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NAB 2019: First Looks at the Sharp 8K Micro Four Thirds Camera

Logan Baker

Sharp announced their 8K micro four thirds camera last year, and this week at NAB, we finally get to see what the hype is all about.

In the past year, we’ve seen some pretty surprising camera announcements from some unlikely companies. Blackmagic Design’s Pocket Cinema Camera 4K was a big moment for low-budget (and high-budget) filmmakers due to the range the camera offers at such a low price. Cut to last fall, and Sharp (yes, Sharp) dropped an announcement about a forthcoming 8K micro four thirds camera release. I was definitely skeptical — as I’m sure you were, too. But with production underway on the camera, we’re starting to see some actual evidence this might be a decent piece of equipment.

The camera is currently on display at NAB, and people are finally getting their hands on it. Let’s take a look at what they’re saying about the little 8K engine that could.

Cinema 5D

When asked about micro four thirds over mirrorless in low-light shooting, Kaino-san says it has to do with focus. Sharp’s goal was to keep usability in mind when designing the camera. As for the sensor, they’re using their very own 33 megapixel micro four thirds sensor for the camera.

Cinema5D also got to take the camera out for a few test shots. They could only shoot for a brief period of time in one location, but the footage is interesting, to say the least.

Johnnie Behiri wrote the following for PetaPixel:

The camera I shot with was locked on 8K/30p 200Mbps, but Sharp is planning to allow Full HD recording, 2K, 4K (up to 60p) and 8K/30, all in H264 and H265, Long GOP, 8 Bit, 4:2:0, 200Mbps wrapped in an mp4 container. Future HDR recording will be in 10Bit as this is part of the HDR standard). Sharp is considering replacing the existing mini 2.1 HDMI connector with a full-size one.

No Film School

No Film School also got in on the action. Speaking with Steve Brauner from Sharp, one of the biggest standouts that emerged from the 8K camera is the swivel display screen on the back. So, not only is the camera an 8K micro four thirds compact, it’s also perfect for vlogging and YouTubers. The price tag right now is $4,000, but who knows where it will actually end up upon release at the end of this year.

So for now, all we can really do is wait to see how the final product ends up. I know I’ll certainly be interested to see what creators think once the first few models head out for full review.

Here are the official specs for the Sharp 8K micro four thirds camera:

  • 33 megapixel sensor (Sharp Exclusive)
  • Up to 10,000 ISO
  • Full HD, 2k, 4k and 6k in H.264 / H.265
  • Powered with Canon LP-E6 batteries
  • 2.1 HDMI connector
  • USB-C interface
  • 5.5 inch touchscreen display
  • Headphone Jack
  • 3.5mm Audio input
  • USB-C interface
  • REC 709 and BT.2020 picture profiles (no LOG gamma)
  • Mini XLR input

Top image via No Film School.

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