is sony fx6 better than

Is Sony FX6 Better than FX3?

The Sony FX6 and FX3 are both excellent cameras with their unique features and capabilities. The FX6 is often considered the sweet spot in the Sony Cinema Line, offering many of the professional features seen in the FX9 but in a more compact form factor that surpasses the handheld ergonomics of the FX3. On the other hand, the FX3 is a more compact camera that offers 4K full-frame recording capabilities and is well-suited for solo shooting.

Image Quality and Color Science

The Sony FX6 and FX3 are both capable of producing high-quality images, but they have some differences in their color science and image processing. The FX6 is known for its organic image quality with better highlight roll-off, which can be attributed to its internal processing and the ability to turn off noise reduction. This results in a more natural and film-like appearance, which is often preferred by cinematographers.

On the other hand, the FX3 offers a more neutral color science, which can be more suitable for those who prefer a more accurate representation of colors in their footage. The FX3 also features custom LUTs, which can be a significant advantage for color grading.

Both cameras offer a wide dynamic range, allowing for greater flexibility in post-production. However, the FX6’s image processing may result in a smoother and more organic look, while the FX3’s neutral color science may provide a more accurate representation of colors in the scene.

In terms of image quality, both cameras offer 4K resolution and support for various codecs, including XAVC-I and XAVC-L. The FX6 also supports 16-bit RAW output via the AXS-R7 recorder, which can provide even greater flexibility in post-production.

Comparison Table of Sony FX6 and Sony FX3

Here is a detailed specifications comparison table between the Sony FX6 and FX3:

FeatureSony FX6Sony FX3
SensorFull-frame 10.2MP Exmor R CMOSFull-frame 12.1MP Exmor R CMOS
Video Resolution4K DCI up to 60fps, UHD up to 120fps4K UHD up to 120fps, FHD up to 240fps
Image StabilizationNoIn-body image stabilization
AutofocusFast Hybrid AF with Real-time Eye AFFast Hybrid AF with Real-time Eye AF
ISO Range800 to 12,800 (Expandable to 102,400)80 to 102,400 (Expandable to 409,600)
Recording FormatXAVC-I, XAVC-L, RAW via external recorderXAVC S-I, XAVC S, XAVC HS
Slow MotionUp to 240fps at FHDUp to 240fps at FHD
ND FiltersInternal variable ND filtersRequires external ND filters
Audio InputsDual XLR inputs with phantom powerDual XLR/TRS inputs
Timecode SupportYesRequires adapter cable for timecode input
WeightApprox. 1.96 lb (0.89 kg) without lensApprox. 1.35 lb (0.61 kg) without lens
PriceHigherLower

Body and Ergonomics

When comparing the body and ergonomics of the Sony FX6, FX3, and A7S III, several key differences emerge that can influence your choice based on your shooting preferences and needs. The FX3 takes the basic shape of the A7S III but heavily adapts it for video, featuring accessory mounting points and a carry handle with an XLR mic input. On the other hand, the FX6 follows a classic box-style cinema camera design, offering a different form factor compared to the more compact FX3 and A7S III.

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In terms of size and weight, the A7S III is the smallest and lightest of the three, making it a good choice for those looking for a hybrid stills/video camera. The FX3 is slightly larger and heavier than the A7S III but is better adapted to video production, especially physically, with features like in-body stabilization. The FX6, although larger than the other two models, offers a more robust cinema package with features like internal ND filters and time code support.

The design of these cameras varies as well. The A7S III is a mirrorless camera designed for both stills and video, while the FX3 features a mirrorless design with a handle tailored for video shooting. In contrast, the FX6 is a box camera with a handle that caters to professional cinema applications.

Ultimately, your choice between these cameras will depend on factors such as your shooting style, need for specific video features like in-body stabilization or internal ND filters, and whether you prioritize compactness or professional cinema capabilities in your equipment.

Inputs and Outputs

The Sony FX6, FX3, and A7S III offer a range of inputs and outputs tailored to different shooting needs. The FX6 provides a selectable 12G/6G/3G-SDI output for flexible monitoring, 12-bit raw output via SDI, and an HDMI output, along with timecode input and output for syncing multiple cameras. It also features built-in Wi-Fi for enhanced connectivity options. On the other hand, the FX3 offers 2 x 3-Pin XLR Mic/Line Level Inputs, a 1/8″ / 3.5 mm Stereo Headphone Output, and a BNC Timecode Input/Output. Additionally, the A7S III includes XLR/TRS-type 3-pin inputs, a 3.5 mm Stereo minijack, HDMI output, and a Multi Interface Shoe with Digital Audio Interface.

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The FX6’s improved autofocus options include Face Detection and Eye Autofocus modes for precise focusing even in low-light conditions. It also offers up to 4-channel audio recording through dual XLR inputs and a stereo mic built into the top handle. The FX6’s design includes a lightweight yet durable magnesium alloy chassis that efficiently disperses heat for extended recording times.

In contrast, the FX3 is designed for gimbal shooting and single-operator scenarios, featuring a flip-out screen ideal for diary-style documenting or framing monitoring on set. It offers full-frame 4K recording at up to 120p with S-CINETONE picture profile and supports 4K 16-bit RAW output via HDMI for advanced post-production flexibility.

Handling Options

The Sony FX6 and FX3 offer different handling options that cater to various shooting styles and preferences. The FX6 features a larger top handle with more room for grip, making it more efficient for handheld and run-and-gun shooting. It also offers a smart handle for additional functionality, providing a more robust and professional feel. The FX6’s design includes a lightweight yet durable magnesium alloy chassis that efficiently disperses heat for extended recording times.

On the other hand, the FX3 has a smaller and lighter body, which can be more suitable for traveling videographers. It features a smaller handle mounted via the multi-interface shoe, rendering it unusable for any other MI-shoe related accessories. The FX3’s handle is also more compact, making it less comfortable for extended handheld shooting.

Both cameras offer a range of accessories and mounting points to accommodate various shooting scenarios. The FX6’s design includes a lightweight yet durable magnesium alloy chassis that efficiently disperses heat for extended recording times. It also features a built-in Wi-Fi for enhanced connectivity options. The FX3, while still offering rudimentary inputs and outputs, lacks some of the professional ports found on the FX6.

Ultimately, the choice between the Sony FX6 and FX3 in terms of handling options depends on your specific needs and preferences regarding ergonomics, comfort during extended shooting sessions, and the ability to use various accessories and mounting points.

Timecode and Locking SDI Out

The Sony FX3 and FX6 offer timecode synchronization capabilities through dedicated adapter cables, allowing users to match the timecode with devices equipped with a timecode output terminal. The FX3, with firmware Version 2.00, gained the ability to input timecode using the VMC-BNCM1 adapter cable, which needs to be purchased separately. This cable enables users to synchronize the camera’s timecode with devices equipped with a timecode output terminal by connecting them via the Multi/Micro USB terminal of the camera and a BNC output terminal of a commercially available BNC cable.

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To synchronize the timecode, users need to set the camera to the movie shooting mode, access the TC/UB menu settings, and connect the BNC output terminal of the BNC cable to the Multi/Micro USB terminal of the camera with the adapter cable. Once connected, the camera’s timecode will synchronize with the connected device, displaying “EXT-LK” on the screen. This external lock state is maintained even after disconnecting the device on the timecode output side.

It is essential to note that when setting the camera to external lock status, users should wait a few seconds before starting recording to allow the timecode generator to stabilize. Additionally, if there is a discrepancy in frequency between the reference timecode and frame frequency of the camera, proper timecode locking may not occur, potentially resulting in movies being off by one frame per hour concerning the reference timecode.

In-Body Image Stabilization

In-body image stabilization (IBIS) is a feature that compensates for camera shake by moving the camera’s sensor to counteract unwanted movement. While the Sony FX3 incorporates in-body image stabilization, the Sony FX6 does not have this feature. Instead, the FX6 relies on post-stabilization methods to improve stability in footage.

The absence of IBIS in the Sony FX6 means that users may need to consider alternative stabilization methods like gimbals, Easyrigs, or post-stabilization software to achieve smooth footage when shooting handheld. On the other hand, cameras with IBIS, like the Sony FX3, offer built-in stabilization that can be particularly beneficial for handheld shooting scenarios where a gimbal or tripod may not be practical.

Conclusion

In conclusion, when comparing the Sony FX6 and FX3, each camera offers unique features and capabilities that cater to different filmmaking needs and preferences. The FX6 excels in providing a more organic image quality with better highlight roll-off, thanks to its internal processing and the ability to turn off noise reduction. It also offers professional features like internal variable ND filters, timecode support, and locking SDI out, making it a versatile tool for various production scenarios.

On the other hand, the FX3 is more compact and lightweight, making it ideal for solo shooters or those who prioritize portability. It features in-body image stabilization, custom LUTs for color grading flexibility, and a form factor that is well-suited for documentary-style shooting or gimbal work. While it may lack some of the advanced features of the FX6, the FX3’s simplicity and ease of use make it a compelling option for certain filmmakers.

Ultimately, the choice between the Sony FX6 and FX3 depends on your specific requirements, shooting style, and budget. If you value professional cinema features and superior image quality, the FX6 may be the better choice. However, if portability, simplicity, and in-body stabilization are more important to you, the FX3 could be the ideal camera for your filmmaking needs. Both cameras offer excellent performance and versatility, ensuring that filmmakers have options to suit their individual preferences and creative visions.

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