Ever since DSLRs started acting like high-end video cameras, third-party companies have been creating peripherals to help them look the part. In fact, last week at the Consumer Electronics Show, you couldn’t walk 50 feet without seeing a 5D Mark II or some other HDSLR rigged up on a shoulder harness with a giant microphone sticking off of the front. Apparently Sony doesn’t want to give up that accessory market to the third parties, so they have introduced a clip-on 5-inch monitor designed to help DSLR videographers get better control over their process.
The CLM-V55 has a resolution of 800 X 480 and swivels freely while mounted in the camera’s hot shoe. Power comes from a battery pack or from an AC adapter and the video feed comes from an HDMI connection to the camera’s built-in port, so it’s compatible with just about any HDSLR, including those from Canon and Nikon as well as Sony’s own A55, A33, and their NEX 10 interchangeable-lens video camera.
In addition to pulling video from the HDMI connection, it also passes the audio, which you can listen in on in real time using the analog headphone jack, something videographers will find very appealing. The same can be said for the pixel magnification mode with color peaking, which allows for neurotic tweaking of focus. That feature, along with its large size, might also make it appealing to photographers that are visually impaired.
It will apparently start shipping in March with an included shade, but the price has yet to be announced. But, Marshall has a similar monitor available now for $599 so we wouldn’t be surprised to see it fall somewhere around there.