December 23, 2013

Take Blackmagic 4K, 2.5K, & Pocket Cinema Cameras to New Depths with Nauticam UW Housings

Nauticam BMPCCThough most indie filmmakers spend the majority of their time out of the water, chances are they're going to end up submerged one way or another, whether in a pool or in the briny deep. Nauticam has just announced an underwater housing that may be of interest to fans and users of either the Blackmagic 4K, 2.5K, or Pocket Cinema Cameras -- the NA-BMCC and NA-BMPCC. Designed with tactile record trigger, handles for stabilization, as well as several mounting possibilities, these underwater housings aim at giving more control and visibility to underwater filmmakers. Continue on for more info.

Nauticam is a pretty well-known (and well-respected) player in underwater photography/cinematography, and has made housings for many, many cameras, including the RED EPIC and RED SCARLET.

NA-BMPCC

Though the NA-BMCC has been around for nearly a month, the announcement of the Pocket Cinema Camera housing came just yesterday. Here's a description of the NA-BMPCC from Nauticam's site:

Key camera controls for record, focus, and lens control are placed at the grips for stable operation while filming.  A tactile trigger mechanism activates record, and is easy to operate by feel even with thick gloves.  A rubberized lens control knob, operating either zoom or focus depending upon the lens used, is placed at the left handle for fingertip control.

Integrated rubberized grips provide a comfortable, stable platform for shooting.  Handle brackets eliminate any flex when heavy video lights are used, and the handles are angled forward 15 degrees for comfortable use in the prone swimming position.

bmpcc cheeseplate

The housing was designed with mounting capability in mind. On the top of the enclosure, a cheese plate to be used in any number of mounting situations (jibs, poles, etc.), and on the bottom, dual tripod screws for mounting to a tripod or quick release plate. The handles can also be removed in case you want to switch to a shoulder rig.

The NA-BMPCC is compatible with existing Nauticam ports system for Micro 4/3 lenses.

NA-BMCC

Probably one of the coolest (and most important) things about this housing is that it allows you to access the camera's touch screen. It supports both the 4K and 2.5K versions of Blackmagic's Cinema Cameras, has a 100m depth rating, and is said to be 1/4 the size of similar underwater rigs. A new feature, which comes standard with the NA-BMCC, is the Electronic Vacuum Check and Leak Detection System.

Nauticam explains the ergonomics of the NA-BMCC:

Oversized control dials for mechanical zoom and focus are placed underneath the left handle for fingertip control. The "focus" and "iris" commands are conveniently placed for thumb access at each handle.

Touch screen controls provide menu access to key camera and exposure settings, and retract out of the way to avoid obscuring the camera's large 5" LCD. All exposure related settings are available with this touch screen system, and the mechanical controls don't interfere with viewing the large 5" LCD monitor.

Here you can see the NA-BMCC in action:

The NA-BMCC, depending on the retailer, is going to cost you around $3,600, whereas the NA-BMPCC will cost about $1,800. Check out Nauticam's site to learn more about these UW housings for Blackmagic cameras (as well as others).

What do you think? Do these Nauticam housings seem to cover a filmmakers UW recording needs? Let us know in the comments.

Links:

[via 43 Rumors]

Your Comment

12 Comments

Looks coo'! I guess it's time to write a script that deals with being underwater...

December 23, 2013 at 5:43PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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...way........way...too expensive...

Use 5D3 RAW....only like 1,600 for UW houseing...

December 25, 2013 at 11:42AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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sammy

I think this is a great product, but I'll take my chances with a cheaper underwater housing or a zip lock bag and take the money I was going to buy this with and get another camera........if I was a fulltime under water DP I'll invest in this.

December 23, 2013 at 5:50PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Al

So you go down and after 15m the battery die and you gotta go up. Or will they have any solution to change the battery underwater? lol

December 23, 2013 at 5:56PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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The BMPCC picture shows an external battery in the housing...

December 23, 2013 at 9:27PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Matt W

BMCPC + Nauticam housing - definitely very interesting and compact underwater package. Manual focusing on moving subjects under water can be pain. Limited shallow DOF ability of BMCPC would be beneficial here.

December 23, 2013 at 8:30PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Robert B.

You mean deeper depth of field? Revelation!

December 23, 2013 at 11:21PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Hodkamavemo

I wonder if the pocket housing will support their external monitor solutions (SmallHd, etc) like the BMCC one does. None of their dealers have any BMPCC information yet. The Pocket housing does look nice with the dual battery option.

December 23, 2013 at 9:35PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Matt W

I tested a prototype of the BMCC housing back n October and I did a brief comparison with the PMW200 which is a broadcast standard for underwater work. You can view here

http://vimeo.com/79240644

The encode on that video is a bit blocky but overall I was very impressed with the housing and if you have the back up to shoot in RAW it is definitely worth a look at.

December 24, 2013 at 6:08PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Simon,
Your comment in the Vimeo post says that there was banding in the original ProRes material. That's disappointing to hear. I struggled with terrible blue-water banding with the hacked GH2...but Pana have done a superb job of eliminating it in the GH3's 50p codec.

December 27, 2013 at 7:18PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Skeptikal

I also can get you into a studio and access to lots of Lights hit me up! Calebjr@me.com

December 24, 2013 at 10:22PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Caleb

Nauticam housings are well made...just a nightmare to service. I 've used their GH2 and GH3 housings for years with no problem. The problem is their over-engineering...you don't what to try stipping them down to change an O-ring in a remote part of West Papiua on a moving Liveaboard...

I am more doubtful about the suitability of the BM 4K camera for serious uw work (but I'm getting one for topside work).. What I'm really waiting for is Panasonic's follow-up to the GH3. It will be 4k with the auto features necessary for uw documentary shooting. I used a Canon 5D2 for a year and will never waste my time with an essentially manual camera uw again. OK for controlled scenes (ie ads or features) but very difficult for long takes of large animals (Mantas or Whale Sharks) moving in and out of a scene. This is where Panasonics AF really makes a difference.

December 27, 2013 at 7:04PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

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Skeptikal