And we’re very excited about it.
Sony just announced the BURANO, a new CineAlta Digital Cinema camera that sits below the VENICE 2 and above the FX9. Its features are quite impressive and propel Sony cameras to the next technical level: It’s the first PL-mount camera with built-in IBIS, and also the first camera that combines IBIS and built-in ND. Apart from that: 8.6K resolution, X-OCN LT RAW codec and the new XAVC H codec, autofocus, up to 4K120 (in S35 crop), and it records on CF Express Type B.
Lauded as a smaller, cheaper Venice, we’re thrilled to be one of the few dealers in the US to be able to sell it (the only in MN).
Our friend Alister Chapman also wrote about his experience with the Burano HERE, and we highly recommend checking it out!
The Sony BURANO will be available starting in spring 2024 ,and YES! We’re taking pre-orders.
Call 952-974-3140 or email us with any questions, and be on the lookout for more info.
Keith’s Musings on BURANO:
The Sensor Block:
What we know about the sensor so far is that it is an 8.6k full height, full frame sensor. I’ve heard several rumors about the sensor itself. Some say it is the same sensor as found in VENICE 2, others that it’s the sensor from the Sony a1. Either way we’re getting a fantastic imager with all the modern bells and whistles that go along with it.
We also know that we are getting two base ISO’s (800 and 3200) like pretty much every new Sony camera lately. What makes BURANO stand out from the likes of the FX3 and FX6 is we are getting the better version of it, like what we see on the VENICE, VENICE 2, and FX9. The range isn’t nearly as big as that found on the smaller cameras, but the result is cleaner.
In Body Image Stabilization (IBIS) is a cool new feature to have on a high end cinema camera. This will make it much easier to be mobile with PL, Vintage, and non stabilized lenses and get steadier results. This is a unique feature among cameras that come with a PL mount out of the box, and something that up until BURANO wasn’t possible if the camera had built in ND filtration as well.
Speaking of built in ND filtration, the BURANO features Sony’s electronically variable ND filter system, exactly like we’ve gotten used to having on our FS5, FS7 II, FX9 and FX6 cameras. The E-VND is an immensely useful tool that can really speed up on set lighting changes and challenging environments.
Like the VENICE and VENICE 2 the BURANO features a PL mount which is great because its been industry standard for decades and there are countless lenses that use it. Also just like VENICE and VENICE 2 the BURANO has a locking E mount hidden behind the PL mount. It’s quick and easy to remove or put on the PL mount, just a handful of screws and your done. You don’t even need to take the camera off the tripod to do it. Having an E mount opens up even more doors for lensing choices. Of course you can use adapters to go from E mount to almost any other mount there has ever been; EF, FD, Nikon, m42, etc, but you also have hundreds of native E mount lenses from Sony and other manufacturers like Sigma, Tamron, Zeiss, and so many others.
BURANO has another first with hybrid autofocus when using E mount lenses. Since the FX9 hit the market just under 4 years ago we’ve become well acquainted with just how good the autofocus on these cameras can be. With face and eye detection and a bunch of user definable parameters for speed and subject selection the autofocus has been game changing for many people. The BURANO is even more advanced with the addition of AI integration that allows the camera to track subjects even if the subjects face becomes obscured.
This is one of the areas that is still a bit fuzzy as Sony has not published the full list of options yet. What we do know is that we will be able to record 8.6k in 16:9 and 17:9 (DCI) aspect ratios using the full width of the sensor up to 30 fps, 6k up to 60 fps using about 95% of the sensor, 5.8k up to 60 fps using a s35 crop of the sensor, and 4k up to 120 fps using a crop somewhat smaller than s35. These figures are for the XOCN-LT RAW recording option. There are also 8k and 4k XAVC I and XAVC H (more on this in a second) recording options at these imager scan modes that use the extra resolution to provide an oversampled image. We hope to get a better understanding of all of the imager scan and recording options in the near future as the information becomes available.
The BURANO has 4 or possibly 5 internal recording types; XOCN-LT, XAVC H-I, XAVC H-L, XAVC I and possibly/probably XAVC L.
XOCN-LT is the light weight version of Sony’s 16-bit compressed RAW recording option. XOCN-LT is highly efficient and delivers image flexibility only found in a very few handful of cameras. To give you a quick idea how much more information is packed into 16-bit XOCN vs 10-bit XAVC, 10-bit recording offers just over 1 billion different colors while 16-bit recording overs over 280 trillion different colors.
XAVC H-I and XAVC H-L are brand new H.265/HEVC based codecs that allow the camera to record 8k resolution using a highly efficient 10-bit codec. Previously XAVC was only capable of recording up to 4k. XAVC H-I is the intra frame or all I version while HAVC H-L is the long-GOP version that offers better efficiency but can be subject to image artifacting depending on the scene being recorded.
XAVC I is the same codec we’ve been working with for years and is used for 4k recording in the BURANO. We have heard that there will also be an XAVC L option for long-GOP 4k recording, but it’s not on the official information at this time.
The BURANO has 2 CF Express Type-B card slots. CF Express Type-B shares a form factor with XQD but is much faster than XQD. The great news is that CF Express Type-B is pretty affordable for professional media. There are options from Angelbird and Sony as well as several other manufacturers ranging from 256GB to 4TB.
Size and Weight:
The BURANO is smaller and significantly lighter than VENICE and VENICE 2, which lends itself to more mobile and hand held operation. It’s also shorter than an FX9 from lens mount to battery plate which makes it a bit easier than the FX9 to hold in front of your body.
The LCD viewfinder is not the greatest for image quality, on par with the FX9 screen, but it can be mounted in a couple of different ways and has a shorter, mirror based loupe than the FX9. The LCD can double as a quick menu camera control, similar to the side panel on the F5/55 and VENICE cameras, which comes in handy for jobs where you have an AC and need to put controls on the AC side of the body.
What’s in the box:
The camera is pretty complete out of the box, with the body, top handle, and viewfinder included.
The only official optional accessory for the BURANO at this time is an FX9 style hand grip that’s gotten a couple of improvements to make using it easier, like a lever release for rotating the arm instead of having to unscrew from the rosette to rotate. The grip and arm are $1,500.00.
Additionally you can use the top handle from an FX9 on the BURANO as there is a port on the top of the camera that gives you integration with the FX9 top handle. This gives you more XLR inputs as well as an MI shoe for wireless mic connectivity. The FX9 top handle is available as a part from Sony.