Haunting infrared footage of Las Vegas was made with a modified Sony RX100 IV

Sony’s RX100-series cameras are well known for providing some of the best image quality one can get without going to a larger, interchangeable lens camera. The latest version, the RX100 IV, also introduced some pretty incredible movie features, like 4K resolution and the ability to capture bursts of HD video at a blistering 250 frames per second.

None of that was enough for filmmaker Phillip Bloom, who has traveled the world shooting projects for numerous clients, from the BBC to CNN, but who is equally known for his love of novel filmmaking technology. He was a pioneer of DSLR video and has been tapped by manufacturers to produce product announcement videos, such as his Panasonic GH3 launch film, Genesis.

So when Bloom took his Sony RX100 IV to Las Vegas, it was no ordinary RX100 IV. Instead, as first seen in PetaPixel and explained in detail by Bloom in a blog post, it had its infrared-blocking filter removed and replaced by a special infrared pass filter, a service provided by a company called Life Pixel. With this modification, Bloom’s camera can record video beyond the range of light visible to the human eye. It is his latest of now three cameras that have been modified for this purpose.

The process of infrared photography is nothing new, but by combining it with such a compact, capable camera, the results of Bloom’s experiment are striking. The finished piece (as much as an experiment is ever finished) is simply titled “Las Vegas in Infrared” and was shot primarily using the RX100 IV’s 250 FPS video burst mode from the seat of a car as Bloom drove through Vegas. The slow movement of people on the sidewalks and the strange colors, accompanied by Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony, show the city in a way that is both recognizable yet strangely foreign. It could easily serve as the intro to some sort of dystopian science fiction film.

For more details on the project and the camera that made it possible, head over to Philip Bloom’s blog.

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