Atomos Samurai Blade, a 5-Inch 1280x720 Monitor & Field Recorder for $1,300

Announcements from this year's NAB just keep coming! This time, we're looking at the new Atomos Samurai Blade, a video field recorder inside a 5" production monitor with a ton of useful features. Read on for the full specs, pricing information, and the video from Atomos:

The Samurai Blade includes the following features:

  • 325 dpi SuperAtom IPS 1 million pixel touchscreen for sharpness, brightness, and rich blacks
  • Recording of 10-bit 4:2:2 directly to ProRes or DNxHD with 2.5" HDD or SSD
  • Standard BNC connectors
  • Full waveform/vectorscope
  • Adjustable gamma
  • Real-time monitoring
  • Focus assist, zebra and false color monitoring
  • S-log/C-log recording
  • Trigger rec/stop from camera
  • Timecode from camera
  • Hot swap drives
  • Cutting and tagging clips within the unit

This looks like it could be a good fit for some of these new digital cinema cameras, and will ship in May 2013 for $1,295. What do you think of the latest ninja-themed gadget from Atomos? Start the discussion in the comments below.

Link: Samurai Blade — Atomos

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This and the Odyssey monitor are a big deal IMO. They open up a lot of possibilities.

April 9, 2013 at 12:06PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


Just got back from NAB, I have to say, the Blade was really impressive..waveform, great resolution, only drawback is the fact that you need the $300 sd--ddmi converter if you're recording through hdmi..They also had a 5D3 with the new firmware (BH had a couple as well)..

April 9, 2013 at 6:56PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


not really impressed, a recorder than could do 444 up to 12 bit for under $2,500 would be amazing, the pocket cam from black magic does not need a recorder and does what this does out the box with possible 12 bit in future.

I do not see a reason to get this other than for c100 and there is no reason to spend an extra 300 over the other models

April 9, 2013 at 12:21PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM

You voted '-1'.

I agree on the price point not being impressive. I disagree on the comparison. These kinds of recorders have multiple purposes. I look to them to recorder video outputs from non-camera devices. That's why this is different than the Pocket Cam - it's not a's a monitor/recorder.

April 9, 2013 at 12:34PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


too much tech picky in what you want..and shoot film

April 9, 2013 at 12:39PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


I really like the fact it uses regular SDI connections. And the price cut is nice. What to do with my old samurai !

April 9, 2013 at 12:57PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


i will take the old one how much

April 10, 2013 at 9:45AM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


The last few Samurais have been pretty wiggy and prone to failure on set. The Gemini odyssey smokes this by comparison.

April 9, 2013 at 1:17PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


i couldn't find the specs and maybe i'm not totally understanding but i see it supports a sony FS700 but will it shoot 4k ProRes?

April 9, 2013 at 2:09PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


needs balanced audio xlr's ....

April 9, 2013 at 2:58PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


... and a lens and a sensor? ;D

April 17, 2013 at 10:25AM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


Why? SDI has embedded audio, like up to 16 channels (or even more? Not sure...)
I have never encountered an SDI source that doesn't use the embedded audio.

I guess you could even get an XLR->SDI adapter/converter if you needed it.

April 17, 2013 at 1:17PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


I have once used two rented Samurais to record an HD broadcast from an eng truck.
The truck recorded on P2, but we needed to edit thebwhole thing really quickly and so the ProRes QuickTime files on HDD from the Samuraiwere a total life saver - we could never have made the tv deadline with the P2 cards.

Would probably hardly ever use it for recording from a camera (maybe for green screen stuff) but I still consider buying one as a general purpose SDI recorder.

April 17, 2013 at 1:25PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


samurai vs ninja?

April 17, 2013 at 9:21PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


I bought and used a Samurai for the last company I worked for. It was solid, no problems. Yes, audio comes thru on the SDI connectors (along with TC) , adding XLR's would be useless. We shot everything on it and used the P2 as our backup, then we went right into FCP for edit. The monitor on the original Samurais was good and let you know you were getting a signal but obviously not color accurate or even good for setting f-stop. Over all though we loved it and I am very interested in the Blade version.

April 18, 2013 at 2:11PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


Don't know if anyone is still watching this article, but I have a question:
If I'm working on Premiere on a PC, do either of these codecs help me?

April 24, 2013 at 8:01AM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM