JVC puts an oversized Super 35mm sensor in its upcoming Micro Four Thirds 4K camcorder

jvc puts oversized super 35mm sensor upcoming micro four thirds 4k camcorder gy hmq10 side 2

After recently joining the open Micro Four Thirds standard, JVC Kenwood has shown off two prototype 4K Ultra HD camcorders at NAB in Las Vegas. Both come with a Micro Four Thirds mount, meaning that all lenses from Olympus, Panasonic, Sigma, Voigtländer, and others made for the system can be used on these camcorders. But this isn’t really the interesting part, as JVC is neither the first to create a dedicated Micro Four Thirds video camera, nor the first to create a 4K-capable camera with Micro Four Thirds mount.

What’s really interesting is that JVC has decided to put an oversized Super 35mm sensor behind that Micro Four Thirds mount. The Super 35mm format comes from the days of film, and is slightly larger than the sensor in regular Micro Four Thirds cameras. In fact, this reminds us a bit of Sony cramming a full-frame 35mm sensor behind its E-mount, which was originally created for the smaller APS-C-sized sensor.

There is little information available on the two devices as of right now, but here’s what we know so far. The larger of the two is a shoulder-mounted camcorder called the GY-LSX2, and is capable of recording 4K Ultra HD at both the cinematic framerate of 24p, and the more common video framerate of 30p. It is also said to be able to output HD and standard definition video at the same time, and uses SDHC and SDXC as recording media. The smaller device, the GW-SPLS1, actually comes in two pieces: a mount-plus-sensor unit that can be attached to a gimbal, and an external monitor-plus-recorder unit. It uses the same Super 35mm sensor as the GY-LSX2.

Now the question is whether the Micro Four Thirds system lenses will be usable on these devices at all, considering they were designed for a smaller sensor area. The answer is a definitive yes and no. The thing is, each lens has a specific imaging circle, that varies in size from lens to lens and depends on many factors including the lens’ focal length. As a general rule, lenses with a longer focal length (e.g., telephoto lenses) can cover a larger sensor area than lenses with a shorter focal length (e.g., wide-angle lenses.) So in the end, it really depends on the lens.

Does this mean that we will see Micro Four Thirds still cameras with larger sensors in the future? Probably not. For one, this would require new lenses to be developed, just like Sony’s full-frame E-mount cameras need a new set of lenses that cover their full sensor area. This doesn’t make a lot of sense for Micro Four Thirds, which already has a vast lens selection. Also, the Micro Four Thirds system already has a very good balance of size and quality, and the size part would definitely be compromised by using a larger sensor.

For cinematography, however, using the larger Super 35mm format actually makes a lot of sense, because it’s already an established standard in the movie world. Cinematographers are used to thinking in terms of the Super 35mm format when looking at lenses, not in terms of the Micro Four Thirds format. So the larger sensor makes it easier for them to determine the angle-of-view a lens will yield when used on JVC’s new camcorders. In addition to that, the choice of the Micro Four Thirds mount makes it possible to adapt many different lenses from various systems, and even full-fledged cine lenses that were designed for the Super 35mm format in the first place. And that makes JVC’s camcorders very flexible in theory.

Check out photos of the prototype camcorders, as well as one for an aerial drone, at DVInfo.

(Via NoFilmSchool)


Sony’s latest sensor is stacked, backlit, and equipped with a global shutter

Say this five times fast: Backlit, stacked, global shutter sensor. Sony managed to cram all three technologies into one sensor. The result is a high-speed sensor with a higher resolution without sacrificing low-light quality.

Protect yourself and your ride with our favorite dash cams

Dashboard cameras can assist drivers in car accident claims, settle speeding ticket disputes, and even catch glimpses of incoming meteors, among other things. Here, we've compiled a list of the most noteworthy offerings available.

Does this video show off the Huawei P30 Pro's impressive camera suite?

The Huawei P30 Pro will be announced on March 26. It has already started to leak ahead of this date, and expectations are high that the company will improve even further on the P20 Pro's camera.

The best budget-friendly GoPro alternatives that won’t leave you broke

Cold weather is here, and a good action camera is the perfect way to record all your adventures. You don't need to shell out the big bucks for a GoPro: Check out these great GoPro alternatives, including some 4K cameras, that won’t leave…

Obsbot Tail camera uses A.I. to follow the action (or a pet) for you

Want to capture more epic action selfies, or see what your pet is doing while you're gone? The Obsbot Tail is a camera-gimbal combo that uses artificial intelligence to follow the action.
Social Media

Twitter takes a cue from Instagram and Snapchat with new quick-swipe camera

Twitter is giving the "what's happening" treatment to photos and video by allowing users to access the in-app camera fast enough to catch and share the moment. The new Twitter camera is now accessible with a swipe.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Write music with your voice, make homemade cheese

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!

The Lensbaby Composer Pro II with Edge 35 mimics tilt-shift blur for less cash

Want to create a tilt-shift image on a budget? The new Lensbaby Composer II with Edge 35 mimics the look of a tilt-shift lens for under $500. The new Edge 35 optic is part of the Composer Pro II optics system.

Loupedeck Plus can now edit video, audio with Final Cut Pro

The list of Loupedeck Plus-compatible software is growing. The photo-editing console now works with Final Cut Pro and Adobe Audition for video and audio editing. The controls can be configured to be used on either platform.

Photography News: Taking a smartphone photo probably saved this guy’s life

A man was snapping a photo in Australia when the smartphone stopped an arrow shot at his face. In this week's photography news, see Canon's plans for a stabilized mirrorless, Hasselblad's newest accessories, Samyang's latest lens, and more.

Nvidia’s A.I. Playground lets you edit photos, experience deep learning research

Nvidia is making it easier to access information on deep learning research. It has launched an online space with three demos for image editing, styling, as well as photorealistic image synthesis. 

Paper designs digitize in real time using an Illustrator-connected paper tablet

Love graphic design, but prefer the feel of real paper? The new Moleskine Paper Tablet - Creative Cloud Connected syncs with Adobe Illustrator in real time, turning paper sketches into digital drawings.

Insta-checkout? New Instagram service lets you shop without leaving the platform

Shopping on Instagram no longer means leaving the platform to checkout in a web browser. Instagram checkout launched in beta today with a handful of retailers, allowing users to checkout without leaving the app.

Make the most of your toner with our five favorite color laser printers

Color laser printers have improved dramatically over the years, and today's models offer both blazing print speeds and great image quality. Here are our favorite color laser printers, from massive all-in-ones to smaller budget options.