BlackMagic Pocket Cinema Camera

People's Champ ,
Sep 12, 2013 Sep 12, 2013

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I got a call from a shooter yesterday saying he plans to get

one of these cameras (because he can use the lenses from his 16mm).

He was asking for my opinion, and I couldn't offer one.

Does anyone have any direct experience with this camera?

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/964117-REG/blackmagic_design_blackmagic_pocket_cinema_camera.h...

http://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/blackmagicpocketcinemacamera

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LEGEND ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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a) adding ablity to record sound in stereo or 2 mono tracks gives poor performance as opposed to...

See, again you're assuming that just because a camera can do a thing means it must do that thing for every shot.  That's not what I'm suggesting.  If the shoot allows for a better method of acquiring sound, by all means go ahead and use it.  Having high quality built-in mics won't stop you from doing so.

However, not having high quality built-in mics can ruin the shot in run-and-gun situations where you have no time, equipment or personnel to handle a more complex audio setup.  So...put them on every camera.

it simply adds 'cost' to the camera

Now that's a valid argument.  And one way to handle that is to make it modular.  Panasonic has done this with a few of their less expensive cameras.  The XLR input jack was an add-on, it didn't come with the camera.  So that's one possible solution here.  The other thing to consider is economies of scale.  If every camera maker is putting these things into every camera they make, those things get cheaper.  It also opens up those cameras to more shooters, meaning more sales.

lets move on to the next 'feature' you want added to your low cost cameras without adding cost to the cameras

I never said the features wouldn't add cost.  They might do so.  I'm only saying it's frustrating when camera makers design a camera that only be used in a production situation because it's missing critical features needed for event/documentary work.  Like the audio meters and time remaining indicators on the BMPCC.  Those two things should be in every camera.

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People's Champ ,
Sep 18, 2013 Sep 18, 2013

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If every camera maker is putting these things into every camera they make, those things get cheaper.  It also opens up those cameras to more shooters, meaning more sales.

Kinda like Obamacare will do for health insurance?

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LEGEND ,
Sep 18, 2013 Sep 18, 2013

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I'm not touching that one.

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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======

so what Hollywood does is not all that relevant to the question.

=======

oh.. didnt see that part... could you please define 'production' since you are eliminating 'production' for the question ?

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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come to think of it.. you are the one who threw in the " under 10k money " thing...once this got started...and now youre saying its not about hollywood, and you think I am 'deflecting' the issue ??? you must be joking ....

maybe do it another way, Jim.. you tell ME what you think should be added to your less than 10k camera that IS GOOD FOR PRODUCTION WORK and define what you mean by PRODUCTION work.. and I will tell you why it is stupid...okay ??

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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Maybe what you need for that sort of " production " work isnt so much about the camera, but about help from assistants and crew... and the ability to tell 'stories' by doing multiple takes etc.... you dont need 4 cameras to shoot a football play , if you use one camera and do the play 4 times...you get a better result...

so talk to the teams and after the game ( you got your b roll during game ).. have them hang out a few minutes to do one play 4-5 times...and shoot what you need to tell the story.... you need help... but it aint from having more stuff on the camera... its from people helping you make the product...

IMO

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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ps.

if you shoot overcranked during one of those takes of the football play... keep the sound normal speed...and keep the 'pace' going .. the excitement of the play ...and dont record to camera and slow it down to make a joke out of it like Steve might do...he doesn't know much about this either...

yet...

in a couple years he will be the head of some studio but right now he's learning ....

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People's Champ ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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and dont record to camera and slow it down to make a joke out of it like Steve might do...he doesn't know much about this either...

Actually, that is quite true. I know nothing about audio with slow motion other than "the joke" or "replace it".

I do know that on camera sound is not the best way to go unless you are desparate. Not counting using the on camera sound to help you sync later. That can be very handy. Just for reference.

Even I have multiple off-camera recording capabilities. A Mini Disc recorder left over from a decade ago still works fine. And nowadays, I can record audio to a Smartphone using a couple of special Rode Lavalier Mics. But the gem in my collection is the external recorder that accepts my XLR output off the first Lav mic I bought in 2002. In studio, I have a little XLR amp that records to the audio inputs of my add-on sound card.

But I have a question. If the camera has a microphone, it doesn't make it unsuitable for production work if you don't actually use the audio in the production, does it? I probably shouldn't stick my nose in this conversation, but I heard my name. You know how that is.

If the cameras we are talking about are in the sub $10K range then the production could still be television commercials, or television programs (B-Roll or dangerous stuff that requires GoPro kind of cameras) or even television reality shows. I would think that past that, you get into a lot more expensive cameras.

But for feature films, most cameras are one heck of a lot more expensive than $10K. Except when they aren't. The modern documentary is being shot with all kinds of stuff, from prosumer camcorders, to Mirrorless cameras like mine, to expensive DSLR.

The whole thing is getting all blurred and confusing. Sure, the big productions use expensive stuff, and generally it can be relied on to look a whole lot better than the prosumer stuff. But the GoPro or the DSLR can be used in places where a big camera just will not fit. And when talented people go after the shot they want, they are not worrying about what camera they are using.

It aqppears that color grading can fix a multitude of sins. Low budget cameras can be combined with high dollar cameras with fantastic glass, and when used in the right places for the right reasons, it seems to work

Just so you know, I am using information gleaned from my suscription to Post Magazine. I read about this stuff all the time. I don't have first hand experience, obviously. But it seems to me that different cameras are being asked to succeed at different tasks.

There were a huge number of different cameras of all types used for "Dust to Glory", which was edited with Premiere Pro, by the way. Yet it came out great.

Which says to me, that event cameras can be used for production a lot easier than cameras designed for production can be used for events. And I think, but I am not certain, that is Jim's point. Or one of them, anyway. Just because cameras have things that event videographers want, doesn't mean that those features will get in the way oif a production team.

After all, I can shoot video with my camera just the way it is. But if you put great glass in front if it, and rig it with a focus puller, and connect HDMI via a wireless adapter to go to a monitor somewhere close by, and put a talented shooter behind the viewfinder, the video is going to look a lot better than what I could shoot, and none of the prosumer features will get in the way of the professional videographer.

artofzootography.com

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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Steve,

You make some great points.. and I'll get back to you when I can.

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LEGEND ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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Steve,

You make some great points.. and I'll get back to you when I can.

Dude, he's saying the same thing I am!

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Guide ,
Sep 17, 2013 Sep 17, 2013

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Well, Jim, you erased my nice answer so maybe you can just relay what I said in essence ... so the others know how I responded...

thanks

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LEGEND ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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Which says to me, that event cameras can be used for production a lot easier than cameras designed for production can be used for events.

This is my point.  So let's make them all suitable for event work, then everyone can buy and use the camera they desire.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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...you dont need 4 cameras to shoot a football play , if you use one camera and do the play 4 times...

omg

Still giggling.

For me, one of the highlights of the soliloquy, Act III Scene 57...

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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you warthog !  stop giggling..

its how stuff is made....well, " productions " ...whatever that word means here...

is like you say, " doggy, go get the newspaper ! "

that was the master.. wide shot.. dog gets newspaper...brings it to you...

take 2...

"doggy get the newspaper "

with medium lens...same result...

" doggy get newspaper "

tight ....close up ...( this is the 'beauty shot' for the doggy...make sure his hair is brushed, etc )

and you get the close up of him grabbing that newspaper .. you can even overcrank the camera a little bit ....increase the " love " factor...he is sooooo good at getting that paper !

edit it all together...( using slated shots for sound, or doing all wild track or whatever... ) and you got a BEAUTIFUL doggy getting newspaper clip !  YIPEE !

hehe.. cracks me up...but working with dogs is not so easy so I dont suggest you use animals or kids for your first production !

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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not only THAT.. but you would re-light to some extent for every take...like duh.....you go in tight you make the doggy look better and better ....its not documentary its "production" ...whatever the heck that means in this context

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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here's an example.. going back 2 years.. yes, really... 2 years ago... I did a test of the red camera when I was in ny...

I wanted to test the red shooting to card ( no hard drive )...so was limited to chip size and stuff...( red raw limits to card ).. and THEN on top of THAT I had mouse computer and cs3 ( just learning how to use premiere pro )...so had to convert the red stuff via redcine to mov file...( SD ).. which further hampered my efforts to really 'test' the camera...

But all that aside.. here's the main point...

If I was JIM I woulda sat my ass down and shot mom ( 80 years old ) coming outta house, going to car, getting in car and driving off...all in one shot...and call it " an event ".

In MY CASE I got mom ( 80 years old and sometimes cranky ) to do the SAME THING 11 times...and cut it together into TELLING A STORY...  ( mom didnt have to go back to the very beginning for every shot but she did have to go back to where I told her to go..so I could pick up the action with the different sizes etc... and she in fact DID get a bit of a big head ...all of a sudden she was the STAR of the show and got cranky )

neighbors and dogs and kids started to notice this stuff and cars and school buses came around the circle during the shoot...so things are not as simple as they look .... lots of pressure on the big movie star .. my mom

Anyway, here's the sequence.

http://rodneybauer.com/whiteboard8.htm

when JIM saw this 2 years ago, you know what he said ???  " When are you going to do some color correction ?? "...

I'm not kidding !

geez.. and now we're talking about THIS junk... his one shot vs my 11 shots... no sound recorded in camera ( everything is from a radio shack cassette recorder I bought to jingle keys, open doors, shut doors, shuffle feet through leaves, start car, etc... all wild sound ).. really...

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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now be honest, you warthogs... pay attention....if I didnt mention it was 11 shots would you have noticed ?? it is just simple and taken for granted. it is what it is...

ITS SIMPLE !

NOW look at what JIM has to offer.. check out his website or his samples of work...WHAT IS HE DOING ??

what do YOU want to do ???  its not rocket science....and guess what ??? YES ! ITS BEER THIRTY ! YIPEE !

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Guest
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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if I didnt mention it was 11 shots would you have noticed ??

I would...

By the way, when are you going to do some colour correction?

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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soon as I can figure out what a color corrected monitor looks like in my house... you got it...

well. thats not exactly true.. sorry fuzz..... i wont waste time on that.. the test was about other stuff...sorry...

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People's Champ ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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soon as I can figure out what a color corrected monitor looks like in my house... you got it...

It looks like a boatload of money, that's what it looks like.

There are places you can go to work on a calibrated monitor before you print a photograph. I wonder if the same thing is available, for a reasonable price, for video before you export to DVD?

artofzootography.com

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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fuzzy, do you know how heavy that stupid camera is ??? like, in the back seat of a small car in the summer ??? I was sweating bullets trying to focus on mom's hand from the back seat... it was ugly...

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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real life in the back seat of small car with stupid red camera....after taking light reading with meter...

" put your key in the ignition mom, so I can focus on your hand "

she puts key in

" okay, now take it out and get your hand out of the way,, put it down by your lap, and when I say " action" put the key in the ignition and turn the key to start the car, okay ?"

She takes key out and leaves her big right arm in frame.

" move your body to the left cause you're arm is in the way "

she moves left

" okay, that's good...hang on one second...I got sweat pouring down my face and can't see ....okay, Im ready..." action" "

she puts key in ignition but doesnt turn it.

" okay, cut... that was perfect.. but now take it out again and when I say 'action' put the key in and TURN IT ON ! OKAY ! ??? "

" WELLL.. YOu don't have to get SNIPPY ABOUT IT ! Just tell me what to DO ! .....Is this gonna go on much longer ? I am getting hungry."

" No, mom, this is almost the last shot... you're doing great....okay, let's start from where you are leaning left and you put the key in the ignition and turn the engine on...ready ???"

" ACTION "

She fumbles the key and almost drops the keyring...CUT...

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Guest
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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Lounge. Underwater Housing. 01.jpg

Lounge. Underwater Housing. 02.jpg

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Guide ,
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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whats up with that fuzzy? you got that air stuff ( looks like air stuff ) and also some sea stuff ??  very neat equipment .. gizmo stuff.. cant figure out what it is exactly...orange thing on left ballast for sea camera ? i love tech stuff... what is it ?? high tech vacume cleaner ?

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Guest
Sep 16, 2013 Sep 16, 2013

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Yep, that's a multicopter under the ceiling. But aside from it, there are two underwater housings in the images: a universal one currently stuffed with Red Epic in the upper image in front (weighs around 30 kg when completely empty), and that yellow thing with the orange gizmo attached (nope, that's not a ballast, that's an external monitor) in the lower image is the housing for SONY camera.

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