JVC’s First 4K Movie Cameras Include one for Aerial Drones
by Stephan Jukic – July 24th, 2014
JVC, which is behind some of the other players on the 4K market in terms of film and photo cameras, has finally entered this well-established sales landscape with an innovative twist.
Instead of simply coming out with purely typical film production camera models, the electronics manufacturer has taken things one step further by making one if its 4 prototype film camera models a gimbal mounted video camera that’s perfectly designed for use in aerial drones.
The JVC GW-GBLS1, a gimbal mounted Super 35 mm 4K video camera tailor made for aerial drones is quite a little marvel to behold.
It can not only grab overhead video footage but can also swivel nearly 360 degrees in pretty much every direction for full panning aerial shots. As it captures film it can also (quite naturally, given its purpose) stream that footage straight to a ground control module.
Mounted onto a drone with enough lifting power for the camera’s several pounds of weight, this video unit would be extremely handy or coordinating aerial movie shoots and news shooting from the sky without the producers needing to launch a videographer into the sky inside a helicopter –an expensive proposition under even the best of circumstances.
This is not a large camera and even smaller sized drones should be able to lift it without too much trouble if they’re capable of handling the mounting mechanism. In fact, the total dimensions of the GW-GBLS1 come out to roughly 13 inches x 11 inches x 10.5 inches.
Furthermore, the gimbal swivel system can be fully removed for conventional ground based video shooting and the camera itself comes with an integrated 35 mm CMOS sensor with a micro four thirds lens mount. Shooting can be done and streamed in 4K resolution at a rate of 60p and in HD at a rate of 240p.
Of course, the GBLS1 also features auto stabilization controls and gimbal control features to direct the cameras movements on the ground, mounted in an elevated position or when its attached to an aerial drone.
Recording media for the JVC 4K camera include SDXC UHS-1 for 4K film and SDHC or SDXC for conventional HD film and the video recording format options are MPEG-4/AVC H.264 in 4K filming mode and AVCHD and MPEG-4/AVC H.264 in conventional HD format.
While JVC is not as major a player in the 4K DSLR or Production camera market as Sony or Panasonic (among others) they are definitely making a strong effort to enter the professional 4K video shooting field with the GW-GBLS1 and some of their other prototype models. These include the smaller but more or less similar GB-SPLS1, which is a miniature remote controlled 4K camera for even trickier shooting and the GY-LSX1, which is a shoulder mounted camera that is also capable of doing super slow-motion shots in 4K at 240p Then there is also the GYLSX2, which is actually just a camcorder but with a powerful sensor built into its Micro Four Thirds lens.
JVC is still unclear as to then all four cameras will reach the studio market but there will certainly be some legal questions with their gimbal mounted GW-GBLS1 given the somewhat restrictive FAA rules around commercial drone flights.
Story by 4k.com