August 1, 2013

It's August 1st, Do You Know Where Your Blackmagic Cameras Are?

Blackmagic_Pocket_Camera_Arri_PL_Zoom_LensWe have word straight from the company that a number of Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Cameras have left the factory and are apparently on their way to distributors around the world. What does this mean exactly? For one thing, you're not getting your cameras by July (for obvious reasons). It also means we're probably still a few days away from the first few getting in the hands of those who pre-ordered minutes after Blackmagic announced them. Read on for when we might actually see both the Pocket and the 4K camera in greater numbers.

Here's Christine from Blackmagic on shipping:

Units already started shipping out from the factory, I believe. But it can take several days for them to travel to the distributors, to the resellers, and finally to the end customers. Longer in some regions than others due to different paperwork and processes that vary from country to country.

The promise of shipping in July is completely out the window for the 4K camera, as that one won't actually be finished until sometime in August. The Pocket is only shipping in the strictest technical sense of the word, but I don't believe I am alone in previously thinking that shipping meant "shipping to actual customers."

Here is a little bit from an interview with the website Two Nerds Flip Out:

TNFO: Can you give us a progress report on the development of the cameras and Resolve 10?

BM: Yeah, so last week we had said the pocket cameras are shipping from the factory, we needed a few more days to get the last bits tightened up, and get a few more clearances before we let them go. We just got that yesterday afternoon so the first few cameras that we’ve kind of already been receiving actually left Blackmagic U.S. yesterday (Tuesday, July 30th), and I think the rest of the world will start shipping their cameras today (to retail outlets). So the pocket cameras are now shipping. We’re obviously running a limited run from the factory, but we’re getting new cameras everyday, so those will continue to ramp through the next couple weeks.

 Not much progress on the 4k from last week. There’s still probably still 2 to 3 weeks more work to be done before those units start leaving from Blackmagic so we’re hoping to see those leaving in the 3rd week of August and shipping out from there. Again , that’ll be a limited production run, when we start doing the production on those. But we’ll continue to ramp those out as time goes on.

 And Resolve 10 should be good. We’ve got some seeds out there that people have been playing with. We’ve kind of always said Q3, it’ll probably be on the back half of Q3. But we’re feeling really good about the product that’s being made on there.

If you're starting to feel like this is last year all over again, you're not alone. While technical issues kept the original BMCC from shipping in greater numbers at the beginning, it doesn't seem like either the 4K or Pocket Cameras have hit any technical snags. The big question that everyone keeps asking is how many they are shipping and when we can expect serious volume. We've heard volume could happen in August for the Pocket, but this might be optimistic on BM's part.

I think it's worth noting here that it's rare for there not to be delays or shortages for a new camera. There are a few exceptions, but for the most part, DSLRs and other cameras usually see some shortages (intentional or not) within their first few weeks or months of being on the market. If you've really been looking forward to having a Pocket camera sometime in August, and you didn't pre-order, it's unlikely there will be any on the shelves until at least September. For the 4K camera, that's probably going to be October.

Here's what Illya Friedman of Hot Rod Cameras has been saying to customers (this is from BMCUser):

As for the 4K Production Camera, the news isn't as quite as "positive". Based on what we were told, production is likely to begin in four to six weeks, with a final production model likely to be unveiled around the time of IBC in mid-September. Rumors swirling around the Internet about the 4K Production Camera shipping without true RAW capability look to be proving true, with ProRes 4K being the only option at launch. Blackmagic reps claim that 4K RAW recording will be available shortly after launch and likely come via a user firmware update.

What all this information means for you is rather straightforward. If you had your heart set on one of Blackmagic's new Pocket Cinema Cameras your wait, while maybe slightly prolonged, is going to be coming to an end sooner than later -hopefully.

If you've been holding out for a 4K Production Camera, well, signs point to maybe a September (or later) release date.

It doesn't seem like RAW will be working with either camera right away. We'll have to wait and see how quickly this is resolved, but I'd talked to some people a few months back who didn't think BM would be able to ship with RAW immediately (and that looks to be the case).

This info on shipping is what I'd heard previously before we were told that Pockets were shipping in July and 4Ks by August. While this may be technically true, it's not very accurate for people looking to shoot with their shiny new cameras right now. If you pre-ordered the Pocket right away or shortly after, I'd expect you to see your camera in a month or two. The same should go for the 4K camera (except that timeline starts at the end of August). It's unlikely we'd ever get an official word on how many units are shipping, but if it was in the thousands for either camera, you'd hear a lot more enthusiasm coming out of Blackmagic.

So while this isn't good news, it certainly could have been worse. Before everyone loses it, let's just point out once more that these are cameras -- which are just a small part of any production. I think some people take these things as life and death, but if you're already shooting with something, it probably makes sense to stick with that for at least another few months, and not expect any miracles. I wouldn't be planning any shoots around having a Production Camera 4K or Pocket Cinema Camera, as we just don't know at this point, and even if we are given an answer, going by past experience, I would expect it later than any official word we're given. I should mention once more, that if you want the original Blackmagic Cinema Camera, you can buy one right now from many places.

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62 Comments

They are coming! Here's photographic proof

http://cinemacamera.net/2013/08/pocket-cinema-cameras-coming/

Seems legit.

August 1, 2013

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Hahahahhaha

August 1, 2013

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Raad

+1,000,000

August 1, 2013

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jason

No, That is the RED Scarlet 2007.

August 1, 2013

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Tulio

Hilarious! Thank you for sharing! :)

August 1, 2013

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Brian

What kind of company is BlackMagic anyway? They make promises after promises, but they NEVER actually finish a camera within by their own giving deadline. I do understand that they had a delay with the first BMC because of sensor issues. But with the 4K they said everything was allright and it will be SURE it will be done in July! Also they yelled everywhere that it will have a RAW codec with 13 stops, and now they say that raw will be 'soon' possible with an update after launch. What is 'soon'? Half a year? Nahh, this way they lose a lot of customers. The Canon 5d III is already fully capable to shoot Raw at full HD. If this delayed bullcrap with the 4K continues (for whatever reason), I dare to bet that the camera will be released aprox. on February 2014. Who knows what kind of competitors will arrive till that moment. And ofcourse, no company would do this on purpose. But then again, don't promise something if you already have a crappy reputation with deadlines. How can customers take such a company serious? I'm real curious too about their customer support. Don't get me wrong, I really do love the concept of the camera, but this is just too frustrating for people who are waiting for a really long time!

August 1, 2013

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Goran

What're you on about. It will come eventually... Just wait it out. I'm absolutely in love with my BMCC and I love the company for making such great tools.

August 1, 2013

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I don't remember anyone say the 4K version would have 13 stops. Only 12.

August 1, 2013

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Rodrigo Molinsky

Sorry, my intention was to reply Goran's comment.

August 1, 2013

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Rodrigo Molinsky

That's not true actually.

From the start they said it probably wouldn't ship with RAW, but it would "most likely" be added post release.

Rodrigo is right, it has always been 12 stops since the day of the announcement.

Technically speaking, they have shipped the PC in July. It's not on your doorstep yet, but it has shipped.

Lastly, no...the 5D cannot shoot raw. A hacked 5D can shoot raw, but not for any reasonable amount of time. The hardware cannot handle the data. It was never built to. It never will.

August 1, 2013

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sean

LiveView on a 5D is a RAW feed. The camera has to work harder to record to its H264/Linear PCM format from this.

August 1, 2013

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Pat

Personally I shot a short on June 3rd-13th and never had a problem recording for a reasonable amount of time, meaning up to 10min/shot (yeah, like a film roll). What do you consider reasonable, 30min or 1hr?? get a video camera...Fanboys should relax, both cameras can perform, stop turning this into a mine vs yours issue..
p.s. The images coming from the 5D3 are f***g amazing, if you haven't handled footage coming from it, then I would strongly advise you to do so before speaking. Personally I prefer them to the BMD, and that's why I sold mine. I'll get a Pocket though, had the chance to play with it at NAB, and it packs ridiculous quality for the price. A warning though, it heats up easily (which is normal considering the size), even more than Canons, and although it doesn't shut down, it is really uncomfortable to hold, but you'll need some kind of rig anyway.

August 1, 2013

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Michael

yeah i meant 12 (like that's going to be a big difference from 13). Still, that's not the important issue what I meant.

August 1, 2013

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Goran

Well, as each stop up moves exponentially, I'd say the difference between 12 and 13 is going to be a big difference.

August 1, 2013

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matthewx

You're absolutely incorrect about the 5D raw being incapable for long periods of time. It shoots continuously until your card runs out. The software isn't PERFECT (as it isn't finalized), but it is perfectly usable for projects, including paid ones. I personally use the 50D Raw software myself so I can attest to this.

August 1, 2013

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lolll guys come on BM was not doing cameras 2 years ago!
Hate on canon, sony or whatever

August 1, 2013

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well

Canon is an easy target for being overpriced. I don't see rotten tomatoes flying over that. The golden rule: Love other camera companies as you love Canon. ;-)

August 1, 2013

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Gene

Really? The usual comments on Canon: (1) nice camera, (2) bad codec (8-bit, really?), and (3) it's way overpriced.

August 1, 2013

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Tzedekh

Thanks for the update. I think it's a real shame for Blackmagic design to have made such promises earlier this year. For most people it'll ship in late 2013 would have been enough, to promise July and then miss it just makes you look incompetent. I cancelled my pre-order for the 4K 6 weeks ago thanks to ML on the 5Dmk3 being available. It goes to show that in order to create a truly disruptive product you have to do more than promise the world. You have to actually deliver it.

August 1, 2013

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Ewan Thomas

These new cameras are cool and all...but am I alone in just wishing for their attention to go slightly more to the current firmware upgrades of the camera that exists now? Audio meters and compressed raw..these will win them more friends than overdue hardware!

August 1, 2013

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Jim

Agreed. I think I'm focused on the firmware because I own the BMDCC and would love to hear news on that front.

August 1, 2013

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Jeremie

My dealer in South Africa seems pretty confident his order will be here by mid August based on his email correspondence with BM. Who knows? If it takes till mid September for that order to arrive I'm still very happy.

August 1, 2013

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dan

who is your dealer..hehe sounds like a drug exchange hehe. .I am from sa to and didn't think any company was going to sell it

August 1, 2013

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kerr

Call Orms in Cape town they are a BM agent.

August 1, 2013

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dan

From what I read on BMCuser, BM's idea of 'shipping', means sending out ONE camera to each of their preferred resellers - who will no doubt gobble that as up as their test cam.
Not what I'd call shipping - and not a reason to put "Available now" or "pre order now" on their site.

August 1, 2013

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Fresno Bob

Meanwhile, tick, tick, tick, Digital Bolex imminent !
http://www.digitalbolex.com/getting_ready/

August 1, 2013

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Saied

Come on now... I would love for the Digital Bolex to be almost ready. But they have yet to release ANY video. Just still frames. I am starting to think the DB is not going to hit until NEXT YEAR.

August 1, 2013

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Matt Stevens

Let's not be overly sensitive to the shipping dates. As I look at various footages out there, BMCC is still probably the best bang for the buck with its 2.3K'ish resolution, Pro-res/Raw capabilities and the Resolve (though, I've seen folks go "Stalingrad" with their color grading far too often). BMD product, while not perfect, also provides a tremendous downward price pressure on the competing brands. When the new 4K cams begin to pop up at below $10K, don't forget the thank the blokes Down Under.

August 1, 2013

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DLD

It's August 1st, let the BMD meme's begin :)

August 1, 2013

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August 1, 2013

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A better question would be, "It's August 1st and the 5D RAW hack still looks like video"

Long live "filmic" bmcc footage!

August 1, 2013

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Michael Hawk

*comment*

August 1, 2013

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Michael Hawk

Yeah, it is odd how no one complains that 5Diii video doesn't look 'filmic'.

And why must all video quality of all new cameras continue to have the look of film? No on insists new cars look like Model T's. What's up with that anyway? I watched a clip from Transformers for the first time a couple of days ago. It looked incredible. (BTW, for those of you that don't know Transformers was not shot on film. Jus incase u dint kno)

Digital is better. I'm still looking for breakthroughs in 16K. :-) :-) :-)

August 1, 2013

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Gene

It's funny how you claim the RAW 5D3 doesn't look filmic, yet stood NECK and NECK with the Red Scarlet in a test looking virtually identical. Filmic is a matter of shooter's skill, color grading, etc. Stop lying to yourself. I've owned the BMCC. The 5D3 shooting RAW can be just as cinematic and at certain times even more so (ie; such as in low available light).

August 1, 2013

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Corey

+1

August 1, 2013

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Goran

That could also be a commentary on the video quality of the RED image, as graded by that person. Most RED images are not graded to reveal its full potential.

August 1, 2013

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Philip Lipetz

It really is true, and odd, that few grade Red footage in post to show it's true colors! Yeah, that was an intended pun. :-)

August 1, 2013

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Gene

Yeah, we observe Hollywood running to buy 5Diii's in bulk, with ML RAW, for making movies. Didn't Peter Jackson buy like 50 of them for making The Hobbit? ;-)

August 1, 2013

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Gene

Great news! A big applaud to BlackMagic for making the Pocket Camera a reality! I have been waiting for something like this for a few years so a couple of weeks don't really mean nothing to me at this point.

August 1, 2013

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Suza

Why waste energy flipping out. They're making their mistakes and taking their lumps for it. This is no where near the first time a company gave a release date and was late for it. Apple did it all the time. People still use Apple. When the 4K comes out video will probably look so great almost people will forget the delays and just be glad they can get beautiful 4K for $4K.

(Ohhhh, but someone will burst a capillary over some moire they saw)

August 1, 2013

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Gene

So they're late compared to previous forecast. If they are really pushing the envelope of what is possible at a high quality level, that shouldn't be a huge surprise. Compared to RED they are still golden, delivering the PocketCC a month or so late and the 4KCC @ $4K a month or two later than original forecast.

August 1, 2013

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Wild Biker Bill

Sorry to say but this post is so unprofessional.

August 1, 2013

1
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P

Don't be so hard on yourself.

August 1, 2013

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Fresno Bob

You just got a chuckle out of me, congrats

August 1, 2013

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Aaron Grimes

LOL! Great comeback!

August 1, 2013

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Anon

Hahaha!

August 1, 2013

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Brian

hahahah +4

August 1, 2013

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CSG

LOL!!!

August 2, 2013

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Gene

Don't know how reliable the source is from an article I read, but the new BM cams will be hitting large dealers 12 at a time. Not more or less as of right now. Of course it's hearsay (who really knows) but in the mean time I just scored a wollensak cine raptar 1" 25mm f1.9 lens, looking to grab a 10mm and 16mm kern paillard too. It's gonna be a fun little camera, I have no issues waiting it out (in a reasonable time of course) I know it'll definitely be worth it. Thanks

August 1, 2013

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Anthony Marino

People buying and not buying gear on emotion is really pretty funny. If you were a carpenter and a new nailgun was shipping a month late do you think there would be a similar uproar? I wonder if carpenters do pre orders?

That said, BMD has a monopoly on a niche they created out of thin air. As far as people comparing 5d3's to BMD cameras, does anybody really shoot entire full length projects in RAW on either camera? A camera test is not an entire project. It seems to me other than a specific tough shot here and there uncompressed raw is for pixel peepers and camera testers. I love RAW, most of the projects I've shot in the last year have been on RED Epics but at 5:1 to 10:1 compression but uncompressed raw just seems unrealistic for the market both of these cameras fall into. It seems to me the pro res option is really the only option that makes sense in this price range. If you have the budget to shoot an entire project with uncompressed raw wouldn't you go with an Alexa instead of a BMD camera or a real camera instead of a 5d3. Also, do people that shoot professionally with the 5diii in RAW (do people?) hand over their RAW data to the DIT on set and move on to the next setup? Or are they stuck dealing with a non conventional workflow themselves? I just can't imagine getting hired for a job and either having to deal with the workflow myself or pawning it off to a DIT. Also, how long and what kind of system does it take to transcode an hour of footage into something that can be dropped into a NLE or to get some kind of daily? I applaud the ML guys for doing what they are doing, but going out and buying a 5d3 because it shoots RAW seems a bit shortsighted.

August 1, 2013

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