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Andrew Reid

Blackmagic Micro Cinema vs Studio Camera - What are the differences?

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When I saw the Pocket in person I felt the LCD was shit. So it's better to make smaller cameras and you choose your LCD! Black Magic is really proving to be a forward-looking company! Five years ago they weren't a camera company at all and now they are!

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So the studio camera is the same camera plus it shoots 4K? I've read the tech specs for both on B&H and it seems to deliver the exact same things. Only difference I can see is there's no talk about global shutter on Studio version. Otherwise they seem the same so for 300dolllars you get a pocket 4K shooter basically.

No, the studio camera can't record at all while the Micro Cinema camera can record even in 12 bit raw.

Recording solutions seem to cost more then the camera does for each and every camera on the set.

Then you still need a monitoring solution that's at least as expensive as the camera (4K ATEM switch. No idea if you can rung a 4K recorder and a 1080p ATEM that's 500eur less).

 

I'd love to use these and control multiple camers including a basic color grade done live from one station (no live feed, just for multicam monitoring, remote control and recording each camera's feed) but I can't affort that as there's no bare-bones option to start with.

 

Investing in 1080p cameras in 2015 makes no sense anymore.

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Investing in 1080p cameras in 2015 makes no sense anymore.

​This comment gets thrown around so much. The black magic pocket when graded correctly, looks much better than any of that GH4 stuff… The 60p RAW out of the pocket will be lovely.

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it`s true...I just watched a clip where there was 4k, 1080 and 720p stuff mixed up and I barelly noticed. I did  because I knew it, but for a random viewer it doesn`t make a diference. 

Regardless...there is no real replacement for the old cinema camera and it`s 2.5k mode. You have the micro cinema which I presume has the same sensor as the pocket and cinema camera, which is great. Then you have the micro production, which I presume has the shitty 4k sensor of the old production camera and it takes about 3k to get it to shoot 4k and then ursa...

The micro cinema really needs to have 2.5k to be a nice middle ground othervise there is not much going for it compared to the 500€ pocket cinema except 60fps. Is that worth an extra grand over the pocket just for 60fps? throw in another 300 and get a gh4 and 96fps instead.

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I mostly agree with jagnje - if the micro cinema could gain 2.5K through a firmware update, I'd buy it. I like the size, the fact that it can record raw internally, and that it has global shutter + 60p option (rolling shutter).

 

I'd pay more for a cousin with the 4.6K sensor, with internal recording (likely only heavily compressed at 4.6K) and A MFT mount. 

It would also be nice with some high speed 1080p and 720p modes to compete further with action cams..

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

There seems to be a lot of confusion here about the difference between the Micro and Studio Micro Cameras. 

1-The Blackmagic Micro Camera has an internal recorder to SD card, in Raw and ProRes. While the Studio camera doesn't record at all, all you can do is record the HDMI output to an external recorder of you want. 

2-The Blackmagic Micro Camera has a 1920x1080p sensor, while the Micro Studio has a 3840x2160 sensor, both are the same size at s16 but are VERY different sensors.

The sensor 1080p sensor is described by Blackmagic as a ''film'' sensor, while the 4K one in the studio micro is described as a ''broadcast'' sensor. 

In other words, the 4K sensor in the Micro Studio camera is the same one in their older full 4K studio camera, which had horrible moire & aliasing, has a native ISO of 200 and anything higher is unusable, as well as 9 stops of DR or less, it's only Rec 709 and designed for closed studios for love broadcast. 

While the 1080p sensor in the new Micro camera is the next generation of the one in the Pocket camera from Fairchild Imaging. Over the late model (pocket) they added a switchable Global shutter mode, as well as the abilitt to shoot up to 60fps in rolling shutter mode (same rolling shutter in the pocket camera), the sensor is said to be improved overally in lowlight performance, no aliasing, better DR, a FILM camera sensor designed for film unlike the broadcast cameras. 

So the Micro 1080p camera of fitted with an external LCD can be considered as a successor for the pocket camera with a better sensor, global shutter, better lowlight, slowmotion, better design and more inputs and outputs, as well as specific abilitt to be controlled remotely by any device. 

While the Micro Studio Camera can be considered as the Full 4K studio camera that was announved last year just without the 10" LCD/Viewfinder. 

 

So while the two micro cameras appear similar on surface they are completely different and have vastly different uses and applications. Don't fall into the trap of buying the Micro Studio camera thinking it's a s16 4K version of the Pocker/micro cameras for 300$ more and record it externally. Only buy the Micro Studio camera if you want to broadcast 4K images from a tiny POV camera in a studio and you have the broadcast setup the goes with it. Not for ''video/film'' shooters on the forum here. 

On a side note, I am very excited to see how the Micro 1080p sensor images look since it's an improvememt on the already class leading filmic pocket sensor. 

That Fairchild imaging that came out of nowhere seem to have made sensors no other major manufacturer could make for FILM simulation, their products are the original m43s size 2.5K sensor in the BMCC, the S16 1080p sensor in the Pocket camera, the S16 1080p global shutter sensor in the Micro camera, and lastly the glorious s35 4.6K sensor in the new URSA mini and URSA upgrade. 

And a side note: Whenever Blackmagic got a different sensor manufacturer (as in the 4K productiom camera or the Studio 1080p and 4K cameras) their cameras lost the distinct film-like response that marked the Blackmagic cameras from the beginning, so it's fair to assume Fairchild Imaging sensors played a big role in that filmic quality. 

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So the studio camera is the same camera plus it shoots 4K? I've read the tech specs for both on B&H and it seems to deliver the exact same things. Only difference I can see is there's no talk about global shutter on Studio version. Otherwise they seem the same so for 300dolllars you get a pocket 4K shooter basically.

No, different sensor. Different performance. Worse dynamic range. 
The studio camera is for studio use.... where you can control the lighting and not looking to squeeze out max dynamic range. 

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2-The Blackmagic Micro Camera has a 1920x1080p sensor, while the Micro Studio has a 3840x2160 sensor, both are the same size at s16 but are VERY different sensors.

 

​Thanks - I was not aware that the resolution of the sensor was actually 1920x1080. Often times they are higher resolutions that are cropped or downsampled, as you know for sure. While limit of 1080p is a bit low, on the other hand it probably will work really well in terms of reducing artifacts, and low light capabilities should be quite good due to the size of the pixels. Definitely an interesting little camera..

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Are you sure about the aliasing being fixed on the MCC Ebrahim?  That would be huge as it's the only serious IQ flaw of my Pockets, and I wasn't expecting it would be fixed yet.  If true did they do it without an OLPF, just with a new sensor design?

I've got two MCC's on pre-order; with Genlock, full remote control, global shutter mode and narrow bodies they are everything I asked for over the years for dual-cam 3D.  After hacking my Pockets for workaround 3D frame sync I'm now putting a full-featured MMC 3D rig together that will be awesome if the IQ works out.  I expected it to be the identical Pocket sensor but Grant Petty confirmed in a video that its a slightly improved version.  If the aliasing is also fixed or reduced, wow.

Less noise will be great too.  The only other thing I'd need in future models like this would be the 15 stops, and purer colours.  The Pockets do blow out bright colours early, I don't think this is just a DR limitation (where 15 stops would help) but possibly a gamut issue, ie. how pure the RGB filters are.  I expect there is a trade off here with sensitivity (deeper colour filters reduce the amount of light hitting the sensor).

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Very helpful answer Ebrahim, thx. At a fist look i was doing the same mistake, now i understand the needs of each new model of Bm cameras.
 I have a couple of questions maybe you'll have an answer to them.

1. do you thing they will add the same new sensor in a future pocket model sharing the same features as micro cinema but adding an integrated monitor? or the new micro cinema is the new pocket itself?

2. i am looking at the market since 2 years now and i feel like the industry is on the edge of evolution. Last year i was almost sure that the panasonic and olympus will jump into the "organic sensor" era and sony will come up with something even greater than that to keep the dancing running. But my eyes were on blackmagic since the cinema look was their thing and i am in love with the look of the BMCC,2.5k. I was waiting for something in between BMCC and BMPCC, i don't wanna go into details here. And the micro cinema seams that is just that, less the screen. So, the question is: do you thing there will be new models for the enthusiastic filmmakers like the BMCC and BMPCC were? or they focus on the "pro" consumers and offer models that require more knowlage and third party pieces in order to shoot but with better results (i hope) ?

cheers

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Originally bought a pocket cinema. Great camera but the 1080 mft image is really not my cup of tea. It has its moments in certain lighting but looks very low res at times. Bought the micro studio 4K shortly after along with the 1080p black magic video assist and was very impressed with the image. Looks fantastic for me as a cinematographer even though it's advertised as a broadcast camera. Just yesterday I purchased the 4K video assist and I'm hoping to start shooting 4K by next week. If it's as good as the 1080 video assist I expect my image quality to be superb. The only downside is that the micro 4K is terrible in low light. All I have is 1.4 glass and even with the metabones speed booster on it wide open (.95 equivalent aperture) it's really on the low side. I could never think to use it indoors with a 2.8 aperture lens. Even with my 1.4 it needs help with light for a proper exposure. i think I'll be ok. I just built a high cri 100w LED light that I'm going to be incorporating for indoor shooting. Overall considering its low light performance I am super impressed with th cam. Superbly sharp image and there is a ton of resolution. I am very happy with this investment. And having the ability to shoot 4K on UHSII SD cards is amazing! Makes it so much more cost effective and the small size form factor of everything is just awesome. 

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B&H never gave me a final answer about the metabones speedbooster for the bmpcc if it works on the 4k micro studio camera but can anyone please confirm if he used this speedbooster on the 4k micro Studio camera and not the micro cinema camera

help needed

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cause the low light is really bad even with fast primes and the crop factor is killing me, i have the ND throttle and i am using it for outdoors but i need an adapter like the metabones speedbooster, it will be a life saving and won't regret that i bought the 4k micro studio camera with the 4k assist monitor, with the expensive sd cards for 4k shooting and drains battery fast , i can go over them but like i said the crop and the low light they are the worse

regards

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