Sony Snapshots - NAB 2008 Day 0

Some highlights of what Sony is showing
Adam Wilt
By Adam Wilt 04.14.08

PMW-EX3 with 2/3" cine lens, Sony HDD recorder

Sony's Juan Martinez gave me a night-before-the-show tour of the Sony booth (really a miniature city; "booth" doesn't do it justice), and here are some of the highlights from a camera operator's perspective.


The EX3 will be to the EX1 what the HDV S270 is to the Z7: a higher-end variant using the same basic imager and architecture.

  • 3 half-inch CMOS chips with true 1920x1080 resolution; XDCAM HD EX recording on dual SxS cards.

  • "Chainsaw" form factor, similar to Canon's removable-lens DV and HDV camcorders.

  • Interchangeable lenses (the camera comes with a removable version of the EX1's Fujinon 14x, using a new "wide mouth" mount. Into the wide mouth mount you can fit 1/2" or 2/3" mount adapters, complete with hot-shoe lens connectors, as well as EX3 wide mouth mount lenses. The wide mouth allows fitting 1/2" and 2/3" adapters with no change in flange depth; it's really a "mount for lens adapters" as much as it's a "mount for lenses").

  • TC in, TC out, Genlock, Remote-panel port, HD-SDI, dedicated composite (BNC) and Y/C (S-video) ports, along with the usual USB and 4-pin i.LINK and mini-D-shell component ports.

  • Some of the prototypes are showing a vertical "head brace" that works with the shoulder brace to register the camera against your body. The combo makes for a much nicer handholding experience than the EX1 offers. The head brace may or may not make it into production.

  • Gorgeous EVF. The EX1's LCD has been encapsulated in an articulated EVF housing (it adjusts side to side, up and down, and back to front) with a flip-up eyepiece. Magnification is excellent—you're not peering at a tiny image, but watching a BIG screen, which makes focusing easier and more certain.

  • Optional 60GB disk recorder that plugs in via an SxS slot. Remember the Specialized Communications that plugged into a P2 slot? Same idea.

  • Same 1920x1080 1/2" Exmor CMOS imagers.

  • Price: "Under $13,000" with stock 14x lens.

  • Shipping: later this year.

PMW-EX3 with standard 14x lens

Note the "head brace" sticking out the back, and the extendable shoulder pad

close-up of left-side controls; there's a "frame" dial to set frame rate (no in-shot ramping, though; gotta save something for the F23 and F35!)

The front of the EVF has a real, honest-to-goodness variable peaking control

One of the remote panels that the EX3 works with

The HDD unit with SxS "connector" on a thin cable

Another view of an EX3 with a 2/3" cine lens

Next: there was more than just the EX3 on display...

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