Thread about the Megalodon as it was used in the Champions League quarter-final this week.

It’s a lovely camera, provides some stunning shots, it’s far more basic than most people think and, strikingly, it was never meant to be used for live broadcasts.

The camera (in most cases, at least) is a Sony a7R IV was paired with FE 24-70mm F2.8 GM lens and mounted to a DJI Ronin-S gimbal – it’s also dubbed as the Megalodon.

The man behind it all, Jarrod Ligrani, a technical director for Fox Sports, got the idea to use the camera in live sports after being impressed by it whilst filming his first-born son.

The camera provides a depth-of-field effect, and the shots’ high stutter speed means that the shutter exposure for every frame is much shorter, so there is less motion blur, making shots look vivid and appealing to the TV eye.


For more technical details on its use in live sports, the camera, a Sony a7R IV, is fitted with a field monitor and a wireless transmitter that would send a 1080p signal to a camera truck…(continued)

...where it’s colour corrected to match broadcast cameras, giving it a more television-like feeling to viewers sitting at home.


It was first in use by cameraman Mike Smole in a NFL game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Washington Football Team in December 2020 on Fox.

While this isn’t something that can’t be done with many other modern-day cameras or by any other person involved in filming or videography, it’s groundbreaking in the world of sports broadcasting, making it such a revered piece of equipment.

Contrary to its name, the Megalodon isn’t that big a piece of equipment. It’s actually quite small and portable – making it such an accessible piece of equipment for fast-paced sports, including football.

Ideally, cameras like these are used for off-the-pitch content, but its cinematic effects make it perfect for sport.

In time, the camera was adopted by other sports, leagues and sports entertainment productions around the world, away from the NFL.

On the 15 January 2021 episode of WWE’s Friday Night Smackdown on Fox, the camera made its debut in the world of sports entertainment for the wrestlers’ entrances.

Soon, it would go across the pond as LaLiga, in association with its broadcaster MediaPro, would use it for goal celebrations in a match between Barcelona and Athletic Club.

Òscar Lago, responsible for LaLiga match production at MediaPro, said: "We are committed to providing solutions that enhance our broadcasting quality and develop a product that is more visually appealing for LaLiga fans."

In February 2021, Fox Deportes also used the Megalodon for its coverage of Liga MX.

The camera made its debut in a match between Monterrey and Tijuana, once again used for celebrations, corners, throw-ins and more.

Fox extended its use to other sports, using the camera for the ever-engaing Daytona 500 in February 2021.

Overall, the entire rig costs around $10,000, which isn’t a hefty price to pay for leagues and broadcasters and is signficantly cheaper than other cameras used (some of which rise up to $200,000).

Initially, many confused it for an 8K camera. Jarrod Ligrani said: “It confused me...If anything I would have thought that viewers would complain because parts of the image are out of focus. I tell people, it’s not an 8K camera, it’s an $8k camera ($8,000).”


Equipment like these won’t ever fully replace traditional broadcast cameras, because they’re tried-and-tested pieces of equipment that have been around for decades and something viewers have gotten used to.

The camera is still in its experimental phase, as it is using a rig that was never meant to be used in broadcast.

Fox Sports’ Senior Vice President Mike Davies: “It certainly does a great job of shooting beautiful video but is not typically used for live [broadcasts]. We were astonished by how much this was recognized.”

Information from: Sportico, Fox Sports, LaLiga, Sports Video Group, Fox Deportes, MediaPro.

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