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http://www.cnet.com/products/sony-handycam-fdr-ax53/

Press release: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/sony-unveils-its-latest-products-at-ces-2016-300199679.html
The new FDR-AX53 4K Handycam® camcorder is equipped with a new 20x optical zoom ZEISS® lens as well as a high-sensitivity image sensor with pixel size approximately 1.6 times greater than in the current 4K Handycam model*1. The FDR-AX53 also features Balanced Optical SteadyShot™ technology, which suppresses blur during all shooting modes – from wide shots to close-ups – and enables crisp, high resolution image capture in 4K even when shooting from a distance. It is also fit with a new Fast Intelligent AF and a new microphone structure that records high stereo sound and faithfully captures the original audio. In every sense, from image clarity to audio quality, the FDR-AX53 is a sizable leap forward.
 

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I hope Sony came to its senses and allows setting all exposure parameters manually and independently .
Unless the controls are behind the flip out screen, don't hold your breath.

The AX-100 has Iris, Gain and Frame Rate controls using hard buttons below the screen. The dial for controlling those manual settings that the AX100 has is not present on the AX53. The AX53 has the same Manual Focus button has near the ring control the AX100 has, indicating manual focusing abilities, but appears to be lacking the other manual hard controls. Without other photos, I can't tell if it has manual controls for Neutral Density, either, like the AX100 has.

Based on that evidence, I wouldn't count on it.

While it's possible they put the settings in the touch screen, even that's not optimal since it would be hard to make adjustments on the fly. It would be like using the zoom controls via the touch screen - in other words, it would work, but not well.

If those controls are important, the AX100 still seems to be the way to go. However, if shooting hand held is a priority, this is likely a better bet while still getting decent imagery. It should at least produce better low light images than the AX33, for about the same price retail.
 

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According to some it doesnt feature BOSS in 4K.
Here's what it says on the site:
Balanced Optical SteadyShot™
Advanced image stabilization suppresses camera shake to stabilize a movie as it is being shot within the wide-angle-to-telephoto zoom range. In HD shooting mode, it further reduces effects of camera shake even under unstable conditions with 5-axis Intelligent Active mode compensating for vibration in five different directions, so you can shoot stable high-quality movies even while running.
https://www.sony.com/electronics/handycam-camcorders/fdr-ax53/specifications

So perhaps the balanced stabilizer is for all video modes while the HD mode adds 5 axis on top of that.
 

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Seeing that it is the replacement for the AX33, I imagine that it would be fairly similar in terms of functionality. Strictly a consumer cam.
 

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Here's what it says on the site:

https://www.sony.com/electronics/handycam-camcorders/fdr-ax53/specifications

So perhaps the balanced stabilizer is for all video modes while the HD mode adds 5 axis on top of that.
My guess is, in lower resolution modes, it can float the image electronically within the sensor for additional stabilization since it doesn't need the entire thing for the image. In 4K, there's less room to do that (since it uses more of the sensor pixels), so it has to rely mostly on the lens stabilization, which reduces the effectiveness in 4K verses 1080p mode.

Either way, I'm sure it's still very good. If they could put a 1" equivalent version of that sensor in the successor to the AX100, that would allow better stabilization just via electronic means. It would definitely make the decision some people need to make between handheld performance verses image quality a bit easier when choosing between models.
 

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Controls or not, this little cam, at least based on the clips I've seen, appears to produce some very nice imagery.
Hi Ken:
Can you point me to your source for those clips you have seen of the AX-53. As you know I have the AX-33 and have been very satisfied with the image quality and BOSS stabilization and compactness, but as many people in the Forum I was waiting for an upgrade or new camera to replace the AX-100 with the 1 inch sensor, Instead we got and improved AX-33 according to some of the writings and improvements in low light and image resolution with the changes they have done, however I have not seen any clips or comparisons yet. I know is early and I am sure there will be many in the future but if you can point the way to the ones you have seen I' appreciate it.

I am undecided, since I sure was waiting for the new generation of the AX-100 but if this AX-53 approaches the PQ of the AX-100 I may consider it. Who knows when they will kick an AX-200 out the door.

Thanks,
Luis
 

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All this talk of bigger pixels makes me wonder if the AX53 has the same sensor as the Nexus 5x/6p? I have been getting outstanding stills and 4k movies out of my Nexus 5x.
 

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I'm really surprised there's been no direct replacement for the AX100 yet.
I'm Not. What would they add? Essentially it is still state-of-the-technology, as it is clear no one has been able to attain 4K 60p in a consumer model at a reasonable price (it's probably going to require H265 or v9 to use sd cards). And you cannot do BOSS with a big sensor and have a reasonably sized camera. They could add HFR, like in the A7S or RX100 IV or RX10 ii but that would not attract a lot of new buyers. Btw, I think the RX10 ii is probably a better video camera than the AX100 now if you don't zoom while shooting a lot.
 

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I'm really surprised there's been no direct replacement for the AX100 yet.
Well, other than BOSS, what's really missing that is really a deal killer for most people?

They could probably stand to make the autofocus a bit less pokey, especially in low light. That would probably be deal killer number two for some.

I think the next model could benefit from a 16x9 sensor, a little more lens at the telephoto end and the ability to output via HDMI while rolling 4K video (even if it's only in SD resolution). It might be nice to get 5.1 audio in 4K mode.

I'd like to see reference hash marks on the focus/zoom ring and a full size HDMI connector in a camera as large as the AX100. It's silly they went with micro HDMI.
 

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Well offhand they could add:

* An improved lens
* Improved OIS...it doesn't have to be BOSS
* Better flexibility in picture controls
* Improved autofocus
 
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