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Making sense of the new Blackmagic Production Camera and Pocket Cinema Camera


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#1 EOSHD

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 10:25 PM

Blackmagic Production Camera 4K

For the second NAB in succession Blackmagic are bulldozing down the image quality / price barrier for film production. 4K compressed raw, global shutter and Super 35mm was the unique preserve of Sony with the F55 until today, and that was a $36,000 camera. This is a $4000 one. Gone is that extra margin - unsettling stuff for the big guys. Here's my own personal look at the cameras and the consequences.



Read the full article here
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#2 OzNimbus

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 10:41 PM

Thought the pocket cam had same sensor as bmcc, just a tighter sample.

#3 EOSHD

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 10:45 PM

Thought the pocket cam had same sensor as bmcc, just a tighter sample.

 

John Brawley hinted at this in his blog but the Blackmagic rep in Dan Chung's video counters that and says it is a brand new sensor.



#4 OzNimbus

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 10:48 PM

Thanks for the clarification. Now could we get the story on the 4k dng bit depth? Reading some conflicting stories about 8 bit & would love some feedback.

#5 pask74

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 10:49 PM

This pocket thingie is exactly what I've been waiting for ... wow, miracles happen!

 

BMD website says that it records RAW, too, but the guy on the vid says ProRes only. Is compressed RAW going to happen sometimes in the future?



#6 EOSHD

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 10:53 PM

Thanks for the clarification. Now could we get the story on the 4k dng bit depth? Reading some conflicting stories about 8 bit & would love some feedback.

 

Production Camera raw is 12bit as far as I know and the 4K ProRes is 10bit. I highly doubt the raw will be 8bit whilst 4K ProRes will be 10bit!!



#7 nahua

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 11:07 PM

Andrew your assessment is excellent as always.  I think your most telling statement:

 

One final thought. These cameras MUST be delivered. Blackmagic’s reputation cannot afford another BMCC 2012 situation. If they tell their dealers and customers July, it must ship in July and ship in large quantities.

 

This is the key.  I will be first on the list, but the reality is - can they deliver in a TIMELY manner?  I have no doubts about their technical prowess.  But can I wait for a year after the supposed delivery date?

 

All in all this is the "game changer" that we've been waiting for.  Big F-U to Canon, Sony, RED and ARRI.  Now let's see some real innovation instead of stagnation.



#8 Greg R Greenhaw

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 11:08 PM

I have no problem with the form factor. If I and hand held i'm always using my small hd monitor with the camera body on my shoulder like Hurlbut's master series. Most of my shoots have the camera in full matte box and cage on a jib and dolly.

 

No mention of audio meters yet. I agree anamorphic support is a no brainer.

 

With a wireless hdmi transmitter you really dont need to look at the back of the camera. I run a video village feed into a apple cinema display on a c stand.

 

http://www.amazon.co...V Wireless hdmi



#9 EOSHD

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 11:18 PM

I'm fine with the form factor on sticks, it is more the handheld shoots where I have an issue with it. It is quite a heavy camera especially with the bits you need attached to it, but the weight all seems to be on one narrow plane rather than distributed evenly across a box from front to back. The screen is useless when it is shoulder mounted. They should have changed the form factor.

 

You can maintain a good tripod form factor, that's easy. Handheld is there they need to focus their efforts.



#10 chauffeurdevan

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 11:20 PM

Production Camera raw is 12bit as far as I know and the 4K ProRes is 10bit. I highly doubt the raw will be 8bit whilst 4K ProRes will be 10bit!!

Like I wrote in another thread I asked Adobe about DNG lossy compression and they answered that it is 8bit Jpeg, you could also look in the Adobe's DNG documentation .

 

So for now, our only hope is that there is a new DNG specification version coming soon with better lossy compression and that BM have access to it.



#11 biginvegas

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 11:27 PM

Long time GH13/GH2 user but was not taken with the Gh3 and BMC.  The pocket BMC is the no brainer replacement.   A grand, you kidding me?  Just checked specs on my GH2 DCage and the pocket BMC is 128mm to the 124mm GH2.   Durn it, don't think it will squeeze in.



#12 EOSHD

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 11:58 PM

Like I wrote in another thread I asked Adobe about DNG lossy compression and they answered that it is 8bit Jpeg, you could also look in the Adobe's DNG documentation. So for now, our only hope is that there is a new DNG specification version coming soon with better lossy compression and that BM have access to it.

 

I think Lossy DNG and Lossless DNG are too different things.

 

John Brawley and the official Blackmagic website say 12bit lossless DNG. It is still compressed but it is lossless like raw not lossy like JPEG.

 

Here's John's tweet just now - https://twitter.com/...411372296577026



#13 chauffeurdevan

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 12:17 AM

I think Lossy DNG and Lossless DNG are too different things.

 

John Brawley and the official Blackmagic website say 12bit lossless DNG. It is still compressed but it is lossless like raw not lossy like JPEG.

 

Here's John's tweet just now - https://twitter.com/...411372296577026

Let's hope he's right.

 

Where did you find the info on the website ? Looked everywhere, was not able to find anything. The only hint I get is the VISUALLY lossless wording they using on the BMPC and not for the other camera - this is pure marketing wording.

 

Christine Peterson from Blackmagic on the forums : It's visually lossless, a very slight compression.

 

So right now, I prefer believing Adobe specs on DNG than Blackmagic wording - and the only "visually lossless" compression that is not lossless is the 8bit JPEG.

 

So like I said, there could always be some new specs that could be published soon with a 12bit log "visually lossless" compression. Right now, there is not.

 

Like I wrote on the Adobe forum 6 months ago,  I really hope that Adobe would update the specs to include something better than 8bit Jpeg and that was before the BMPC. I now hope even more that Adobe will do it.


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#14 Vidrios

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 12:25 AM

Did get they get rid of the issues - the battery life not being displayed incrementally, but rather by 25%. And also the SSD not telling you how much space left?

Lastly will the 4k intercut well with the 2.5k and the pocket camera? I know the 2.5k will intercut well with the Pocket Camera as they use this sensor I think (fairchildimaging.com/files/data_sheet_cis_1910f_0.pdf). Whereas the S35 is this sensor ( I THINK) cmosis.com/products/standard_products/cmv12000. Technically they won't intercut well but maybe BM figured out a way to make it work?

 

The reason why I ask is I ordered the M43 version and also put a deposit for a 4k camera through a distributor. I'm wondering if it'd be good to have one of each versus two 4ks? (I will get a second 4k down the line regardless) just wondering if owning the 2.5k M43 with an extra stop of dynamic range plus true raw will be a benefit to have as another camera on set?

 



#15 EOSHD

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 12:34 AM

So right now, I prefer believing Adobe specs on DNG than Blackmagic wording - and the only "visually lossless" compression that is not lossless is the 8bit JPEG.

 

I think the DNG spec you're reading is for stills not motion. Cinema DNG is different.

 

Also there's such a thing as Lossless compression http://en.wikipedia....ata_compression

 

Lossless is not the same as uncompressed, and Lossy is not the same as Lossless!

 

There's no need for Blackmagic to describe it as 'visually lossless'. The proper term is "Lossless Compression".



#16 schnorgie

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 12:50 AM

Questions....

 

Variable frame rates? Amount of storage space needed for compressed DNG RAW? Still have 1/4 microphone inputs? No EVF....? in camera control of aperture in Canon lenses? Auto-focus? Zebras? Peaking? Magnified focus assist? ....and, as mentioned, actual delivery date? After all this time, I see the original Blackmagic Cinema Camera is still backordered, on the B&H site......a deal-breaker, for many if not most.

 

Amazing spec'ed camera, no question. I will be curious to see Canon and Sony's newer releases, towards the end of the week.....



#17 mzo

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 01:32 AM

Where is the 60/50p mode??? I assume that many like me were hoping that the new BMCC had 1080 60p recording mode, right? The specs indicate a 1080 60i mode, which is useless for slow motion shooting.... I wonder why they didn't add this very important feature, that is a deal breaker for many potential buyers like myself

#18 tehgeek

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 02:17 AM

Other than the form factor these cameras are very interesting. I hope we will be seeing footage from all over the world in August this year, sadly we might still be waiting mid 2014. Hopefully that isn't the case. 



#19 shijan

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 02:41 AM

sensor http://www.fairchild...scmos/cis-1910f

seems blackmagic choose a not too friendly marketing way used in other big companies - make many niche not perfect cameras, instead of develop one perfect and good working one which can make peole happy.

BTW those compressed DNG from small camera is only 8 bit, so you stuck with low bit debth RAW or high bit depth RGB. but from other side its not so bad as non raw jpeg http://helmersworks....s-it-worth-it/.

mini HDMI is also pain as everyone know, and large SD cards are extremly pricy.



#20 cginz

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 03:16 AM

What impact will this have on the DSLR (Stills/Video) market? 

 

Can I assume this BMCC 4K announcment is going to be disruptive enough to add significant downward pressure to non-4K DSLR market?

Why should Canon expect me to pony up $3500 for a 5D Mark 3 when I can go to 4K for another $500.

 

With this announcement, I'd rather just go Canon 6D for $1600--to get a competent stills/video DSLR. 

 

  






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