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Alternatives to original BMPCC (Super 16 look)


dreamplayhouse
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Love the 16mm film look from my original bmpcc but really would like better battery life, good video autofocus (when I need it as I will mostly shoot manual focus using vintage lenses) and IBIS. Any great alternative for under $700 body only??

I'm thinking about the OMD EM1 mark ii.

 

 

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The truth...

For the under $700 camera price range, only the Blackmagic Cinema Camera 2.5k and the Micro Studio Camera look like the Pocket Cinema Camera.

Making your Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera work the way you want it to...

If you keep your BMPCC, add an AFX audio focus system ($415) when for sale again and Tilta Nucleus Nano motor ($150).

If you are in the market for a top of the line gimbal, fly your BMPCC on a Ronin RS2 Pro Combo ($999) and add the DJI 3D auto focus system ($169).

For your price range and feature requirements (mostly)...

You can also look at the Panasonic G9, which goes as low as $700 used on ebay, though they are more likely to be $800.  This will get you a 10 bit depth and 4:2:2 color rendering, but you will not have the highlight roll off, dynamic range or color density of the Blackmagic Fairchild sensor.

 

 

 

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lol pretty much covers it...

of course, people around here might disagree - I asked the question and people thought that the sensors all look the same and you can use basically any camera to get any look:

I went back to editing some BMMCC footage and just shook my head.

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8 minutes ago, majoraxis said:

For the under $700 camera price range, only the Blackmagic Cinema Camera 2.5k and the Micro Studio Camera look like the Pocket Cinema Camera.

I meant Micro Cinema Camera not Micro Studio Camera...

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4 hours ago, dreamplayhouse said:

I'm thinking about the OMD EM1 mark ii.

Thats pretty much your option in that price range with the features you want. The image is a far cry from the BMPCC but IBIS, auto focus, better battery life and a smaller crop factor are all nice for practical shooting. 

The GH5 or G9 will be a closer match IQ wise but you won't get Olympus AF 

A more off the wall option would be a Canon camera with Magic lantern. You'd get 12 or 14 bit RAW and possibly auto focus and better battery life depending on the model you get. 

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I own both a G9 and an EM1 II and honestly I'm not convinced that (overall) the Oly autofocus is much better than the G9 - and IMHO the G9 is a much better overall video camera than the EM1 II. The G9 1080p leaves the Oly 1080p in the (soft) dust, then add 4k50/60p and 10-bit video modes which the Oly hasn't got at all...

On the other side, the Oly is nice to use, has great IBIS and battery life, and is smaller and lighter than the G9.

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8 minutes ago, ac6000cw said:

Oly is nice to use, has great IBIS and battery life

If budget is a concern, however, the EM10iii for under $400 ain't a bad alternative Oly option.  LUMIX camera have better resolution IQ, no question about that, but the Oly shines in different ways --really gotta know what you want to do with the camera and how much you want to spend when making choices!

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Save your money and buy a Lumix 12-35 2.8 IS and a nice external battery for your pocket! You can solve the problem with stabilization by using an IS lens and the battery fix is very cheap and effective.

20 hours ago, majoraxis said:

If you are in the market for a top of the line gimbal, fly your BMPCC on a Ronin RS2 Pro Combo ($999) and add the DJI 3D auto focus system ($169).

No need. The Zhiyun Weebill is 400 and does a great job. Smaller, lighter, more portable, battery goes forever with the bmpcc. Gotta be close to 8 or 9 hours.

Attached a photo of my setup. I'm working on a project with vintage C mount lenses. Not trying to win some sort of depth of field contest. The camera has beautiful texture and looks great at F8 or F11. OLPF shows up next week. Throw a 4 stop ND on there and rate it at ISO50 with a light meter.

IMG_5241.jpg

park_1_2000-01-06_0822_C0045_000401.jpg

Grain.jpg

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3 hours ago, BenEricson said:

No need. The Zhiyun Weebill is 400 and does a great job. Smaller, lighter, more portable, battery goes forever with the bmpcc. Gotta be close to 8 or 9 hours.

@BenEricson does Zhiyun offer a Lidar autofocus add on module like the DJI 3D auto focus system?

If so, the Weebill would be an even better value than Ronin RS2, if not maybe they have one in the works.

I mentioned the RS2 Pro Combo because you can add the DJI Lidar 3D Auto Focus system, though not as good as the AFX auto focus system when it comes to the distance it can achieve auto focus at.

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Also the object tracking the RS2 (ActiveTrack 3.0) seem to track better when compared to the Zhiyun CRANE-3S Pro, I assume the Zhiyun app uses the algorithms across their product family, that said, software can be improved all other things being equal like HDMI wireless delay, resolution and frame rate providing the data for processing.

I tried both the Crane 3-S Pro and the RS2 and I liked the DJI app and physical design of the RS2 better, the Weebill may be a completely difference experience as compared to the Crane 3S...

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18 minutes ago, majoraxis said:

@BenEricson does Zhiyun offer a Lidar autofocus add on module like the DJI 3D auto focus system?

If so, the Weebill would be an even better value than Ronin RS2, if not maybe they have one in the works.

I mentioned the RS2 Pro Combo because you can add the DJI Lidar 3D Auto Focus system, though not as good as the AFX auto focus system when it comes to the distance it can achieve auto focus at.

 

27 minutes ago, majoraxis said:

@BenEricson does Zhiyun offer a Lidar autofocus add on module like the DJI 3D auto focus system?

If so, the Weebill would be an even better value than Ronin RS2, if not maybe they have one in the works.

I mentioned the RS2 Pro Combo because you can add the DJI Lidar 3D Auto Focus system, though not as good as the AFX auto focus system when it comes to the distance it can achieve auto focus at.

You're probably a bit more experienced with this sort of thing. The sensor on the pocket is tiny, so at F5.6 or F8, you should have no problem zone focusing and getting really good results. If you want to shoot at F2 while walking backwards and maintaining focus, there are certainly better gimbals and cameras. 

I am more speaking to the fact that the gimbal is tiny, weighs next to nothing, takes me 1 minute to balance, and the batteries last forever. The Ronin is twice the size and more than twice the price.

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10 hours ago, BenEricson said:

The sensor on the pocket is tiny, so at F5.6 or F8, you should have no problem zone focusing and getting really good results

Worth pointing out that f8 or at most f11 is as high as you should go, otherwise you start running into diffraction softening on that small sensor. I lost a lot of footage when I was first starting out with the original BMPCC because I shot it at f16 and didn't realize the image would be affected so badly by diffraction; I've seen it at f11 as well but not as badly. ND filters are essential to ensure you don't have to stop down too much. There's a good tutorial on diffraction and sensor size at https://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials/diffraction-photography.htm

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3 hours ago, bjohn said:

Worth pointing out that f8 or at most f11 is as high as you should go, otherwise you start running into diffraction softening on that small sensor. I lost a lot of footage when I was first starting out with the original BMPCC because I shot it at f16 and didn't realize the image would be affected so badly by diffraction; I've seen it at f11 as well but not as badly. ND filters are essential to ensure you don't have to stop down too much. There's a good tutorial on diffraction and sensor size at https://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials/diffraction-photography.htm

That was a great article... no wonder I like shooting with the aperture wide open ; ) I imagine that comes with is own set of physics and constraints and at a minimum a lens may not be (will probably not be) at its sharpest when shooting wide open.

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7 hours ago, bjohn said:

Worth pointing out that f8 or at most f11 is as high as you should go, otherwise you start running into diffraction softening on that small sensor. I lost a lot of footage when I was first starting out with the original BMPCC because I shot it at f16 and didn't realize the image would be affected so badly by diffraction; I've seen it at f11 as well but not as badly. ND filters are essential to ensure you don't have to stop down too much. There's a good tutorial on diffraction and sensor size at https://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials/diffraction-photography.htm

Yeah, the sweet spot on the older c-mount glass is definitely F5.6 to F11. You can get a nice natural softness / glow at F4 or 2.8, but the wider lenses also vignette at times.

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  • Andrew Reid changed the title to Alternatives to original BMPCC (Super 16 look)
On 3/23/2021 at 11:04 AM, dreamplayhouse said:

Love the 16mm film look from my original bmpcc but really would like better battery life, good video autofocus (when I need it as I will mostly shoot manual focus using vintage lenses) and IBIS. Any great alternative for under $700 body only??

I'm thinking about the OMD EM1 mark ii.

 

 

It goes above your budget but I just switched from the Blackmagic Micro to the Panasonic G9. In 4K the Ex Tele Crop mode gives you a 2.8x crop, very close to the 2.88x crop of the original Pocket and Micro. I got one used with Vlog already installed for $900. I'm very thrilled by this camera. You can get a 4K s16 without all the horrible moire and IR pollution. With Vlog and the Panasonic Vlog lut I'm getting great color and dynamic range. Plus with a focal reducer I have s35, and of course the native MFT sensor crop as well. And I can still use all my c-mount lenses. And I have IBIS and good battery life, and more importantly, I don't have to rig it up to make it more usable. A friend of mine still has a Micro, so I may be doing a side by side test soon.

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On 3/24/2021 at 12:06 PM, BenEricson said:

Attached a photo of my setup. I'm working on a project with vintage C mount lenses. Not trying to win some sort of depth of field contest. The camera has beautiful texture and looks great at F8 or F11. OLPF shows up next week. Throw a 4 stop ND on there and rate it at ISO50 with a light meter.

IMG_5241.jpg

 

Very cool!

 

Your rig reminds me of @ZEEK's EOSM Super 16 setup.  It shoots 2.5K, 10-bit continuously or 2.8K, 10-bit continuously with ML at around 16mm and Super 16 frame sizes.

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