Maintaining its lens-to-living room high-performance video mantra, Sony Electronics introduced Tuesday the ILME-FR7 professional cinema camera with E-mount interchangeable lens compatibility and full-frame image sensor.

Prior to the announcement, the company teased the camera’s release on its Japanese website with the tagline “cinematography meets robotics”.

The Sony ILME-FR7 features built-in pan/tilt/zoom (PTZ) functionality and offers versatile remote control and cinematic features for greater flexibility in studio, live production and filmmaking applications, the company said.

The ILME- the FR7 is billed as “the world’s first pan-tilt-zoom camera to combine a full-frame image sensor, lens interchangeability, and remote shooting functionality.”

Sony’s Cinema Line PTZ camera is said to open new creative and cinematic possibilities for content creators. The camera is equipped with a back-illuminated 35mm full-frame CMOS image sensor Exmor R with approximately 10.3 effective megapixels and wide 15+ stop latitude in a pan tilt zoom (PTZ) camera for the first time.

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It supports wide dynamic range, low noise, and cinematic full frame bokeh, while the highly sensitive sensor allows ISO to be expanded up to 409,600 when shooting in low light.

Sony’s E-mount will take a wide range of lenses, including the G Master series with high resolution and bokeh effect. The lens family’s focal lengths range from 12 mm to 1200 mm for comprehensive creative control.

A collection of preset scene files includes S-Cinetone for natural mid-tones that assure healthy-looking skin color, plus soft colors and highlights.

Sony said that since the target look can be created while shooting, time can be saved in post-production. In the Cine EI mode, base sensitivity can be set to either ISO 800 or ISO 12800 to match lighting conditions and to minimize noise while maintaining a consistent look.

Sony said the camera is very post-production friendly, because it allows the use of Sony’s original S-Log3 gamma, wide S-Gamut3 and S-Gamut3.Cine color spaces.

Shooting up to 120fps 4K (QFHD) and 240 fps FHD slow-motion is possible, while creating the emotional qualities of a cinematic look.

Sony said a new dedicated web application allows pan, tilt, zoom, focus, record, playback, and all camera settings to be intuitively controlled from a tablet or computer web browser. Multiple people can monitor FR7 footage remotely at the same time.

Multi camera monitoring is also enabled, allowing multiple cameras to be viewed remotely on one device.

The integrated remotely controllable pan/tilt mechanism enables mounting the FR7 to a tripod, on a ceiling with the dedicated CIB-PCM1, or in other locations with limited access so that subjects can be unobtrusively followed and recorded from unique viewpoints.

The FR7 is also compatible with Sony’s RM-IP500 remote controller for multi-camera production with greater control and a reduced need for dedicated staff in production studios and other shooting situations. A single RM-IP500 unit can remotely control up to 100 PTZ cameras and provide precious joystick-controlled pan, tilt, and zoom operation. ​
​The built-in electronic variable ND filter allows seamless ND adjustment. An Auto ND function keeps exposure constant by automatically adjusting the ND filter to match changing light. Remote control is also possible, allowing exposure control at a distance from the camera.

Sony said the ILME-FR7 professional cinema camera will be available in November 2022 for approximately $9,699.99. The FR7K, which includes the FR7 and SELP28135G lens, will be available for $12,199.99 and the CIB-PCM1 ceiling bracket will be available for $119.99.

Sony said it will be showcasing the ILME-FR7 for the first time at the IBC 2022 show Amsterdam from September 9th to 12th.

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By Greg Tarr

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