November 21, 2018

The Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro Takes On the BMPCC 4K: Which Will Win?

Blackmagic Camera Comparison
A Blackmagic breakdown of how the URSA Mini Pro and the Pocket Cinema Camera 4K compare.

For starters, if you were to truly compare the Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro with the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K, a lot more would have to go into the equation than just image quality. While both are arguably great cameras, they are designed and intended for different uses - but with several aspects that do overlap.

Let’s look at some slightly-scientific side-by-side image quality tests between the two Blackmagic’s to see how they both stack up and compare.

Side by Side Comparison

In this side-by-side comparison video by Zebra Zone, we get a good look at each camera’s video recording quality with the sole focus on static, tripod recording uploaded online. It’s not an end-all comparison, but it does offer some surprising insights - mostly into just how high of quality the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K can deliver.

The URSA Mini Pro, however, clearly outshines with its dynamic range and built-in ND filters (not included in this test) and V-mount support. It’s interesting though to see how far Blackmagic’s color science has developed and how each camera performs in different low light settings.

The Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro

Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro

As we’ve written about before, the Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro has been a strong feature-heavy offering that’s helped Blackmagic build itself into the brand it is today. For broadcast and larger scale productions, the URSA Mini Pro will always be a stronger option than its Pocket Cinema 4K counterpart, but also reflects up to 5 times the investment. Here are the full stats for comparison.

  • Super-35mm CMOS Sensor

  • 4608 x 2592 Video up to 60 fps

  • CinemaDNG and ProRes 444 & 422 Recording

  • 2/4/6-Stop ND Filter Wheel

  • 15-stops Dynamic Range

  • 12G-SDI Output

  • 2 XLR Audio Inputs with Phantom Power

  • Full Set of External Controls

  • Price: $5,995.00

The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K
On the other hand, as you can see in its video tests with similar mirrorless 4K digital cameras, the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera is really beginning to turn some heads with its image quality and very competitive price point. Here are its full specs for comparison.

  • 4/3"-Sized HDR Sensor

  • 4096 x 2160 up to 60 fps (DCI 4K)

  • Dual Native ISO to 25,600

  • 13-Stop Dynamic Range

  • Active Micro Four Thirds Lens Mount

  • Record up to 120 fps Windowed HD

  • External Recording via USB Type-C

  • 5" Touchscreen Display

  • Price: $1,295.00

How do you think the Pocket Cinema Camera 4K compares with the URSA Mini Pro? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.     

Your Comment

5 Comments

For me the pocket to own and the ursa as a rental -I'm done paying more than a few grand for a camera that looses it's value quickly. For someone that wants to get better at grading the BMPCC is a no-brainer especially considering it comes with Resolve and the shots actually compare really nicely making it hard to justify that big price difference. This thing is so cheap for what you get! I can live without the ND's or autofocus - flip screen would be nice but coming from a 5dmkiii I'm used to it plus I have a ton of batteries so it works out nicely :)

November 21, 2018 at 10:53PM

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Stephen Herron
Writer/Director
1615

Something to remember is that while the Ursa Mini has 15 stops of dynamic range and the BMPCC4K has "only" 13 stops, just a few years ago a camera having 10 stops of dynamic range was considered super awesome.
We're doing very well with either of these.

November 22, 2018 at 11:29AM

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I own both of these cameras and I pretty much 100% agree with everything this guy says, they do match beautifully together. I typically use the p4k on the Ronin S or on my micro slider as a lightweight 'movement' camera and the UMP is my master A-cam for most of the material I shoot especially for interviews and less run and gun shoots where you can muck around with rigging it up with a matte box, follow focus and mics etc. I do wish there was a better solution for sticking the p4k on the Ronin S other than using a bunch of risers and cheese plates though, especially with the new follow focus module where you're forced to use the Ronin riser plate to attach it to...

November 23, 2018 at 4:05PM

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Lee Pretious
Film Maker
1

Where else can image quality go that will be significant for more money. Just dynamic range and sensor size? What about 14 bit color??

November 23, 2018 at 11:05PM, Edited November 23, 11:05PM

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Vincent Gortho
none
949

Honestly! How I see it, those big cameras, outside of Hollywood uses, are only to justify charging clients premiums plus it looks respectable. Charging someone $500/hour they wanna see ‘The Show’.

November 27, 2018 at 12:20AM

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Freddy Long
Writer-Director
256