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Image: Sony

Sony’s small drop into the 4K ocean would be a super compact hand-held camcorder for the family — the FDR-AX100 that the company showed at CES 2014.

The company press release said the model is almost 70 percent smaller and lighter than its predecessor, the FDR-AX1. The AX100 is 14.2 effective megapixel, and records footage in Ultra HD 3,840×2,160-pixel resolution at 30 fps in XAVC S, a consumer friendly format . It has a 12x optical zoom and can also record at 120p for slow-motion playback in post processing.

The camera is Wi-Fi enabled for sharing with smartphones and connects to 4K TVs with an HDMI cable. The ‘Super-Sampled Full HD Playback’ feature automatically converts the rich 4K footage down to full HD.

Patrick Huang, director of the camcorder business at Sony Electronics was quoted by the press release as saying, “With unparalleled performance, it’s the perfect device for enthusiasts, hobbyists and even professionals looking for a more affordable, compact and high performance 4K video solution.”

Nate Lanxon, Wired magazine’s tech correspondent, reporting from CES did a quick hands-on review and these were his first impressions:

“In the hand the camcorder feels no more heavy or bulky than a typical HD camcorder. Strangely the lack of heft made it feel cheaper somehow.”

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