Sony introduces new XAVC 4K recording format

Sony has today launched the new XAVC recording format that will be at the heart of its new industry-leading 4K products. Sony’s XAVC provides a dedicated 4K format that will encourage the adoption of 4K beyond feature films, in genres such as TV Dramas, Entertainment shows, Documentaries and Commercials.

“The new XAVC format underlines Sony’s commitment to bringing high quality content to the mainstream consumer market” said Takao Yoshikawa, Corporate Vice President at Sony. “The quality of HDTV program recorded in 4K is simply stunning and will allow both broadcaster and production communities to build a future-proof catalogue of high-end content straight-away.”

As well as the widespread applications for the professional HDTV market, Sony has developed the XAVC format to enable the expansion of 4K content into the consumer market. XAVC has been designed to provide a future-proof codec that can meet the shifting requirements of the fast developing world of 4K and HD120P content production.

Sony’s XAVC format employs MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 level 5.2, the highest picture resolution and frame rate video compression codec available, based on industry standards. XAVC enables a wide range of operational possibilities for content production, notably, from Proxy to 4K pixel resolutions, intra frame and long GOP schemes, and 1080/50P/60P infrastructure capability.

Built with the principles of workflow efficiency, evolution and optimised image quality at its heart, Sony’s XAVC can support the following content formats:

• 4K (4096 x 2160 and 3840 x 2160), HD and proxy resolution
• MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 video compression
• 12, 10 and 8 bit colour depth
• Up to 60fps
• MXF wrapping format can be used
• 4:2:0, 4:2:2, 4:4:4 colour sampling

XAVC has been developed as an open format, providing a license program for other manufacturers in the broadcast and production industry to develop their own high quality and high frame rate products. The following fourteen leading manufacturers plan to support the Sony XAVC format and workflow:

• Non Linear Editors: Adobe, Apple, Avid, Grass Valley, Quantel, Sony (Vegas Pro)
• On-set dailies: Codex, Colorfront, MTI, YoYotta
• Colour Grading: Assimilate, FilmLight
• Software codec management: Rovi
• Codec board: Matrox

Note: Each licensed manufacturer will decide which profile and operational characteristics of XAVC they will implement in their products.




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