A further camera was leaked just weeks after the Sony A1 bombshell, and the Sony FX3 may be poised to shoot another salvo across the bow of Canon.
It looks like the recently announced Sony FX3 could be expected to threaten the Canon EOS C70, as well as other compact cinema cameras such as the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K, much like the Sony A1, unveiled as a direct rival to the Canon EOS R5.
What is confusing about the Sony FX3 is that it has the FX name, making it part of the cine camera series of the manufacturer, which includes the Sony FX6 and Sony FX9. It also bears the Alpha label (“α”), however, which means that it is part of the traditional mirrorless camera range of Sony.
Still, on the top plate of the camera, the “Cinema Line FX3” label betrays that Sony is positioning this as another candidate for the best crown for the cinema camera. And there’s also something really curious about the top plate: the top joystick, which is something we’ve never seen before.
This may be remarkably relevant. To boost ergonomic handling, it’s entirely possible that a top joystick is merely an extra bonus. However, it is also likely that a monster 5-inch rear screen (similar to the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Cameras and the increasingly legendary Sharp 8K Video Camera) has been delivered by Sony, which means there is no space for a joystick on the back of the camera.
The supposed specifications of the camera, along with its naming convention, raise more concerns. “A New 8K ILME VIDEO CAM! It Can Shoot UHD 8K, Oversampled DCI 4K, HFR UHD 4K.”A New 8K ILME VIDEO CAM! It Can Shoot UHD 8K, DCI 4K Oversampled, HFR UHD 4K.
This is entirely conceivable on the one hand; this could be the equivalent of the 8K Sony A1 cine camera. And this may actually mean that the FX3 is actually a technically better camera than the FX6 and FX9, just as the A1 bucked Sony’s norm of lower numbers indicating more junior versions.
Where does the truth lay, then? The video-focused Sony A7S III may have just been fully obsolete at the moment, between this and the A1. The specifications could be wrong, of course, and this might be, like the Canon EOS C70, a hybrid cine camera styled DSLR that crosses the difference between mirrorless and cinema cameras.
We’re willing to bet that we’ll find out the answers really soon with Japan’s CP+ 2021 trade show taking place from 25-28 February.