Japanese broadcaster and technology innovator NHK plans to trial 8K Super Hi-Vision TV in 2016, and to prepare has built a compact, more-easily managed camera that can capture in the double 4K resolution.
The company will use a custom-built H.265 (HEVC) encoder to ensure the footage is small enough in file size to broadcast, as that will use half the bandwidth if it was encoded in the conventional H.264 standard, but that didn't solve the problem of current 8K cameras being too unweildy for cameramen to use outside of a studio environment.
Therefore, NHK has co-developed the new camera with Astrodesign. It packs a 33-megapixel sensor into a camera box that is just 100 x 100mm. The weight of the camera is 2kg, just half a kilo more than Sony VX1000 DV camera used in the mid-Nineties by many production companies on outside broadcasts.
As the image sensor is less than an inch from corner to corner, the lens doesn't need to be too large. Indeed, the lens chosen for the NHK camera is taken from a digital camera.
The image sensor used is capable of running at 120Hz, but the signal processing can only manage 60Hz at present.