Sony PXW X70 vs Sony PXW Z90

Dedicated camcorders are great because they come with various capabilities to enhance the video shooting experience, especially if you are working in a more demanding job. For those who are looking at budget friendly options, Sony PXW X70 Vs Sony PXW Z90 will be an amazing option both for the price point and overall reliability but, they can be different as well. Before shopping, go check what they can offer, which of them will serve a better benefit as well as match your preference here.

In this article, we are going to give you information about:

  • Which Video Recorder to Purchase
  • What are Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90
  • What Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90 Look Like
  • How are the Camera Specs of Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90
  • What are the Feature from Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90
  • How are the Wireless System of Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90
  • Sony PXW X70 Vs PXW Z90

Video Recorder

As technology advances, there will be various older devices or tools that will be out of the market and losing it’s once consumer range. This seems to what happened with camcorder and this is apparent with smartphone manufacturers releasing camera phones that not only have decent image and video qualities but also advanced in various parts making the need for dedicated home video cameras also prominently decreasing. However, the market for professional range seems to be still relevant because of their clear benefit over the convenient smartphones.

Consumer and Professional Camcorder

They were once very much popular, especially back then in the early 90s to early 2000s with people gaining access to record their own footage anywhere, anytime conveniently. Casual camcorder will be small, very light and compact enough for family travelling while the professional counterpart is huge, shoulder mounted to be more stable. As for the lenses, professional cameras usually have bigger sensors for more reliable performance but consumer models with smaller sensors can use zoom lenses to offer a wider range of close ups of subject.

Another benefit of professional camcorders is their manual control and this is great as the device allows you to adjust the shooting operation manually, one by one to make sure we can be as creative as possible when facing different conditions.

Still Camera and Camcorder

Another option for those who want to record a video using a dedicated camera is choosing between the camcorder and still image camera such as DSLR. While the trend for video cameras is receding, the still image camera is not and they are still very popular nowadays as more people are taking interest in the hobby. DSLR is convenient and one of the biggest advantages is they commonly have bigger sensors yet, will also be pricier compared to the basic camcorders.

Bigger sensor will give you better depth of field and low light performance so those who are seeking to record with creamy bokeh will eventually get an easier result by using a camera with a wide aperture lens. Under low light conditions, larger sensors will gather more light compared to smaller ones and it will be helpful to shoot under such conditions without video lighting in a DSLR. Another difference is their recording time because both use internal storage to save footage or still images and the amount is very limited.

Camcorders have an upper hand as they are designed to capture videos hence you will find most of them are capable of using bigger storage including a bigger battery pack for hours of shooting. 

About Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90

Just like everything else, the best product is not the most expensive or the most popular but the one that fits in your application the most. If you are here then it means that the professional camcorder will benefit you better. There are lots of them out there coming from different manufacturers but in general they are differentiated based on the level of capabilities with price ranging from $1k to those several times pricier.

Camera manufacturers are well-known and there are only few that lead or dominate the market in which one of them is Sony. They are a very well-known camera brand and have lots of products to choose from in different price ranges, models, as well as users including for the video recorder. They carry consumer based models such as Sony FDR AX53 Vs Sony FDR AX700 to those made for a more serious videographer. Not only their huge range of choices, we love their products to be reliable options among other manufacturers.

For the professional range, two choices from different price ranges to try are Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90. They are equally coming from the same line making in majority you will find the same capabilities in both camcorders but, they will not be exactly the same as the latter will be more powerful for serious application. These cameras are equally Sony’s XDCAM series together with several other models which boasted spec will be their ability to capture 4K footage.

In most cases you will find different sensor sizes but not between these two and in addition, they may have several other technologies that makes your experience better especially on the higher price tag. Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90 in a glance will be very different in its top convenience as the latter is recording in HDR with Hybrid Log-Gamma file based workflows. Note that you will find two of Z90; the Z90V like in our sample today and the Z90T that differs on their wireless specification.

Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90 Design

The first thing we love about these camcorders is their form factor itself because as you can see, they are small as professional cameras, both can be hand held with one hand or used as any consumer based models without much fuss as they are only weighing around 3 lbs. with everything installed. In measurement they are at 120.7 mm wide, 103.5 mm tall, and 274.3 mm deep compared to 121 mm wide, 104 mm tall, and 274.5 mm deep including the lens hood, large eyecup, and projecting parts.

Built quality wise they are pretty solid and made from the same material as well which seems very robust and reliable to be carried around. They are featured with folding display on the left panel which can be used to view their menu and even here both Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90 are also packed with a huge 3.5-inch type display with approximately 1.56M dots combined with 0.39-inch type of viewfinder yet here, the latter has better quality at 2.36M dots as opposed to 1.44M dots.

Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90 Specification

Moving further, let’s check the camera part of these video recorders and starting from the sensor they are very much the same, using 1-inch type back-illuminated Exmor R (RS for the Z90) CMOS sensor with effective pixel of 14.2MP in 16:9 ratio or 12M in 3:2 ratio. They equally offer the same built-in optical filters and the same shutter speed including option to record slow or quick motion. What’s different is that the sensor is better as Z90 has RS one and what’s more interesting, it also comes with built-in S-log2 and S-log3.

The basics of Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90 are identical so the latter is more like an improvement of the former but with these differences. Having both S-log 2 and S-log 3 is great as you can tailor the video better and this is a very useful upgrade for professional purposes. As you may already know S-log2 reduced the toe in shadow area to improve shadow contrast while the S-log3 have 18% grey mid-tone and overall brighter than the previous option. 

Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90 Camera Feature

On the additional feature side, what makes Z90 even more interesting for a professional result is Sony’s decision to put in-camera HDR workflow with hybrid log-gamma or HLG. This is crucial in modern broadcasting and while it is already used widely in television technology, not all professional cameras are carrying the option to work with this format. HDR content has been the standard in the industry and HLG is a companion it needs as you can broadcast the content in both HDR as well as SDR displays.

Having this option you can cut the production process short and the best benefit is that we don’t have to do longer post-production anymore for the footage will be saved in the certain file, cutting the fuss and long process of editing.

Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90 Wireless Feature

The last feature we want to mention is their wireless capabilities and as you can expect Sony PXW X70 and PXW Z90 are sporting Wi-Fi or NFC but while the X70 is working in 2.4GHZ frequency, the latter can be available in both bands depending on the availability. The real difference between Z90V and Z90T is that the T variant will work at the same frequency as the X70 while the V variant is working in either 5.2/5.3/5.6/5.8 0r 2.4GHz depending on the country or regional regulation.

Sony PXW X70 vs Sony PXW Z90

Both of these camcorders are amazing for professional use or those who are more serious about their footage quality but the Z90 is a level up version of the X70 as it comes with S-log2 and S-log3 together with HLG workflow, making it an ideal option if you will be broadcasting the content for better image quality and experience by the audience. In addition, in some regions the Z90 is working in both 2.4 and 5GHz frequencies.

- 1" Exmore R CMOS sensor HD Recording
- Built-in SD media card slots viewfinder & flip-out LCD screen
- Xavc, AVCHD, DV File based recording slow & quick motion
- 3G-sdi & HDMI output wireless LAN control
- Fast Hybrid Auto Focus with advanced features
- Instant HDR workflow w/ HLG
- Super Slow/ S&Q Motion in Full HD XAVC 10-bit 4:2:2
- 2.4/5 GHz Wi-Fi networking with support for XDCAM Air production system


You can go with either of these cameras because they are equally reliable but also different. If you are wishing to have S-log3 or HLG workflow however, the ideal option will be Sony PXW Z90 but for a more casual application, the X70 is friendlier for the pocket.


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