 with prices starting from US$16,500 for the PXW-X400.
The PXW-X400KF price will start at US$20,600, and the PXW-X400KC price will start at US$21,100.
Excerpts from Press Release.