Issues with Moire on the Blackmagic Cinema Camera? Mosaic Engineering Has a Solution
The Blackmagic Cinema Camera is even more of a bargain now that BM has reduced the price by $1,000. 10-bit ProRes/DNxHD and RAW recording for just $2K is quite a deal all things considered, but there is still the nagging issue of occasional moire since the BMCC lacks an Optical Low Pass Filter/Anti-Aliasing Filter, or OLPF/AA filter. A company well-known for producing those exact filters for Canon DSLRs, Mosaic Engineering, is making progress on a special OLPF filter designed specifically for the Blackmagic Cinema Camera.
Thanks to Kraig for the heads up on this one. You’ve got to either download it or watch on a full 1080 screen, as there is some aliasing inherent in downscaling the image to fit your screen:
Here is their Vimeo description:
This is a brief demonstration of our initial tests of the first revision of our new optical anti-aliasing filter for the Blackmagic Cinema Camera (mosaicengineering.com).
This source material for this video was recorded in the BMCC’s ProRes 4:2:2 “video” mode, and as such the footage is a little noisy. We’ll be rendering this again shortly with “film” mode source material, which we believe should improve the noise and dynamic range.
Because this initial anti-aliasing filter is a spatial low-pass filter (or what’s sometimes called an Optical Low-Pass Filter or OLPF), a small amount of high-resolution image detail is attenuated by it.*** Therefore, in the middle segment of the posted video, we’ve applied a small amount of postproduction sharpening, to try to match the subjective sharpness of the original unfiltered material. For reference and comparison, we’ve also included a sample of the original, unsharpened, AA-filtered source material.
It’s unclear when we might actually see this filter for sale, but the results of this first version are definitely promising. I honestly didn’t notice the aliasing/moire when I was using the BMCC, but it is there in certain instances. This filter should remove the most distracting rainbow patterns from the image, and bring the focus back on your subject where it belongs. There is always a trade-off between removing moire and keeping enough fine detail, but thankfully the very sharp image from the BMCC should lend itself well to using a filter like this.
BMCC users, what do you think? If it ends up costing somewhere in the $300-$400 range, will you add this to your kit?
Link: Mosaic Engineering