Panasonic Launch 4K Camera
Blackmagic, Sony, AJA and JVC were just a few of the companies that showcased new 4K cameras at NAB 2014. In addition to them, Panasonic also announced their own 4K camera. That is the VariCam 35, which Panasonic have developed in partnership with Codex Digital.
This camera boasts a 35mm MOS sensor for 4096 x 2160 4K recording. However, the camera also supports multiple image formats. The camera records in UHD, 2K and HD image formats. This makes the VariCam 35 suitable for high-end filmmaking, commercials and other 4K TV events.
Panasonic’s Senior Product Manager spoke about the camera at NAB. He stated, “Evoking the VariCam heritage of gorgeous, cinematic image rendition, this VariCam 35 establishes new standards for 4K production. With its expanse of formats ranging from flawless 4K RAW output to more practical 4K, UHD, 2K and HD capture, the VariCam 35 represents a matchless option for premier digital capture.”
The VariCam 35 is one with a modular design. As such, the 4K sensor head and the recording module are separate units. The camera has a flexible system so that you can attach the recorder to the sensor head, or you can expand the system with a connecting cable for use on remote camera setups.
The camera has four storage card slots. Two of those storage slots are for microP2 and two for expressP2 cards. Pansonic have designed the expressP2 to accommodate higher frame rate recording above 60 fps and 4K capture. With the microP2 card you can record HD and 2K at more standard frame rates.
The expressP2 cards have a transfer speed of up to 2.4 Gbps. They include a flash error correction system to recover from sector, page or block failures. Their storage space amounts to about 256 GB.
The Codex V-Recorder can be directly attached to the VariCam. That recorder captures uncompressed RAW at about 120 fps. Its direct camera attachment eliminates cables.
The VariCam 35 also supports the ProRes 4444 and ProRes 422 HQ editing formats. Panasonic’s Product Manager stated, “Given the prevalence of ProRes as a popular editing format within the production community, its inclusion in the VariCam 35 will position the new camera/recorder solidly within a well-established and widely accepted HD workflow.”
The VariCam 35 will come out in fall 2014. It will probably retail at less than $60,000, but Panasonic have not yet provided any specific details. Below is a list of the camera’s specifications.
• 4096 x 2160 Super 35mm CMOS sensor
• 14+ Stops of Dynamic Range
• Internal 4K up to 120fps
• Records 4K & UHD in AVC-ULTRA 4K
• Records 2K & HD in AVC-Intra 100/200
• Capable of 4K RAW
• Two expressP2 card slots (Record 130 minutes of 4K/24p with these cards)
• Two microP2 card slots (for HD and 2K)
• Four 3G-HD-SDI Outputs for 4K QUAD
• Two 3G-HD-SDI Outputs for RAW
• HD-SDI out for monitoring
• Two XLR inputs
• Removable Control Panel
• OLED Viewfinder with Optical Zoom