Sony FDR-AX1 Consumer 4K Video Camera

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Sony FDR-AX1 Consumer 4K Video Camera

Postby Androbot2084 » 06 Oct 2013 18:11

Well history is repeating itself and I remember back in 2004 when Sony introduced its first consumer high definition video camera called the HDR-FX1. Now 9 years later Sony has introduced its first consumer 4K video camera and it is called the FDR-AX1.

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Re: Sony Consumer 4K Video Camera

Postby Doughie » 07 Oct 2013 18:57

Yes indeed it is certainly a little reminiscent of the FX1 launch back in 2004. November 2004 I think it was. I think the price point is a little higher but there's inflation etc.

I guess only 2 main problems with shooting 4k is that editing anything at 3840pixels is gonna be very very hard for most computers to deal with and the (current) fairly low number of 4k TV. YES they are available but the market penetrator still seems quite low.

But yes it's remarkable tech and am sure it's an awesome machine. Looks quite compact to me.

Anyone else got any comments?

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Re: Sony FDR-AX1 Consumer 4K Video Camera

Postby Stephan » 07 Oct 2013 21:46

When I saw the announcement, I thought... Oh boy, here we go again!
- New screen resolution (is that another aliasing nightmare due to up/downscaling?)
- New codec, no support from NLE software
- Will be pain to edit on current computers (need to buy new hardware?)
- New proprietary media (will be horrendously expensive like the P2?)

Sounds so familiar...

Then I thought:
- 3840 x 2160 is exactly 2x the former "Full HD" in both dimensions, so aliasing shouldn't be an issue like it previously was with TV sets that weren't exactly Full HD.
- When viewing blu-rays on my TV from a reasonable distance today, my eyes cannot distinguish individual pixels already, so why would I need even smaller pixels?
- Camera & sensor optics are usually the limiting factors, not the codec spatial resolution (except on systems that cost multiple 10K$).

So, although the steps from DV to HDV, and then from HDV to AVCHD, brought considerable improvements to me each time, I feel that my latest compact AVCHD is really good enough for me now (for video, not for audio though). I can't manage the bulk and weight of the new FDR-AX1, it's way over budget for me, and I just don't need the 4K.

I only feared that 4K would ruin all our past efforts due to upscaling aliasing (soon enough we won't be able to purchase any more Full HD TV sets), so I'm soooooo relieved to see that they wisely chose a 4K resolution that's compatible with AVCHD.

I know I'll prove myself wrong some day, when the technology gets cheaper and we get to enjoy TV displays that are 3m in diagonal suspended on the wall (like in sci-fi movies). At that time I'll be no doubt shooting 4K video with my iPhone 11, but today I'm not in the target market for this cam.

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Re: Sony FDR-AX1 Consumer 4K Video Camera

Postby Androbot2084 » 08 Oct 2013 01:59

Perhaps the biggest problem that holds back 4K early adoption is the consumer perception that 4K televisions are unaffordable. Indeed a name brand 50 inch 4K television can easily cost $3500 but an off brand 39 inch 4k television can cost as little as $700 which is quite a bargain.

Back in 2004 when HDV cameras were first introduced we had the same problem with the public perceiving that high definition televisions were too expensive. Indeed a big screen flat panel HD television could easily cost $3000 however you could buy a 26 inch cathode ray tube high definition television for as little as $650.

However the disadvantage of buying a smaller television is that you have to sit closer to the screen.

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