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An interview from the 2018 International Broadcasting Convention in Amsterdam with Claus Pfeifer of Sony. Sony Corporation is a leading manufacturer of audio, video, imaging, game, communications, key device and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets. In this interview Claus talks with us about the Sony VENICE Sensor Block Extension System, the VENICE Version 3.0 Firmware and their new BVM-HX310 4K HDR Reference Monitor.

Sony’s VENICE motion picture camera, which has been embraced by the production community, will enhance its usability and flexibility with the VENICE Extension System and Version 3.0 firmware updates in February 2019. The lightweight (1.9 kg with PL mount and 1.4 kg with E-mount), easy to use tethered extension system allows the camera body to detach from the image sensor block with no degradation in image quality, from 2.7 m or 5.5 m apart, offering a highly configurable and portable method of operation. The new Extension System is compatible with existing and new VENICE cameras. A user can quickly configure and freely use only VENICE’s image sensor block to capture uncompromising imagery on site, customizing the camera for specific scenarios.

As shooting environments and capabilities become more advanced and demanding, VENICE users can expect the same image quality and integrity when using the robust Extension System, which enables VENICE to become highly mobile and discreet for many mounting setups and filming scenarios including use with gimbals, handheld stabilizers, underwater and helicopter housings, and 3D/VR rigs, as well as in tight and unconventional spaces, such as in vehicles, on cranes or Russian arms.

After detailed discussions and further collaboration with James Cameron’s Lightstorm Entertainment, a prototype of the VENICE Extension System was engineered to meet their rigorous needs as they begin shooting the AVATAR sequels. Since this hardware was first demonstrated at Cine Gear 2018, additional refinements have been made in response to industry requests. Several productions have already sought out the ergonomics, small footprint and agile form factor the Extension System offers, while taking advantage of VENICE’s built-in features including built-in 8-step mechanical ND filter system and Dual Base ISO (ISO500/2500).

The VENICE Extension System CBK-3610XS, which consists of a front panel cover, image sensor block case with a 2.7 m cable and a 2.7 m extension cable, is compatible with existing VENICE cameras with Version 3.0 firmware installed. The addition of the Extension System adds an HD-SDI output, a 12V or 24V output for powering accessories such as lens servo motors and monitoring. CBK-3610XS also comes with multiple screw holes on all surfaces to enable various rigs and accessories attachment. It is planned to be available in February 2019 at Sony authorized VENICE resellers.

Also available in February 2019 will be the free VENICE Version 3.0 firmware upgrade, which further augments VENICE’s capabilities, incorporating feedback from filmmakers and protecting customers’ investment by allowing the camera to grow with the user. Version 3.0 firmware will add a recording profile within the X-OCN (eXtended tonal range Original Camera Negative). This new profile, called X-OCN XT, captures the highest quality imagery with AXS-R7 portable memory recorder. For demanding visual effects work and productions requiring the utmost, uncompromising image quality from VENICE, the new X-OCN XT profile maintains exceptionally economical file sizes comparable to Sony F55RAW file size, making the workflow affordable and efficient.

Sony also announced a new 31-inch Grade 1 reference monitor, the BVM-HX310, which offers accurate colour reproduction and high-contrast performance to provide professional content creatives the assurance in critical picture decisions. The launch of the new reference monitor also marks the introduction of Sony’s new technology brand TRIMASTER HX.

The BVM-HX310 has been created in response to the industry’s desire to overcome the challenge of accurate picture evaluation, especially in relation to black reproducibility. It is able to accurately reproduce images down to individual pixels thanks to a combination of the Sony specified and dedicated panel and its newly developed display processing technology. It is also fully capable of reproducing 4K and High Dynamic Range (HDR) content, supports industry standard brightness of up to 1,000 nits in full-screen and a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio for HDR productions.

Sony also introduced its new technology brand, TRIMASTER HX. HX represents the combination of both HDR (‘H’) and Liquid Crystal (Xtal) Display (‘X’) technologies. Any monitors of this range offer accuracy, consistency and quality of colour reproduction.

The BVM-HX310 hosts all major HDR EOTF and, for the first time in Sony professional monitors, 12G-SDI is supported, enabling simple 4K transmission with a single SDI cable. It handles ITU-R BT.2020 colour space and HDR images with Hybrid Log Gamma, SMPTE ST2084 and 2.4 (HDR) gamma alongside S-Log2, S-Log3 and S-Log3 Live HDR for SR Live Workflow.

Additionally, the BVM-HX310’s User LUT function will allow user to load pre-defined Look Up Tables based on their viewing requirements Onset or in Post Production. The existence of multiple EOTF in 4K/UHD, in addition to multiple colour spaces and RGB ranges, gives rise to potential complexities in source identification.

For more information please visit: Pro.Sony.com

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