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Blackmagic announces Pocket Cinema Camera and Production Camera 4K


April 9, 2013

Blackmagic has expanded its line of cinema cameras with new low and high-end models

Blackmagic has expanded its line of cinema cameras with new low and high-end models

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Blackmagic Design has announced two new cameras at the 2013 National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show, providing both low and high-end alternatives to the popular Digital Cinema Camera it launched at last year's event. The Production Camera 4K is the beefier of the two devices and boasts some compelling features including an EF compatible lens mount, a Super 35 sensor, as well as 4K support. The Pocket Cinema Camera packs a Full HD Super 16 sensor into its slim magnesium alloy body, and offers some impressive functionality at a very competitive price point.

Blackmagic created a bit of a stir at NAB 2012 when the Digital Cinema Camera was unveiled – a US$2,995 device that offered some specs you'd expect to find on some much pricier devices. The new additions to the company's range of cinema cameras look to continue that value-for-money trend, with the lower-end Pocket Cinema Camera coming in at just $995.

The Pocket Cinema Camera, which is a less than an inch thick, features a Super 16 mm sized 1080HD sensor, 13 stops of dynamic range and Micro Four Thirds (MFT) lens compatibility. It has a 3.5-inch, 800 x 480 resolution LCD panel next to a four-way menu controller, both a built-in stereo microphone (though there's also a 3.5 mm input jack) and an integrated mono speaker, and features micro HDMI and mini USB ports. Like the Cinema Camera, the Pocket doesn't use custom video file formats, but uses open standard file types compatible with popular NLE software.

While the Pocket allows for 1080p HD recording at up to 30 fps, the more expensive Production Camera 4K will shoot high quality compressed CinemaDNG RAW and ProRes 422 files in 4K (3840 x 2160 pixel) resolution. The device, which comes in at $3,995, is fitted with an EF compatible lens mount, a professional global shutter and a larger Super 35 mm sized sensor.

The device records 4K video directly to a removable 2.5-inch SSD, meaning that you can connect it to your computer at the end of a shoot and edit straight from the drive. There's also a built-in Thunderbolt port and UltraScope software, allowing for real-time waveform monitoring, two analog audio inputs, and SDI video and audio out. As with the Digital Cinema Camera, the back of the device sports a 5-inch, 800 x 480 resolution capacitive touchscreen.

The Production Camera 4K is very well equipped for its price point. The Pocket Cinema Camera is a more modest offering than its big brothers, but its sub-$1000 price tag is likely to make it an appealing offering to budding film makers.

Both the Pocket Cinema Camera and the Production Camera 4K will be available for purchase worldwide this July.

Source: Blackmagic

About the Author
Chris Wood Chris specializes in mobile technology for Gizmag, but also likes to dabble in the latest gaming gadgets. He has a degree in Politics and Ancient History from the University of Exeter, and lives in Gloucestershire, UK. In his spare time you might find him playing music, following a variety of sports or binge watching Game of Thrones. All articles by Chris Wood

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Chris Keane

When the picture is converted to digital in the 4K camera, do they all use the same process?

I find that HD TV presentations have an unrealistic level of surface light reflection. Everything is shiny and bright. The first HD presentation I saw creeped me out and I couldn't work out why. So after thinking about it I could see that it was not the same as real life. It was more vibrant. Totally unrealistic.

Sure it looks great, and people who buy the TV's say "wow that looks great" without understanding that the picture they are looking at is a digital representation of an analogue signal, and not natural. Totally understandable that the companies making these TV's would want to do this to help sell the new TV's.

Now what happens if you watch a lot of it and then you stop and go to a friends house. You feal depressed but you can't put your finger on why. Everything is dull and lack luster. You go home watch more HD TV and you feal ok then you go out again and it's worse. You become a shut in and have no idea why this is happening as no one has warned you about he negative effects of prolonged exposure to a picture that has a shine greater than real life.

The thing is standard definition looks perfectly OK to me so I don't see the need to enhance the picture other than sell more product.

Does the new 4K process also do this???

I am quite concerned that the manufacturers are not warning people. I know some TV manufacturers say this is not done that it is actually the same but it appears to me that it is not.

Has anyone else noticed this at all? It would be very easy for it to go un-noticed.


"It was more vibrant. Totally unrealistic." So is the genuine Technicolor film process.

IIRC, the last film to use the original Technicolor process was "Pearl Harbor".

"The Aviator" used digitally processed simulations of various color film processes, each contemporary with the time periods represented in the movie.

Gregg Eshelman
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