Sony’s new flagship cinema camera, available now at CineMechanics.

The Old and the New

Above all else, the Sony VENICE 2 is a continuation of what Sony does best. If you’re looking for a reinvention of the wheel, the VENICE 2 does offer something quite unique in their interchangeable sensor blocks (see below for more info), but what DPs and ACs will likely most appreciate are those “quality of life” upgrades that make operating the VENICE 2 a pleasure. Namely: no more R7 recorder! The VENICE 2 now has integrated AXS memory slots, so users can internally record a stunning 16-bit X-OCN RAW digital negative, no extra hardware necessary. This means less bulk, less weight, less troubleshooting, and a goodbye to the old SxS cards. There are also a number of changes to the locations of certain ports for better usability, as well as some upgrades to the menu system.

Interchangeable Sensor Blocks

The most unique feature of the VENICE 2 is, without a doubt, the addition of interchangeable sensor blocks. At its core, this is a new evolution of the idea Sony introduced with the RIALTO, a device that gave users the ability to extend the sensor block up to 18 ft away from the main camera body. Now, with the VENICE 2, not only will the old RIALTO still work, but the new 8K sensor block itself can be swapped for the old VENICE’s. 

Why would one opt to do this? In an interview with Jon Fauer of FDTimes, Sony’s Yutaka Okahashi said: 

“One motivation for changing the sensors would be for higher frame rates. For example, the 8K sensor records X-OCN XT up to 30 fps in 3:2. The 6K sensor records X-OCN XT up to 60 fps in 3:2 [...] Here is another scenario. Always capturing at 8K takes up more data. So, there may be times when the user will use the 6K VENICE. And then switch the sensor for special scenes that might require image stabilization, repositioning or blow-ups in post production.”

If you’re thinking “can’t I just reduce the resolution in-camera?”, you’re right of course, but what you’d lose out on is the ability to take advantage of the full image circle since in order to reduce resolution the sensor is cropped down, which will affect your field of view and depth of field.

It’s also worthy to note that this multi-sensor type of workflow is still in its infancy, and the possibilities the future might hold are still unknown, but it’s easy to start speculating about the sort of limitless modularity this concept could introduce– who’s to say that one day a single camera body might not offer 4, 5, 6 different sensors to choose from that each suit different shooting scenarios?


• 50 MP (8640 x 5760) Full-Frame sensor. 

• Full-Frame 8.6K recording in 3:2 imager mode up to 30 fps. 

• Full-Frame 8.2K 17:9 recording up to 60 fps. 

• Internal X-OCN LT, ST and XT 16-bit (RAW-like) recording. 

• Internal ProRes 4K recording oversampled from 8.6K sensor.

• 16 stops of exposure latitude (dynamic range). 

• Dual Base ISO of 800 and 3200.

• Internal Clear and ND.3 to ND2.4 filters (8 stops). 

• VENICE 2 8K accepts VENICE or VENICE 2 6K sensor block. The camera recognizes the change automatically.