By site editor Dan Chung:
AJA announced today that the company has started accepting orders for their CION Super35 production camera. They expect to ship initial units by the end of the year. The 4K camera is a radical departure for the company which until now has been focussed on external recorders and convertor products.
Pricing is set at a competitive $8,995 US MSRP – more than the competing Blackmagic Design URSA, but with a different feature set that is likely to appeal more to real world shooters. The CION weighs a mere 2.9 kilograms without top handle attached and has a PL mount as standard that can be interchanged to Nikon, Canon EF or FD mounts with the use of an adapter from MTF services. From what I’ve seen the camera is capable of very pleasing colour reproduction but don’t expect it to be a low light king.
Those looking to buy the camera need to bear in mind additional costs. No electronic viewfinder or battery system comes with the camera and these will need to be purchased. The camera also requires the use of the company’s own AJA Pak SSD drives which retail at $695 for 256GB and $1295 for 512GB. For attaching the drives to your computer you will need the AJA Pak Dock that costs $395 MSRP.
This from AJA:
AJA Announces Ship Date for the CION Production Camera;
Now Accepting Orders from Worldwide Reseller Channel
Tokyo, Japan, Inter BEE Conference, Hall 4; 4206 (November 18, 2014) — AJA Video Systems today announced that the company has started accepting orders for the new CION production camera, with an anticipated initial ship date by the end of December. CION is both ergonomic and lightweight with unparalleled connectivity, and is capable of shooting at 4K/UltraHD and 2K/HD resolutions direct to Apple ProRes or AJA Raw. For information on where to place orders, please visit http://www.aja.com/en/where-to-buy#wtb-cion for a list of AJA CION resellers.
AJA pioneered professional ProRes support with the Io HD, the first non-Apple device to encode ProRes, introduced in 2007, and then the Ki Pro recorder, introduced in 2009. CION builds on these achievements by offering in-camera recording directly to proven AJA Pak SSD media in the Apple ProRes family of codecs – including 12-bit ProRes 444 – for pristine image capture at up to 4K/60p. CION also outputs AJA Raw at up to 4K/120p, with support already announced by industry leading companies such as Adobe and Colorfront.
We have recruited an incredible team of resellers from all over the world to help bring CION to market. Demand has been overwhelming and weve decided to start taking orders to pre-allocate the many cameras that we have already assembled in our Grass Valley manufacturing facility, said Nick Rashby, president, AJA Video Systems. The image quality, functionality, and reliability of this camera is absolutely incredible. We are thrilled to finally start accepting orders from our CION resellers, and our supportive customers will see that this camera was worth the wait. Our engineering team has been working tirelessly to push the color science on this camera, and the picture is simply breathtaking.
AJAs CION is an ergonomic and lightweight professional production camera, capable of shooting at 4K/UltraHD and 2K/HD resolutions. CION offers in-camera recording directly to the Apple ProRes family of codecs including ProRes 4444, and ProRes 422 up to 4K 60 fps, and offers the ability to output 4K AJA Raw data at up to 120 fps via 4x 3G-SDI outputs. When recording in HD or 2K, the image is oversampled from the full 4K sensor, retaining focal length as well as providing a vibrant and detailed image. CION features a simple interface with direct controls, as well as camera menu parameters and live preview video stream that are remotely configurable and viewable through any web browser via a LAN connection.
Pricing and Availability
Pricing for CION is US MSRP $8,995. AJA Pak SSD media is available at a US MSRP of $695 (256GB) and $1295 (512GB). AJA Pak Dock is available at a US MSRP of $395. Please visit www.aja.com for additional CION information, and a list of global CION dealers.
Third-party camera accessory manufacturers including Alphatron, MTF, Portabrace, Wooden Camera, Vocas, Zacuto and others have already produced several accessories, from viewfinders to lens mounts and protective cases for CION available through their respective retail channels.