DataVideo Joins the Digital Camera Movement

By James DeRuvo (doddleNEWS)

With high profile camera companies making huge announcements, it’s easy to suck up all the air in the proverbial room. So when smaller companies come to IBC to make a splash, it becomes somewhat of a ripple on the pond. Euphemisms aside, DataVideo has announced a a micro four-thirds cinema camera that’s capable of shooting HDR in full HD and at extremely low light.

NightHawk cameras have the highly modifiable body gives you the freedom to build up and enhance you own professional camera rig, containing monitors, recorders, batteries and stabilizers. Moreover, NightHawk cameras are compatible with professional lenses from Leica, Panasonic, Olympus, and more.

Known as the NightHawk, the camera has a hypersensitive 20 MP Micro Four-Thirds CMOS sensor that is capable of recording in HDR at ISO speeds up to 409,600.  Other specs include a standard micro four-thirds pens mount, 3 HDMI outputs with plans for SDI output in the future, and dual XLR inputs for audio.

Specs list:

  • 20 megapixel Micro Four-Thirds sensor
  • HD recording format up to 30p
  • Micro Four-Thirds lens mount
  • External recording only via HDMI (and SDI in the future)
  • Dual XLR audio inputs coming in the future
  • ISO sensitivity up to 409,600
  • RMTP streaming over 4G

The NightHawk also has a modular design, which will enable shooters to custom build their own rig piecemeal for each project they shoot on. Datavideo also promises extremely long battery life of up to 6 hours. External recording options include compatibility with Atomos external monitor recorders, remote follow focus accessories, embedded audio, and WiFi control features via a mobile device. That WiFi option will also enable wireless streaming and broadcasting to YouTube and Facebook Live and other streaming video options. That makes the NightHawk a great option for a band looking to make its mark online.

Customization options aside, however, for all its highly sensitive sensor capabilities the NightHawk can still only record in HD at up to 60 fps. That would have been great back in 2013, but it makes it rather late to a party that has moved to 4K and beyond. DataVideo seems to be sensitive to this fact, stating that the processor is actually capable of higher resolutions, but is being downsampled for a better HD image. So there is promise that a 4K model is in the future.

It’s important to remember, however, that the DataVideo NightHawk is an early prototype (it has only HDMI and a 3.5mm audio jack), so the final configuration is still under development. But DataVideo will offer two models, the NH-10 with HDMI connections and the NH-20 with SDI outputs.

I think it will more than likely be a specialist camera that will only be used for the exact low light capabilities. This could include concert videos, astro-photography, and wildlife documentaries. And since DataVideo has opted for a micro four-thirds lens mount, shooters will be able to deploy a wide array of lenses from Panasonic, Olympus, and Sony, as well as third party lenses.

Price of the DataVideo NightHawk is expected to be around $4,000.

Hat Tip – Cinema5D

About doddle 16509 Articles
Doddlenews is the news division of the Digital Production Buzz, a leading online resource for filmmakers, covering news, reviews and tutorials for the video and film industry, along with movie and TV news, and podcasting.

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