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Sony XDCAM PXW-FS7 / FS5
Super 35 CMOS recording 4K to XQD media cards.

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Old November 11th, 2021, 06:43 AM   #1
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: London, England
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Looking for a used FS5. Couple of questions

Hi All

I have an ageing Canon C500 Mk1 and am looking for a low-priced second camera shooting 4k, 4:2:2, 10-bit (I have 12 bit at 2k in the C500). I always buy used because money and am looking for something to match the Canon well enough with XLR inputs.

My thoughts are SLog can match well enough and the price of used FS5s is amazing. However, being a Canon guy, I'm trying to figure out a few things. Specifically:

1. I've seen FS5 users talk about a menu problem that occurs. What's that issue and are there workarounds?
2. Are there any other issues with FS5s I should look for when buying used?
3. External monitor. From what I've seen, the FS5 with the raw upgrade can output 12-bit 4K RAW from the SDI port and I'm assuming I can get an Atomos to convert this to 10 bit 4k. However, are there any monitors that can convert this to 12 bit 4k? ProRes. I can't seem to find any that will do this.
4. Any FS5 users happy to recommend a monitor?

Thanks (and sorry for the Sony noob questions, as a Canon guy... well, you know how it is...)
Paul Walker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 11th, 2021, 03:44 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jan 2009
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Re: Looking for a used FS5. Couple of questions

Paul, the main thing you need to know is that the FS5 is an okay camera, but not a great camera. I owned one and produced a 6-hour master class on that camera when it came out, so I know a little something about it.

The best advice I can give you is to aim higher and go for an FS7. The FS7 is a huge jump up from the FS5 in every way that you want to compare them -- and not for very much more money. The FS7 will also hold its value better.

BTW, the FS5 is only 8-bit 4:2:0 when shooting 4K. And the RAW output is not only a hassle, it is overrated. I've got some split screen videos on Vimeo that show there's really no visual difference between internal and RAW after grading in post.

Get an FS7. You can do 10-bit 4:2:2 internally with the XAVC-I codec (no farting around with external recorders or monitors) that is every bit as good as ProRes but with far lower file sizes. You won't regret it.
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