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Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera now supports Raw CinemaDNG

By dpreview staff on Nov 12, 2013 at 18:00 GMT

Blackmagic Design has announced its Camera 1.5 software update which adds new 12-bit Log CinemaDNG RAW recording to the Pocket Cinema Camera. The CinemaDNG Raw lossless compression works like a ZIP file where the Raw files are compressed during 1080p recording without the loss of any part of the image. This allows videographers to capture files with wider dynamic range for increased flexibility during color correction. 

According to a Blackmagic Design forum post, the lossless CinemaDNG RAW will work in DaVinci Resolve and with Adobe applications such as Photoshop and Lightroom. They are also recommending using Sandisk Extreme Pro 64GB SD card when recording.


Press Release:

Blackmagic Design Releases RAW Recording for Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera

InterBEE 2013, Chiba, Japan - November 12, 2013 - Blackmagic Design today released Blackmagic Camera 1.5 software which adds new 12-bit Log CinemaDNG RAW recording to the popular Pocket Cinema Camera. Blackmagic Camera 1.5 update is available now free of charge from the Blackmagic Design website.

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera can be seen at the Blackmagic Design InterBEE 2013 booth, Hall 7-7105.

The new Blackmagic Camera 1.5 software update adds CinemaDNG RAW file recording so customers can now capture super wide dynamic range in a single file. Wide dynamic range RAW image recording allows users to capture the brightest highlights and the darkest shadows simultaneously, capturing more of the scene than is possible with a regular video camera. CinemaDNG RAW files give users incredible freedom to be able to adjust the exposure manually during color correction with Davinci Resolve allowing more flexibility for incredible feature film look color grading.

The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera uses the open standard lossless compressed version of CinemaDNG RAW. CinemaDNG RAW lossless compression works in a similar way as a ZIP file where the RAW files are compressed during recording without the loss of any part of the image, so all images retain the same quality when they are decompressed. That means customers get back the mathematically perfect high quality RAW file image that they recorded.

High quality lossless CinemaDNG files are fully compatible with DaVinci Resolve 10 for seamless color grading and editing workflows. Lossless CinemaDNG RAW files are an open standard however not all video applications can open them, although those that can are increasing all the time. Customers can download the free Davinci Resolve Lite and transcode to popular editing formats like ProRes andDNxHD for compatibility and round tripping with editing software like Final Cut Pro 7®, Final Cut Pro X,® Avid® Media Composer® and Adobe Premier Pro®.

With this new Blackmagic Camera 1.5 update, the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera gives customers the choice of recording CinemaDNG RAW or high quality ProRes 422 (HQ) in video or film mode. Cinematographers can simply remove the SD card from the camera, insert it into a laptop or computer, open the file and immediately start editing or color correcting media in any location! Working directly from the SD card eliminates the time wasted copying files and dramatically speeds up post production workflows.

Featuring a high resolution 1080HD Super 16mm size sensor, wide 13 stops of dynamic range, MFT lens compatibility, LCD screen for camera menus, metadata entry and monitoring, standard connections and more in a compact size, the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera has everything users need to shoot high quality digital film images in even the most remote or difficult places.

"Adding CinemaDNG RAW recording to the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera is incredible," said Grant Petty, CEO, Blackmagic Design. "It's amazing that we are now able to record the highest quality RAW images on such small SD cards! We think customers are really going to enjoy the extended creative flexibility that color grading wide dynamic range RAW files will bring to their productions!"

About Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera

The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera has been designed with a dramatically smaller size that is less than an inch thick and can be held easily hand held. This compact design allows the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera to be used in more situations where a larger camera would not be practical. It’s so small that it can be used in situations in the field where a larger camera could be dangerous. The camera’s film look even allows personal video to be shot with the style and creativity of a motion picture film!

The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera features an industry standard Super 16 sensor size, so it’s perfect when using Super 16 cine lenses via MFT adapters, as the shooting experience is the same as using the same lens on a Super 16 film camera. The 13 stops of dynamic range look of the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera is almost identical to shooting on a professional Super 16 film camera. The Micro Four Thirds lenses offer a wide range of low cost lenses with amazing image quality, and they are compatible with mount adapters such as PL mounts for large lens and professional motion picture film rigs.

One of the most important features of the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera is its super wide dynamic range of 13 stops, allowing feature film quality images. A common mistake in the television industry is the assumption that more resolution means higher quality. Most cameras, even ones with higher than HD resolution, can produce "video" looking images that suffer from highlight and black clipping that limits details. Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera's wide dynamic range eliminates this problem and provides film quality with dramatically more detail retained in black and whites in the image. Once the shoot is complete, DaVinci Resolve Lite color correction software can be used to adjust images and take advantage of this extra range in the images.

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera has been designed as the perfect companion to editing software such as Final Cut Pro X and Avid Media Composer. Unlike other cameras, which require the use of custom video file formats, the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera includes absolutely no custom video file formats, and every file type included is open standard.

The built in large LCD display makes focus easy, and allows playback of captured files. Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera includes a built in microphone, as well as external jack based mic/line level balanced audio connections. When reviewing recorded clips, audio can be played through the built in speaker and routed through the headphone port or micro HDMI output. The HDMI output includes all camera data such as timecode, transport control, shutter angle, color temperature setting and ASA information overlaid in attractive anti aliased fonts.

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera Key Features:

  • High resolution 1080HD Super 16mm sized sensor with superior handling of image detail.
  • Super wide 13 stops of dynamic range allows capture of increased details for feature film look.
  • Compatible with extremely high quality Micro Four Thirds lenses. Compatible with other mounts via common third party adapters such as PL mount and Super 16 cine lenses.
  • Built in SD card allows long duration recording with easy to use media.
  • Open file formats compatible with popular NLE software such as ProRes 422 (HQ) and lossless compressed CinemaDNG 12 bit RAW. No custom file formats.
  • Standard connections including mini jack mic/line audio in, micro HDMI output for monitoring with camera status graphic overlay, headphone mini jack, LANC remote control and standard DC 12 power connection.
  • Built in LCD for camera settings via easy to use menus.
  • Supports 1080HD resolution capture in 23.98, 24, 25, 29.97 and 30 fps.
  • Compatible with DaVinci Resolve Lite color grading software.

Availability and Price

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera is available now for US$995 from Blackmagic Design resellers worldwide.

About Blackmagic Design

Blackmagic Design creates the world’s highest quality video editing products, digital film cameras, color correctors, video converters, video monitoring, routers, live production switchers, disk recorders, waveform monitors and film restoration software for the feature film, post production and television broadcast industries. Blackmagic Design’s DeckLink capture cards launched a revolution in quality and affordability, while the company’s Emmy™ award winning DaVinci color correction products have dominated the television and film industry since 1984. Blackmagic Design continues ground breaking innovations including stereoscopic 3D and 4K workflows. Founded by world leading post production editors and engineers, Blackmagic Design has offices in the USA, United Kingdom, Japan, Singapore, and Australia. For more information, please check www.blackmagicdesign.com.

Comments

Total comments: 31
duchamp
By duchamp (2 months ago)

Blackmagic ... Key Features: Built in LCD

Wow! A breakthrough I'd say.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (5 months ago)

Blackmagic? Of Australia?? Are they still in the digital camera business??? Really???? Why?????

1 upvote
slippedcurve623
By slippedcurve623 (5 months ago)

Hmm I wonder If this camera is as good as the 5d iii MGL raw in terms of image quality hmm

0 upvotes
Nukunukoo
By Nukunukoo (5 months ago)

Hooooray!

0 upvotes
matteusclement
By matteusclement (5 months ago)

I still don't understand if the Ninja with the BMPC gives you TRUE prores422.

Can anyone clarify?

0 upvotes
AshMills
By AshMills (5 months ago)

8bit output i believe over hdmi

0 upvotes
JayBratcher
By JayBratcher (5 months ago)

10 bit HDMI, same framerate that would be recorded internally. No visual difference between Ninja ProRes 422 and internal ProRes 422

1 upvote
Jogger
By Jogger (5 months ago)

Im not sure what the point is in making this type of camera so small. The external audio recorder would be the same size if not larger. And, the fiddly controls and mediocre battery life will turn people off. The cage/rig would be just as massive.

1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (5 months ago)

Why make a "Pocket Cinema Camera" large? Kind of defeats the purpose, wouldn't you say?

But no an external recorder like the Zoom H1 is only a fraction of the size of the BMPC, and besides an audio recorder is not a requirement as you can just use a shotgun or lavalier mic. Less work syncing audio in post.

Extra batteries are only $14 (most camera brand batteries are 50) and there are, AFAIK larger battery packs available.

A rig can be as small as the tiny Zacuto target shooter or Edelkrone pocket rig, and we should see tons of custom cages made specifically for this camera. They won't be any larger than needed to protect the body and provide a few mounting holes for accessories.

5 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (5 months ago)

No matter how we slice it, this particular camera is seriously overpriced at $1,000. For starters, you would need to knock off 500 bucks just for the name of the manufacturer.

0 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (5 months ago)

I hope Black Magic continues to push the envelope of what can be done. However, I am afraid that a few of their missteps at launch time have caused too many customers to go back to the tried and true cameras.

1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (5 months ago)

You said it -- why experiment with an unknown entity that has bungled so many things, when there are major names out there that can deliver superior products and competitive prices?

0 upvotes
CameraLabTester
By CameraLabTester (5 months ago)

"Is that a Blockbuster in your pocket?"

Blair Witch is so 1999...

.

2 upvotes
SteveNunez
By SteveNunez (5 months ago)

It should be noted to capture RAW video the camera MUST use SD cards that are rated at 95/mbps and faster of only which the Sandisk Extreme Pro 64GB is recommended!

1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (5 months ago)

Good to know. Or hopefully you record CinemaDNG RAW directly to an Atomos Ninja with a similar set up to this guy. That's probably the way to go.

Black Magic Pocket Camera + Atomos Ninja

https://vimeo.com/72675168

Comment edited 54 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
GodSpeaks
By GodSpeaks (5 months ago)

Yes, BlackMagic has told me that the data rate for raw is in excess of 45MB/s (that's >360Mbps).

The Sandisk Extreme (45MB/s) card I use for ProRes does NOT work for RAW... unfortunately.

0 upvotes
stevens37y
By stevens37y (5 months ago)

There is a 95/95MBs its price is about 2x of the 45/45MBs.

0 upvotes
JayBratcher
By JayBratcher (5 months ago)

That's not entirely true - it seems that the newer Extreme cards rated at 80 MB/sec also work, at least in my limited testing (no more than about 4 minutes of continuous video so far, but no dropped frames). I'm still not 100% sure I would recommend purchasing these and expect to record raw, but if you already have them, it's worth a try...

0 upvotes
AshMills
By AshMills (5 months ago)

You cannot output cinema dng over hdmi.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (5 months ago)

RAW is so passe, when Sony has got these amazing new super high bitrate codecs that beat all the others by a mile.

0 upvotes
jkoch2
By jkoch2 (5 months ago)

The "pocket" appellative merits clarification. The camera is small, but not pocketable, but is suitable mainly for pros with lots of money and batteries in their pockets. The camera body is only a fraction of what one must buy to make proper use. People without time or incentive to edit h.264 MOV or AVCHD video won't need ProRes or CinemaDNG any more than a kid on the lap of Kris Kringle (or Edmund Gwenn) will need a real locomotive or a B-29.

It is possible to admire this camera, as one might admire an RJ Corman GG10B, without having any impulse to buy one.

Folks anxious to capture or edit CinemaDNG, and who have the requisite equipment, time, and fine eye to take advantage, may be disappointed when the fruits of their labors fail to register in the 3mbps 480p version most people actually see, or the absence of any incremental pricing they'll be able to pass on to clients to cover the costs.

Comment edited 6 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
ecm
By ecm (5 months ago)

Agree with you - a very specialized piece of equipment. Still, it's a very interesting object in and of itself - a lot like the locomotives and B-29s you mentioned. I've got to wonder what it's being used for, and by whom....

0 upvotes
Archiver
By Archiver (5 months ago)

The BMPCC is already on huge backorder around the world. The potential to shoot 12-13 stops of dynamic range footage at around $1000 is immense for the indie film making crowd, as well as wedding and event shooters.

The closest non-Blackmagic camera that shoots at that dynamic range is the Canon C100 with the Atomos Ninja capturing ProRes at seven times the cost. Accessories to make it a viable cinema camera will increase the price, but still nowhere near the level of competing cameras.

Bigger budget productions will use these for crash cams and in-car cams, in places where normal cine cameras cannot fit. Just as the 5D Mark II has been used as a crash cam in movies like Iron Man, the BMPCC will likewise be used.

This is NOT a consumer camera and was. It's intended for the indie film making market, the serious enthusiast market, for documentary film makers who want this image quality in a small package, and big productions that can afford a dozen or more for crash cams.

4 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (5 months ago)

Totally disagree, as you need no more extra equipment with the Pocket Cinema Camera than you do with a HDSLR camera.

You don't think HDSLR video shooters have oodles of batteries, shot gun mics, sliders, fluid heads, matte boxes, et al? There is no difference. To do video properly on either an DSLR or BMPC camera you need some extra gear. But there is nothing stopping you from using the Black Magic Pocket cam with a small rig or handheld run and gun style. Nothing at all.

ProRes is absolutely trivial to edit, no more difficult than h.264 as all the popular editors like Final Cut support it. It's just less compressed, no big deal. And RAW, the huge benefits in shooting RAW come in post with color grading and in increased dynamic range just like with a still camera. Do the challenges of RAW mean people should pass on the BMPC? Of course not. It's $995 and batteries are $14 but the IQ and capabilities for that price were virtually non-existent before it.

9 upvotes
ecm
By ecm (5 months ago)

@archiver:
"and big productions that can afford a dozen or more for crash cams." - which may explain why it's on backorder.... :)

Thanks for the info.

0 upvotes
Michael Ma
By Michael Ma (5 months ago)

I held out for this camera as long as I could. But I realized that I needed a camera with a reliable autofocus and a robust battery. I got the GH3, and although I am content with my purchase, the image quality of the video of the bmpcc is mind-blowing. The tragedy is that they have the hardware, but they are lacking..what seems to be decades in all the minor stuff, a lot of it with firmware.

2 upvotes
Archiver
By Archiver (5 months ago)

@Michael Ma - I love my GH3 and it has totally replaced my 5D Mark II for video. I also have a BMPCC on order (come on, Blackmagic, hurry it up!) which I intend to use for 'hero shots' of nature and other things that would benefit from the extra dynamic range and colour depth, and locked down on a tripod or slider. As a complementary 'static' cam to the run and gun GH3, I think the BMPCC will be super.

0 upvotes
GodSpeaks
By GodSpeaks (5 months ago)

"Folks anxious to capture or edit CinemaDNG, and who have the requisite equipment, time, and fine eye to take advantage, may be disappointed when the fruits of their labors fail to register in the 3mbps 480p version most people actually see"

It's no so much about the final product, but about the flexability while editing to achieve the final product.

0 upvotes
stevens37y
By stevens37y (5 months ago)

For RAW you need grading/coloring also.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (5 months ago)

Blackmagic cameras are on perpetual "backorder" -- because they are supposed to be made by a totally clueless camera maker (Blackmagic of Australia) that one simply cannot trust any more. They had their chance once upon a time -- and blew it, badly.

I have about 4 products from Blackmagic, and 3 of them are just great, but I would NEVER buy one of their troublesome cameras for all the tea in China.

"12 to 13 stops of dynamic range" -- out of a $1,000 experimental camera? Why do people fall for such a bull, I wonder?

Moving on, you do not need to shoot weddings in RAW, you know. You really don't.

0 upvotes
JayBratcher
By JayBratcher (5 months ago)

I think Francis may be bitter - but I am also guessing he has never used this camera, and has no idea what he is talking about...

1 upvote
Total comments: 31