Sony have started off the first quarter of 2015 with a couple of action camera announcements that are likely to excite fans of the Sony series. At CES 2015, which was hosted last week, Sony unveiled two new models of action cameras, venturing into the 4k action cam market. Sony are no newcomers to 4k recording products and have been selling 4k recording devices for a few years already, but moving in the direction of smaller and cheaper recording devices such as action cameras is a big step towards general consumers. Along with the new announcement for the 4k action camera, was the announcement of a new HD action camera, a new version of one of the company's popular cameras.
The first of the two cameras announced at CES is the FDR-X1000V, the 4k action cam product that will aim to compete with the new GoPro Hero 4. The X1000V will be able to record 4k video (3840x2160) at 30fps, with focus also being placed on enhancements to the HD recording options, stabilization and frame rate. The enhancements in stability come from an upgrade to the company's trademarked "SteadyShot" technology, which is promoted as being 3 times better at handling certain vibrations. With stabilization being such an important part of recording skydiving footage, it will be interesting to see how the X1000V does in comparison to the other Sony action cams on the market. Also beneficial, especially to skydivers - is the new, enhanced wind noise reduction.
While the focus of the X1000V definitely appears to be the ability to record in 4K, the camera also boasts some impressive recording abilities at both full HD and standard HD. Up to 120fps is supported for Full HD recording, while Standard HD allows for 240fps recording.
The second camera to be announced is the new HDR-AS200V. Last year Sony unveiled the AS100V, which in turn became quite a popular action cam. The AS series of Sony action cameras have in fact probably been the most used Sony product for skydivers, with the releases of the AS15, AS30 and AS100 in just a few short years. We've done extensive testing on some of these models in the past, and they have always performed well, with the Sony AS30 coming out on top in our Action Cam Shootout last year.
The AS200V will receive the same boost in stabilization and noise reduction as the above-mentioned X1000V, while offering recording in 60fps at 1080p, 120fps at 720p and 240fps in the WVGA video format.
New Features For X1000V and AS200V
Sony have extended most of the new features they have developed to both of these cameras, and it appears that the only real differences between models will be the ability for 4k recording on the X1000V, as well as a more enhanced underwater casing that is provided with it.
Built in GPS & Action Cam Movie Creator
Action Cam Movie Creator is software that is included with both the models and allows for the easy creation of videos, which can also use the built-in GPS to display the GPS details in an overlay of the video.
Highlight Movie Maker
For those who don't want to spend the time creating a movie from a series of clips, the Highlight Movie Maker will offer the ability to quickly and easily produce smaller mp4 video format highlights of a video, along with being able to add music to the video. The Highlight Movie Maker uses an algorithm to detect where the action is happening within the video, and then cuts out scenes which it detects as unimportant.
Live View Remote
With the new cameras come a new live view LCD remote. The Sony RM-LVR2 is a waterproof (to 3 meters) offers extensive control over both the AS200V and the X1000V, with the ability to control recording, playback, deletion of files. The live view functionality also means that you'll be able to get a clear preview of what is being recorded.
Release Dates & Pricing:
The X1000V and AS200V will be available from March with the X1000V being priced at $500, packaged with the enhanced SPK-X1 waterproof case. For the live view remote bundle, you will be paying $600.
The AS200V will go for $300, and include the SPK-AS2 waterproof case and tripod mount. The live view remote bundle will also cost $100 extra, and set you back $400.