July 24, 2016 at 4:00PM

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Is this Blackmagic camera/accessories worth the $?

I am on a modest budget, and besides editing software (FCP 7) and some audio equipment I have no film equipment. I've been saving up to get a Pro quality camera to shoot independent fiction films. I have been intrigued by the image quality of the Black Magic Cinema Camera but I've been hesitant about it because of the amount of accessories it seems to require to be functional. I have the opportunity to purchase the camera used with accessories for $1,350 (which is pretty much my budget): http://www.ebay.com/itm/Blackmagic-Design-Cinema-Camera-2-5k-EF-mount-body-lens-evf-and-extras-/262538432250?.
Am I wrong in thinking this is a good value? Are there other necessary major accessories that aren't included here that I'm not thinking about? Is there a different camera/camera with accessories for a comparable price that would be a better purchase? Thanks in advance for any feedback
Here is a list of the included items if the link doesn't work:
This is a used Blackmagic 2.5k Cinema Camera. Nothing is wrong with it besides a minor scratch on the SSD door cover.
and This comes with-
Blackmagic 2.5 Cinema Camera EF mount (with a cage)
16mm rokinon 2.2f lens
Blackmagic switronix battery
2SSD drives
Mounting rails
Follow Focus
EVF
SSD docking station
MatteBox
Handles
Cheeseplate

5 Comments

$1,350 seems pretty decent but remember it is the starting bid. If $1350 is pretty much your budget this camera won't do unless all your filming is going to be with a 16mm prime lens and nobody else makes a higher bid. Also you would need filters, a tripod and batteries.

July 24, 2016 at 5:16PM

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Cary Knoop
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Thanks for the response Cary, yes I see it is starting bid-there's a few hours left on it, but if it goes way higher then I will opt out. Good call on the tripod. I apologize for my ignorance, but what is the issue with shooting exclusively with the 16 mm prime lens until I can afford another one? What type of filters would you recommend for this setup. Also, am I confused in thinking that the included Blackmagic switronix battery is the only battery I would need?

Neil Anderson

July 24, 2016 at 5:58PM

There is no issue per se to only use a 16mm lens but it is obviously quite limited. If I am not mistaken the crop factor of the camera is about 2.4 so the lens will give you a focal equivalent of 38mm. Which is a good "street photography" focal length. For facial close ups it will be problematic unless you are looking for that dramatic effect.

You would definitely need an ND filter and for some scenes a polarizer might be a good idea as well.

With respect to batteries it seems to me you need at least 2.

July 24, 2016 at 6:37PM

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Cary Knoop
Member
2402

Looks like it sold for US $1,575.00

Not too bad of a deal.

July 25, 2016 at 12:29PM, Edited July 25, 12:29PM

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Cary Knoop
Member
2402

I have nothing good to say about Black Magic products. From video switchers to cameras to SSD recorders to a MultiView, they have all failed me at some critical point, including a Hyperdeck that spontaneously combust in the middle of a shoot. I had several other instances with various Hyperdecks where they'd stop recording or even ruin an SSD without showing any signs of trouble until I go to look at the video later. I've only used a BMCC once (never again). The image was riddled with alias/moire because of the cheap optical block, rolling shutter, not to mention it was impossible to get accurate color out of it. I used it on a multi-cam shoot and had to dumb down the other cameras to match the BMCC. They also lied about the dynamic range. It's 10 stops under ideal conditions, not 13 or whatever they claim. I suppose you can technically rescue some extra range with careful noise reduction and highlight reconstruction in the grading process, but not out of the box. I'll use a hacked GH2 over a BMCC any day, but my favorite camera in the sub-$10,000 price range is the Digital Bolex. No frills, just quality image and sound. It can be a bit finicky as well, but it is built like a video camera and you only need to tack on a lens to start shooting.

October 24, 2016 at 9:21AM

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