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Phil Blooms Black Magic Camera review


markm
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[url="http://philipbloom.net/2012/09/05/bmd/"]http://philipbloom.net/2012/09/05/bmd/[/url]

Have to say this is a GREAT very long review that covers everything. One thing though he did place the emphasis I feel a tad to much on what the camera could do for him and the camera is all about making proper film films.

I really don't know how he gets all over the place and manages to make all these films. You have to admire the guy.
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I have to admit, I feel less enthusiastic about the camera after watching the review. The reflective screen and the lack of being able to delete files and reformat the SSDs in camera seem like glaring omissions. Luckily firmware patches should be to fix the ladder and other quirks. This camera has so much to offer though, but I'm glad a sober approach was taken in PBs review. To some extent, I wish he really showed what extra dynamic range and color sampling can do in post.
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Yes it was sobering. I feel like it has been bumped down to Earth somewhat.

I'm still excited about the actual IMAGE though.

In future versions we need...

- Micro Four Thirds lens mount
- NEX mount if it goes S35
- Anamorphic 4:3 film mode
- No silly quirks like lack of file management
- A DSLR like form factor and articulated screen
- Phantom power
- Iris displayed on screen and quicker access to ISO
- $1000 (joking)

By the way people are still missing the point about the power of raw.

Acquisition in raw.
Grading in raw.
Transcoding to ProRes
Editing in ProRes
Archival in ProRes or H.264
[b]Maintain 2.5K resolution throughout[/b]

Simple.
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My only moan would like to be able to use other lenses.

Phil Bloom is not a DP in the movie sense of the word. This is a PRO camera that delivers a PRO picture. If I was a movie DP reviewing a C300 I would see it as an overpriced toy for fun. I totally get where he is coming from and his review is perfect for those likely to be in that world.

If I was a docu, internet, working quickly, maybe alone, holidays weddings corporate, lower end TV shows and I was to review an Alexa on this basis I would have to consign a £40,000 camera to unusable because of its lack of luxury little gadgets and slowness. A lot of so called professional opinions are bandied about but in the end there is only one thing that matters. What the tool does for you. The camera delivers RAW and prores in a small box that is the most user friendly camera to date. Either its of use or it isn't. It never said it was anything else than what it is. And it gives the best picture up to an Alexa and even then do you want an outboard recorder and the costs that go with it Let alone the fact it delivers full 10 bit prores. I couldnt care if it had no sound. Or it was limited to 3200 5500k I couldnt care less about f stop display or battery power.

This is a very special camera that was once only for the high end of professional. I feel very happy to have this tool available at this price.
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The review is invaluable for all who already bought the BMCC and for those who consider it for the future. You shouldn't underestimate the problems though. Somebody wrote (or did PB say it in the video?) the camera was [i]user friendly[/i]. Okay ...

[quote name='cameraboy' timestamp='1347003638' post='17498']
@markm
excellent observation ...
and surprise from BMD ...
[url="http://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/blackmagiccinemacamera"]http://www.blackmagi...giccinemacamera[/url]
BMC with MTF ...
[/quote]

Now are the early buyers left out in the rain or can they swap ('[color=#333333][font='Lucida Grande', 'Lucida Sans Unicode', Geneva, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif][size=3][b]Now[/b] the Blackmagic Cinema Camera comes in two models')[/size][/font][/color]? My credo: Never buy the prototype!

[i]Dungeness[/i] may be beautifully shot, but honestly, these are [i]stills[/i], animated in a Ken Burns fashion by the Kessler (but very carefully). I do like PB, I don't want to sound like a 'hater', but am I the only one who would skip calendar shots in a vimeo playlist? Let alone endure them in a [i]cinema[/i]? Because this is what the camera is allegedly designed for. I have the imagination to tell how a real film [i]might[/i] look with the BMCC.
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The good thing about Phillip Bloom's work is while he is an excellent camera operator & has a great eye for an image he is no DoP so most all of his work just uses available natural light. Contrast this with the super-slick professional demo piece 'Afterglow' from John Brawley on the the BMCC involving 1.2K HMI lights, reflectors & flags & a even a Steadicam operator all designed to make the image from the camera look as good as possible. Philip's Naked Cinematographer approach is the opposite of the latest Zacuto Shootout where the best DoP wins rather than demonstrating what the camera can do without any outside help.
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After watching this very interesting review, I think I'll hold out on this until the super 35mm version is available. Not because I need the larger sensor, but because I think the price of the M43 version will drop dramatically. By then I expect that the oddities and quirks of the camera will have been tamed and SSD prices will have come down quite a bit.

Looking forward to grading RAW in 2014! ;)
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[quote name='andy lee' timestamp='1347038457' post='17549']
no focus assist too! this is a major issue as you need this for every shot you do!
no x10 zoom in and its a reflective shiny screen.....
so you will need to get a external monitor with digital focus assist for this camera
[/quote]

Doesn't it have peaking?
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[quote name='andy lee' timestamp='1347029227' post='17540']
Philip says it has 'Bad Rolling Shutter issues !'
we have yet to see how bad these are
I would like to see this camera being moved around quickly!
[/quote]
Did you see any rolling shutter issues in any of the shots? Looks pretty awesome to me.
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[quote name='andy lee' timestamp='1347029227' post='17540']
Philip says it has 'Bad Rolling Shutter issues !'
we have yet to see how bad these are
I would like to see this camera being moved around quickly!
[/quote]

To be fair it says "[color=#444444][font=Arial, Helvetica, 'Nimbus Sans', sans-serif][size=3]Bad rolling shutter issues, not as bad as DSRLS but worse than FS100/ C300".
So it depends on what you're comparing it to. If you've learned to deal with DSLRs' rolling shutter artifacts then you should even better with the BMCC.[/size][/font][/color]

[quote name='andy lee' timestamp='1347038457' post='17549']
no focus assist too! this is a major issue as you need this for every shot you do!
no x10 zoom in and its a reflective shiny screen.....
so you will need to get a external monitor with digital focus assist for this camera
[/quote]

Just reading the Pros and Cons isn't fair for the camera or the reviewer.
If you watch the whole video you'll see there isn't only zoom for focusing when you hit the screen twice, so you can focus tightly, but there's also peaking (although Philip does say it isn't that good).

[quote name='galenb' timestamp='1347045381' post='17558']
Did you see any rolling shutter issues in any of the shots? Looks pretty awesome to me.
[/quote]

Like I mentioned above, according to Phillip Bloom rolling shutter is there, but I think saying it's "bad" goes a bit overboard. Still, there was no fast motion in the shots he showed, so one couldn't really use them to judge the issue.
In any case, as much as I hate rolling shutter artifacts, it shouldn't be a big problem considering it's better than DSLRs and it costs less than a 5DMkIII. And with a lot of room for improvement in the firmware department!
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[quote name='charlie_orozco' timestamp='1347047321' post='17562']
Like I mentioned above, according to Phillip Bloom rolling shutter is there, but I think saying it's "bad" goes a bit overboard. Still, there was no fast motion in the shots he showed, so one couldn't really use them to judge the issue.
In any case, as much as I hate rolling shutter artifacts, it shouldn't be a big problem considering it's better than DSLRs and it costs less than a 5DMkIII. And with a lot of room for improvement in the firmware department!
[/quote]
Well, yes... not in the beach shoot no. But there was a lot of hand held stuff in Finland and that would have shown some distortion if it was really that bad. There's even a shot of a train leaving rather quickly. Even though you can see the effect, it's not as bad as a 5DII. It feels more in line with higher end CMOS video cameras. I usually judge rolling shutter to be bad if you can see it distorting in the edges while you are just holding it by hand. If I'm shooting 24p on my GH1, I simply cannot hold it by hand. I need some sort of brace or something. Shooting 60 frames per second is better though I discovered.
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[quote name='galenb' timestamp='1347045381' post='17558']
Did you see any rolling shutter issues in any of the shots? Looks pretty awesome to me.
[/quote]

Are you joking? He barely moved the camera! Rolling shutter would have to be VERY bad to be visible in those shots!

Raw is definitely very powerful, but I doubt anyone will be using it for every single project, it does add a few time consuming steps and loads of storage space. People shooting projects with a quick turnaround and no need for much post work will choose the prores mode in a heartbeat. Even you Andrew! :)
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[quote name='Bruno' timestamp='1347052373' post='17570']
Are you joking? He barely moved the camera! Rolling shutter would have to be VERY bad to be visible in those shots!

Raw is definitely very powerful, but I doubt anyone will be using it for every single project, it does add a few time consuming steps and loads of storage space. People shooting projects with a quick turnaround and no need for much post work will choose the prores mode in a heartbeat. Even you Andrew! :)
[/quote]

Granted, it's not for every project, but for everyday work you have ProRes that's a lot lighter and still has crazy better image than any DSLR codec, while you have the option (unlike any other sub $15,000 camera now) to shoot RAW for any project that needs it (I persoanally would love to have it for personal and paid fiction projects).
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