Cinema Camera Firmware Version 1.3 is Out, Plus a Conversation with Blackmagic President Dan May
Blackmagic might have introduced new cameras at NAB, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t still working on support for the current 2.5K camera (which is still trickling out slowly but surely). Contrary to what most people think, research and development doesn’t necessarily interfere with anything they are doing to support the current camera, as it is normally different teams of people working on different things. The company has just released firmware update 1.3, which should be great for those who’ve wanted to bring the Blackmagic Cinema Camera into a broadcast environment. We’ve also got a video from Andrew Wonder that takes a little different approach to NAB coverage — check out the video below where he sits down with Blackmagic President Dan May to talk about the company’s philosophy and their new cameras.
Here is the only addition to the firmware in version 1.3:
SDI outputs interlaced video when frame rate is set to 1080p25 or 1080p29.97 and overlays are turned off
This isn’t going to be a huge deal for a lot of people, but it’s very important if you’re trying to put the BMCC into any sort of broadcast situation, since the camera would normally only output progressive frame rates.
Regarding Dan’s comment about the camera being a little less sharp: even though he’s talking about the 4K camera, I would be very surprised if it was actually less sharp than the 2.5K camera when both of them are downscaled to 1080p. Of course both of them will have varying degrees of sharpness at full resolution, but theoretically even if the 4K camera has a low pass filter, I would expect them to be around equal at 1080p at the worst (but of course we won’t know until we get our hands on one).
I think Blackmagic was definitely in an interesting position to build a camera, and even though they’ve had sensor issues, the fact that their cameras will all eventually have RAW of some kind and also have 10-bit ProRes log internally — all for $4,000 or less, speaks volumes about where they think emphasis should be placed regarding image quality and affordability to consumers.
You can find the link to the 1.3 update at their support page below.
Disclosure: Blackmagic Design is a nofilmschool advertiser.