Sony has added new capabilities to its SRW-9000 camcorder in a move designed to future proof the HDCAM SR shooter.

The improvements were announced at the London leg of Sony’s ‘Power of Images’ tour last week (25 November).

They cover acquisition, storage, archive and workflow and include the ability to add a 35mm size sensor, which is due next year, and file based recording using a one terabyte recording pack, which is expected to be possible by 2011.

The SRW-9000, launched at NAB, costs around Euro 50k and has been touted as a direct replacement for Super 16 film cameras.

It has a variable frame rate option for under and over cranking from 1 to 60 frames per second.

Suggested applications in the future will include use as a ‘B’ camera to the F35.

Solid state recording

The new SR memory technology is a one terabyte recording pack designed for high-end production and native acquisition from 3D 1080p and super high frame rates up to 4k.

A memory adapter will also be made available for the F35 and F23.

“We have unveiled the media of the future,” said Sony’s Olivier Bovis. “There is nothing else capable of this level of quality native recording anywhere on the market today.”

Transfer and storage

Sony also unveiled a new file transfer and storage technology.

SR Lite (220Mbps) is based on the open MPEG-4 SStP (Simple Studio Profile) codec together with an MXF wrapper, which ensures data remains compressed during transfer and enables an almost real time exchange over a GB Ethernet connection.

It will provide users of the SRW-9000 with transfer rates of 880Mbps, 440Mbps and 220Mbps via a hardware update.

SR compression means that the storage requirements are also reduced to a quarter, so a compressed future 4k file has the same storage transfer characteristics as native 2k.


Post-production processes using HDCAM SR will also benefit from new innovations, with DoPs being given more opportunity to follow a project through to completion with consistent colour values.

  • A Telefile label - which is built-in as contact-less memory storage in the HDCam SR format - can be used to generate an EDL that relates to the actual shooting set-up and as an automatic logging system.
  • This can be used when working with the Filmlight Truelight box as an on-set, or near-set, first pass grading system.
  • CDL files are generated and recorded onto SR tape.
  • Automated EDL and CDLs pumped directly to the grading suite can speed up the process of a one light grade.

Sony has also reduced the cost of its HDCam SR tapes by 40%.