Not much is known about this new, smaller 4K camera apart from the 1 inch CMOS Sensor and the 10 times optical zoom lens (24-240mm equivalent with an aperture of f2.8 to f5.6).
The other similar cameras on the market are the Sony FDR-AX100 and the Panasonic FZ 1000, both of which also have 1 inch sensor and shoot 4K video.
Visit ARRI’s website for more information, but the feature that we find highly relevant is the in-camera ProRes at 4K. This camera has the same sensor as previous ALEXAs but there are other significant changes around processing and color management.
The Sony FDR AX100 is quite a unique video camera. It’s not without its faults but having a 1-inch sensor along with 4K resolution and an unusual amount of 8-bit detail retention created a unique product. If put in the hands of a competent videographer who knows how to expose for this camera, the image quality truly is amazing (after some post-processing work to pull out the details). The greatest issue we run into with this camera is around stabilization as we enjoy not using tripods. The dynamic range is not great on this camera, unfortunately.
The 4K video codec was at 60Mbps but the new firmware allows for 100Mbps as well as some autofocus improvements. A few people have reported problems or a dead video cameras after attempting to update the firmware; it’s not clear if this was an isolated event or user error or something else.
The biggest advantage of this new firmware should be a reduction of macroblocking in complex and busy scenes.
This camera is in the design phase and said to use the same sensor and similar design to the AJA CION. We are going to keep our eyes on this one.
You can read more about the Maestro Video Camera at NexVision’s website.