Sony has launched the new BURANO camera as part of its CineAlta lineup – the company’s top line of digital cinema cameras. The new BURANO features a sensor that matches the colour science of the VENICE 2 and is especially designed for single-camera operators and small crews. This camera combines exceptional image quality with high mobility and, according to Sony, is the world’s first digital cinema camera with a PL-Mount to feature in-body image stabilisation.
In addition, the compact housing includes for the first time both a thinner-than-before electronically variable ND filter structure alongside the optical image stabilisation mechanism, a technological feat never achieved previously. When removing the PL lens mount, the camera can be used with E-mount lenses and supports fast hybrid AF and subject recognition AF, even perfect for fast-moving subjects.
Using the widely appreciated colour science of the VENICE cameras, BURANO features an 8.6K full-frame sensor that shares most of the VENICE 2 specifications enabling it to work alongside that camera in all types of productions. The sensor features dual base ISO of 800 and 3200 and 16 stops of latitude to produce stunning images even in the most challenging lighting conditions.
Like all cameras in Sony’s full-frame Cinema Line, BURANO will have the ability to shoot at full-frame, Super 35, and also features a desqueeze function for anamorphic lenses. It can film at frame rates including up to 8K at 30 frames per second, 6K at 60 frames per second or 4K at 120 frames per second.
BURANO features a compact and lightweight body for high mobility, approximately 32mm shorter and 1.4kg lighter than the VENICE 2 camera. BURANO is housed in a rugged magnesium chassis, making it suitable for filming in the most challenging environments. The camera and accessory packaging bags materials are made primarily of plant-based cellulose instead of plastic as part of Sony’s efforts to be environmentally conscious. Moreover, a moulded pulp cushion is used on the camera as the cushioning material, thus not using expanded polystyrene.
BURANO is the world’s first digital cinema camera with PL-mount to support in-body image stabilisation. With a newly developed image stabilisation mechanism and control algorithm that leverages the advanced image stabilisation technology cultivated in the Alpha series of mirrorless interchangeable-lens cameras, unwanted camera shake, such as movement from shooting handheld or walking, can be corrected when shooting with an E-mount or PL-mount lens.
BURANO is equipped with an electronic variable ND filter from 0.6 to 2.1, enabling easy adjustments in various lighting conditions. In addition, the electronic variable ND filter allows control of the depth of field with the iris and adjusts to the optimum exposure without changing the depth of field.
More than 70 E-mount lenses can use the excellent image stabilisation function cultivated with Alpha, as well as Fast Hybrid AF that combines the benefits of phase detection and contrast detection method and are also compatible with high-precision Subject Recognition AF using AI. Using an E-mount lens further reduces the weight and size of the camera.
BURANO also includes design improvements based on feedback from the filmmaking community. For example, all menu buttons are positioned on the camera operator’s side. Additionally, tally lamps are placed in three locations to make it easier for the surrounding crew to check the shooting status. The 3.5-inch multi-function LCD monitor can be used as a viewfinder, for touch focus, or menu control. The BURANO also comes equipped with an optional robust T-handle, viewfinder arm, two 3-pin XLR audio inputs, and a headphone terminal (stereo minijack), convenient for solo operation.
The BURANO can record from HD to 8K depending on the resolution, aspect ratio and codec. BURANO supports multiple internal recording formats, such as the new XAVC H for 8K, which uses the MPEG-H HEVC/H.265 high compression efficiency codec. Other recording formats include XAVC and X-OCN LT. X-OCN is Sony’s original compressed RAW format that can capture information shot with 16-bit linear data, which gives filmmakers more freedom in post for colour grading. X-OCN LT can reduce file transfer time and storage size load, making post-production workflows more efficient than standard versions of RAW data.
BURANO is also equipped with two new CF express Type B memory card slots and supports VPG400, which can sustain high bitrate writing of video data, including X-OCN LT 8K. Sony will also be releasing in early 2024 new compatible CFexpress Type B memory cards, CEB-G1920T (1920 GB)/ CEB-G960T (960 GB).
BURANO supports various log recording modes including S-Gamut3 and S-Gamut3.Cine, which are colour spaces that cover a colour gamut exceeding BT.2020 and DCI-P3. BURANO can reproduce the same colour as all cameras in Sony’s Cinema Line, including the VENICE 2. This allows filmmakers to match cameras within the line.
BURANO comes with four new cinematic looks: Warm, Cool, Vintage, Teal and Orange, in addition to supporting industry standard s709 and 709 (800%) Look Up Tables (LUTs).
Furthermore, like the VENICE series amongst others, BURANO can be used for virtual production using large screen LED displays such as Sony’s Crystal LED VERONA. The camera also features gen-lock.
Sony will be releasing separately the GP-VR100 Grip remote control for the BURANO’s main unit, to control the zoom lever and recording start/stop button, particularly useful in solo shooting set ups.
BURANO will support the S700 protocol over ethernet and a 1.5x de-squeeze display function when using anamorphic lens by summer 2024. Further updates based on user feedback and suggestions will be rolled out in the future.
From a software perspective, the newly launched mobile app, Monitor & Control, part of the Sony Creators’ Cloud can be used with the BURANO, FX3, FX30 amongst others. The app, designed with visual creators in mind, enables wireless video monitoring, support for high-precision exposure determination using false colour and waveform monitors, and intuitive focus operation of compatible cameras, on the screen of a smartphone or tablet.
At the Motel
Highly acclaimed and Milli Award-winning cinematographer, Stefan Duscio, ACS, (The Dry, Shantaram, The Invisible Man) has produced a film entitled At the Motel with the BURANO.
The film was written, directed and starred Australian actor Sam Corlett (The Dry, Vikings: Valhalla) and can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/EmOyKhRs7qw
Behind the Scenes footage of At the Hotel can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/KAk2G5vaC3I
The BURANO and new GP-VR100 Grip Remote Control (sold separately), CFexpress Type B memory cards, CEB-G1920T (1920 GB)/ CEB-G960T (960 GB) will be available in Australia & New Zealand from early 2024.