Hi everyone and welcome to another Tech Gear Talk video. Some very exciting news from yesterday, DJI announced the release of their newest camera, the Zenmuse X7.
The Zenmuse X7 is and absolutely beautiful new camera and is the latest in the professional line of cameras from DJI which includes the X5, X5R, X4S and X5S. The X7 is an awesome compact Super 35 camera with an integrated gimbal that is made specifically for high-end filmmaking.
DJI promises that it delivers stunning resolution and image quality.
The X7 is compatible with the Inspire 2 which is an outstanding platform for professional aerial cinematography.
I’ve been flying the Inspire 1 Pro since it was released and I think this new camera is going to push me to upgrade to the Inspire 2.
The Zenmuse X7 has a 24 MP CMOS sensor rated at 14 stops of dynamic range which as you probably know helps preserves detail in both the highs and lows.
It offers both 6K CinemaDNG and 5.2K Apple ProRes with support for continuous RAW burst shooting at 20 fps and 24 MP stills which is insane.
Now, you may think that you don’t need 6K right now because your other cameras don’t have that resolution but not only does 6K offer crazy amount of detail, it also let’s you re-frame when your project has a final output at a lower resolution.
The ISO range is 100 – 25600 so you should have no problems using the X7 in pretty much any lighting situation.
Let’s talk a little about the lenses. The X7 introduces the DL-Mount, which is the world’s first integrated aerial lens mount that allows you to quickly switch between four available prime lenses.
The super short flange distance allowed DJI to design very compact lenses.
The lenses are made of carbon fiber to keep them lightweight and durable They offer resolutions of up to 8K. They come in 16 mm f2.8, 24mm f2.8, 35mm f2.8, and 50mm f2.8
This way, you’re not stuck with a fixed focal length and can use whatever works best for your particular application. The large sensor, together with f2.8 enables shooting with a shallow depth of field for that cinematic look.
Remember that there is a focal length multiplier of 1.5 when shooting stills.
The X7’s super 35 sensor support RAW output at 6K/30 fps and 3.9K/59.94 fps. The sensor has a 26.6mm diagonal length and as I mentioned it offers 14 stops of dynamic range as compared with the 12.8 stops on the Zenmuse X5s.
The SNR (or signal to noise ratio) of the X7 is 46 dB, which is 8 dB higher than that of the X5S and the tonal range is as high as 9.41 bits. What all of these numbers mean is that from a grading standpoint, you have much more flexibility and are able to work in situations that would normally prove to be extremely challenging
CINEMA COLOR SYSTEM
In order to allow more room for post-processing aerial videography, DJI introduced the brand new DJI Cinema Color System.
This new color system consists of a new D-Log curve and a D-Gamut RGB color space. Designed with professional cinematography in mind, the D-Log can encode 15 stops of dynamic range which preserves excellent detail in shadows and highlights and leaving so much room for post-production creativity.
There are some great examples of this on the DJI website and you can see just how much you can do with the footage.
The D-Gamut RGB color space, which is very popular in filmmaking, uses the entire DCI-P3 color space and preserves maximum color information. This lets you really push grading while still keeping noise level down.
The new EI mode makes it easy to match the footage to that of different cinema cameras which is really great when you’re combining different cameras in the same project.
As far as aerial photography goes, the X7 captures amazing DNG RAW or jpeg still images with a resolution of 24 MP. The colors and image quality look absolutely spectacular.
The cost for the Zenmuse X7 sells for $2,699 and of course it’s compatible only with the Inspire 2.
This, of course, is the price for the camera alone, the Zenmuse X7 DL Lens Set sells for $4,299 and comes with the 16, 24, 35 and 50mm lenses.
Altogether with the Inspire 2 which right now sells for $2,999 you’re looking at about 10K which is very high for a hobbyist but is totally reasonable for the a complete system like this one.
As usual, DJI has done an incredible job in marketing and promoting this new product. They already has a strong hold on both the consumer and pro-sumer segments. The Zenmuse X7 is designed to push the envelope and provide cinematography professional with the tools they need to fully realize their creative vision.
This looks like an absolute killer camera and I can’t wait to get my hands on one and test it. As I mentioned, I currently fly an Inspire 1 PRO but the X7 along with all the new features of the Inspire 2 have combined to create a truly impressive platform.
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