First Look: Sony PXW-X70 Compact 4K-Ready Camcorder

I recently had the new Sony PXW-X70 camcorder here in the office for a few days. It’s a very interesting little camera. It’s very small, weighing in at only 2.9 pounds. It offers a unique combination of a larder sensor and a built-in 12x powered servo zoom lens. The sensor is 1” in size. That means its bigger then a 2/3” broadcast camera sensor and even bigger then a Super16mm film frame. It’s still a fair amount smaller then a Super35mm motion picture film frame or a Photo Full Frame sensor. The result is that you are able to create a shallow depth of field much easier with this camera then most traditional 1/3” or 2/3” camcorders, and you still get the benefit of using a 12x powered zoom.

The camera shoots 1080p up to 60fps in the XAVC format. The sensor is a 4K-ready sensor. Beginning in 2015 Sony will be offering a paid upgrade for the camera to enable the 4K recording capability. At this point there is no price point set for the paid upgrade. Currently the camera is selling for $2,299.

Local shooter Jeff Kastner (website) took the camera out for one of his “Grants Getaways” packages. The results looked great. The 60p slow motion was very clear and retained lots of detail. He also performed some low light tests compared to the Sony EX3. The X70 held up very well. The noise levels were low and were mostly in the luminance range. Post by Eric C. Petrie