PXW-FS7 / FS7 II workflow

Ultimate Super35 versatility

The right tools for every job

The PXW-FS7 and PXW-FS7 II are all about choices. Record internally in 4K or HD. Bend time with High Frame Rate shooting. Choose the latest XAVC-I, space-saving XAVC-L or the broadcaster’s de facto standard MPEG-2 HD 422. Attach the extension unit XDCA-FS7, sold separately, to branch out with Apple ProRes 422 recording and 4K or 2K RAW, with outboard recorders, sold separately.

Internal 4K recording at up to 59.94p

The migration to 4K and Ultra HDTV is well under way; the FS7 and FS7 II are a perfect partner whatever your production requirements. Onboard recording supports frame rates of 23.98, 25, 29.97, 50 and 59.94 fps at both QFHD (3840 x 2160) and DCI 4K (4096 x 2160). 24P DCI 4K is also supported.

Even if you’re not planning on 4K production, the 8.8 megapixels of Sony’s 4K image sensor enable you to shoot super-sampled HD, with detail and image texture that HD sensors cannot see.

Sony’s 4K sensor gives you a gorgeous, super-sampled HD picture with visibly superior texture, detail and high-frequency contrast that HD sensors cannot touch.

Derive your delivery format while preserving the original as a future-proof archive. Your master is ready for future 4K release.

The FS7 and FS7 II enable three attractive strategies in today’s distribution environment.

[1] Shoot [2] Record [3] Master [4] Distribute 

Colour, contrast and the XAVC codec

Without enough precision, colour correction can cause banding, as in the sky (left image). The XAVC codec delivers 10-bit recording for images that hold up better in post (right).

Simulated images for illustration purposes.

Technically, Sony’s XAVC codec is a straightforward outgrowth of the industry-standard H.264/MPEG-4 Advanced Video Coding technology that Sony helped develop. XAVC-I and XAVC-L versions encapsulate video essence in an industry standard MXF OP-1a wrapper.

Using our 256GB G-Series card, you can record approximately 45 minutes of 4K footage at 60P or 3.5 hours at 30P in 2K.

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Playback for anyone, anywhere

Sony has the solution for the producer’s desk, where content review needs to be as simple as hitting the play button. For digital signage and trade shows, where playback needs to absolutely fool-proof. For the field, where you don’t always have access to a power outlet. And for 4K jobs, where you may not have a major investment in computer processor cores, GPUs and interface cards. Presenting Sony’s PMW-PZ1, the simple, affordable memory player that supports a range of codecs, frame rates and resolutions.

The rear panel supports HDMI 4K output, four 3G/HD SDI outputs and L/R audio out, while the front panel offers a USB 3.0 interface for playback from external drives and a second USB port for connecting a mouse.

12-bit linear RAW

The ultimate camera capture system would record every nuance of light and shadow from the image sensor, preserving every detail from every pixel for full exploitation in post-production. That’s the concept behind Sony RAW recording. If you want the maximum flexibility that 4K and 2K RAW deliver, the FS7 and FS7 II supports RAW recording on outboard recorders, sold separately.

To enable RAW recording, first attach the XDCA-FS7 extension unit, sold separately. Then connect the extension unit’s FS RAW interface to an HXR-IFR5 interface unit and AXS-R5 recorder. The extension unit also enables the use of compatible third-party external recorders, such as the Convergent Design® Odyssey 7Q and the ATOMOS Shogun, equipped with the Sony FS RAW option.

Sony’s 4K RAW recording system starts with the XDCA-FS7 extension unit, which connects via BNC cable to the HXR-IFR5 interface, AXS-R5 recorder and BP-FL75 battery. All these components are sold separately.


Conventional HD recording requires the image sensor signal to go through a demosaicing process, gamma encoding and a colour matrix — ‘baking in’ many decisions that may be better left for post. RAW recording bypasses these processes, preserving more of the original camera signal for maximum image quality and maximum flexibility in post.

Derived 2K RAW without windowing

Unique to this process, there is no line skipping or sensor windowing. So there’s no crop factor, no loss in angle of view. With Sony, 2K RAW is not just a technical specification. It’s a business model. Sony 2K RAW gives you everything you love about Super 35 cinematography with no telephoto conversion on your lenses. 2K RAW is a smart choice for HD productions and it consumes just one quarter the data of 4K RAW.

12-bit precision

AXS-R5 recordings capture linear light as 16-bit RAW with a 12-bit payload, resulting in 12 bits of precision. This delivers 64 times as many colours as 10-bit recording. The resulting files are compatible with the workflow tools used for F65, F55, F5 and FS700 RAW. Sony’s RAW is also a powerful complement to the Academy Colour Encoding System (ACES) workflow.

High Frame Rates

The RAW recording mode takes advantage of the camera’s extraordinary High Frame Rate capabilities — up to 240 fps in 2K RAW. Note that the camera cannot capture audio at frame rates higher than 59.94 fps.

4K 12-bit RAW: 23.98, 25, 29.97, 50 and 59.94 fps.

2K 12-bit RAW: 23.98, 25, 29.97, 50, 59.94, 100, 120, 200 and 240 fps.

Simultaneous RAW and onboard recording

Instead of requiring you to patch together a science project, Sony provides a coordinated off-line, on-line workflow with simultaneous recording to the camera’s internal memory card and the AXS-R5 RAW recorder. For seamless conforming in post, you get matching time code, start frame, stop frame, file names and other metadata.

A man does a sky jump in front of a sunset.

Apple ProRes 422

Sony understands that some workflows are committed to the Apple ProRes 422 codec. Our XDCA-FS7 extension unit, sold separately, supports Apple ProRes 422 and Apple ProRes 422 HQ – 1920 x 1080 recording to an XQD™ card in the camera. Both versions deliver the resolution of Full HD, the texture of 4:2:2 colour with the nuanced grayscale rendition of 10-bit recording.


S-Log3 and maximum grayscale

As the exposure latitude of modern cameras climbs, conventional HD recording systems are hard-pressed to keep pace. That’s why Sony developed S-Log, S-Log2 and now S-Log3. Sony’s most refined logarithmic gamma mode yet, S-Log3 enables faster, easier colour correction with more levels devoted to shadows and mid-tones for spectacular grayscale rendition. You’ll spend less time ‘getting into the ballpark’, leaving more time for creativity. Of course, for the S-log2 lover, Sony supports S-log2 gamma for PXW-FS7 and PXW-FS7 II.

Two XQD card slots

Dual XQD™ card slots enable simultaneous and relay recording. During relay recording, when one memory card becomes full, recording continues automatically to the other card. In simultaneous recording, you can record the same footage on both cards at the same time. Or you can use one card for selected shots while the other records continuously as backup.

Robust communication between the camera and the card’s controller enables read/write speeds up to a sizzling 600 Mbps.

S‑Gamut3 and S‑Gamut3.cine

The camera features the ample colour space of S-Gamut3 and S-Gamut3.cine. The first reproduces the maximum available colour space, and is well suited to archiving. The second matches well with the Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI) P3 colour space.

Catalyst Browse

Available as a free Mac OS or Windows® download from Sony Creative Software, Catalyst Browse is a powerful clip management tool which will eventually replace the Sony Content Browser application. While Catalyst Browse offers many new features, not all functions of Content Browser have been duplicated.

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Catalyst Prepare

Media production is growing more complicated. Turnaround times are getting tighter. You need a tool that eases the workload on your editor, ensuring that projects meet their deadlines. With Catalyst Prepare, a powerful, affordable tool from Sony Creative Software, you can quickly identify the right footage to deliver, in the correct format, with your desired folder and clip-naming structure, even when using a variety of popular cameras. Jumpstart the editing and review process by creating a rough cut storyboard with a quick initial colour grade, then render it out directly or export an EDL for use in popular NLEs.

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Catalyst Edit

In video, focus is critical. Catalyst Edit focuses on 4K and Sony RAW video editing so you can focus on your creativity. Deliver your most stunning video productions in all the glory you captured through your camera lens.

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