Understanding Sony Z150 & Sony PXW-FS5 HLG (Instant HDR)

HDR is supposed to make 4K TV sell better and ease the overall penetration of 4K content into the mainstream as it offers a much more drastic improvement that a regular consumer can see as opposed to SDR 4K content blasted onto super-saturated 60 inch UHD TV at BestBuy. Even though technically any camera capable of LOG can produce an image that can be successfully graded for HDR delivery, Sony and Panasonic have recently implemented in-camera HDR profiles to make into their Sony FS5/Z150 and Panasonic GH5 respectively, making it even easier to capture and deliver HDR content in a more streamlined workflow.

Sony calls their in-camera HDR – Instant HDR and you can check out Director of Photography Rob Scribner introduce Instant HDR with Hybrid Log Gamma in the video below. Instant HDR is available through free firmware upgrades for the Sony FS5 (Version 4.02) and the Z150 (Version 2.02).

Sony FS5 HLG HDR Hybrid Log gamma BT.2020 update

Sony PXW-FS5 Firmware V4.02 Details:
*Functionality is same as Firmware v4.0 but with HLG bugs fixed

Issues Fixed:

  • Video image may be recorded with short delay of 2 or 3 frames of audio in other recording modes than AVCHD.
  • When choosing [HLG1],[HLG2] or [HLG3] in the PictureProfile and CENTER SCAN in the CAMERA/PAINT menu, rebooting the camera may cause brightness and colour shift.

Firmware v4.0 Added Functionality:

  • High Dynamic Range (HDR) by shooting in Hybrid Log-Gamma** (HLG) standard
  • Continuous 120fps High Frame Rate (HFR) recording in 1080p with CBKZ-FS5HFR (sold separately – $499 B&H/Adorama)
  • Minimum ISO sensitivity can be lowered to ISO 2000 from ISO 3200 when recording in S-Log2/S-Log3

*4K: XAVC-Long 4:2:0 8-bit, HD: XAVC 4:2:2 10-bit.

Download Firmware v4.02 for Sony FS5 from this link here.

Sony PXW-Z150

PXW-Z150 Firmware v2.02 – download here.

v2.02 fixes the following issue:

  • Video image may be recorded with short delay of 2 or 3 frames of audio in other recording modes than AVCHD.
  • When choosing [HLG1],[HLG2] or [HLG3] in the PictureProfile and one of the HD recording modes, rebooting the camera may cause brightness and colour shift.

Firmware version 2.00 Details:

  • Support for High Dynamic Range (HDR) by shooting in Hybrid Log-Gamma* (HLG) standard
  • Support for high-quality streaming using QoS by network client mode
  • Support for the system link (tally display and synchronized recording) with RM-30BP Remote Commander (sold separately) and MCX-500 Multi-Camera Live Producer (sold separately)
  • Support for the enhanced zebra marker function and two types of setting are available. Also the level settings can now be adjusted in 1 increments

*4K: XAVC-Long 4:2:0 8-bit, HD: XAVC 4:2:2 10-bit.

So if you are a Panasonic GH5 and/or Sony FS5 or Z150 owner/operator, who’ve updated to the latest firmware, be sure to me know in the comments below how you find HLG and whether it is something you’d be implementing into your future workflow. To see some of the official HLG videos released by Panasonic shot on the GH5, you can check out our previous post here.

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