can the sony fx3 shoot 12 bit raw 13168

Can the Sony FX3 Shoot 12-Bit RAW?

The Sony FX3 is a popular choice for filmmakers and videographers due to its impressive features and capabilities. One of the key considerations for many professionals is the camera’s ability to shoot in 12-bit RAW format.

In this article, we will explore the Sony FX3’s RAW shooting capabilities, its potential for capturing high-quality footage, and alternative options for filmmakers.

Understanding the Sony FX3

The Sony FX3 is a full-frame mirrorless camera designed for professional video production. It features a 12.1-megapixel Exmor R CMOS sensor and is equipped with a high-performance BIONZ XR image-processing engine.

The camera offers various video recording options, including 4K at up to 120fps, and it is known for its cinematic color science with S-Cinetoneā„¢ and 15+ stops of dynamic range.

Key Features

  • 12.1MP Full-Frame CMOS Exmor R Sensor
  • UHD 4K up to 120 | 1080p up to 240
  • Compact Form for Cage-Free Operation
  • 10-Bit 4:2:2 XAVC S-I,16-Bit Raw Output
  • S-Cinetone/S-Log3/HLG, 15+ Stops DR
  • Detachable 2 x XLR/TRS Adapter Handle
  • Phase Detection AF/Face Tracking/Eye AF
  • 80 to 409,600 Expanded ISO Range
  • Dual CFexpress Type A/SDXC Card Slots
Sony Alpha FX30 Full Frame Cinema Camera

What is RAW Format?

RAW format is a minimally processed data format that retains all the information captured by the camera’s sensor. This provides greater flexibility in post-production, allowing for extensive color grading and adjustments without degrading the image quality.

RAW footage is typically recorded in either 10-bit or 12-bit depth, with 12-bit offering more color information and greater flexibility in post-production.

Sony FX3’s RAW Shooting Capabilities

The Sony FX3 is capable of shooting in 16-bit RAW format via its HDMI output. This allows for high-quality, uncompressed footage to be recorded externally using compatible devices. The FX3’s 16-bit RAW output provides filmmakers with exceptional flexibility and image quality for their projects.

Additionally, the FX3 can shoot in 10-bit 4:2:2 internally, offering a good balance between high image quality and manageable file sizes. While the camera itself does not support 12-bit RAW internally, the option for 16-bit RAW output via HDMI provides filmmakers with a powerful alternative for capturing the highest-quality footage.

Alternatives and Workarounds

For filmmakers who specifically require 12-bit RAW internally, the FX3’s 16-bit RAW output via HDMI provides an opportunity to record in a high-quality, uncompressed format externally. This can be achieved using compatible external recorders such as the Atomos Ninja V, which supports 16-bit RAW recording to 12-bit Apple ProRes RAW.

While the FX3’s internal recording options do not include 12-bit RAW, the camera’s 16-bit RAW output via HDMI, combined with the use of external recorders, offers filmmakers a viable solution for capturing the highest quality footage for their projects.


In conclusion, the Sony FX3 offers impressive RAW shooting capabilities, with the ability to capture 16-bit RAW footage via its HDMI output. While the camera does not support 12-bit RAW internally, the option for 16-bit RAW output provides filmmakers with a powerful alternative for capturing high-quality, uncompressed footage. By leveraging external recorders, filmmakers can achieve the desired level of flexibility and image quality for their projects.

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