Z Cam’s new E2-M4 cinema camera shoots 4K 10-Bit ProRes at up to 120fps for $1,500

May 25, 2020

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

Z Cam’s new E2-M4 cinema camera shoots 4K 10-Bit ProRes at up to 120fps for $1,500

May 25, 2020

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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Z Cam has announced the new E2-M4 cinema camera. It’s a Micro Four Thirds unit with 13 stops of dynamic range (16 with WDR enabled) that shoots 10-Bit 4K DCI at up to 120 frames per second in ProRes 422 and 1080p at up to 240 frames per second.

Like Z Cam’s other cinema cameras, it’s essentially an aluminium alloy cube with a hole in the front for your lens, a handful of buttons, and connection points spread all around.  It features an OLED display on top and has gigabit ethernet and wifi for streaming, remote control and preview.

While the Z Cam E2-M4 features internal microphones, it also has both 3.5mm stereo input and output jacks as well as a 5-pin LEMO port for dual-channel XLR microphone input (although there’s no mention of 48v phantom power). A Gigabit Ethernet port allows for remote control, settings adjustment as well as live streaming.

Although the camera can shoot up to 120 frames per second at 4K DCI, the HDMI 2.0 Type A socket can only put out 4K at up to 60 frames per second. A Type-C USB socket allows for external transfer and storage of video, but they haven’t said yet whether you can record straight to SSD as you can with other cameras like Blackmagic’s Pocket 4K and Pocket 6K.

Interestingly, for internal storage, they’ve gone with CFast 2.0, which seems a little date now that the world is already starting to switch over to CFexpress, and most manufacturers have already ditched CFast 2.0 and XQD in favour of the newer, faster format.

Power comes from either a Sony NP-F series compatible battery or through a 12v DC 5A input via 4-pin LEMO socket, which allows for a multitude of possible powering options including via D-Tap from a V-Mount battery or an AC adapter plugged into the wall.

There’s been no mention of ZRAW with this camera, although it doesn’t seem to have become a big selling point for their other cameras, really, either, without wider support for the codec in mainstream editing software like DaVinci Resolve and Premiere Pro. Given the lack of ZRAW support and it being $500 cheaper, the Z CAM E2-M4 might be a better option for many than the Z CAM E2 4K.

The Z Cam E2-M4 is available to pre-order now for $1,499 although there’s no word on when it’s expected to ship yet.

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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One response to “Z Cam’s new E2-M4 cinema camera shoots 4K 10-Bit ProRes at up to 120fps for $1,500”

  1. Joost Avatar
    Joost

    I read bad things about E2’s being ‘a bad one’ from the box.. the specs and video look great, but I probably wanna stay away from v1 – tho tempting for this price