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Shooting short film on original BMPCC instead of 4K - advantages


Sandeepthefifth

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Hey all, I'm looking to shoot a narrative short film with controlled lighting early next year and am thinking about shooting it on my original BMPCC...

I know, I know. No 4K, terrible low-light, and horrible battery life. But if 1080p was fine, controlled lighting throughout, and an external battery solution, is it better for me to use the original and cancel my 4K pre-order? I could use the money saved to pay for an additional cine prime/actually pay actors a decent wage...

What would be the advantages in this case of using the 4K over the original?

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Well, you've sorta answered your own question by listing the OG Pocket's shortcomings... but it is still an amazing little camera capable of producing a beautiful image. The Pocket4K gives you up to 4K60p, 1080p120, raw video up to 4:1 compression, better audio preamps and connections, much better screen, and Gen 4 color science (if you like that). Under the same conditions (controlled lighting and battery solution), I'd take the Pocket4K every time. 

And one thing that probably doesn't need said, but I'll say it anyways. Even with controlled lighting, shooting with a great low light camera means you have freedom of exposure and DoF. You can maybe shoot something at f/5.6 for the DoF you want rather than being forced into an f/2.8 lens with the OG Pocket's limited ISO range. You might only need to rent an Aputure 120d versus a 300d. Etc. 

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I think it comes down to what look you are looking for. No doubt in my mind the PK4 has a more "modern" look to it. More GH5s to be honest, but with a more film look than the Panny. The Original Pocket has a purer film look to me, that the PK4 I think it is not going to have no matter how hard you try. But I think the PK4 "look" is more in style now than the old one.

I prefer the old look, but I bet I am in the minority in this day and age, and I think BMD did well to go with the more modern look down the road. So it really boils down to Your likes, and that should be what really matters in the mix of things. I don't think I would do it on a cost savings thing unless you are just destitute LoL. You might regret that decision in a short time. The PK4 is a heck of a lot more polished camera than the original. And if you don't have the Studio version of Resolve a true bargain to boot..

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It’s a short film and you already own the BMPCC... so... why bother waiting, until God knows when, for your P4K? Will the story of your short film be any better on the P4K? If anything, it sounds like you will have more resources to put towards the short film if you use the OG Pocket... it seems like an easy choice to me.

To add... a lot of people act as if no camera existed before some of these new releases arrive but the BMPCC was a great camera 4 years ago and is still a great camera today. It’s been used in Holllywood films for pickup shots and edited with Alexa footage.

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Thanks for the replies guys. Having some days to have thought about it, I definitely prefer the older OG film look as opposed to the 4K's - I much prefer the highlight roll-off, halation, plus that magic that's so difficult to put into words.

22 minutes ago, mercer said:

It’s a short film and you already own the BMPCC... so... why bother waiting, until God knows when, for your P4K? Will the story of your short film be any better on the P4K? If anything, it sounds like you will have more resources to put towards the short film if you use the OG Pocket... it seems like an easy choice to me.

To add... a lot of people act as if no camera existed before some of these new releases arrive but the BMPCC was a great camera 4 years ago and is still a great camera today. It’s been used in Holllywood films for pickup shots and edited with Alexa footage.

And yep Mercer, people do often treat a new piece of gear as if the previous gen was completely terrible.

I'd much rather shoot the film now as opposed to have to wait. And maybe next year there's a project that needs that sexy 4k and low-light capability, in which case I'll upgrade then. But for now, I'll use what I have.

Thanks!

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3 hours ago, Sandeepthefifth said:

Thanks for the replies guys. Having some days to have thought about it, I definitely prefer the older OG film look as opposed to the 4K's - I much prefer the highlight roll-off, halation, plus that magic that's so difficult to put into words.

And yep Mercer, people do often treat a new piece of gear as if the previous gen was completely terrible.

I'd much rather shoot the film now as opposed to have to wait. And maybe next year there's a project that needs that sexy 4k and low-light capability, in which case I'll upgrade then. But for now, I'll use what I have.

Thanks!

I think that’s a smart move. Now if you needed 60p Raw, then sure you’d need a different camera... at which point the much cheaper Micro would be a better fit than the not in stock P4K. 

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