- Wednesday, Apr. 1, 2015
In the just published third installment of a series of Sponsored Entertainment & Advertising technology features, SHOOT delves into Ultra HD 4K. In today’s era of democratized media, non-pros have the means to shoot video with their smartphones and upload it to the Internet. The proliferation of video has set a higher bar for professionals, making UltraHD 4K a natural progression from High Definition and 2K. Within a relatively short period of time 4K cameras and UltraHD TV sets have arrived at film/industry TV events, from the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) to the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Convention. In this feature, SHOOT spotlights a pair or pioneering companies--including Sony--that are making advances in 4K.
This feature, titled “UltraHD: It’s Here! From Cameras To Monitors, UHD/4K To Make A Big Showing At NAB And Beyond,” was published on March 27, 2015, across SHOOT’s digital and print platforms, including SHOOT Magazine, SHOOTonline and The SHOOT>e.dition.
Rob Willox, Senior Marketing Manager, Content Creation at Sony’s Professional Solutions Americas group, was interviewed for the article.
An excerpt from the SHOOT feature about Sony...
Sony has mastered one of the biggest challenges in producing 4K content: end-to-end workflow. “Sony is the only company that can deliver a total 4K ecosystem for documentaries, sports, music videos commercials and production at all budget levels,” says Rob Willox, Senior Marketing Manager, Content Creation at Sony’s Professional Solutions Americas group.
“With each of its 4K cameras, Sony’s approach has been to develop the right technologies that meet today’s production requirements, and to provide the tools that enable a professional’s creativity,” he adds. “Ongoing upgrades and product development have enabled the addition of new codecs and recording options, all offering compatibility with most workflow platforms. Today’s camera technologies are continually delivering better image quality and higher performance to give professionals more flexibility.”
The cameras’ ability to produce 16-bit RAW delivers the highest dynamic range and color fidelity, with other creative advantages including more post-production flexibility in cropping, re-framing, and image stabilization. New technologies are making the 4K post process easier, more efficient and less expensive. For example, using the XAVC codec, 4K at 24P is only 240 Mbps, just 20 Mbps more than leading third party codecs in HD. “In fact, the 4K workflow isn’t any harder or less expensive than it is in HD – a change from just a year or two ago,” says Willox.
4K makes HD look better; there is more post production flexibility, and assets are “future proofed.” According to Willox, an increasing number of production professionals are realizing there is a value to shooting 4K now for HD and keeping that evergreen “4K Negative” on the shelf for later use.
Recent camera upgrades have included an optional hardware and firmware upgrade that transforms the F5 camera to an F55, and a 4K upgrade option designed to enable a host of improvements including: XAVC 4K/QFHD recording and playback; 4K SDI and 4K HDMI Output; and simultaneous recording (XAVC 4K/QFHD) with MPEG 50Mbps 422; a shoulder mount dock so users can quickly convert an F5 or F55 into a run-and-gun ENG/documentary camcorder; and Apple ProRes and Avid DNxHD onboard recording.
At NAB 2015, Sony will announce new upgrades and features for many of its cameras, from large sensor models like F65 and F55 to its shoulder-mount and compact camcorders, as well as highlight new software updates for other products. “Sony has a commitment to keep investing in these 4K cameras and assuring customers that their investments in Sony technology will keep them abreast of changes in technology,” says Willox.
With this appetite for higher resolution, Sony’s 4K cameras and other products are being adopted by the film and TV industries. Some of the recent and upcoming motion pictures shot on Sony 4K cameras includes Annie, The Wedding Ringer, Dolphin Tale 2, Let’s Be Cops, No Good Deed, Ted 2, A Million Ways to Die in the West, Tomorrowland and Monkey Kingdom. On the small screen, TV’s top drama, The Blacklist, is shot with Sony 4K cameras, as is the top comedy, The Big Bang Theory, leading a long list of sitcoms and dramas.
Sony F65s and F55 have been widely used in live sports, mostly for cut-ins, zooms and high frame-rate capture and to produce crisper and more accurate replays for HD broadcasts.
Documentaries and commercials are increasingly being shot with Sony 4K camera. Willox reports that 4K acquisition for commercials has actually been occurring for the past several years. Sony’s PlayStation group uses F65 and F55 cameras for many of its spots, notably last year’s “Call of Duty” commercial and recent spots for the new Playstation 4 game “Destiny.”
There are also several growing areas for 4K production, most notably in over-the-top programming, where streaming and on-demand services like Netflix (Bloodline, Marco Polo), Hulu (Deadbeat) and Amazon (Alpha House) are all using F65s and 55s to create their original programming.
Another growth area is live concert production, where F55s have shot concerts by a range of artists including Katy Perry and Foo Fighters, with production crews taking advantage of the camera’s ability to capture a concert with a “filmic” look with a shallow depth of field.
In conclusion, Sony has been proving itself in 4K since 2005. That’s given the company years to develop technology, fix problems and come up with new ideas. The result is a range of 4K cameras for every budget and products that create a robust 4K workflow. That’s no small accomplishment for those seeking an end-to-end solution, and Sony offers just that for content creators who want to dive into this new world of 4K and Ultra High Definition.
To read the full “UltraHD: It’s Here! From Cameras To Monitors, UHD/4K To Make A Big Showing At NAB And Beyond” sponsored feature, please visit one of the following links:
Click Here to read the online version of the article. Here’s link to online version of article.
Click Here to view article in the PDF version of the March 27, 2015 PDF version of SHOOT Magazine. (click on first issue at top of the page)
Click Here to view/download PDF version of just the article.
Click Here to request information on future SHOOT Entertainment and Advertising Technology sponsored features. Sponsorship includes participation in feature article plus digital and print advertising & promotion.
About Sony Electronics Inc.
Sony Electronics’ Professional Solutions of America group develops and manufactures video and audio technologies for a range of professional production applications. These include broadcast television and motion picture production, live event production, event videography, ENG/EFP, digital cinematography, digital cinema, videoconferencing, medical, visual imaging, digital signage, remote system diagnostics and monitoring, and IP surveillance and security.
About SHOOT Magazine / SHOOTonline
SHOOT® Magazine and SHOOTonline® are the leading publication and website for commercial and entertainment production & postproduction; edited for agency, movie & studio creative and production executives, executives at commercial and entertainment production/post companies, TV/Online/Mobile networks, brand marketer production executives, independent filmmakers and artisans including directors, cinematographers, editors, colorists, vfx supervisors/artists/animators, composers, sound designers & mixers. Through its “News” and “ScreenWork” sections, “Columns” and in-depth “Features,” SHOOT publishes timely news, relevant information and a behind-the-scenes look at the best new work and profiles/interviews with industry news makers. In addition, SHOOT reports on the latest cinematography, post & editing technology and equipment. If the work involves advertising and entertainment motion picture content that consumers view on a screen---a TV screen, Cinema screen, Computer screen, Mobile screen or Game screen, SHOOT is searching out who’s doing the most innovative work and what’s coming next. For further information please visit www.SHOOTonline.com®
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