Blackmagic Design exceeds fans’ expectations by developing a high-end cinema camera the size of an ice-cream sandwich.
The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera features a good part of its big brother’s specifications, adapted to the digital era’s continuous need for miniaturization.
Following in the footsteps of last years’ lauded Blackmagic Cinema Camera
In 2012, at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) convention, the Australian company took the video recording industry by surprise, with the release of its very first video recording equipment, the Blackmagic Cinema Camera (BMCC). It made use of the newest digital cinema technology, capturing a super-wide dynamic range of 13 stops, with a 2.5K image sensor. The device was lunchbox size, to continue the food metaphor.
To this day, BMCC passes lens-men’s tests, which praise the image quality and the camera’s compatibility with both EF, and Passive Micro Four Thirds (MFT) mounts.
Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, great choice for high-end mobile cinematography
This year, at the same NAB event, in Las Vegas, the Australian company got online forums going wild with anticipation, just hours after exhibiting its new product.
The Pocket Cinema Camera has comparable specifications to its big brother, packed in a body sizing less than half of BMCC’s.
It is powered by a Super 16mm sensor that records full HD, at a resolution of 1920×1080 pixels. The sensor captures up to 30 frames per second, and also benefits from a 13 stop dynamic range. This wide dynamic span means lighting results are closer to the way our eyes reproduce images. Highlights don’t get blown out and shadows are clearer.
Due to the camera’s active Micro Four Thirds (MFT) mount system, Panasonic and Olympus MFT lenses are compatible, including the use of autofocus and image stabilization. Via third party adapters Super 16 cine-film lenses can also be attached, a huge plus for filmmakers who still use analog.
Data is saved on SD cards, in professional ProRes 422 (HQ) format, as well as 12-bit RAW lossless compressed CinemaDNG. Both are open-standard formats that can be imported in most image processing software.
Can take on any video capturing DSLR, at a competitive price
Even though the camera has integrated quality microphones, its stereo audio input comes in handy for more precise external audio options. For better monitoring, a mini HDMI video output is also present in the connectivity panel. The interface is accessed almost entirely via touch-screen.
Considering its extra-small size, The Pocket Cinema Camera will definitely need to be operated smoothly in order to achieve its purpose of feature-film quality shots. Thankfully, it will probably handle adaptation to an already broad range of camera stabilizers, released for DSLRs.
The camera is as wide as an iPhone 5, approximately two times as thick, benefiting from the same kind of mobility, and that’s about enough for comparisons to a smartphone. Even though it is slightly down a notch from BMCC, The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera blows all smartphones and most DSLRs out of the water, in term of video image quality, at a competitive price of $995.
The company is ready to take in preorders, after finally resolving last year’s distribution problem.
The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera will be available for shipping starting this July.