Description image

Volume Production of the Blackmagic Cinema Camera Could (Finally) Begin Soon

12.15.12 @ 4:43PM Tags : , , , ,

Blackmagic Cinema Camera Arri Master Zoom PL LensIf you’ve been following the shipping updates, Blackmagic has been going through quite a frustrating situation since the Cinema Camera was originally supposed to ship back in July. The company that makes their sensors has been having quality control issues, and it has taken a few months to sort out the problem and figure out ways to correct it. Grant Petty, CEO of Blackmagic, has updated the public once more on the current situation.

Here is what he posted in the Blackmagic forum:

Ok good news everyone as the test run of sensors have just been built into cameras and they look good. Very good. So we have just given the sensor supplier the go ahead to commence volume production of the sensors and we hope to start getting them within the next week to start building cameras. How many cameras? I am not sure, as we have all stopped production and so we all need to restart production and see how many they can produce. However we will be working hard to build as many cameras as possible over the next few weeks.

I hope people start to see more cameras shipping, but it might be a good idea if I post another update early January to update everyone on how production is progressing. 

As for the micro four thirds model, it’s ready to go, however the problem is I feel until we are shipping a whole bunch of EF model cameras, there is little point building any of the MFT model. So we will ship as many as we can and then perhaps see where we are mid Jan and do a few MFT models then.

It is sure a relief seeing this problem coming to a close. I cannot believe this happened and it’s been an incredibly frustrating delay. However I am feeling really positive now.

Things look like they’re heading in the right direction, and if you’ve been waiting for a camera, the wait may finally be over in the next month or two. There is no word on how many cameras have been pre-ordered (I would think it’s in the thousands), so it really will come down to how quickly they can manufacture them. Assuming the company doesn’t hit any more snags in production, those who are getting the EF mount camera should have one in their hands sooner or later — unless you just pre-ordered in the last few weeks, in which case, you may be at the end of a long line.

As for the MFT mount cameras, that wait may be a bit longer, but you certainly could see one within a few months depending on how quickly production is ramped up. Either way, this is a heck of a camera for this price, and I think people are going to be more than satisfied once they finally get theirs and take a look at the image quality.

Link: Camera Shipping Update: 12/14 — Blackmagic Forum


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 40 COMMENTS

  • Booo! Hum bug.

  • Petty: “As for the micro four thirds model, it’s ready to go,…”
    Marine: “As for the MFT mount cameras, that wait may be a bit longer….”

    I don’t really fathom the discrepancy, but I might order/pre-order the MFT model before year’s end to join the queue, and for tax purposes.

    • “however the problem is I feel until we are shipping a whole bunch of EF model cameras, there is little point building any of the MFT model. So we will ship as many as we can and then perhaps see where we are mid Jan and do a few MFT models then.”

      That’s the rest of the quote. He’s saying they might build a “few” almost a month after EF production starts. He’s not being very definitive at all on that model if you read what he is saying, so there is no timetable. They might build 5 cameras in January and 10 in February. The main concern is the EF mount, because that’s really the flagship and it’s the one they’ve taken the most pre-orders on.

      • OK, thanks, got it (I think). “ready to go” does not mean ready to ‘ship,’ as I mis-interpreted it.

        • Right the production line is ready, but they wouldn’t be building them on purpose so they could focus on EF first.

      • thadon calico on 12.16.12 @ 3:06AM

        Jo Marine, I respect your work and thank u for the posts. I had just seen the hour long BMCC CAM presentation man, kudos! You looked nervous as shit in that. Was it because of the older guys u were in front of? not a relevant question but just asking.

        Joe Marine fan

        • I wasn’t operating on much sleep, I’m sure that was part of it – I was a little wired and jumpy. Thanks for being a fan. :)

  • Might as well make the sensor a bit larger as well.

  • I guess there are about 10.000 preorders worldwide. After 3 month of production they were able to ship about 100 workin pieces. So even if the production is ramping up it might still take them about a year to complete all the preorders.
    I think I’m out for now.

    • Terrible business practice if it indeed takes a year to fill a preorder. Within that year anything can happen, e.g., with the witch down, a raptor enterprise builds a similar camera and ships it out right away, at a lower price sans software. Users say Aperture grades fairly well; don’t need Resolve.

      I’m out, ‘might as well plan on NAB, see what else is cookin’.

      • I agree but doubt it will be a lower price, As far as the software, it costs them nothing to give it away as a gift, because utimately i think there plan is to make the software a homebrand name/big production name for post houses that may use multiple cameras.

        I’ve said from day one that i really want the camera, you cant beat the price and appreciate the post from joe but one thing he didnt mention was the sound and how the camera handles with sound, but he did say it wil be a series review so it may not have come yet

    • Clayton Arnall on 12.15.12 @ 9:09PM

      You ‘guess’?… based on what?

    • one year?!? who do you think they have assembling all the bits and pieces, two guys in a basement? seriously guys… are you joking?!?

      • Cut to:


        GRANT PETTY: Hey guys, how’s it going? Should have them ready for Christmas, right?

        The two guys look at each other.

        GUY 1: Uh… Right.

        GRANT: Awesome! Keep up the good work.

        Grant walks away. Crane up to reveal 10,000 camera bodies

        GUY 2: Yeah, Christmas 2014.

        GUY 1: Dude, I’m so going to charge him for overtime.

    • That statement is a bit misleading and doesn’t in anyway represent the production volume that BMD will be able to pump out. You must take into account that production halted almost immediately after an initial run of cameras were manufactured after it was discovered there was an issue with the glass covering their sensors. It took months to test every possible variable in the logistical model of receiving said glass, which involved a 3rd party manufacturer. This takes time in order to figure out where the problem is coming from… then of course you have to figure out how to solve the problem.

      I think BMD has been very open and forthcoming about the challenges facing the production process and are doing the right thing by being honest as opposed to simply promising something and saying nothing as these things come up… I”m sure once they do fire up completely into production, with these glass issues resolved that they’ll be able to meet their pre-order quota much quicker than 1 year from January…

      That being said, it would be most prudent to wait til mid-January at which point I’m sure we’ll have a more accurate idea of how many cameras will be produced and how quickly. Best of luck til then.

  • Mr. Petty revealed so much about what videographers want, tried to address their immediate needs, and couldn’t do it, while also giving away critical market research. m43 rumors says Olympus, which has been pretty much out of the video realm but recently partnered with Sony, allegedly will announce a video camera after the holidaze. Well, I’d be surprised if it’s an answer to Mr. Petty’s missteps, but Oly-Sony is certainly capable of creating such a beast and delivering the goods in a timely manner.

  • I think B&H has 8,000 pre-orders and it will not take a year to fill all of them. They are now mass producing sensors so they will be pumping them out significantly faster then before. I would not be surprised if they would be up to date on all current pre-orders by mid march, as long as there is no other production delays.

  • i’d love to get a camera like this and make a movie. It was a dream actually.. Then I got married to a woman who pretended to care about it until it interfered with her desires and a litter of kids. Now i hate my life because she thinks a good time is a Goddamn squash festival with a screaming kid in my face…. looking at hillbilly crafts. $3500 would cut into the downpayment of the house that we can’t afford and won’t be paid off until after I die… So I guess this forum is about as close as I’ll ever get to a BMC…lol. Word of advice, don’t settle. You’ll wind up just another statistic with the life you always hoped you’d never have.. chock full of routines and a job you hate.. talking to a woman that changes the subject 5 seconds after you bring up something that interest you. it’s miserable. So! without further ado, i have to be at work in 3 hours. sigh.

    • Obviously you have no respect for God or for yourself… get some or get out of the way.

      • Umm… In case you haven’t noticed… God isn’t real.

        • Yeah, for me god isn’t real too, but for those who Believe in the concept, it si real in their qualia inner process… So, each one with their Beliefs! Even the materialistic view is just a view, not the right one nor the last one. Religion of science (prof. David Noble term) sounds the “right” reality tunnel because we create tools from it. Informational physics and quantum mechanics and the holographic concept give room for all Beliefs to coexist , so why we atheists need to attack the reality tunnel of deists if even sir issac Newton was a deist, An alchemist and a scientist?

          In the end all certain is impermanent… Lide buddha and the scientific method shows us when paradigms shift!


        • Your answer can be found here Proverbs 14:12

      • “Get some, or get out of the way.” ….that’s badass. Actually, I’m gonna make that my XBox motto and yell it over & over again on Call of Duty. Just saying though, Normally I’d tell you to take your condescending b.s. and go fist yourself with it:) probably because I respect myself. But because I actually do respect God, I won’t.. Kill 2 birds with one stone. Nobody gets on a filmmaking website and gets that deep guys.. Well… – Actually somebody inspired this post. Alas, nothing surprises people these days so it’s easy to see the humor do a fly-by. I should’ve expected “Life’s hard, ya pasty Care Bear. Put some dirt on that shit & grow some seeds.” If I ever go into battle, I want you in the trenches with me man. You sound hard & your name is Razor. I bet you rode out of the womb on a Harley through Rock concert pyro, with a Magruber mullet and some chains. Lit a cigarette and burnt your umbilical cord off… Looked around the room. “‘ -the f-ck are you lookin at Dr. Oz?”

        • I’m 43. I had a messed-up childhood (drugs and violence). My parents were serious addicts (still are). I need the free weights, the camera hobby, and God to help me keep my mind off of the past. If you met me in person you would think I was career military, even though (and unfortunately) I never served a day.

  • you guys wont see this camera untill April ’13…get your 50mm ready oops i mean 115mm

    • With the MFT model, there is a 12mm T1.6 available with lens and aperture gears for $500 – gives the FoV of a 27mm on an FF sensor.

      For those buying the EF BMCC, there is the Tokina 11mm – 16mm F2.8 – which equates to a 25mm – 36mm FoV FF equiv.

      Most films don’t shoot wider than 24mm. From DPs I’ve spoken to over the years, most films are shot between 24mm – 35mm.

    • Further, what you need to remember is, films are shot on Super35, not FF sensors. So when thinking of the BMCC’s sensor, think of it versus a Super35 crop – 1.5X vs 2.3X. The crop isn’t as severe as you think.

      And a 50mm is a bitch on a 1.5X crop sensor anyway…

  • With all the publicity over the Blackmagic, it actually looks as if the Digital Bolex release will more or less coincide, which should be interesting.

  • Any word on an active-mount MFT version?

  • And me, I want for Christmas a Nikon F-Mount version !!!!!