Today Sony announced two new XDCAM EX cameras. The first is a new version of the EX1 camera called the PMW-EX1R. The R stands for revised, and that’s exactly what it is. It has the same sensor and functions as the EX1, but with several improvements including SD recording, HDMI output, and revised buttons and switches. Sony has taken user feedback to heart, and the EX1R is proof of that.
The really big news though is the 2/3″ PMW-350. That’s right – it’s a 2/3″ EX camera. The sensor block has three 2/3″ Exmor CMOS sensors with F12 sensitivity. It is a full-sized shoulder-mounted camera with all the outputs and inputs you’d expect, including TC in/out, Genlock, HD-SDI, and even HDMI. The camera records to two SxS cards in all the same formats as the EX3, which also includes variable frame rates. The codec options are also the same but now will also include a SD recording mode. It comes equipped with a new full color LCD viewfinder, and it will also accept other Sony B&W viewfinders. What makes this package even more exciting is that it comes with a 2/3″ 16x Fujinon lens. The lens is a standard 2/3″ lens, which uses the B4 style lens mount. The camera will except any 2/3″ lens, but the fact that it comes with one is really fantastic. The camera body, VF and lens has a MSRP of $22,000, or it is available without a lens for $20,500. This is very big news, and will no doubt change the 2/3″ video camera market. Look for the camera to be released in January 2010.
Finally, Sony has also released two new memory card options. First is the SxS-1 memory card, which is a high-speed card with a limited lifespan. This is similar to the E-Series P2 cards from Panasonic with a lifespan of 5 years with daily use. A 32 GB version will be the first to hit the shelf. Next up is the MEAD-MS01 adapter, which allows users to record to Memory Stick Pro HG Duo memory. This is Sony’s answer to all of those SDHC card adapters out there. Hats off to Sony for embracing the technology instead of locking it out.