The camera from DJI RAW X5R was introduced in 2015. After a couple of years, the model has become much more perfect, turning into a competitive camera that can compete in the market with the best representatives of this segment.
Advanced 60K/30 sensor
Considering the capabilities of the Zenmuse X7 camera, it is necessary to recognize its significant progress against the background of the X5S. For example, the matrix has increased in size by 60%, reaching 35 mm.
The new camera is characterized by a resolution when shooting video at the level of 6K, and in the photo mode, the maximum resolution is 24MP. Against the background of the X5S model, the figures increased by an average of 10%, which allows us to consider the new product as a competitor for SLR cameras. In general, the DJI Zenmuse X7 can be compared with the Sony α6500, which has an APS-C sensor designed for production use.
The cameras X5R and X5S are characterized by high-quality work in low light conditions. The matrix range is claimed to be 12.8, but the feel of use gives the impression of a much higher score. For the X7 camera, the dynamic range figures are slightly higher – 14, which corresponds to the Sony FS-7 cameras. In general, it must be recognized that DJI specialists have put considerable effort into creating a new camera that surpasses the capabilities of the DJI X5R in a limited time.
DJI DL-Mount and Lenses
The differences between the X7 and X5S models are quite significant. They consist in:
- Application of efficient DJI DL-Mount;
- The presence of four lenses F2.8 with a distance of 16-50mm;
- The weight of the lens does not exceed 180g due to the manufacture of carbon fiber;
- The lens has a reduced working distance (DL-mount 16.84mm);
- The RGB color model guarantees an extensive color palette;
- New version of CineCore 2.1 for image processing with advanced features.
Given the excellent performance of the camera, it makes sense to compare it with the RED Weapon 8K, which provides high quality shooting resolution.
RED Weapon 8K test
As part of the model test, the Japanese coast with bright sun was used. Practice shows that the most difficult moment when organizing shooting in such a situation lies in the ability to control dynamic ranges, since they turn out to be much larger than the available range of the camera.
For testing, the X7 camera was mounted on a tripod indoors, artificially creating angles comparable to those of the Weapon 8K. It was also necessary to install an ND filter of identical density.
Test 1. Shooting RAW outdoors
First of all, both cameras were checked for photo quality, and the photos were taken almost simultaneously to ensure identical conditions. For Weapon 8K, the dynamic range reaches 16.5 stops, which is one of the best indicators. During testing, the possibilities of indicating light / shadow were used to the maximum. In general, the camera successfully coped with the tasks. In one of the photos, the quality of the color palette of the rocks turned out to be insufficient, but they managed to correct it.
Images from the camera, without processing and with it
Even in the presence of significant contrast, the capabilities of the camera made it possible to create conditions for a smooth transition of brightness. At the same time, places with high contrast require maximum use of the available dynamic range. Given the more limited range, the X7 camera was suspected of being unable to successfully handle a similar test task from DJI’s solution.
Filmed using RAW 6K CinemaDNG to avoid significant jumps in brightness. The image editing carried out pleasantly surprised by the quality of the resulting picture, which practically does not differ from the images obtained using Weapon 8K. Against the background of previous cameras from DJI, the novelty makes it easier to deal with overexposed areas. Particularly simplified work with dark areas.
Images captured using Zenmuse X7
The first image, before processing, shows a high level of contrast with shadows highlighted.
Test 2. D-Log mode
The D-Log mode was also tested, which went through improved capabilities. The previous version did not protect against numerous noises and stood out for not the most convenient use. The updated version of the mode provides a significant improvement in contrast and saturation of the color palette. DaVinci Resolve 14 and Mini Panel were used for editing. When using these programs, the editing process fits in a minute. The new D-Log not only offers improved color fidelity, but also ease of use.
Images using D-Log
Test 3. Shooting indoors
As part of the test, video was shot from the room to the street. Such a task is recognized as difficult for conventional cameras. Meanwhile, the image performance from the X7 camera turned out to be minimally weaker in terms of image contrast compared to the Weapon 8K. The result obtained demonstrated the very high capabilities of the camera.
Caves are among the highest levels of contrast, presenting a very difficult target for any camera. Given the darkness and the only fragment that transmits light, it is necessary to choose the right accents, eliminating the resulting shadows. The test results obtained exceeded the wildest expectations.
The exposure was set to the light entering the cave through the passage. During the editing process, step 4.3 was applied with noise removal. In most cases, photos under these conditions are blurry, but in this case the result was very good.
In general, testing took a single day, so it is not necessary to talk about its comprehensive coverage. However, you can notice a slight difference in the results obtained when comparing the two models. Given the significant difference in camera costs, choosing the X7 from DJI will be the best solution for producers to significantly reduce costs.
In addition, this camera is compatible with the Inspire 2 for drone shooting capabilities. Previously, a high-quality picture was available when shooting from drones only if professional cameras with significant dimensions and weight were installed.
For commercial shooters looking to cut down on their own expenses, the Zenmuse X7 is the solution.