New toys – er, I mean tools

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One challenge in the video production industry is to keep up with technology.

As with most aspects of modern-day, first-world life, we find technology progresses at a rapid pace. In the video media industry, one of the key questions is “do we make the move from HD (High Definition – i.e. 1920×1080) to 4K?”

There is no doubt that, if you have more pixels, the potential for higher picture definition is likely with 4K. A friend, who recently purchased a 4K TV, showed off the image clarity of 4K – quite impressive, assuming the quality of the picture is present to begin with.

One point to consider is just how many 4K TVs/screens are out there? Also, what percentage of our market is likely to truly benefit from 4K.

We considered this during our recent (major) upgrade of video cameras. We chose to remain with Sony, a brand we have been largely happy with over the past 8-10 years. We chose to remain with Full HD for the time being, although one of our new video cameras (Sony PXW-X70) has the ability to shoot 4K.

The larger (read: more expensive!) of our recent video camera purchases, is Sony’s PXW-X200. This beauty has a stunning 1/2″ 3CMOS Exmor sensor and uses Sony’s new XAVC codec. As a result, we can achieve an extremely pleasant depth-of-field (where the background is blurred from the subject) and less quality-loss through the 50Mbps codec (less compression of footage).

We have had opportunities to film with the PXW-X200’s predecessor, the PMW200, and been really impressed with the quality of footage produced. We are looking forward to sharing some of the results of the recent investment of money.