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Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K

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5 hours ago, Savannah Miller said:

It's fairly useable but not the best.  You can totally see it in the sun, and with a cheap hood it should be more than adequate.

350 nits is not usable in the sun.

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6 hours ago, Snuff said:

Here is a comparison of brightness of SmallHD Focus vs BMD Assist and it shows that they almost the same.

 

The SmallHD 502 is 400 nits and it's pretty much unusable in the bright sunlight, amazingly even with the hood thingy that I also owned. The BMD at 350 would be no contest to the SmallHD Focus at 800 nits. I don't know what this guy is smoking. Now that I have a monitor that has 1,000 nits I won't go back to anything less. It's just too much of a pain in the ass to battle the sun with a dim monitor and isn't worth the hassle. I guess on a pistol gimbal with the pocket4k you'll have to get what you get unless you hang a monitor from it. At least 350 has to be better than the OG Pocket. What was that, anyone know? 100 nits? :glasses: It may as well be off for all I know in the afternoon sun.

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2 minutes ago, graphicnatured said:

The SmallHD 502 is 400 nits and it's pretty much unusable in the bright sunlight, amazingly even with the hood thingy that I also owned. The BMD at 350 would be no contest to the SmallHD Focus at 800 nits. I don't know what this guy is smoking. Now that I have a monitor that has 1,000 nits I won't go back to anything less. It's just too much of a pain in the ass to battle the sun with a dim monitor and isn't worth the hassle. I guess on a pistol gimbal with the pocket4k you'll have to get what you get unless you hang a monitor from it. At least 350 has to be better than the OG Pocket. What was that, anyone know? 100 nits? :glasses:

I’ve got both the BMD Video Assist (unusable in bright light), and the Shogun Inferno (no problem in bright light). 

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3 minutes ago, graphicnatured said:

1,500 nits. Now you're talkin'.

I still can’t recommend it though - it’s too huge. Had I known they’d be releasing the Ninja V, I’d have waited. 

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3 hours ago, jonpais said:

I still can’t recommend it though - it’s too huge. Had I known they’d be releasing the Ninja V, I’d have waited. 

I prefer the larger screens but I guess that thing weighs a lot too.

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21 minutes ago, graphicnatured said:

I prefer the larger screens but I guess that thing weighs a lot too.

Everybody likes big screens, but they are not comfortable for monitoring purposes on the field. Try to use one before buying, even the Video Assist is "significantly" bulkier and heavier than the Focus. 5" are just right. For big rigs and sets 7" could be fine I guess, but the last couple of jobs I used 7" IKAN and TV Logic monitors and I didn't like it!

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The SmallHD sidefinder add-on makes the monitor “usable” irrespective of the ambient lighting - but does make the compact 502 look and feel far too cumbersome. The swing-out mechanism also permits it to be set up for a more casual framing view which is good. It does a good job overall although I find that changing the visible screen isn’t easy with limited access to the joystick. Was hoping to sell it once the Pocket arrives but I suspect it’ll still be needed... 

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12 hours ago, Snuff said:

Here is a comparison of brightness of SmallHD Focus vs BMD Assist and it shows that they almost the same.

 

Surely something must be wrong here? 

350 nit vs 800 nit 

My last monitor was the blackmagic and its very dim, only good in doors and even then in the daytime still not bright enough.

I was looking at buying a smallhd focus just because it should be brighter, ill have to make sure i get it with a good returns policy i guess !

Maybe look at the new Ninja V 1000nits too 

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4 hours ago, Anaconda_ said:

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The whole philosophy, one could say religion, of the BM cinema camera series is to apply as much internal processing as absolutely necessary and as little as possible. It's a kind of analog-ish purism. No OLPF, only the most basic anti-IR-coating. A "dumb" camera, compared to any modern Sony. 

In addition, noise reduction is very problematic for 4k, because it smudges texture detail, and texture detail is what distinguishes UHD from HD. You will want to use it with painstaking care, and clearly not in-camera. In many cases you will decide that some grain-like noise was better than NR. Furthermore, Resolve Studio has NR, allegedly also improved. I couldn't tell, I only have the free version.

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29 minutes ago, Axel said:

The whole philosophy, one could say religion, of the BM cinema camera series is to apply as much internal processing as absolutely necessary and as little as possible. It's a kind of analog-ish purism. No OLPF, only the most basic anti-IR-coating. A "dumb" camera, compared to any modern Sony.

IMHO it's an excellent approach.

Light comes into the camera and hits the sensor.  Everything that happens after that will have both technical and aesthetic impacts - depending on what you're trying to do those impacts may not align with what you are trying to accomplish.  The purist philosophy is the most flexible and requires the most amount of work / skill.

Maybe it's just me, but I find that mostly when computers make decisions for me (as they've been instructed to make by their designers) the decisions are not what I would have chosen.

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22 hours ago, Kisaha said:

Everybody likes big screens, but they are not comfortable for monitoring purposes on the field. Try to use one before buying, even the Video Assist is "significantly" bulkier and heavier than the Focus. 5" are just right. For big rigs and sets 7" could be fine I guess, but the last couple of jobs I used 7" IKAN and TV Logic monitors and I didn't like it!

I've got a SmallHD 702 Bright and I love it. Had there been a 502 Bright at the time I purchased it I probably just would've bought that, but the size doesn't bother me too much.

21 hours ago, Snowfun said:

The SmallHD sidefinder add-on makes the monitor “usable” irrespective of the ambient lighting - but does make the compact 502 look and feel far too cumbersome. The swing-out mechanism also permits it to be set up for a more casual framing view which is good. It does a good job overall although I find that changing the visible screen isn’t easy with limited access to the joystick. Was hoping to sell it once the Pocket arrives but I suspect it’ll still be needed... 

Sell it and buy the Focus. You can still get great money for one, especially with the sidefinder included. I just sold mine without the sidefinder on eBay and would be able to buy the focus and twice as bright and still have plenty of money left.

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1 hour ago, kye said:

IMHO it's an excellent approach.

Light comes into the camera and hits the sensor.  Everything that happens after that will have both technical and aesthetic impacts - depending on what you're trying to do those impacts may not align with what you are trying to accomplish.  The purist philosophy is the most flexible and requires the most amount of work / skill.

Maybe it's just me, but I find that mostly when computers make decisions for me (as they've been instructed to make by their designers) the decisions are not what I would have chosen.

Agreed. If you're at all into post-processing and grading, the BM cameras are godsend, because they leave all the processing off to your own consideration. That's why they come with Resolve included - and I'd dare say it's way more powerful as a processing tool than any in-camera processors.

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I’m not sure I can agree with the absolute claim of “not useable” because...well I use them all the time in pretty bright situations.

Yes in some situations the glare makes it impossible but I can make it work the vast majority of the time.

https://www.flickr.com/gp/johnbrawley/10XBcm

Here’s an operator making do on a shoot in colombia.

Queen Videos

 

And here’s a shot on a recent rig  

30481357410_d6021ffc36_b.jpg

Yeah it could be brighter. But it’s not unuesable if you want a camera that’s small and compact. Or it functions well enough as your camera function screen once you fit an external monitor that better suits your needs. 

 

JB

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Does the brightness required depend on the depth-of-field and focus assists?

I just got back from shooting my kids football game in full Australian 31degC / 88degF sunlight and had no problems because the players were mostly 20-150m away and I was at f5.6 on a 1" sensor, so everything was in focus and all I had to do was keep framing.  If I had shallow depth of field I would have been screwed, and would have needed either a very large/bright monitor or spectacularly performing focus assist features.

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John Brawley must have amazing eyesight, because I can’t see the Video Assist screen in bright light at all. And with the Ninja V coming out soon, I can’t see why anyone would get the BMD, unless you absolutely needed SDI.

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