The PXW-FS7 reflects years of intense conversations we’ve had with documentary shooters. In response, we completely redesigned the grip, improved the viewfinder, optimized the balance and refined the ergonomics. Of course, the FS7 also reflects Sony’s expertise in 4K and HD codecs, Super 35 sensors and memory recording. The result is the ideal camera for documentaries—and the optimum tool for magazine shows, reality TV, unscripted TV and more.
It's ironic that so-called affordable cameras need to be outfitted with expensive rigs, cages, hand grips and accessory viewfinders before they can be properly handheld. The PXW-FS7 is different. It was designed from a clean sheet of paper to rest comfortably against your chest or sit well on your shoulder. Zoom, Start/Stop and Assign controls are carefully located on the sculpted, telescoping smart grip. Sony supplies a proper viewfinder that's perfectly offset to the left with a huge range of fore-aft adjustment.
Sony’s α mount lens system offers unsurpassed compatibility with both Sony and third-party lenses. The FS7’s E-Mount can take Cinema lenses and SLR lenses with a third party adaptor, as well as Sony’s E-mount and A-mount lenses. So whether buying new lenses, or making use of lenses you’ve already purchased, the FS7 makes it easy.
You can purchase the FS7 on its own (PXW-FS7) or with lens (PXW-FS7K).
For size, weight, price and exceptional performance in moving images, the Sony SELP28135G is the perfect partner for the PXW-FS7.
Motorized zoom empowers you with smoother moves than you could accomplish by hand.
Click-free iris ring enables split exposures and smooth adjustment, even during a shot.
Minimized “focus breathing” fights unwanted image magnification during a take.
Constant aperture eliminates “zoom ramping,” unwanted exposure changes during a zoom.
Sony’s Optical SteadyShot® image stabilization reduces the effects of camera shake.
Flexible spot AFallows you to select the autofocus area in any place on the screen (requires Version 4.0 firmware or above).
Meticulous optical design maintains axial image consistency across the zoom range.
Internal focus and zoom mean the front of the lens does not extend, so it will not interfere with your matte box.
Advanced Aspherical elements achieve extraordinary optical refinement while reducing size, weight and complexity.
SELP28135G is supplied as standard with PXW-FS7K.
High Frame Rate shots can turn everyday actions into slow-motion ballet, a visual feast of elegant movement. The FS7 delivers a maximum of 180 frames per second (fps) continuous shooting in Full HD. If your project plays at the cinematic 24 fps, you get beautiful 7.5x Super Slow Motion. There's no sacrifice in bit depth and no "windowing" of the sensor. So there's no crop factor, no loss in angle of view. The camera also performs Slow & Quick (S&Q) motion from 1 to 180 fps in 1 fps increments. So you can alter the narrative by selectively speeding up or slowing down the action.
Long-form programs need media that's both reliable and affordable. As specified by the CompactFlash Association, XQD™ memory cards score big on both accounts. Reliability comes from in-camera recovery. You get very low cost per minute compared to CFast™ cards. And robust communication between the camera and the card's controller enables read/write speeds up to a sizzling 600 Mbps.
Long-form projects shine with Sony's XAVC™ L (Long GOP) recording system. Here's the superior grayscale rendition of 10-bit High Definition, plus the uncompromised detail of 4:2:2 colour—all at budget-friendly data rates of 50, 35 or even 25 Mbps in HD mode. You can also record on-board 4K (4096x2160) at cinema standard 24p*, 59.94p, 50p, 29.97p, 23.98p or 25p. Other formats include the same XAVC I (Intra) QFHD (3840x2160) and Full HD (1920x1080) recordings as Sony's high-end F55, well-accepted MPEG HD 422, the Apple ProRes 422 codec (with XDCA-FS7 extension unit, sold separately), and even outboard RAW recording (with XDCA-FS7 and outboard recorder, sold separately).
* Requires Version 4.0 firmware or above.
Sony engineers were on a mission. To provide a sculpted, handheld design that remains comfortable even over the course of long shoots. To support hour after hour of recording—without changing memory cards. To provide the latest in resolution, exposure latitude, and colour reproduction. And to deliver it all in one affordable, practical package. With the PXW-FS7, that mission is a success.
When it comes to image sensors, size definitely matters. Sony’s Super 35 sensor delivers "bokeh," the defocused backgrounds made possible by shallow depth of field. A common technique for directing audience attention within the frame, shallow depth of field is far easier to achieve with a large sensor. Other things being equal, a bigger sensor also equates to better low-light sensitivity and lower image noise. And with bigger sensors, the field of view is wider for any given focal length lens.
With the FS7 sensor, size is just the beginning.
14 stops of exposure latitude deliver powerful grayscale rendition without crushing shadow detail or blowing out highlight detail.
ISO 2000 sensitivity enables you to shoot well after sunset, without tons of lighting and grip.
4K resolution. The sensor incorporates 11.6 million total pixels and 8.8 million effective pixels to deliver full 4K resolution. Even if you’re delivering in HD, your recordings will capture detail and image texture that HD sensors cannot see.
Sony Exmor® CMOS design makes for extremely fast readout, contributing to frame rates of up to 180 fps and minimized image skew.
From freestyle skiing to water sprays to pyrotechnics, High Frame Rates underscore the beauty and drama of everyday motion. That’s why the FS7 provides continuous recording at Full HD at frame rates of up to 180 fps. When you play back at 23.98p, you’ll enjoy extraordinary Super Slow Motion of up to 7.5x. Compared to burst mode, the continuous recording of the FS7 reduces mistimed shots and extra takes. The camera also provides Slow & Quick motion from 1 fps to 180 fps, in 1 fps increments. This enables time lapse effects to make the clouds race by or flowers bloom before your eyes. And for even higher frame rates, you can attach the XDCA-FS7 extension unit and connect an outboard recorder, both sold separately, for 2K RAW recording at up to 240 fps. This creates 10x Super Slow Motion when played at 23.98p.
You don't need a matte box to get the advantages of shallow depth of field even in exterior day shoots. A built-in Neutral Density (ND) filter wheel includes positions for Clear, 1/4 (2 Stops), 1/16 (4 Stops), and 1/64 (6 Stops).
To keep the PXW-FS7 small, light and easily hand-holdable, Sony engineers reserved some special functions for an outboard module, the XDCA-FS7 extension unit, sold separately. The unit adds powerful capabilities:
External RAW recording. To preserve the maximum in colour, contrast and resolution, the XDCA-FS7 enables RAW recording when connected to outboard recorders, sold separately. The XDCA-FS7 supports the vivid colour of 12-bit linear RAW at either 4K or 2K resolution. Use a single BNC cable to connect the XDCA-FS7 to Sony’s HXR-IFR5 interface unit and AXS-R5 recorder, both sold separately. The interface also allows the use of compatible third-party external recorders, such as the ATOMOS Shogun and the Convergent Design® Odyssey 7Q and theequipped with the Sony FS RAW option. Even when you record outboard RAW, you can still record time code-synchronized Full HD on-board, a convenient proxy for offline editing.
Apple ProRes 422 recording. Sony understands that some workflows are committed to the Apple ProRes 422 codec. That’s why the XDCA-FS7 supports Apple ProRes 422 and Apple ProRes 422 HQ – 1920 x 1080 recording to an XQD™ card in the camera.
Multi-camera operation. The XDCA-FS7 also provides Genlock and Timecode In/Out for multi-camera shoots.
A handheld camera should be able to get you into tight places. To work in your lap. To move with the talent. To shoot high and low angles with equal facility. And a handheld camera should function beautifully against your chest or shoulder, comfortably steadied by your right hand. The Sony FS7 does all of this, and more. The built-in shoulder pad makes for stable shoulder-style shooting, while the curved back sits comfortably against your chest.
Sony’s remarkable smart grip
First, we consulted extensively with videographers and cinematographers, asking questions and noting the answers. Then we created prototype after prototype—refining the size, shape, angle and control locations. The result is Sony’s Smart Grip: a highly adjustable control centre located on a pivoting, telescoping arm. The smart grip includes Zoom, Start/Stop and a range of Assign controls, including a dial you can use to adjust Iris. So you can operate the camera without taking your hand off the grip. The shape is comfortable hour after hour. And the angle of the grip can be adjusted at the press of a button.
Convenient, telescoping arm
Another key to handheld comfort is the telescoping arm that holds the smart grip. Adjust the arm length by simply turning a knob. Another knob at the joint adjusts angle. So you can instantly adapt the arm to suit your physique and your shooting position.
Sony supplies a proper viewfinder that's perfectly offset for right-eye or left-eye viewing with a huge range of fore-aft adjustment. Just turn a single knob to set the finder’s position. For even greater flexibility, Sony supplies a 15 mm rod mount. The viewfinder takes the form of an LCD monitor and a viewfinder extension box that easily tilts up and out of the way when you want direct viewing. Peaking, zebra and contrast controls enable easy adjustment of focus, contrast and exposure.
Sony designed the PXW-FS7 to stand up to the rigors of real-world shooting. The frame is magnesium, for high rigidity and light weight. Buttons, dials and other parts are sealed to prevent dust and water spray from entering. Cooling is an urgent requirement in a high-speed 4K camera. That’s why Sony engineers developed special heat pipes that whisk heat away from the electronics and into a remote heat sink. An air duct cools the heat sink while isolating the electrical components from exposure to dust and water spray.
A pair of heat pipes draws heat away from the electrical components and into the cooling duct. The duct dissipates accumulated heat, while its sealed design prevents the entry of dust, dirt and water spray.
The FS7 takes advantage of Sony’s flexible Multi-Interface (MI) Shoe, which provides power, signal connections and coordinated on/off switching to compatible Sony accessories. For example, you can connect and control Sony wireless microphone systems such as the UWP-D11 or UWP-D12 or attach the HVL-LBPC light.*
*Accessories sold separately. HVL-LBPC light does not draw power from FS7.
The FS7 supports 4-channel audio input. In application such as interview, this function enables the simultaneous use of an external microphone for recording ambient sounds, the built-in microphone for voice memos by the operator, and two optional UWP Series wireless microphones for voice of interviewer and interviewee. In addition, by the use of an optional XLR adapter “XLR-K2M” or ”XLR-K1M” which provides additional 2 XLR inputs, possible applications are further expanded.
Like high definition a decade ago, 4K is emerging as a consumer entertainment platform. And Sony is playing a pivotal role in this transition. When we launched the world's first commercial 4K projectors in 2005, we had to explain that a "K" was 1024 horizontal pixels and that "4K" meant 4096 x 2160 resolution. We had to itemize the advantages with tutorials on resolution and seating distance. Today 4K is a robust production platform. It is enshrined in the Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI) specification. The ITU and SMPTE have both issued 4K standards. And the Consumer Electronics Association is promoting the term "Ultra High-Definition" (Ultra HD) to cover 4K consumer products.
Sony 4K products include the world's leading line-up of Digital Cinema 4K projectors, with over 18,000 systems installed worldwide. We also created 4K live broadcasting tools, including production switchers, a monitor, a server and a baseband processor unit. Our line of 4K projectors supports visualization, simulation, auditoriums and post. Our Sony Vegas® Pro 13 software is enabled for 4K nonlinear editing. Our 4K consumer products include the VPL-VW1100ES home theatre projector, televisions, camcorders and even the FMP-X10, a 4K home media player with access to over 200 titles in 4K.
FS7 belongs to Sony’s α mount system family of cameras with interchangeable lenses, offering unsurpassed compatibility with third-party lenses as well as Sony products. The FS7’s E-mount can take both Cinema lenses used in cinematography and SLR lenses from stills photography, as well as Sony’s E-mount and A-mount lenses.
There is no cinematography without lenses. That’s why Sony is a primary manufacturer of high quality lenses. And that’s why we build our own optics, based on our own designs in our own factories. We’re experts at selecting, moulding, polishing and coating the glass elements. We’re accomplished in the rarefied craft of integrating motors and drive systems. And we’re a primary innovator, as demonstrated by these recent advances:
Sony’s Optical SteadyShot® (OSS)
image stabilization is ideal for still photography, when you’re normally standing or sitting as motionless as possible. However, camera movement is a vital part of moviemaking, whether following your subject or changing framing and perspective in ways that support the story. OSS (Active Mode) is optimized for movie shooting, with a wider optical stabilization range plus electronic stabilization that works on the pitch and yaw axes. You get smoother, more stable imagery on run & gun shoots.
Sony’s remarkable E-mount Lenses
Traditional SLR lenses were designed exclusively for still images. While the optics may be fine, their behaviour during a motion picture shot can be highly compromised. Motor noise, abrupt zoom, stepped changes in iris, and unwanted magnification during focus can all take your audience out of the story. Sony’s E-mount lenses are different.
Smooth power zoom
Sony combined professional camera expertise with state-of-the-art lens design and control to deliver exceptionally smooth tracking. Zooming is quiet as well as responsive thanks to advanced mechanisms and actuators. And Sony tests each lens individually to ensure high performance in every unit.
Background bokeh (defocusing) can be just as important in movies as it is in still images. Sony's well designed aperture contributes to smooth, beautiful bokeh with natural highlights. Iris noise can also be an issue in motion pictures. That’s why Sony incorporates uncommonly quiet, accurate and responsive iris control and actuator systems.
When making movies, you’re frequently focusing while shooting. A still camera lens can exhibit “focus breathing,” a jarring distraction that varies the angle of view. Sony E-mount lenses feature optical designs and control technology that minimize breathing. Sony's contactless linear motors eliminate gears and mechanical couplings. So focus is fast and quiet. With internal focusing, the front element of the lens does not rotate and the overall length of the lens does not change during focus.
Sony extends the E-mount advantage to the maximum with a series of E-mount servo zooms, which include the SELP28135G, SELP18105G and SELP18200. They provide smoother zoom than you could accomplish by hand. Meticulous optical design maintains axial image consistency across the zoom range. Constant aperture eliminates unwanted exposure changes during a zoom. SELP28135G is supplied as standard with PXW-FS7K.
|Focal Length||28-135 mm|
|35mm equivalent focal length (APS-C) (mm)||42-202.5|
|Max. Aperture||Constant F4|
|Image Format||35mm Full Frame|
|Extra-Low Dispersion Glass||ED|
SELP28135G is supplied as standard with PXW-FS7K. For size, weight, price and exquisite performance in moving images, the Sony SELP28135G is the ideal partner for the PXW-FS7
|Focal Length||18-105 mm|
|35mm equivalent focal length (APS-C) (mm)||27-157.5|
|Max. Aperture||Constant F4|
|Image Format||Super 35/APS-C|
|Extra-Low Dispersion Glass||ED|
SELP18105G is supplied as standard with PXW-FS5K. This 6x zoom lens supports a constant maximum aperture of f/4 throughout the zoom range, a powered zoom system with two separate controls, internal focusing and zoom and optical stabilisation.
|Focal Length||18-200 mm|
|35mm equivalent focal length (APS-C) (mm)||27-300|
|Image Format||Super 35/APS-C|
|Image Stabilization||OSS Active Mode|
|Extra-Low Dispersion Glass||ED|
SELP18200 is available separately. Ideal for movies, the SELP18200 α lens features a smooth powered zoom, plus Optical SteadyShot™ image stabilisation with Active Mode for filming on the move
Sony's LA-EA3 and LA-EA4 lens adapters (sold separately) open up a wide range of A-mount lenses for Sony α interchangeable lens cameras . Choose portrait lenses, macro lenses, super telephoto lenses and a host of specialty glass that give you exceptional freedom in framing your shots. You also get extraordinary convenience with focus indication the camera’s viewfinder and aperture control in the camera’s smart grip.
Phase detection auto focus helps define the modern SLR, minimizing focus “hunt,” maximizing speed and accuracy. The LA-EA4 A-mount lens adapter, sold separately, brings this fundamental advance to professional moving pictures. You get fast, accurate focus even when the subject is moving quickly. The adapter incorporates Sony's award-winning Translucent Mirror Technology. While most of the incoming light goes to the camera, Sony's translucent mirror continuously directs a fraction of the light to the phase detection AF sensor.
Most of the incoming light goes through the translucent mirror and into the camera. A fraction of the light goes to the phase detection auto focus sensor in the base of the LA-EA4.
The E-mount system's short flange-back distance enables use of Cinema lenses, plus 35mm SLR and DSLR lenses from others via simple third-party adapters. For amazing creative freedom, you can reach beyond the standard primes and zooms to tilt shift and bellows lenses. Not locked into one type of lens mount or brand, you are free to choose what suits you best.All application images ©2015 Thierry Donard Films. Produced by Perfect Moment Entertainment for Nuit de la Glisse 2015.
The PXW-FS7 is all about choices. Record internally in 4K or HD. Bend time with High Frame Rate shooting. Choose the latest XAVC-I, space-saving XAVC-L or the broadcaster’s de facto standard MPEG-2 HD 422. Attach the extension unit ”XDCA-FS7”, sold separately, to branch out with Apple ProRes 422 recording and 4K or 2K RAW, with outboard recorders, sold separately.
Does a 4K camera make sense in an HD world? Perfect sense. Even if you're not planning on 4K production, the 8.8 megapixels of Sony's 4K image sensor enable you to shoot super-sampled HD, with detail and image texture that HD sensors cannot see. And if you want to record in 4K, the FS7 supports internal recording at frame rates of 23.98, 25, 29.97, 50 and 59.94 fps. The camera is able to record both QFHD (3840 x 2160) and DCI 4K(4096 x 2160).
* Requires Version 4.0 firmware or above.
Sony's 4K sensor gives you a gorgeous, super-sampled HD picture with visibly superior texture, detail and high-frequency contrast that HD sensors cannot touch.
Derive your delivery format while preserving the original as a future-proof archive. Your master is ready for future 4K release.
Technically, Sony’s XAVC codec is a straightforward outgrowth of the industry-standard H.264/MPEG-4 Advanced Video Coding technology that Sony helped develop. XAVC-I and XAVC-L versions encapsulate video essence in an industry standard MXF OP-1a wrapper.
Sony has the solution for the producer’s desk, where content review needs to be as simple as hitting the Play button. For digital signage and trade shows, where playback needs to absolutely foolproof. For the field, where you don’t always have access to a power outlet. And for 4K jobs, where you may not have a major investment in computer processor cores, GPUs and interface cards. Presenting Sony’s PMW-PZ1, the simple, affordable memory player that supports a range of codecs, frame rates and resolutions.
The rear panel supports HDMI 4K output, four 3G/HD SDI outputs and L/R audio out, while the front panel offers a USB 3.0 interface for playback from external drives and a second USB port for connecting a mouse.
The ultimate camera capture system would record every nuance of light and shadow from the image sensor, preserving every detail from every pixel for full exploitation in post-production. That’s the concept behind Sony RAW recording. If you want the maximum flexibility that 4K and 2K RAW deliver, the PXW-FS7 supports RAW recording on outboard recorders, sold separately.
To enable RAW recording, first attach the XDCA-FS7 extension unit, sold separately. Then connect the extension unit’s FS RAW Interface to an HXR-IFR5 interface unit and AXS-R5 recorder. The extension unit also enables the use of compatible third-party external recorders, such as the Convergent Design® Odyssey 7Q and the ATOMOS Shogun, equipped with the Sony FS RAW option.
Conventional HD recording requires the image sensor signal to go through a demosaicing process, gamma encoding and a colour matrix—"baking in" many decisions that may be better left for post. RAW recording bypasses these processes, preserving more of the original camera signal for maximum image quality and maximum flexibility in post.
Derived 2K RAW without windowing.
Unique to this process, there is no line skipping or sensor windowing. So there's no crop factor, no loss in angle of view. With Sony, 2K RAW is not just a technical specification. It's a business model. Sony 2K RAW gives you everything you love about Super 35 cinematography with no telephoto conversion on your lenses. 2K RAW is a smart choice for HD productions and it consumes just one quarter the data of 4K RAW.
AXS-R5 recordings capture linear light as 16-bit RAW with a 12-bit payload, resulting in 12 bits of precision. This delivers 64 times as many colours as 10-bit recording. The resulting files are compatible with the workflow tools used for F65, F55, F5 and FS700 RAW. Sony's RAW is also a powerful complement to the Academy Color Encoding System (ACES) workflow.
High frame rates
The RAW recording mode takes advantage of the camera's extraordinary high frame rate capabilities—up to 240 fps in 2K RAW. Note that the camera cannot capture audio at frame rates higher than 59.94 fps.
4K 12-bit RAW: 23.98, 25, 29.97, 50 and 59.94 fps
2K 12-bit RAW: 23.98, 25, 29.97, 50, 59.94, 100, 120, 200 and 240 fps
Simultaneous RAW + Onboard recording
Instead of requiring you to patch together a science project, Sony provides a coordinated "off-line, on-line" workflow with simultaneous recording to the camera's internal memory card and the AXS-R5 RAW recorder. For seamless conforming in post, you get matching time code, start frame, stop frame, file names and other metadata.
Sony understands that some workflows are committed to the Apple ProRes 422 codec. Our XDCA-FS7 extension unit, sold separately, supports Apple ProRes 422 and Apple ProRes 422 HQ – 1920 x 1080 recording to an XQD™ card in the camera. Both versions deliver the resolution of Full HD, the texture of 4:2:2 colour with the nuanced grayscale rendition of 10-bit recording.
As the exposure latitude of modern cameras climbs, conventional HD recording systems are hard-pressed to keep pace. That’s why Sony developed S-Log, S-Log2 and now S-Log3. Sony’s most refined logarithmic gamma mode yet, S-Log3 enables faster, easier colour correction with more levels devoted to shadows and mid-tones for spectacular grayscale rendition. You’ll spend less time “getting into the ballpark,” leaving more time for creativity. Of course, for the S-log2 lover, Sony supports S-log2 gamma for PXW-FS7.
Dual XQD™ card slots enable simultaneous and relay recording. During relay recording, when one memory card becomes full, recording continues automatically to the other card. In simultaneous recording, you can record the same footage on both cards at the same time. Or you can use one card for selected shots while the other records continuously as backup.
Specified by the CompactFlash Association, XQD™ memory cards are reliable thanks to in-camera recovery. You also get very low cost per minute compared to CFast™ cards. Robust communication between the camera and the card's controller enables read/write speeds up to a sizzling 600 Mbps.
The camera features the ample colour space of S-Gamut3 and S-Gamut3.cine. The first reproduces the maximum available colour space, and is well suited to archiving. The second matches well with the Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI) P3 colour space.
Available as a free Mac OS or Windows® download from Sony Creative Software, Catalyst Browse is a powerful clip management tool which will eventually replace the Sony Content Browser application. While Catalyst Browse offers many new features, not all functions of Content Browser have been duplicated.
Media production is growing more complicated. Turnaround times are getting tighter. You need a tool that eases the workload on your editor, ensuring that projects meet their deadlines. With Catalyst Prepare, a powerful, affordable tool from Sony Creative Software, you can quickly identify the right footage to deliver, in the correct format, with your desired folder and clip-naming structure, even when using a variety of popular cameras. Jumpstart the editing and review process by creating a rough cut storyboard with a quick initial colour grade, then render it out directly or export an EDL for use in popular NLEs.
In video, focus is critical. Catalyst Edit focuses on 4K and Sony RAW video editing so you can focus on your creativity. Deliver your most stunning video productions in all the glory you captured through your camera lens.
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