I recently started getting into Adobe Speedgrade since we’re using Adobe Premiere Pro for editing. The Adobe suite really has a nice family of programs to allow you to edit, color grade, sound mix, and VFX all within the same suite. The round trip function between for example Premiere Pro and Speedgrade is really sweet and easy to use.
So I wanted to create some custom LUTs to load into our Sony FS7. I started playing around with this and after a few attempts of not being able to load the LUTs into the camera I realized there is a compatibility problem between Speedgrade and the Sony F5,F55 and FS7 cameras.
The exported LUTs from Speedgrade are in a 32x32x32 .cube format and the Sony cameras will only accept the 33x33x33 .cube luts, being exported from other apps such as Davinci Resolve. Of course I could use resolve but i’d like to be able to do it within speed grade since we use the adobe suite for the rest of our stuff.
I pushed an email to my contact at adobe and he was not aware of this but would check and get back to me with some news, hopefully soon… In the meanwhile I’m looking at ways of converting the 32x LUT into a 33x LUT. I’ll post updates.
Today we shot a trailer for TV4 and the upcoming European Championship in Handball.
Fun shoot, weather was nice, almost too nice to fit the story but with a bit of grading we’ll be fine. Shot on the Sony F55 in S-log 2, in both 1080 (120p) and 4K (50p) Minimal lighting with a couple of Arri M18 and bounces and a 6×6 ft (1,80×1,8m) frame with silk.
About a month ago I saw a demo of the coming Adobe Premiere upgrade but was asked to keep a lid on until now. I was really interested to see if the software only machine would playback 4K XAVC footage from the F55. It played (on a maxed out HP laptop) back the 4K footage in full resolution without any problems. Even more so, it scrubbed the footage like it was a 25Mbit/s DVstream, not a 300Mbit/s 4K stream!! It updated the timeline window as fast as I could move the cursor and played back instantly when I hit play. I was blown away!
This release will add full XAVC support (all flavours) to Prelude, Premiere Pro, After Effects, and Media Encoder but with read-only at first. As for Speedgrade there is more surprises ahead…
Playback will require some pretty heavy system requirements to playback 4K 50/60+ fps but the support is there. Just in time for NAB, how lucky is that…. 😉
Sony has released a menu simulator to the NewF cameras, the F5 and F55. The application will let you control the 6 basic menu buttons, much like the Arri Alexa simulator.
I would have liked to see the app extend into the deeper camera menu tree on the F5/F55 as well since you are very limited in the settings allowed by the 6 user buttons.
You’ll find the simulator here.
So the day is finally here. I got the privilege to hear about all the details last week and have been hard pressed to keep quiet. I really think Sony is going to change things up quite a bit with this announcement. The F5, the F55 and upgrades to FS700 and the F65. According to Sony 4K is here to stay and I am becoming a believer.
I don’t even know where to start with this to be honest, there is so much. I guess I can start with the new Codec known as XAVC which is a new 10bit 4k codec. It’s a intra frame and Long GOP codec allowing for both 4K and 1080/50p files as well as “regular” HD. Then…. I think what most people anticipated for #TheNewF was an upgrade to the F3. Well there is now the Sony F5 and F55. Both cameras have an S35mm 4K CMOS sensor with PL mount (with PL/FZ mount adapter). Both cameras are built on a modular design to make everything as streamlined as possible. There is even a new battery system developed by Sony that fits this modular design. Even more, there is new recording media released that has a docking slot that fits into the modular design of both the F5 and F55, all without cables!! On top of this, I know it never ends, there are new professional view finder options as well as a 30′ LCD 4K monitor. Ohhhh I almost forgot there is the 6 lenses, T2.0, metal housing with a 240 degree throw!
Ok so lets try and break this down just a little.
The F5 and F55 are both 4K sensor cameras. 14 stops of DR! Slog2 gamma and hypergamma modes. Both deliver in a multi codec environment with both the established Mpeg2/HD422/50mbit as well as the new XAVC directly to the SxS cards. The F5 does 120fps XAVC HD and the F55 180fps XAVC HD both to internal SxS Pro+. ONLY THE F55 will record 4K to the internal cards, using the new XAVC codec, but it will also store MPEG2 HD422 files, perfect for offline editing. The F5 will need the external 4K recorder to deliver 4k images.
The F55 will also shoot 240fps 2K RAW to the new external recorder, AXS-R5. This new recorder (fitting both F5 and F55) will simply snap to the back of the camera like a battery and the attachment is cable free. The AXS-R5 is a RAW 2K and 4K recorder (16bit linear) storing up to 60p in 4K and 240 in 2K. It uses a 2,4Gbits new media card with capacities up to 512GB. The F55 also has a global shutter and a wider color gamut than the F5 and more like the F65.
One thing I’ve been waiting for since we got our F3 is a real HD viewfinder. Well now there are 2 new viewfinders and one 7 inch onboard monitor.
The top of the line VF is a 0.7” 1280 x 720 OLED DVF-EL100 which will work on F5/F55/F65 and is said to deliver an outstanding clarity.
The next choice is a DVF-L350, a 960 x 540 pixel LCD VF with a flip-up display.
And to finish off is a high brightness (1000cd/m2) 7” FullHD, LCD
The Lenses. I am personally really excited about this. Sony has announced 6 PL mount prime lenses T2.0 all metal housing. This could of course be re-housed still lenses, but that doesn’t mean its bad optics; other PL mount lenses are known to be just that. Exciting indeed. No price point yet that I know of.
TheNewF meant more than the release of the F5 and F55. It also meant an upgrade/advancement of the FS700 and the all mighty F65.
The F65 will get a v3.0 upgrade with “Advanced de-mosaicing at 6K or 8K even with RAW files captured to-date” and “120P 8K capture, totally unique feature”
The FS700 will among other things finally get 4K RAW output to the AXS-R5.
I think the announcement of the new XAVC codec is really exciting. It is a 8/10bit codec allowing for intra/long GOP coding as well as 4K, 1080/50p as well as 1080/25p. It is said to wedge in between the top of the line HDCAM SR and the existing HD422 50Mbits format. I can’t wait to see what it really looks like.
I also really like the modular design of everything. Batteries, recorders and camera is now one unit without any cables. The rigs nowadays are big and cumbersome and cables everywhere. Can the integrated electronics save a few cables that is great news I think. The new batteries for the Fseries are promising a longer running time and a 2x high speed charging.
I am going to the US to cover the election on thursday but the thought crossed my mind to cancel and go to the UK Sony Roadshow instead. Will try my best to get a look at these cameras as soon as I can.
There was no talk to pricing last week, but my guess is the F5 will last slightly higher than the F3 at $16k, which will still be available, and the F55 perhaps 20K above the F5 to protect the 4K internal recording, global shutter and higher frame rates. Products are available in end of January.
Lots of more information will of course come out in the next few weeks and it will be interesting to see the first images from these cameras, since after all that is what we use them for….
Wow how long is my Christmas list now…
Disclaimer: No one asked me to write this post, no one has payed to write anything in regards to this. I do not work for Sony. I was privy to information about the release early as I am sure lots of other working professionals with contacts were. Images in the post are from a Sony release