AXIOM Beta Open-Source Camera Moves Closer To Reality

Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 11 September 2014 at 08:30 PM EDT. 12 Comments
The first digital cinema camera comprised of open-source software and open hardware is closer to becoming reality.

A crowdfunding campaign has launched for the AXIOM Beta as the first open digital cinema camera to be produced in large quantities, one year after the AXIOM Alpha camera was shown off with just two of those units having been produced. For those unfamiliar with AXIOM, it's a fully open software/hardware movie camera designed by a DIY community of the ApertusĀ° project. AXIOM originates several years ago from enthusiasts experimenting with film production using the Elphel open hardware camera.

The AXIOM Alpha camera.

The AXIOM Beta camera is designed to support two different image sensor modules (including the Cmosis CMV12000 that can allow up to frame rates up to 300 FPS), uses a Xilinx Zynq 7010/7020-based dual-core ARM SoC, supports various lens mounts, boasts three HDMI outputs with 4K support, and features a variety of built-in devices including a 3D accelerometer, 3D magnetometer, and 3D gyroscope. The camera, of course, runs Linux and fully open-source software. The camera's hardware is also designed to be modular and upgrade friendly over time.

This open-source video camera though isn't for filming your children or other amateur filming as it comes with a hefty price. Right now the crowd-funding campaign is looking for 300~350 EUR upfront per pre-order to allow for the completion of AXIOM Beta development while the cost of a beta unit for the camera when it's ready to ship next year will be a total of 1900~2300 EUR (depending upon the image sensor you select). The final amount of the AXIOM Beta is subject to change as well based upon the camera's cost, production run costs, etc. If these AXIOM Beta cameras make it to retail, the group is looking at charging 4,000~5,000 EUR per camera.

Those with deep pockets and after a fully open-source cinema camera can visit for more information and the project's IndieGoGo campaign. The campaign just started this week and they have raised already over 36 thousand Euros of their 100,000 goal. With almost a whole month to go, it looks like this project could very well be successfully funded.
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Michael Larabel

Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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