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DJI brings drone photography to higher level with ZenMuse X5R

By Katrina Canlas & Marcus Wong - on 22 Sep 2015, 8:07am

DJI brings drone photography to higher level with ZenMuse X5R

Are you a drone-flying enthusiast? DJI’s new ZenMuse X5R is a Micro Four Thirds camera built specifically for aerial photography and cinematography and represents a huge upgrade over the company’s previous X3 camera.

As you can see, the X5R’s Micro Four Thirds 16-Megapixel sensor is about eight times larger than the X3’s 1/ 2.3” sensor, and this means you’ll get better resolving power, less noise, and greater high sensitivity recording with an ISO range of 100-25600.

A quick comparison of sensor sizes shows the size advantage of the X5's new sensor.

Get the XenMuse X5 or X5R as standalone systems or together with DJI's drones.  

Using the standard Micro Four Thirds mount also means you’ll have a greater range of lens options to choose from, thus greatly increasing the shooting options available to you. At the time of launch, this includes the DJI MFT 15mm f/1.7 ASPH lens, the Panasonic Lumix 15mm G Leica DG Summilux f/1.7 ASPH lens, the Olympus M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12mm f/2.0 lens, and the Olympus M.Zuiko 17mm f/1.8 lens.

The camera captures 4K lossless videos in Cinema DNG (RAW) at a frame rate of up to 30fps, and Full HD (1920 x 1080) at up to 60 fps in MP4/MOV format with an average bit rate of 1.7Gbps. This higher speed signal readout helps to suppress rolling shutter effect, giving you great footage even when flying at high speeds. To complement the data needs further, the ZenMuse X5R comes with a removable 512GB solid state disk (SSD) in addition to the standard microSD card slot, hence providing an option for fast onboard storage.

A comparison of the extra detail you can get from RAW.

The ZenMuse X5 and X5R offer more lens options thanks to the MFT mount.

There’s also an integrated 3-axis stabilization gimbal that communicates with the aircraft as you fly, dynamically stabilizing the camera so that you can capture long exposures or time-lapse videos with ease. Features like Zebra Pattern and Focus Peaking are also available on the camera, making it a cinch to ensure your footage is captured just as you envision it.

As with DJI’s previous cameras, the ZenMuse X5R is also completely controllable via DJI’s mobile app. Tap on your smartphone’s screen to focus, adjust ISO settings via an easy slider, and make changes to aperture and shutter values from the one screen. With Live HD view thanks to DJI LightBridge, you can see exactly what the camera is capturing in real time, and so make the necessary adjustments on the fly.

Get the ZenMuse with a DJI Inspire 1 direct from the DJI website.

The ZenMuse X5R will be available in Q4 2015 for US$7,999 ( including a DJI Inspire 1 and DJI’s MFT 15mm F1.7 ASPH lens) while the DJI ZenMuse X5, a version of the ZenMuse X5R which doesn’t do RAW and doesn’t include a SSD is available on the DJI webstore now for US$4,499 including a DJI Inspire 1 and DJI’s MFT 15mm F1.7 ASPH lens. You can also purchase the ZenMuse X5 alone for US$2199.

DJI will release software to edit and convert the RAW camera files called Cinelight when the  ZenMuse X5R is released.