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AJA Cion - 4000$ price drop: Now 4995$


Guest Ebrahim Saadawi
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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

https://www.aja.com/en/news/top-stories/345

-4995$ for the Cion, down from 9000$

-2500$ worth of media gift to previous buyers.

Step in the right direction.

(PS: *There's talk about an upgrade (send-in) to the 4.6K 15 stops Fairchild Imaging sensor. Not official Nor confirmed but robust, it's on their mind)

While the camera has been met with an overwhelmingly positive reviews saying it's a dead-in film-like image with perfect colours and ergonomics that resemble great ENG/Cinema style shooting, 12 stops of DR, and other overwhelmingly negative reviews saying a defective sensor, doesn't work above 200ASA and has 8 Stops of DR and a horrible burnt-in video look and bad ergonomics for working on shoulder/badmenu system. Nothing in-between. 

Exact srtipped down shipped package you get for the 4995$

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URSA mini stripped down package you get for 2995$ (same URSA 4K sensor) or 4995$ (newer 4.6K 15 stops of DR sensor)

blackmagic-ursa-mini_720x600.jpg

Both built up to their full package (EVF/LCD/LENS/SHOULDER-PAD/POWER/MEDIA,ETC) (about the double price for each, give or take a little)

 

 

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URSA

 

IMG_485522.jpg

IMG_485520.jpg

 

 

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A massive price drop for a camera that has just started shipping......cool!

I still think the URSA Mini is the better option though. From what it seems... better ergonomics, better sensor (4.6k one), better dynamic range, better usability (from seeing previews), sensor switchable, internal RAW, better frame rate options, 1080p included OLED screen, fantastic affordable add-ons, massive Blackmagic community and support, will work out cheaper overall = much much better value. 

I think filmmakers will only go for the AJA if it comes down to the "mojo"....anything else, the URSA Mini seems to be the much better creative tool. Gotta love Blackmagic. 

p.s the URSA Mini looks more stylish too. ;) 

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A massive price drop for a camera that has just started shipping......cool!

I still think the URSA Mini is the better option though. From what it seems... better ergonomics, better sensor (4.6k one), better dynamic range, better usability (from seeing previews), sensor switchable, internal RAW, better frame rate options, 1080p included OLED screen, fantastic affordable add-ons, massive Blackmagic community and support, will work out cheaper overall = much much better value. 

I think filmmakers will only go for the AJA if it comes down to the "mojo"....anything else, the URSA Mini seems to be the much better creative tool. Gotta love Blackmagic. 

p.s the URSA Mini looks more stylish too. ;) 


FYI the mini is not sensor upgradeable, only the Ursa is.

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

FYI the mini is not sensor upgradeable, only the Ursa is.

​Yup only big ursa. Dont fall into the trap of ordering the 2995$ model and upgrade to 4.6k later, you can't.

The entry price for the new 4.6K is 4995$, + the BM EVF, shoulder pad, arm extension, top handle, V-lock plate, V-lock batteries + chargers, and of course CFast 2.0 Cards & a reader. Almost 7K by then. Wish recorded to SSDs. 

CFast 2.0 + Uncompressed 4.6K raw or ProRes HQ is a recipe for 3000$+ media for a conservative day shoot! Cion, even more expensive media. At least we know Cfast will come down and your cards will be a standard to use among all future cameras.

 

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Excellent AJA dropped their price. As it faced a hard sell otherwise. Even after the price drop I can't imagine a person going for a Cion over the much cheaper URSA-M 4K or the presumably much better URSA-M 4.6K for the same price. 

I did a quick estimate recently how much it would cost for me to get the URSA Mini:
 

body: US$5k

evf: US$1.5k

storage media: US$2k+

shoulder kit and battery plate: US$0.5k

the few EF lenses I'll list next, total: US$1k

V mount batteries: US$0.5k+

 

Total cost: easily US$10.5k+ (not including shipping, or taxes!)

 

So for lenses I'd get a very few native EF mount lenses, while the bulk of my shooting would be with my existing Nikon mount lenses (as I've got a Rokinon Cine DS set, plus heaps more). But there are times when native mount lenses come in handy (AF & IS is handy for R&G for instance), so I could get these for US$1k on the second hand market easily:

Canon 24-105mm f/4L for general run and gun shooting, plus the Yongnuo 35mm f/2 and Canon 50mm f/1.8 because they're very cheap general purpose fast primes. And the Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM because it is dirt cheap, and an extremely handy wide pancake lens for gimbal use (24-105mm is too long I expect to fit on many small gimbals, as the sheer size of the URSA-M is already stretching the capacity of many of them).

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

Let's see how barebones we can go to balance it:

The Ursa Mini 4K (still a very filmic, very sharp sensor with a wide DR, just needs fast glass at night, I've amazing results out of that sensor!)

-2995$: Body + top handle + side grip including a full 1080p 5" LCD. We can work fine with that.

-400$ for one big V-lock or Anton bauer 

-100$ for a 32Gig CFast 2.0 or 300$ for a 128Gig. (128 would handle a day of Robust prores especially LT and 422 which are great codecs) 

EF mount is a good choice, we all have Canon and/or nikon lenses that would work, plus cheapo m42 vintage glass.

So you can shoot with an URSA mini for just 3500$, very ergonomic body, well made magnesium alloy camcorder with 4K ProRes and Raw, 12 stops of DR, global shutter, s35, XLRs, proper buttons, large sharp LCD with all the focus/exposure assist tools, plus a free 999$ value Da Vinci Resolve Full Version. 

It's a perfect step-up from DSLRs/mirrorless (a7s 2500, nx1 2000$, 5D 3000$)just like BM wanted with their first cameras, but now it's finally delivered it after removing all bugs and remaking a much better body at the same price as the production camera.

-You fully build a 10.000$ 4.6K one if you need these features, which still is the same as an FS7, and much lower than a C300 mkII, that's where BM sees it fit into.

 

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With the back-of-the-envelope math, it still seems like the Ursa Mini - 4k version - is the better bargain. Even the flip-out screen on the Ursa Mini gets you up and running right away, no need for an EVF.

@Taranis -- there's no way I'd take that C-Box out in the field. it just doesn't look suited for actual production unless you're in a studio.

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