When you have the keys to the car, you can drive it anywhere you please. Atomos has picked up yet another passenger on its Apple ProRes RAW journey in Z CAM. The two have teamed up to develop ProRes RAW recordings over HDMI for the Z CAM E2 cinema camera. 

The free firmware will be released in June 2020 allowing the Ninja V to record 12-bit Apple ProRes RAW up to 4K 60p via the HDMI output on the Z CAM E2. 

Z CAM released E2 firmware version 0.95, which adds RAW support over HDMI to all six of its cameras. No Film School reached out to Atomos to see if other Z CAM models in the lineup would be supported and the company confirmed that only the E2 camera would be at launch. Additionally, ZRAW will not be supported by the Ninja V, only ProRes RAW. So if you want to shoot ZRAW, you'll have to do so internally, or wait for another external recorder to support the format. 

Atomos says additional frame rates will be added in the future and files can be recorded using the AtomX SSD mini SATA drives. The companies have also announced the development of touchscreen camera control on the Ninja V for all of the E2 cameras. Users will be able to control and adjust key settings on the E2 cameras directly from the Ninja V. 

Watch: Distance by Philip Bloom

Philip Bloom got his hands on pre-production versions of the software and shot some test footage in parts of Greater London. In a post, Bloom mentions, "the key thing when shooting with this set up is to give the sensor lots of light, so much so that when you bring the image into the edit it looks really REALLY overexposed, but it isn’t. It is just how the software sees it." Bloom edited everything in Premiere Pro and used Lumetri to create the graded look. 

It will be interesting to learn how the Z CAM ProRes RAW workflow stacks up against ZRAW, which has its own caveats. 

Z CAM is the third company to announce support for RAW over HDMI. They join Nikon's Z7 and Z6 and the Panasonic S1H. Other manufacturers, including Sony, Canon, and Panasonic support ProRes RAW over SDI to Atomos recorders.  

ProRes RAW is fully supported in Final Cut Pro X, ASSIMILATE SCRATCH, Colorfront, FilmLight Baselight, and Grass Valley Edius. Adobe and Avid have announced that Premiere Pro and Media Composer will support ProRes RAW sometime this year.

No Film School will let you know when Atomos releases the Ninja V update come June.

What do you think of Z CAM going ProRes RAW? Smart move?