Sony is widely recognized as a leading manufacturer of cinema cameras, supplying equipment to major film industries like Hollywood as well as smaller filmmaking communities and independent filmmakers. It has previously created well-liked products, such as the small but powerful Sony FX3, and it appears that a cheaper version of this camera is on the way.
Considering the Sony FX3’s initial price of $3,899/£4,200, this might be excellent news for filmmakers who were previously priced out of purchasing the camera. Sony’s FX3 is a tiny full-frame cinema camera featuring advanced video features from its cinema range and the build quality of the Alpha series.
Small and recognizable to fans of Sony’s mirrorless Alpha series, this option served as a bridge to the company’s cinema cameras. Like the Sony A7S III, one of the best video cameras money can buy, this one is built on that model but is even more dedicated to video.
Since its release, the Sony FX3 has been a go-to B-cam for both independent filmmakers and seasoned pros. Sony Alpha Rumors(opens in new tab) has been spreading rumors for the past year that an APS-C version of the movie camera, codenamed FX30, is on the way.
This is a full year after the camera’s first introduction. I’m curious, though, about what kind of video goodies it might offer. Everything we know so far is included below, along with some suggestions for desirable features.
Sony FX30 Release Date and Price
Seems like we may have nailed down a firm release date for the Sony FX30. Although the exact release schedule may vary by time zone, Sony Alpha Rumors(opens in new tab) is quite convinced that the camera will debut on September 28.
The Sony FX3 was released in February of 2021, therefore if this is the case, the camera would appear a little over 18 months after the FX3. After announcing the Sony A7 IV in October 2021, the FX30 would be Sony’s first new mirrorless camera of the year.
We can only speculate at this point because of the lack of official information on the FX30’s potential price. Sony’s A7S III ($3,499 / £3,800 / AU$5,999 at launch) and Fujifilm’s FX3 (£3,899 / AU$7,485) come closest to this alleged new model in terms of price.
You can use either of those cameras with confidence, as they both include full-frame sensors. The FX30’s price is expected to be around $2,500 if it contains a smaller APS-C sensor, which is a number that also appeared in a previous leak from Sony Alpha Rumors (opens in new tab). While this is still on the pricier side for an APS-C camera, it might be justifiable if the FX30 retains the majority of the FX3’s functionality.
Sony FX30 Rumors and What We Want To See
Sony Alpha Rumors(opens in new tab) claimed on September 12 that it had seen the Sony FX30 and that it looks the same as the Sony FX3. However, the camera’s rumored spec list has changed twice already, so we are taking the leaked information so far with a few pinches of salt.
It was originally believed that the Sony FX30 would have a full-frame sensor. But it now looks most likely that the FX30 will instead feature an APS-C sensor while keeping the same compact form factor as the FX3.
One of the most interesting rumored specs for the FX30 is that it could have the same 26MP APS-C sensor as the Fujifilm X-H2S, a camera that brings some seriously impressive video powers including ‘open gate’ 6.2K video (which comes from the sensor’s full 3:2 size) and the ability to shoot 4K/120p video, albeit with a 1.29x crop.
The FX30, according to Sony Alpha Rumors, will support 4K/120p video recording, though the site doesn’t specify whether or not this will be cropped. In fact, right now that’s about it for the rumored specs for Sony’s next cinema camera. But that doesn’t mean we can’t fill in the considerable gaps with our own wishlist.
Sony FX30: What We’d Like To See
1. Open-gate recording
If the rumors about the Sony FX30 being able to use the same sensor as the Fujifilm X-H2S are true, we hope that it supports ‘open gate’ video recording at 6.2K, allowing the full sensor to be recorded at a 3:2 aspect ratio.
2. Dual-native ISO
Many prosumer mirrorless cameras with video capture have a linear ISO range, where digital noise and color cast become more noticeable at higher settings. Video cameras can feature dual-ISO which enable cinematographer to set a lower ISO rating when shooting outside, and then switch to another ISO range suited for low-light conditions.
This allows you to shoot photographs at optimal performance, regardless matter the settings. We’d like to see this Dual-ISO on the FX30 set at ISO 800 and 4,000.
3. CFexpress Type B + SDXC cards
The Sony FX3 supported both CFexpress Type A cards and SDXC cards, allowing for speedy data transfers. But as technology moves at an ever-evolving pace it would be good to see CFexpress Type B introduced to offer a great read and write speeds and allow for higher resolution recording, like 6.2K ‘open-gate’.
4. High frame-rate slow-mo
It would be great if the FX30 included a 240fps (or even 480fps) mode at a lower resolution, giving us even more slo-mo options and versatility since the FX3 could record in 4K at 120fps.
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