September 10, 2015
IBC 2015

DJI Announces the World's First Micro 4/3 Aerial Cameras; Shoots 4K RAW

Your aerial footage is about to look a whole lot better.

In their highly anticipated announcement today, DJI unveiled the Zenmuse X5 and X5R, the world's first Micro 4/3 cameras built specifically for aerial use. Designed to work with the Inspire 1 drone, the X5 and X5R have plenty of features that professional aerial filmmakers will be excited about, including lossless 4K RAW recording at up to 30 fps, 12.8 stops of dynamic range, and Micro 4/3 CMOS sensor.

Before we get to all of these features, though, take a look at these videos of the X5 and X5R in action:

Here's the X5R with its RAW capabilities:

Technical Specifications

  • Micro 4/3 CMOS sensor
  • Average 1.7 Gbps bitrate (2.4Gbps maximum)
  • Removable 512GB SSD
  • 16 MP
  • Interchangeable lenses
  • Max resolution: 4608x3456
  • Video resolution: UHD: 4096×2160 (24/25p); 3840×2160 (25/30p); 2704x1520 (25/30p)
  • ISO range: 100~25600
  • Lens: DJI MFT 15mm f/1.7 ASPH

Obviously this announcement is huge. In a lot of ways, you have a GH4 up in the air -- Micro 4/3 sensor, interchangeable lenses, and 12.8 stops of dynamic range. Pilots are also able to control aperture, shutter, and focus right from the ground with the DJI GO app, or you use the intuitive autofocus feature by tapping on the screen of your mobile devise to focus on a specific area. It truly takes aerial cinematography to the next level.

Here's what we know currently about pricing:

  • Zenmuse X5 (without DJI 15mm F1.7 lens): $1700
  • Zenmuse X5 (with the DJI 15mm F1.7 lens): $2200
  • Zenmuse X5 + Inspire 1 (with DJI 15mm F1.7 lens):$4500
  • Zenmuse X5R + Inspire 1: $8000

A standalone price for the X5R hasn't been specified, but will be announced closer to its release date. Shipping is expected to start in Q4 2015.      

Your Comment

16 Comments

Great images from this little camera. With tools like this, limitations are no more these days. Before i open my wallet, i wanna see what else emerges before the end of year.

September 10, 2015 at 11:36PM, Edited September 10, 11:36PM

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this is totally going to differentiate the inspire 1 from the phantom 3. I wonder if DJI has plans to move into gopro's territory too. they obviously are investing heavily into camera tech...

September 10, 2015 at 11:46PM

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I wonder whats so special at the X5R because 8000$ instead of the X5 with lens and Inspire?

September 11, 2015 at 1:00AM, Edited September 11, 1:07AM

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Nico Saiger
Indie Filmproducer
220

X5R has cinema dng/RAW and m-sata ssd, x5 does not.

September 11, 2015 at 1:26AM

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Alex Munoz
Director / Photographer
84

I wonder how the extra weight will affect flight times.

September 11, 2015 at 1:50AM

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Around 2-3 minutes less flight time with these new cameras.

September 11, 2015 at 4:40AM

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ozkan erden
Aerial Videographer
15

We can't judge the Image quality until We use the original file in post process .. I have the phantom 3 .. the 4k Video look so bad ... and The camera is not interchangeable .. I can see the artifacts in The new camera commercial .. and I can not judge if it is from you tube compression or from the original file

September 11, 2015 at 4:07AM

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Arthur
195

Most likely YouTube. This sort of YouTube artifacting has been around forever.

September 11, 2015 at 9:00AM

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Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer
31814

Standalone price of X5R would be around $5000. Because there is no competition in that weight class in terms of feature set, they will price it higher than expected.

If, X5R would give real 12.8 dynamic range with a similar image quality comparable to Black Magic pocket sensor, this small system will find itself a solid space in pro arsenal where portability is the first concern. And also in situations like flying over water, high speed chasing, windy weathers; Inspire 1 would be easily preferred unless the production is asking for Red Epic or Alexa Mini quality footage.

The only real downside I can see with X5R is, it can not record ProRes internally. It only shoots 10-bit 4:2:2 RAW to a SSD.

If the BM Micro Cinema Camera would have 4K RAW option, X5R wouldn't be that expensive.

September 11, 2015 at 4:50AM, Edited September 11, 4:50AM

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ozkan erden
Aerial Videographer
15

Micro Camera is only super 16 (1"), this one is full M43 sensor, lowlight will be better for sure, and it record both raw and h.264 at same time (raw to ssd and h.264 to microsd)

September 11, 2015 at 5:47AM

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does anyone else think this might be a re-designed Olympus air?

September 11, 2015 at 1:29PM

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I assume that this will only be fully useful with m4/3 lenses with built in electronics. There's no way the Veydras would work unless you set your focus and f stop on the ground before lift off. But without the ability to pull focus you are pretty limited in the kinds of shots you can do with those lenses.

September 11, 2015 at 6:07PM

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If it's a wide lens then you're just going to set the lens to infinity and the DOF will handle anything that's further than 20 feet from the camera.

September 11, 2015 at 7:03PM

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Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer
31814

You will want to go with the bigger bandwidth camera. The 5XR, IF you want to stretch grading as high as possible. The X5 has only a max bitrate of 60mbps and only records in compressed formats, whereas the X5R is 1.6Gbps @ 4k (24fps) lossless Cinema DNG (RAW). 12 stops of DR won't do much if your bitrate and formats are not good. http://www.dji.com/products/compare-xcamera

DJI has come up with a product that is extremely integrated, however, the BlackMagic Micro Cinema offers 13 stops DR, RAW recording, and more features and support than the DJI one. For $995. Paired together with one of our drone systems, such as our Gryphon Dynamics (quad) and you will be able to remotely control the camera in pretty much the same fashion as with the Inspire Pro, at about half the cost of the Inspire+X5R (check our blog in the coming weeks). We will include the camera as well. You will be able to control zoom, iris, white balance, recording, and other features at will using our upgraded ground station. So if you are in a budget and can't afford the pricey quad, we may have a solution.

It's a great camera/gimbal solution otherwise.

September 12, 2015 at 4:52AM

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J. Fandino
Drone sales at www.providentialsystems.com
107

Hey, would like to now if is possible to attach to a s1000, and if this is a better option than a 5D mark 3. I believe my battery life will increase a lot. And the inside HD monitoring is amazing.

September 13, 2015 at 1:24AM

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I suspect this one is some sort of modified version of Olympus AIR. If that's the case, they can probably modify Sony's QX-1 too, which has bigger sensor, APS-C.

September 14, 2015 at 9:17PM, Edited September 14, 9:17PM

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G-hun Zern
Amateur Videographer
95