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Opinion


Early adopter New models make waves


The XDCAM EX range is about to receive an innovative boost with the introduction of the PMW-320, a shoulder-mount broadcast camcorder with all-new 1/2-inch Exmor CMOS sensors. Meanwhile, Sony’s other new arrival –the ultra compact HXR-MC50E –is ideal for documentary and diary shooting, with over five hours full HD recording on 64GB of internal memory and a highly sensitive, high-res Exmor R CMOS sensor. The PMW-320 (pictured) builds on the success of the XDCAM EX


format’s flagship model, the PMW-350, but with some key enhancements for its target market. Rather than the 2/3-inch sensor of its sibling, the 320 model is built around 1/2-inch HD Exmor CMOS imager technology, which opens the format up to a wider range of users. Shipping in August, the camera comes in two different models – the PMW-320K, which comes equipped with a Fujinon HD lens with 16x zoom, and the PMW-320L, which comes without a lens. Both models have a standard 1/2-inch bayonet lens interface. Users can thus choose from a wide variety of optional lenses in the existing 1/2-inch HD lens line-up. “The launch of this camera is a smart move by Sony,” believes Nigel


Kemp, operations director at Hammerhead TV Facilities. “It will keep those producers with 1/2-inch lenses happy and help to ease them into the tried and tested tapeless workflow of XDCAM EX. The ergonomics of the camera and ability to be conventionally shoulder-mounted will make shooting easier for many operators.” “The benefits of this shoulder mounted XDCAM camera are balance


and easy changing of lenses,” agrees Duncan Martin of Pro Motion Hire. “Also, it looks reassuringly professional, which, believe it or not, is important if you are filming the CEO of a blue chip company.” Available from July 2010, Sony’s HXR-MC50E AVCHD camcorder


offers low-light sensitivity with improved image clarity and drastically reduced grain, thanks to the back-illuminated Exmor R sensor. An advanced image processor improves camera response time and screens out noise to help ensure an ultra sharp signal. A 10x optical/120x digital zoom and 1920x1080i full HD resolution images make for up close and personal shooting with exceptional quality. Additionally, its 29.8mm Sony G lens offers a very wide angle of view. The HXR-MC50E has a professional design with the same cosmetic finish as Sony’s recently launched NXCAM model, the HXR-NX5E, giving the product a high-quality ‘pro’ look, whilst still being able to pass for a consumer camcorder for covert recording in documentaries. “This promises to be a great little camera which will certainly find its


way into colleges and universities around the UK,” comments Nigel Kemp. “Within the broadcast arena, I am sure the camera can be utilised for some shots traditionally reserved for minicams and will no doubt complement documentary shooting kits when travelling abroad”


in my view Summer 2010 theproducer 9


MICHAEL BURNS Freelance writer Michael Burns is a freelance writer with 13 years experience covering new media, broadcast and design industries. He contributes regularly to Digital Arts, 3D World, Computer Arts and Televisual and is a published author of books on digital content creation


Two new Sony cameras, from opposite ends of the shooting spectrum, have received eager praise from UK hire companies


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