Shoot spectacular HD, 2K or 4K
Does a 4K camera make sense in an HD world? Perfect sense. With 8.9 megapixels (effective), Sony's new 4K image sensor enables a single camera to provide gorgeous, super-sampled HD and 2K while preparing you for the 4K future.
- Shoot, Record, Master and Distribute in stunning 4K. You're ready for the more than 13,000 movie theaters with Sony Digital Cinema 4K projectors.
- Shoot, Record and Master in 4K. Distribute in 2K/HD. Derive your delivery format while preserving the original as a future-proof archive. Your master is ready for future 4K release.
- Shoot in 4K. Record, Master and Distribute in 2K/HD. Sony's 4K sensor gives you a gorgeous, super-sampled HD picture with visibly superior texture, color reproduction, detail and high-frequency contrast that ordinary HD cameras cannot touch.
4K/2K RAW recording option
The ultimate 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. If you want the maximum flexibility that RAW delivers, Sony's optional AXS-R5 recorder is a remarkable new choice.
- 4K or derived 2K RAW. Capture RAW at your choice of resolutions: the camera's native 4K or beautiful, derived 2K. RAW recording preserves the greatest latitude for color correction and other post processes.
- Incredible 16-bit precision. By design, Sony's 16-bit recording captures more tonal values than the human eye can differentiate. Sony RAW retains 16 times as many Red, Green and Blue gradations as 12-bit RAW and 64 times as many tones per channel as 10-bit recording. Sony 16-bit linear RAW is also the ideal point of entry into the 16-bit linear Academy Color Encoding System (ACES) workflow.
- Comprehensive production platform. More than an individual product, the AXS-R5 is the starting point for an efficient workflow. The AXS-R5 records onto sleek, optional AXSM™ memory cards, which are compatible with an affordable optional USB 3.0 reader, the AXS-CR1. Once on a PC, the RAW files can be screened using Sony's free RAW Viewer software.
- Simultaneous RAW + Onboard SxS recording. Instead of requiring you to patch together a science project, Sony provides a coordinated "off-line, on-line" workflow with simultaneous recording to internal SxS cards and the optional AXS-R5 RAW recorder. For seamless conforming in post, you get matching time code, start frame, stop frame, file names and other metadata. The camera supports the following RAW + Onboard combinations:
- 4K/2K RAW + XAVC 2K*/HD
- 4K/2K RAW + MPEG-2 HD422
- 2K RAW + XAVC 2K*
* Expected as a future upgrade.
The future is built in
The Sony F55 is uniquely designed to make economic sense today, with the features you'll need to continue generating value for years to come. Instead of locking you into a single recording system, the camera opens the door to unprecedented versatility. Consider the enormous flexibility of internal recording codecs and the choice of HD, 2K*, QFHD* and 4K resolutions. The camera's 16-bit Linear RAW 4K output enables Sony's optional AXS-R5 recorder to register every nuance of color, contrast and detail from the 4K image sensor—and even record a derived 2K RAW signal. Finally, Sony's planned firmware upgrades are scheduled to bring you even more frame rates, more operating features and more recording options in the months and years to come.
* Expected as a future upgrade
Revolutionary electronic global shutter
The traditional CMOS image sensor uses a "rolling" shutter that can result in images with unwanted distortions like motion skew and flash banding. That can be annoying, especially when shooting visual effects or 3D. Anything but typical, the F55 sensor incorporates electronic global shutter. Rolling shutter distortions aren't minimized, they're completely eliminated.
Motion skew at work. Right-to-left subject motion causes the train's verticals to tilt, even while the foreground fence is unaffected. With Sony's electronic global shutter this effect isn't merely minimized, it's completely eliminated.
Vast exposure latitude
Cinematographers paint their images with light and shadow. So the ability to render tones from deepest shadows to brightest highlights is a crucial test of any digital camera. The F55 excels, with an impressive 14 stops of exposure latitude, extraordinary low-light sensitivity and extremely low noise in the blacks. The result? Graceful rendering of scene contrast, even in searing sunlight.
Ultra wide color gamut
Sony believes that your camera should not limit your color palette. That's why the F55 incorporates the same advanced color filter array technology as used in Sony's flagship F65, which is equipped with the industry's only 8K sensor.* You get a color gamut that's not only wider than other digital cameras. It's even wider than motion picture print film.
* As of September 2012.
Viewfinders as revolutionary as the camera
It's ironic that with focus so critical, most operators are stuck with viewfinders and on-camera monitors that offer middling contrast and resolution. Sony changes all that with the F55. A new digital interface has given rise to a brilliant new series of viewfinders.
- Amazing OLED: optional DVF-EL100. Don't let the small size fool you. This 0.7-inch* viewfinder has the incredible clarity of 1280 x 720 High Definition. And resolution is just the beginning. Thanks to OLED technology, you get superb brightness, contrast and response.
- Higher resolution, higher contrast: optional DVF-L350. Take a major step forward in operating with the incredible image of this 3.5-inch* LCD viewfinder. Compared to previous Sony viewfinders, this one has higher resolution (960 x 540) plus ten times the contrast. And the eyepiece flips up for direct monitoring.
- Full HD: optional DVF-L700. This compact 7-inch* LCD viewfinder enables high resolution when shooting in 2K and 4K, not to mention pixel-for-pixel 1920 x 1080 representation of your HD images.
* Viewable area, measured diagonally.
Optional shoulder rig
Sony consulted closely with cinematographers on the ergonomics of handheld and shoulder-mounted shooting. One result was the optional Sony shoulder rig, which provides comfortable handheld operation hour after hour. The rig is sturdy, lightweight and features industry-standard rosettes on both sides for quick and easy attachment of third-party hand grips and other accessories.
Modularity and versatility
The F55 is exceptionally small, light and modular, letting you build up the right configuration for each job—or each shot. For example, you can add the optional AXS-R5 RAW recorder whenever you need it. Or go with internal 4K recording whenever size and weight are the highest priority. The time code/genlock connections and XLR audio inputs are built into two modules you can add or remove as needed. Small size is particularly welcome in stereoscopic 3D shooting. The chassis is only slightly wider than a typical PL mount prime lens, perfect for both mirror rigs and side-by-side configurations.
The camera is highly modular, a major advantage whenever size and weight are primary concerns.