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2K BlackMagic Pocket Cinema Camera, active m43, $995
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  • Oh got it. I did not notice that the same settings do not apply tint to the ProRes material. Technically it should if it applies a white balance change to the ProRes as well?

    Might have to ask about that one. I haven't shot as much ProRes as RAW.

  • Okay here is a small white balance with the LUT to lean to a cooler tint - Nothing fancy really. I am not a colorist guys so take it for what it is. Didn't white balance in firstlight this by the way - just the LUT which may or may not work on everything. I did go deeper in Speedgrade to deal with the Highlights, mid tones and secondaries so there is some stuff under the hood. If anything I think the shots from these cams require individual shot adjustment. It wasn't just the colour temperature required to get it right but the tint as well and some shots seem to drift into cyan or magenta at a low level. With such fine adjustment required it may go to show that getting to know a good colorist is a good investment to make these cams shine. Like I said - finding a pure white seems a major challenge for me and that blue just stays put or fades into brown - hard to find a sweet spot like a Sony where everything looks pristine and white. All the same - exciting times ahead

    Here is one of the cleaner BMCC shoots I have seen. Wedding shot with 5D MK III as well. Real test of figuring out which is which but your average Joe won't care. Great showcase for the cam I reckon.

    Auckland In My Pocket - Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera Original.jpg
    1920 x 1080 - 305K
    Auckland In My Pocket - Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera LUT.jpg
    1920 x 1080 - 313K
  • @itimjim Keep in mind there are still limitations to digital cams with 13+ stops of DR. It's not yet film where the highlights roll off soooooo nicely and you are almost never worried about them. They roll off better than DSLRs, but not like film.

    My 5 stop zone bleeding into 7 stops on DSLRs changes to a 7 stop zone bleeding into 9 stops when shooting on them - leaving the outer zones for blacks and blown out whites. Only because even though there's still detail in those outer zones, I don't want to sit there worrying about them cuz i can push them to the outer boundaries with more control in post. I only ever use them when I have no other choice. Like in outdoor scenes where there's just not enough firepower to do what I wanna do.

    Also keep in mind that 16:1 is a pretty contrasty look and it's only a difference of 4 stops. The characters in "Blade Runner" are mostly exposed with a 16:1 contrast, and the full frame's DR is around 256:1 which is a difference of 8 stops. What you gain with these newer cams with all the DR is falloff. And that's what I love about them, the gradation of the light changes as they fall across objects is so smooth.

    But @danyyyel is right: those with wide DR in their cams and no idea how to paint with light, will still shoot shit. It requires almost no thought or talent to get some really decent looking images out of the RED and Alexa and these new BMD cams. And for most viewers who aren't savvy, it's good enough. They won't care. I'll know it's shit. You'll know. Everyone with an eye for beauty in photography will know. but the general audience won't give a flying fuck. And to those of us that really have a passion for this stuff, it's frustrating and sad.

    Soon every cam will have 13+ stops and RAW - so what's it gonna matter? A level playing field. Then you'll really need to know how to paint with light and how to compose.... to impress us image geeks. But no one else will really care. How sad :(

  • CaptainHook over at BMCUSER has been playing with the pocket cam for "a week or so"

    this camera has the same aesthetics as the BMCC with less jello ; ) and I can't wait

    if you haven't checked out captainHook's LUT for resolve it's free and really nice.

  • @kholi I hope I didn't offend you with the term autoshit! It was a bit harsh, I more meant just standard stuff people are doing in Davinci to get the same look. I have seen different looking footage out of BM cameras but most of it does look the same. Not saying it's bad.

    On another note, if anyone has seen Gangster Squad, first, I'm sorry. Second, as soon as the first image came up, all I could think about was how much it looks like all the BMCC footage. It had that same, brown-blue tint to everything. Just thought it was funny that the discussion came up about this look and how the exact same look is in that movie!

    @HenryO Cool man, took the cast right out of it.

  • @gravitemediagroup There is no evidence that the jello is better than the BMCC. In fact I would expect it to be more of a problem all things equal due to the smaller sensor. The above clip was on sticks and glidecam.

  • What are you talking about? Smaller sensors = faster readout = less rolling shutter. It´s not "magnified" like optical properties of lenses. I think even John Brawley wrote something about it in his first tests.

  • The RS is the same, but it often to me seems worse, because the form factor of the camera being more difficult to hand hold. A small and light weight camera which has less mass tends to be inherently more jittery.


  • @vicharris

    No nah man not at all. Now that we've met I can kinda hear your tone, I know you're not being offensive haha. A lot of us really did notice the "cast" that the image had, which was why that first thread on BMCuser exists. Problem is that there are many factors that attribute to it. But, it's actually not a big deal.

    There are all types of looks you can get from the camera, starting with acquiring the image. Underexposing, overexposing, etc. It's just mostly a matter of (being repetitious here) balancing things first. And, sometimes? I like the grey-blue-shadow-cast-type-deal that goes on. It works for some things.

    I'm sure more people will create LUTs for the camera as they become more popular, when you guys jump into resolve you'll have a few to start with already so that's really cool. X_X Early Adopters not so much.

    Oh and on Cap'n Hook's LUT, a lot of people are using it so yeah, that's what a LUT will do. Things will look similar. It's like when everyone shoots with a Nostalgic profile on a GH2 or Technocolor on 5D. I think all of us can spot each of these cameras for the most part... BV1 and BPC (then B4K) shouldn't be much different, it has its own vibe.

    Or maybe I'm just prattlin. xD Carry on.

  • @johnbrawley - ok, thanks for clarification on the issue!

  • @RRRR yeah by saying small sensor I was talking about FOV without getting into the FOV discussion, it's tougher to get wide basically. I'm not disagreeing with JB on the form factor but the fact your not as easily going to get wide to me is the other big reason why RS needs taming on the Pocket cam. Stabilized lenses will be your friend hand held.

  • @jimmykorea

    I get what you are saying!

    In my experience RS is more tricky on wide lenses than it is on longer ones. Reason: on longer lenses you can normally spot immediately (with no particular monitoring) wether the shot is going to work or not, but on a wide lens you can end up in a world of problems with small vibrations.. / micro-jitter that can´t be cleaned up later. I´ve experienced this with tracking shots where there has been slight bumps in the tracks, f.i..

    If you are shooting hand-held (or on a glide/steadycam) then wide/long makes no difference for RS (up until a certain point, it gets really difficult to keep a long tele steady) as long as you are steady in your overall movements, IMO. Basically the overall movements disguise any RS issues.

    Lens stabilization can be extremely useful but it can also be a PITA, for instance if you are walking around a lot and the stabilization action becomes apparent in the footage (rather than a controlled hand-held look). However, with really good stabilization that is rarely an issue - you get a sort of forced steady-cam look.

  • @gameb - Hmmm, not sure about expensive EVFs for a $1k camera, but I plan on purchasing and using a sunshade for run and gun during the day... probably this if it I can fit it on the pocket cam body:

  • @wilbo not mocking but basically you will look like your walking around with just a sunshade.

    Actually I think I heard possibly JB mention the screen is far better in bright light than the BMCC. I do hope that's the case..

  • The screen is matte. It's designed to have a very good visibility under bright sunlight.

  • @itimjim I totally agree with everything you said. And right, RAW certainly won't turn someone into a master craftsman. Look at the results @shian has achieved with our lovely GH2 (by the way...8bit...). Anyway, as it was said above, all cameras have their "personal" look/tone. And in any case, if someone wanna shoot RAW with BMPCC (or other RAW camera), he doesn't give a shit about this personal look, he will be (and it's a MUST) grading his shots 100% and it's very simple to get rid of any color/tone you don't like during post.

    All I care about with BMPCC is: dynamic range, correct initial exposure during the shots I made (because even with RAW you can screw it up and post won't help you that much), details I can see (or I can pull out duting post) and that's it!

    If someone can't shoot (make correct/beautiful shots), he'll screw it up even with Alexa... In Russia we got a saying - If a man is an idiot, this is for a long time... :-)

  • @jimmykorea - Haha, I won't mind how I look. I just want to see the screen clearly in the glare of a sunny day. Maybe it won't need it. We'll see.

  • On a more serious point, I wonder if some might run into the issue of not looking professional if you use a pocket cam for any paid gig. Even a wedding your going to get people annoyed they paid for a guy with a point and shoot? personally It's not an issue for what I'm going to use it for but it may be an issue for some , even if its a superficial issue.

  • @jimmykorea Good point. I actually raised this point with my wife only on Saturday. I recently shot a wedding for a friend on my GH2 and I could see that people were not really taking me too seriously as It looked like I was just carrying around my "photo" camera and using the video mode to get a few clips, its only when they see the finished result they realize the power of the DSLR's.

    I drove past a wedding on Saturday and saw this guy outside with a huge camcorder on his shoulder with a big mic on he looked the part and I bet everyone took him seriously when he turned up with that....I bet his footage turns out to garbage...

    In 12 months time am I going to turn up to weddings with an iphone sized BMPCC camera on top of a monopod??..Thats my plan but as mentioned, the perception with this will be even worse than that had when using a GH2...perception I guess that will only change with time, reputation and familiarity of the product.

  • @jimmykorea serious point indeed! I was working for a client for a commercial with a GoPro H3 last month. It was no problem - because we did only a few shots we couldn't have done with the C300. I think it's the same with the BMDPCC. It will be no problem getting well paid for your work if you will use as a B-Cam - or getting low budget fee for A Cam shots.

  • my work has all come from reputation, and referrals where they have seen a clip and want the same. once in a while they will ask what I shoot on, I say dslr because no one knows lumix, its then left up to them if they want to proceed. I have yet to feel negativity towards it. I dont see things changing with the BMPCC, well for me anyways. then again im not shooting big budget productions.

  • I regularly film multi-cam concert footage and on some jobs, the ones with the least informed clients, I usually take along an old 1980s Panasonic M7 VHS Camcorder I picked up for $50 on eBay. It's about the size of an old BetaCam but it makes those 'bigger is better' clients feel more comfortable and acts as a 'sacrificial lamb' for any light fingered types that might have an eye on my gear. It still amazes me how they think (or don't) that's where all the good shots come from that are really acquired with GH2s or Q3HDs .

    In other news... I'm off to SMPTE 2013 in Sydney Australia tomorrow, Blackmagic have one of the largest stands in the exhibition so I am hoping to get a close up/hands on look at the BMPCC... If any of you have any questions (APART FROM THE OBVIOUS) let me know and I'll see if I can get any answers.

  • @shian

    Then you'll really need to know how to paint with light and how to compose.... to impress us image geeks. But no one else will really care. How sad :(

    I'd argue that this has always been an unresolved dilemma in the no- and low-budget world, which seems to dog everyone who gives a s*** about the visual qualities of a movie: even assuming you have a DP who knows what he's doing, and has the means to do what he wants, how much time can reasonably be spent on production value for no-name festival circuit movies which sell almost exclusively on their stories, novelty and appeal to festival culture?

    Is beautiful image making time well-spent, even assuming the writer/director knows the difference and has any visual imagination, which is usually not the case (just look at the typical Amerindie production)? And at what point is enough enough since, no matter what you do, it's never going to look like Reds or The Godfather, on these kinds of budgets.

    OTOH, almost all low-budget stuff, from $5K and up, now has at least decent visual quality if the shooter had the sense to keep the highlights under control and get a proper exposure, which wasn't at all the case in the mini-DV era.

  • So I decided to pull the trigger today and preorder the Pocket Camera. I called up B&H just to ask a few questions, and the guy told me if I pre-ordered it now I would probably get it the same time everyone else gets the preorders (around July 25th). I thought I would be waiting months, so I decided on the spot to pull my credit card out and place the order.

    I have a feeling I will still be waiting, but the guy acted like they were coming this week and they had enough to cover preorders plus more.

    Now I'm not sure if I should sell or keep my gh2.

  • Now I'm not sure if I should sell or keep my gh2.


    I gave mine to my wife to use. :)