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Sony NXCAM / AVCHD Camcorders
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Old January 6th, 2010, 08:18 PM   #1
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Sony HXR-NX5U and HDR-AX2000 Camcorder

I just saw the news of Sony's new HDR-AX2000H camcorder from their CES 2010 Press Release from their website. There were 3 different images of the camera presented. I couldn't find any specific information but I did see this comment:

The features of the AX2000 will wow the most hardened techmophile: Full HD progressive scan recording; syoerb three sensor video reproduction, smooth Active Mode video stabilization; film-like cinematone Gamma and color and a wide angle G lens with telephoto zoom. I believe it's a AVCHD type camera maybe the prosumer version of the NX Cam.
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Old January 6th, 2010, 08:32 PM   #2
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SONY UNVEILS NEW SOLID STATE CAMCORDERS

LAS VEGAS (CES Booth 14200) Jan. 6, 2010 – Sony Electronics is expanding its line of solid state camcorders with two new models designed to broaden the shooting capabilities for professionals and consumers. The company is introducing its first professional camcorder that implements the AVCHD format, the HXR-NX5U, as well as a consumer AVCHD model, HDR-AX2000.

The professional HXR-NX5U model is part of Sony’s NXCAM family of video products for professionals. It features Sony’s Exmor™ CMOS sensor with ClearVid™ array, to deliver full high-definition resolution and low light sensitivity with low noise. The camcorder will record AVCHD up to 24Mbps, delivering 1920x1080 high definition images with both interlace and progressive modes along with native 1080/24P, 720/60p and MPEG-2 standard definition recording. Only the professional NX5U camcorder includes both HD-SDI and HDMI™ outputs, as well as two-channel linear PCM audio capabilities. Other unique features for the professional NX5U camcorder include 720/60P recording, built-in GPS function, SMPTE Time Code I/O and an upgrade option for 60i/50i switchable.

AVCHD technology has been widely adopted in Sony’s consumer camcorder line. In the professional market, Sony has already introduced one AVCHD-based model: the compact point-of-view (POV) camera and solid-state recorder combination, model HXR-MC1.

According to Sony, AVCHD is a highly efficient long-GOP codec based on MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 Long-GOP image compression, a member of the MPEG family of codecs. This approach is consistent with Sony’s current line-up of MPEG professional camcorders, including the HDV™, XDCAM® HD optical and XDCAM EX™ series.

The new NXCAM model also shares the 20x optical zoom G lens used in Sony’s HVR-Z5U professional camcorder. The camcorder uses two types of consumer media along with an optional HXR-FMU128 128GB Flash Memory Unit for more than 11 hours of recording time at 24 Mbps. The HXR-FMU128 unit can be easily removed and simply powered through a computer’s USB connection, to make file downloading or editing easier and faster. Besides the Memory Stick PRO Duo™ media, users are also able to record HD content on class 4 or higher SDHC cards.

The new HXR-NX5U will be available this month, at a suggested list price of $4,950, which is the same as Sony’s highly successful HVR-Z5U. The HXR-FMU128 unit will also be available this month, at a suggested list price of $800. It can only be used with the professional model HXR-NX5U, not with the HDR-AX2000.

For High-end Prosumers

With both the HXR-NX5U and the HDR-AX2000 Handycam® camcorders, professionals and more adept consumer videographers can achieve a deep cinematic look with film-like movie quality and advanced color settings.

Recording full 1920x1080/60i high-definition video at up to 24Mbps, the HDR-AX2000 features progressive scan at 1080/24p and 30p, giving video film-quality motions for brilliant scene reproduction. Sony’s new prosumer camcorder delivers HD broadcast-quality images with the convenience of a non-linear recording format to Memory Stick PRO Duo™ media for editing and playback. CinemaTone Gamma™ and CinemaTone Color settings complement the 24P capabilities by providing the color and gamma range for an even more high-end feel and extra control over image expression.

The model uses three 1/3" Exmor™ CMOS Sensors with Exmor derived technology to improve the color reproduction of video recordings and capture sharp, detailed images even in less than perfect lighting situations. Noise reduction is accomplished via the unique column-parallel analog-to-digital conversion technique and grid arrangement of the photo diodes, which are designed to provide high sensitivity, deep resolution, high-speed reading, and a wider dynamic range. The Exmor technologies combine to allow the new camcorders to perform significantly better in low-light environments with sensitivity of 1.5 lux.

The EIP processor is able to rapidly process the vast amounts of pixel data read from the three 1/3” Exmor CMOS Sensors, and record beautiful HD and colorful video. The Exmor CMOS Sensors were developed using some of the most advanced technologies in the semiconductor industry. They handle video data in 1920 x 1080p and 4:2:2 color space for high-quality signal processing before recording it to the dual Memory Stick PRO Duo media. Together, the EIP and Exmor CMOS Sensors imaging system allows both HXR-NX5U and the HDR-AX2000 camcorder to provide extremely high image quality with smooth gradation and detailed image reproduction.

The new camcorder uses Sony’s 3.2” (16:9) (measured diagonally) Xtra Fine LCD™ screen (921K) and Xtra Fine LCD electronic viewfinder (0.45-inch, 1,227,000 dots) for high-resolution and high-contrast images with remarkable color reproduction.

Equipped with a refined level of optical performance, both HXR-NX5U and the HDR-AX2000 also have a 29.5mm Wide-Angle to 590mm Telephoto G-Lens, extra-low dispersion glass and 20x optical zoom. The fixed lens is optimized to perfectly complement the cameras’ advanced image sensor and image-processing technology.

Optical SteadyShot™ image stabilization with Active Mode improves on existing Optical SteadyShot image stabilization by allowing the camera lens to shift over a greater range of motion allowing the camera to compensate for greater degrees of camera shake and deliver a stunning level of image smoothness.

Both models features three built-in neutral density filters for adjusting the amount of light entering the image sensor through the lens and enables prosumers to define their own manual settings for iris, gain, white balance, shutter speed and focus for increased creativity and control. Use of any of the three manual rings for adjustments to zoom, focus and iris provides even more flexibility and makes it possible to fine-tune the settings. This allows users to conveniently assign features used often to shortcut buttons so they can be accessed quickly without going through a menu.

Since professional quality video requires professional quality audio, both models feature dual XLR 3-pin audio jacks for +48V phantom power to external microphones. Additionally, the grounded connection allows insertion/removal of connectors in live equipment without picking up external signals.

The HDR-AX2000 camcorder is scheduled to be available in March for about $3,500 at authorized dealers nationwide, Sony Style® retail stores and online through Sony Style USA | Sony VAIO® Computers | Sony Consumer Electronics.
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Old January 6th, 2010, 08:37 PM   #3
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Pics on the way. And yes, this is the consumer version of the NX Cam. Nice to see that it finally has a model number now (NX5).

Edit: pics uploaded... click to see 'em big.
Attached Thumbnails
Sony HXR-NX5U and HDR-AX2000 Camcorder-ax2000f.jpg   Sony HXR-NX5U and HDR-AX2000 Camcorder-ax2000e.jpg  

Sony HXR-NX5U and HDR-AX2000 Camcorder-ax2000a.jpg   Sony HXR-NX5U and HDR-AX2000 Camcorder-ax2000b.jpg  

Sony HXR-NX5U and HDR-AX2000 Camcorder-ax2000c.jpg   Sony HXR-NX5U and HDR-AX2000 Camcorder-ax2000d.jpg  

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Old January 7th, 2010, 05:45 AM   #4
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Thanks for posting these pictures, Chris. A small point: the consumer version of the camcorder is named the HDR-AX2000, as I read the Sony press release.

I guess the HXR-NX5U is the name for the formerly un-named professional NXCam that we have been reading about on dvinfo.net for the past several weeks.

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Old January 7th, 2010, 07:00 AM   #5
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Thanks Andrew, I have corrected the title! And yes, it's nice to see that the NX cam finally gets a model number.
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Old January 7th, 2010, 08:44 AM   #6
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So I guess soon we'll see a new category under Sony camcorders for NXCam Family camcorders?
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Old January 7th, 2010, 09:13 AM   #7
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woah the AX2000's specs r great for folks who need just almost everything. kinda close to the NX5 but the XLR is really nice to have
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Old January 7th, 2010, 09:18 AM   #8
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nxcam

Quote:
Originally Posted by Douglas Call View Post
So I guess soon we'll see a new category under Sony camcorders for NXCam Family camcorders?
I second Douglas' suggestion.
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Old January 7th, 2010, 09:25 AM   #9
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Sure, as soon as I get back from CES (or sooner, depending on my weariness of the Vegas nightlife).
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Old January 7th, 2010, 09:31 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Douglas Call View Post
So I guess soon we'll see a new category under Sony camcorders for NXCam Family camcorders?
There's one problem with that; Sony seems to be using the NXCAM name for the professional cameras (the HXR-NX5U) but not for the prosumer model (the HDR-AX2000), so that's going to cause a little confusion.
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Old January 7th, 2010, 09:58 AM   #11
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No worries, we'll include it in the category name. They need to share the same forum since they're both essentially the same camera.
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Old January 7th, 2010, 11:20 AM   #12
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At first I was happy to see that Sony included XLR inputs in that $3,500 price but reading a post that someone mentioned elsewhere, I found out that 24p get put inside a 60i stream. If the Panasonic HMC40 and the HMC150 can get that feature as well as 720p modes than why can't Sony put it into the AX2000? I guess they had to cut a whole lot of corners to keep it far from the NX5U. I can't say I'm surprised.
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Old January 7th, 2010, 12:12 PM   #13
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Perhaps they implemented the 24p inside 60i to support editing software that doesn't support 24p?

I can't find any information on how the NX5 encodes 24p.

Adam Wilt has a list of the differences between the cameras, and doesn't mention a difference in the way 24p is handled. He does say that the HDR-AX2000 supports SD/SDHC, which isn't what Sony says, so take everything with a grain of salt at the moment...
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Old January 7th, 2010, 04:31 PM   #14
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Can any one comment on how this cam compares to the EX series of camera? These cameras would seem to be in direct competition with each other (other than the EX having 1/2" chip set)...

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Old January 7th, 2010, 10:30 PM   #15
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The lens (the EX1R has a 14x Fujinon, the NX5U a 20x Sony lens) and the imaging technology are probably the key differences (though there are many other differences from the flash memory to file format.)

The EX1R has three 1/2" chips whose resolution is 1920 x 1080, while the NX5U chips are both smaller in size and have lower resolution, so all things being equal I'd expect the EX1R to have more detail and reproduce color more accurately in low light.

But what that translates to in the real world? Hopefully someone with an EX1R will get their hands on a NX5U and do some comparison's between the two cameras in the near future!


If someone else was paying, I'm guessing I'd still get the EX1R....
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