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Blackmagic Design's Cinema Camera Now Available for Pre-order - What Will the Barebones Cost You?

04.20.12 @ 8:34PM Tags : , , , ,

It seems like it was just yesterday that Blackmagic Design’s Cinema Camera was announced — and now it is available for pre-order!  As expected, the camera body will run you $2,995, and the projected availability is July 30.  So how much will you have to spend to get this thing bare-bones hand-held shoot-ready?  And what effect will the Super16-ish sized sensor have on your existing lenses?  Let’s see:

Lenses  and Crop Factor / Focal Length Magnifier

The nice thing about this camera, as previously detailed, is that it will accept EF/ZE mount lenses — so if you have that Canon-EF and Zeiss-ZE glass, or EF mount adapters, you’ll be able to save yourself some money.  Otherwise, you can approach it just like shopping for DSLR lenses.

The BmD CC's Super16-ish *or 4/3rd-ish* sensor (in red) makes a big difference in the kind of lenses you'll use

Using a Super16-ish (or Micro 4/3rd-ish) active sensor area of 15.6mm x 8.8mm, you’ll have to re-calibrate your perceptions with regards to different focal lengths (i.e the 35mm lens you’ve used on your 7D will have a smaller viewing angle on the Blackmagic).  By my calculations, the “crop factor” or “focal length magnifier” for the Blackmagic Digital Cinema camera’s active sensor area will be 2.4 relative to a full frame sensor camera like the 5D (or 1.5 relative to the APS-C sensor on a 7D/t2i).

So, lets say you want the viewing angle you get from a 50-55mm lens on a full frame camera like the Canon 5DmkIII.  On the Canon 7D/t2i, you would need a 30-35mm lens.  On the BlackMagic, you would need a 20-25mm lens.  Something to consider if you are using existing lenses or thinking of buying new ones.  With a 2.4 crop factor/FLM, folks are going to need to some very wide lenses to achieve wider angles, at which point some of those wide Tokina lenses start looking pretty attractive.  Just how wide can you get before distortion becomes an issue?  I’m sure it will depend on the quality of the glass, and the area of the image.  It’ll be interesting to see just what folks find out once they start shooting.


Unless you’re outputting to an external recorder, you’ll need to buy a compatible SSD (solid state drive) for on-board recording.  B&H has a few suggestions (when you click on “Accessories” and “Media”), just remember it will need to be in a Mac OS Extended format (you can do the formatting on a Mac or through software like Mediafour MacDrive on a PC).  Looking at the prices, it looks like you’ll have to put down between $280 and $965 for something between 256GB and 480GB.  You can go for smaller drives, but considering that shooting in RAW at 24fps will get you 30 minutes on a 256 GB drive, I don’t see why you would.

Ooh, handles

Hand holding…

Wondering about that nifty handle thing-a-majig?  You can get it for $181 dollars.  I could see that being helpful, although I’d probably go for something shoulder mounted if I was really needing to do something handheld.

Barebones Price

So, assuming you buy one prime lens, a basic 256 GB drive, and (what the heck) the handles.  You’ll have something you can shoot with for between $4500 and $5000.  Not bad!  But what’s even nicer, is that for folks who already have DSLR rigs and lenses, they should be able to knock that down to the price of the body and SSD (so around $3300-$4000 depending on how much storage you get).  Who would have thought we’d have a ready to shoot 2.5K raw shooting camera in that range?

Are you planning on buying it?  What do you consider a barebones rig?  What would it cost you?  Are you debating between this camera and a 5dMkIII or D800?

[*Update*:  I decided to simplify and clarify the section on lenses/crop factors -- some folks were getting lost in the jumps from the 7D to 5D, back down to BMD CC.  Understandably so!  (It makes more sense to go from largest to smallest.)  Also -- updated the sensor comparison image.  As Marco points out in the comments, one could easily call it "4/3"-ish!  But I like Super16-ish :) ]

Related Posts

  1. Hands-On With the 2.5K Blackmagic Design Cinema Camera
  2. BlackMagic Design's Cinema Camera is a 2.5K RAW Shooter with Built-in Monitor and Recorder for $3K
  3. NAB Roundup: Monitor/Field Recorders from Atomos, Sound Devices, Convergent Design, and Blackmagic


We’re all here for the same reason: to better ourselves as writers, directors, cinematographers, producers, photographers... whatever our creative pursuit. Criticism is valuable as long as it is constructive, but personal attacks are grounds for deletion; you don't have to agree with us to learn something. We’re all here to help each other, so thank you for adding to the conversation!

Description image 178 COMMENTS

  • Hi everyone, I though that maybe guys from Blackmagic will read this , so here´s what I want to say about this cam:

    First I want to say I´m very happy to see a camera in DSLR price range that shoots raw video , but as we all know.. there is no such thing like a best camera .. every camera is good in specific way .. and also as this camera is in one way revolutionary… in second way it has also its flaws whitch can dissapear till the cam starts shipping..
    As I´m very interested in this cam.. I´ll write some suggestions that would probably force guys like me to buy it this year…

    1. first thing is about crop factor/dof..
    yes I would like to have S35mm senzor or nothing smaller than GH2 but the more I shoot the more I think that it´s more important to have subject in focus than out of focus.. a 2,4x crop is not that bad many of you are now thinking about how to get wide shot on this cam with your asp-c or FF canon lenses.. but I think Blackmagic should seriously think about making a m4/3 mount .. remember the crop factor is 2x so your wideangle pannasonic 7-14mm (14-28 in 35mm) will be (17-34mm in 35mm) is that wide enought for you? I think it should be more than enough!
    next dof.. I see that many of indies like to shoot wide open on their 5D´s because it´s cool , but I think that good f-stops for good focusing on full frame (picture full frame) are from f4-f8 .. only kids are hunting with f1.8 on 5D because it looks cool.. so and what about GH2? I want the same dof as 5D .. so I´ll probably shoot with fast primes f2-2,8 prime will give me same dof as f4-f5,6 so if a m4/3 primes would have original mount on this cam.. you can use
    wide lenses: panasonic 7-14/ olympus 9-18 / olympus 12mm f2 / noktor 12mm f1.6
    mid-telephoto primes or zooms: panasonic 14mm f2.5/ nokton 17,5mm f0.95/ panasonic 20mm f1.7/ panasonic-leica 25mm f1.4/nokton 25mm f0.95/ panasonic 14-140mm
    portrait lenses: olympus 45mm f1.8
    m4/3 system solves the wideangle lenses problem..and also the dof should not be problem because of the fast lenses.. you don´t need to stop down those lenses ! except nokton and noktor they are all sharp wide open!

    2. next thing is for me resolution and codecs
    uncompressed raw is nice thing..but many of us doesn´t like a situation where after 30min I have full 256gb ssd
    even red epic has compression options , so adding a 2:1/ 3:1/ 5:1 raw compression would be verry welcomed solution for more recording time .. and also for faster frame rates.. slowmotion is a must have feature so I would like to have 1080/50p raw with compression 2:1 or 2,5:1 .. i would like to see this function also on prores and DNxHD codec .. I think this would be a big plus for this camera.. 1080/50p is now a standard for me and even with a little compression (which would be still better than epic´s 3:1 compression) footage would be still a lot gradable and useable for pro work.. people would get more frame rates, more space more options .. they could choose what they need more.. to push footage in post or to have more space and fps

    So that´s my thinking about this little miracle..i think m4/3 mount is the best solution for this camera because of the similar senzor size.. add overcranking options for slowmotion in 1080p or 2,5k and people will love you..
    I really want to buy this camera but these two things are keeping my hands out from it .. I think it´s nothing impossible for you guys and I hope you will think about it .. Some things that I would also like to see are electronic nd filter and battery grip for this baby , or some kind of dslr grip that would get this little box an ergonomic feel in hand .. So guys pleas think about it.. I love resolve.. I want to give you my money but this camera needs few more tweaks to be perfect .. I´m wishing you the best and I apologize for my english !

    • These flaws are the reason why they can make it that cheap.

      • sorry but I think giving a new mount option and a firmware update that gives more fps and compression is nothing impossible for a company that works with codecs and software

        • More fps and compression needs more power. It’s hardware, not firmware.

        • Lliam Worthington on 04.21.12 @ 8:01AM

          Yes i will buy one and I will enjoy the benefits of the s35 in regards to focus. 26mm with my Tokina 11-16 will be fine. It’s distortion is pretty damn good. Wanting to scrap the power of RAW so you can save a little money on media is a crazy trade off and a very strange way to view a camera which is so revolutionary BECAUSE it offers raw. M4/3 ok, I get it. But to then expect something already so incredibly disruptive in price and specs to have the slow motion, for less than the price of a 5D? People are insane.

          • shaun wilson on 04.21.12 @ 8:26AM

            Im thinking of this camera, and the way Im gonna shoot on it, as a hybrid 16mm camera but definitely not expecting a 35mm DSLR.

  • I read a lot about sensor sizes. Please explain me. The Alexa uses a super 35 mm sensor. Output: 1080p. This BM camera has a super 16mm sensor. Output 2,5. I don’t understand. Is the image of the Alexa downscaled? Why doesnt BM uses bigger sensors?

    • The Alexa has a 3.5k sensor and debayers to 1080P in camera, the BM camera has a 4/3″, 2.5k sensor which can be recorded raw but demosaics to just under HD resolution.

  • shaun wilson on 04.21.12 @ 8:21AM

    One aspect I like about this camera is that its made by a software company, meaning if you can work around the limitations – sensor size, need of a V-Lock battery rig to run in the field, big ass storage issues (I can live with this)- the added plus is that there are established workflow options included in the package – especially no proprietary codecs to deal with, an industry standard software to grade/process, and if its anything like their software, the camera will (hoping here) actually “work”.

    And… we didn’t get our hopes up by a company that promises us amazing technology who then takes years to finally release it and at 6 times the original price (3k for 3K ring a bell?).

    • I hope there will be some update so my 27 iMac can work with resolve. For the moment it’s not compatible and keeps crashing my computer.

      • shaun wilson on 04.21.12 @ 9:18AM

        Whats the issue? Might be able to help.

        • Well I can open the software but when i’m loading anything it crashes (not only the soft, everything).
          I’ve read the 2009 iMac card is not compatible with resolve lite.

          • Resolve needs nVidia hardware to run. Probably want nothing less than a 560.

          • Just download the Lite version and test it for yourself, that’s the easiest way. :)

          • uh?

          • Resolve WILL run on an iMac. I’m doing it right now. however, its possible your older machine may not. you should check that you have current / correct versions of everything. is does work *IF* the config is correct

          • I use Resolve lite on a 2009 iMac 24″ sometimes (just before stupid Apple released the 27″ for the same price… yeah), and it runs perfectly. It doesn’t render what I see though. The grade always renders quite a bit darker. Anyway, that’s an nVidia GT 130 512mb (quit laughing at me). Resolve is very video card picky, and if you got the Radeon in your ’09 27″ that’s probably the reason.

  • For all the belly aching, either it works for you or it doesn’t. If Raw is attractive to you, touch screen with meta data, Resolve color correction software with the nodes(beautiful feature), then lets Rock n’ Roll. (keep in mind the software alone is a little under $1000) This camera is a B and C camera or an A camera for those wanting to shoot a film worth putting on a big screen for a festival or something.
    FYI, Although these are film movies, check out link for films recorded in Super 16 format.

  • Since the folks from my local equipment rental already offer 5Ds and 7Ds for rent and quickly and thouroughly upgrade their stock (the C500 already ordered, and 5D Mark III just in), I suppose that they will have the BlackMagic for rent in about August. I’ll have a first hands-on tests and probably rent it for myself for a day of test shooting, also to get a feeling of the crop factor and probably have some first thoughts about a workflow with the material, as I have never worked with RAW format on video. I will definitely consider renting it for future projects, but buying it also doesn’t seem to be a hard decision as my computer is already equipped to handle RAW footage and I own some Canon glass already. If the sensor also delivers some great images, then I’ll start saving my money. On the other hand: When I’ll have the money the’ll probably have realeased a bigger sensor model. So in any case I’ll just sit and wait a bit.

    • I don’t care for a bigger sensor, there’s already a wide selection of cameras availiable with S35 / APS-C… and an equally wide selction of out of focus footage on vimeo / YT by folk proclaiming that “shallow depth of field is cinematic”.

      This camera is awkward because of the sensor / mount pairing. If they _reduced_ the sensor to S16mm and could maintain the dynamic range that would be an excellent camera. Alternatively if they could just give us dumb mFT instead of EF with their current sensor, that really would open things up… to f/0.95!

      • Totally agree with you regarding the shallow depth of field. It’s nice to have it as a narrative tool: I wouldn’t want to miss it completely. But too many people use it when they were too lazy to get themselves great locations to shoot on or for the ominous ‘cinematic look’, that of course a whole bunch of cinema films shot on 16mm film also lack. We have all been there on locations that were visually uninteresting, but just using depth of field to fix that is many times a bit shortsighted. Not only can it give your movie an unintended ‘feverish’ appeal if you overuse it, it’s also living hell for your focus puller. And yes: Cameramen DO love it because it is beautiful, but one of my standard sentences to my cameraman is: Higher aperture, please! There is no point in a senseless use of beauty, especially if you shoot establishing shots with an f/stop of 1.2!!!
        Cinematic look has also a lot to do with lighting, composition, and, as mentioned, the selection of your location. And casting. A good actor could even make a MiniDV video seem more cinematic, at least if not a complete amateur is filming.

  • I think this camera looks really awesome, I want 2 of them!

  • Offering of 4/3 mount and the possibility to crop to s16 with at least hd resolution and ill get one for sure

  • Just a heads up, the 5D is a 1.0 crop, so a 35mm lens of a 5D is 35mm. The 7D is a 1.6 crop, which would make it 56mm. You have it reversed in your article.

    Exciting times to be a filmmaker,

    • E.M. Taboada on 04.21.12 @ 5:42PM

      You are correct in that the 5D has no “crop”. What the article says is that if you are trying to achieve the equivalent viewing angle of a 35mm EF lens on a 7D (which would be roughly the same viewing angle as a 50-55mm EF lens on a 5D), you would need a 20-25mm EF lens on a BMD CC. In other words, i’m not talking about the viewing angle of a 35mm lens on a Canon 5D, i’m speaking to the viewing angle of a 35mm lens on a 7D. I think some folks are missing the part where I’m referring to “viewing angle”. In other words, viewing angle of 50-55mm EF lens on a 5D = (roughly) viewing angle of 35mm EF lens on 7D = 20-25mm EF lens viewing angle on a BMD CC.

  • Mark my words in a year to eighteen months another company will bring out a S35 version of the BMC. It’s just logical. I love 16 and S16 dearly but lens FOV issues (buying more glass) are the reason I’m mixing up my GH2 (voigtlanders) with the Nikon D800 and my Nikkor primes. If i want a 16 FOV look I cheat it with the GH2 ETC mode. I’m still scratching my head why everyone has gone nuts for 2 1/2K how many people are heading for cinema display? The images coming out of consumer procameras the last several year from Vimeo, TV commercials, award winning documentaries has convinced me as a filmmaker that staying with these now low-res cameras is the way for me for a good more couple of years.

    • Jordan Carr on 04.21.12 @ 8:56PM

      I agree with you to a point Dan.

      But the cost of production work for green screen and special effects is FAR lower today than ever before. And RAW with a vast color space like what this camera provides is as close as one can get without getting into Red/Alexa territory. Renting those cameras is around $1200 a week – rent them 3 times and you have the cost of the Black Magic Cinema Camera and a few large SSD drives paid for. The value of the BMCC can’t be denied.

      Remember that with crowd sourcing and so many people available to “hire” these days – getting a few special effects shots into your indi-film is easier than ever.

      The other advantage of a RAW type file from this camera is the ability of film makers to hold onto a digital negative of their work – ready for cinema “if they need it to be.” One could shoot a small indi film short, test the waters out and see there is a market for their work at a higher resolution/bit rate, and then re-edit and render out a new file. And as softer gets better, so will the final render.

      How many times do we see studios going back to film archives and re-releasing footage at a higher quality for fans? Same could be done here (to a smaller extent). IMO this camera (and other RAW type cinema products) are all about future proofing your work and giving you options later down the road that a DSLR can’t.

      Third, while I love my GH2 and other DSLRs, the “look” of this camera will indeed be different – and that alone will be a great tool for film makers. Watch this short shot on the Ikonoskop a-Cam small sensor CCD.

      It looks 100% different than DSLR footage. You can not create this look with a Canon 5D or GH2. Not saying it is better or worse, but being different is fun.

      Cheers! :)

      • “Third, while I love my GH2 and other DSLRs, the “look” of this camera will indeed be different – and that alone will be a great tool for film makers. Watch this short shot on the Ikonoskop a-Cam small sensor CCD.

        great film!
        in the “old days” there was diferent stocks for diferent looks. these days diferent stocks = diferent cameras! RED look, Alexa look, Ikonoskop look, F3 look, 5D look, GH2 look, etc… Would be great if we could change sensors (film stocks) on the spot without the need of changing cameras. :)

        • Jordan Carr on 04.22.12 @ 3:58AM

          In a way Red users like the owner of this blog will be able to – the new Dragon sensor is an upgrade path for them.

          • in a way indeed. I even think it´s an amazing move by the company and more and more I think RED is a good investiment for indie filmmakers from shorts to low budget features. It´s a pitty that for now in Brazil to import a RED Scarlet kit would make it cost around U$45000! To legally import a BMD camera would make it cost (with the tax) ~U$8000… I´ve been saving to get a ikonoskop in the end of the year, but i´ll may change to BMD. But RED Scarlet is an amazing camera indeed. It´s just a pitty RED doesn´t have a representative in my country. :/ but to rent is the common option in the end.

      • Jordan, yes! I watched that Belgian short this week and completely fell in love with the look. It’s an exceptional piece of filmmaking. Can someone enlighten me what diffrence the Ikonoscop 1080 RAW 12 bit as opposed to BMC 2 1/2 K 12 bit is? I know the cameras are way off in price, not my point,question is I’m confused by 1080 12 bit and it’s ability to produce such stunning images like that film. Why no more affordable cameras pushing 12 bit 1080 like Ikon or is that the $64k question again?

        • CCD (ikonoskop) and CMOS (BMD has the rolling shutter bonus prize) may be the diference?
          CCD is analogic sensor, CMOS is digital sensor. May be the root of diferent looks is in how analog and digital deal with the light incoming. :)

          • wow thanks Guto, learn something everyday. So why Ikon go for the CCD, simply because it deals with rolling shutter better? or worse?

          • There is no rolling shutter on CCD (charged couple device). They came out before CMOS or were more popular than CMOS early on. They were (are) used in a lot of 2/3 cameras but usually have a prism in front to separate RGB. Many cameras have 3 – one for each color so no de-bayering.

            CMOS became standard on DSLR’s mainly because larger sensors could be made from them, you don’t see any FF CCD’s around. With CMOS comes rolling shutter and bayer patterns, something DSLR’s weren’t concerned with (until video came out). Remember, RED came out with CMOS as well.

          • Bolex is CCD. For the sensor size of the BMCC, I sorta think they should of gone with CCD like Bolex did. It would eliminate rolling shutter and have cleaner color separation. Again, depending on the prism, this could of changed the form factor though.

          • The CCDs are going out of favor because of noise. On the low end no one is really making larger CCDs because the technologies for CMOS have a better signal to noise ratio and more dynamic range.

            There’s a big difference between a CCD single sensor and a 3 CCD camera. A single CCD sensor camera like the Bolex is still a Bayer pattern – there’s no other way to get the other color information – it must have a color filter over specific pixels.

            Honestly I like the image that CCDs produce, but this Blackmagic camera will have less noise because of the CMOS sensor – not to mention it’s probably a newer sensor so they can get more out of it.

          • “CCD is analogic sensor, CMOS is digital sensor. May be the root of diferent looks is in how analog and digital deal with the light incoming. :)”


            “… light passing through a prism …”

            Where does this c**p come from?

            “… here is what I found on her eye-lashes” has to be a LOL inducer.

            This is a great summary that moves past chip-size and crop-factor:

            “DR and Resolution are what make a camera shine, and in that, the BMD is a masterpiece at $3,000.”

            Well said!

  • the only thing I’m worried about is the battery, I hope they do something about that before it comes out

    • Jordan Carr on 04.22.12 @ 12:53AM

      Just plug another one in and mount it on your rig/steadicam/tripod. The internal battery is a bonus but does not have to be used.

      Problem solved.

    • Robert, just came across a tweet from @eoshd and Ilya Friedman at Hot Rod who has figured something out for the battery set up.

    • Ya Robert, they are not going to change it in this model. The entire reason for the internal battery (which Bolex has as well) was to create a solid aluminum body which greatly saved cost in manufacturing. Future brothers of this camera will be more expensive with removable battery and larger sensor, you can be sure of it. You have to understand, manufacturing unibody aluminum is expensive.

  • What speed SSD will you need minimum if it shoots 5MB/frame in Raw 2.5K? Also, I am aware to avoid the two hour battery, you could use an external battery source what would be a good option? I am going to be getting this camera this summer, hopefully, and any information would be helpful.


  • I’m excited about this camera! Not to be too much of a downer, but since I pixel peep my 5dmkII video images for moire my eyes were on the lookout with the test footage. At the beginning of the “Leah” video, here is what I found on her eye-lashes:

    • You must be a fun guy to be around. It costs 3k. It shoots ‘raw’ AND two compressed codecs. It fits most lenses. It has a crop factor that a lot of us already work with. If there was a 1 in front of that, some purple fringing and moire in a pre-prod camera would be fine. The C300 has moire. It costs 16k and records only one format. You are looking a gift horse in the mouth.

      • I like the camera, I was one of the first who started getting info and blogging and checking it out. But let’s be honest here: if the 5dmkIII showed moire on some shots, all hell would cry out “It is soft and still has moire!”

        I checked into the eye lashes as someone on John’s site had pointed it out as well.

        Anyway, let’s see what the testing brings in. Eager to see what people say. I still think they could of saved money and used a CCD sensor – then everyone’s bellyaching over rolling shutter would be silenced as well.

  • I’ve already ordered one.
    It will go in my case next to my Canon 550D, my Nikon d800, an Af101 and a hole where an FS700 may end up sitting. If you shoot for a living, 3k for that nice ‘feel’ this camera gives is a low low price (note: I’m really an editor that self-shoots for a lot of different projects I then cut).
    If you have little money and are burning to make films, buy a 60D. Still the best value camera ever made, and now used its ridiculous. I realise a lot of people on here are just starting out, either before or after college. If you can find 5k somewhere for this to be your first camera, you are much luckier than I was. With luck and imagination you can achieve almost anything with this kit.

  • how much bigger is the BMD sensor over an EX3 sensor? because getting a nice, filmic shallow DOF on those bastards is ridiculous unless you’re in broad daylight.

    this is just a completely personal opinion, but DOF dictates how nice the image is for me, far more than how far i can push a grade.

  • er… and by twice, i meant four times as large

  • to the 4.5 – 5k pricerange for an ready to shoot kit you can easily another 1k to hard drives to store all the data you produce over the first weeks/months.. my guess1 small weekendproject = 1TB = 50€? at least i would prefer keeping the raw data over deleting the files after finishing the project – or unless compress it into something “useable” like the second rec-option – prores 422 which also eats ups gigabytes pretty fast…. its like buying miniDV tapes, only with harddrives :)

  • I have the money lying in wait to outright buy this thing. I also have more coming from scheduled client projects. I was just about to pull the trigger on the 5D3 when they announced this thing, and now, I am flat out torn. For me, a cinematic look is a process, not DoF alone. With that said, if I was FORCED to pick (I am a DoP and the question is frequently posed), I would actually peg Dynamic Range as being the deciding “cinematic” camera benchmark to strive for. That’s where this BMD cam delivers a massive punch to the dslr/value gut! And in DR world, even a half stop is a big deal. There is a difference in proclaimed DR and actually usable DR from any camera, but the small amount of test videos already released show that the DR is in fact in there. “Cinematic” is perceptual and not measurable, but when I see an 11-stop 7D (something like that) put next to a 13-stop Alexa, what is causing the Alexa to obliterate the dslr is not output codec, crop factors, etc., but dynamic range, working in harmony with its “cinematic” wife; Resolution. Maybe that’s just the way I personally perceive “cinematic,” but I think DR and Resolution are what make a camera shine, and in that, the BMD is a masterpiece at $3,000. With allllll of that said………….. I may just save a bit longer for the FS700. lol Slow motion is becoming increasingly important, after all. Exciting times with these cameras though! And I don’t at all mean to say that I would be dissatisfied with a 5D3. It’s still a beautiful tool as well.

    • Oh, and I meant to say: Let’s not forget the role of focal lengths in shallow DoF. More than sensor size is at play here. Shane Hurlbut recommends (for focus sanity) keeping an APS-C around f2.8 give or take a stop, and keeping a FF around f4-f5.6 or so. I think some of you would be pleasantly surprised at what this S16 sensor would dish out on a 50mm f1.4 at f1.4-f2. Or how about backing away with a 70-200mm f2.8 L II from Canon? I usually stop my APS-C down to about f2.8-f4 and it’s a thing of beauty. The shallow DoF is still in there with the right lens combo, friends.

  • I just don’t see the cost effectiveness for a camera like this? It has some great features, but just the fact you have to spend an extra $200 bucks to hand hold a 4+Thousand camera is ridiculous! And the fact is there are much less expensive cameras that real world shooters can buy that will do the job just fine with a larger sensor.
    Is the viewfinder fixed…if so, so much for more low or over the head creative shooting…in your hand!
    And as someone mentioned, why buy this when the Canon 5D is available.
    I think Black Magic needs to re-think the design.

    • Daniel Mimura on 04.30.12 @ 12:33AM

      Wow…so you don’t think you need a $200+ device to handhold the 5D? Cuz the BMD camera is just as unergonomic as a D-SLR (for motion…modern SLR’s are great ergos for still photography, being well refined by Canon/Nikon/etc over the last 50 years).

      You can just look at any d-SLR footage and know by the quantity and quality of the shake and direction of the shake whether or not it was handheld with a weight plate/rods…etc…or just by itself.

      the center of gravity and the film plane are in the same place…the closer they are to each other, the crappier to image looks and that’s why cell phones are so shaky. Probably like your footage looks without “$200″ dollars of gear.

      Also…how big a deal is $200 if you’re talking about a $4,000 camera?! For an iPhone, yeah, I’d think twice about $200 worth of gear.

  • Nigel Smith on 04.27.12 @ 5:02AM

    This camera looks great. Good price and ideal for my undergraduate filmmaking students as a step up from working with S16mm Bolexes. Working with lenses that are poor for focus pulling you don’t really want FF sensors, particularly if you are planning on varying the camera/subject distance by tracking/slider/ mini-jib. All grip options that become more affordable with the camera’s small form factor.
    Going straight to DNxHD instead of some crappy old AVCHD codec is massive too. John Brawley has said that white point is baked-in to the RAW, which is a real shame if true.
    Affordable media, great recording codecs, small form factor, good sensor size, low price – what’s not to like?
    The only current concern is the battery…..

    • I went to a store called Batteries Plus here in the greater Nashville, TN area and explained the situation to them and asked for their thoughts. They pointed me to a rechargeable all-purpose 12v battery that costs $21.99 that is about the same size as a Redvolt batt. Also, there are the V-mount plates for rigging up 12v Li-Ion batteries that you could rig to the 1/4″-20 threads on the top via some Redrock Micro gear. That’s the extent of my research so far, but I’m sure that Blackmagic Design will point us all to the right equipment options when the camera is released. Some third-partier might even make us a dslr battery grip-like device. I think the solution will work itself out in the next couple of months.

  • I’ll buy this Camera.

  • Sunil Sanjan on 06.14.12 @ 3:23PM

    Hello Group,

    I concluded/gathered few inputs/facts and points over BMD reviews. Kindly help in explaining the doubts as mentioned below:

    I read that BMD is better than:5Dmk2, GH2 and fs100 ? Can anyone explain the difference ?

    If Cant afford scarlet or EPIC or a C300, Can go for BMD ? means these are yet better than BMD if price is not a issue?

    Read that Arri Alexa has same sensor as BMD ? Is it True? What difference it will make for Arri Alexa ?

    I read it is faster to use than a h.264 style camera, because you’re shooting native ProRes and the files can be used right away without the messy transcoding steps. Is it good option to use file directly ? What difference it makes if Prores is not used beside time and messy steps ?

    Read that When you’re shooting RAW, every frame is a DNG image file. That means you can open them in Photoshop, and presumably everything else ADOBE like After Effects. What is major advantage of this ?

    Read that can shoot RAW and get everything, or you can shoot Pro Res and get either a LOG image that gets you almost everything, or a REC709 that gets you pretty great looking pictures that can be used right out of the camera. Does this mean need not to work on these pictures ?

    Read that SSD’s are reliable, relatively cheap for the performance they offer and they are very readily available. As a consumer item, their costs are on a constant downward trajectory too. What are other Pros and cons of SSD ?

    Read that Sensor Size very similar to the NIKON 1 which is 13.2 x 8.8. BMD is 15.6 x 8.8 (15.6 sounds like Diagonal). Does this difference makes any major impact ?

    This means sensor size Closer to m4/3 ? Right?

    It means we can use wide m4/3 lenses. What are the wide m4/3 lenses avaibale in market which will suit best for BMD ?

    Read that the sigma 8-16mm ef-s mount rectilinear lens will give you about 18-37mm (35mm equivalent coverage) This is based on a 2.3x crop factor I’ve read elsewhere. Not sure if that’s accurate. How far is this true ?

    Read that the Canon 10-22 EF-S zoom translates to 15mm-33mm on the BMD. How far is this true ?

    Read that 16mm Lenses won’t cover the sensor size? Still doubt on this point ? If so why?

    Also what about Audio quality on this BMD camera? What are audio options for BMD ?

    It will be great if you guys explain these points.

    Best Regards,
    Sunil Sanjan

  • I reserved my pre-order of the Blackmagic Camera at for $1. There’s a promtion going on.


  • Anyone know if you can change aperture in camera on Canon Lenses? I am not to aware of many affordable wide angle lenses with EF mount that are manual aperture.

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