September 10, 2015 at 4:33AM


Black magic pocket cinema camera

Hi guys!
Do you think is still worth to buy to bmpcc? I´ve been a canon user for a few year now (mostly video) and i want to upgrade my set up to a more cinematic look. I will be shooting short films, documentaries, people and good looking stuff.


You might want to wait for the new Blackmagic Micro Cine camera that should be out very soon. It does everything the Pocket camera does and a lot more, with significantly better battery life. ( 3x the battery life )

September 10, 2015 at 4:55AM, Edited September 10, 4:57AM

Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer

I like that camera too. But don't forget it has neither a monitor nor a viewfinder. Buying an external battery pack for BMPCC, if needed, is cheaper than buying a monitor or EVF for the BMMCC.

And you could find a good deal on a used BMPCC and have it right away.

September 10, 2015 at 8:48AM, Edited September 10, 8:52AM

Charlie K

...The BMPCC display is pretty low res ( 800x480 pixels ) and not that bright. Most people I know that shoot with the BMPCC camera always use an external monitor with it. The fact that you can shoot for 90+ minutes on a single battery far outweighs not having a low res display for me.

Guy McLoughlin

September 10, 2015 at 12:02PM

I'd say entirely worth it. Always depends a bit on the type of work you're doing, but I switched cameras around quite a bit (Sony fs100, Panasonic GH4) and finally ended up with the Pocket. Haven't been happier, the image is superb. I just got Sony LP external battery set up and two of those will last 15 hours or so!!!!!!
It's a great little camera with tons of lens options, even fun little c-mounts all the way to EF or whatever you want to use.
The image has never failed me, haven't been disappointed with one shot. Also kind of forces you to get a little better at proper exposure and basic coloring.

September 10, 2015 at 9:30AM

Ben Meredith

The BMPCC is amazing and has the best image for its price point, and is my go-to camera. However it's ill equipped for documentary work, due to its (very) short battery life, bad screen (which makes it difficult to focus outdoors) and lack of autofocus (pulling focus while walking around or documenting things on the go is quite difficult). The Black Magic Micro Cinema Camera supposedly addresses all of the issues above, though it lacks a screen (You can get an OK monitor for 100$).
If you plan to do documentary work I recommend you wait for the micro. If you'll work in mostly controlled environments, the BMPCC is the way to go - an unparalleled image quality at its price point.

September 10, 2015 at 10:49AM

Gal Chen
Documentary Filmaker

i like it but its a totally different approach to shooting, however itll give you practice towards an actual video camera

September 10, 2015 at 11:03AM, Edited September 10, 11:03AM

Kazu Okuda

Absolutely worth it. I have shot for years with my canon 650D (and still use it) but for films, short films, documentaries... the image the Pocket gives you is amazing. It has the things I was missing most from my t4i:
- a better codec (waaay better, plus raw!!)
- more bit depth for color correction
And the downs for me are:
- short battery (buy a lot of them or, like I did, a small power bank thet will give you hours of shooting)
- bad sound (I used separate audio with my canon also)
- need monitor or loupe for shooting outside (same as with canon)
- greater crop factor (I bought a Roxsen speedbooster which almost paired it with my t4i)

So, coming from a DSLR I was used to solve its problems, so it was not difficult to adapt to new problems :) and the quality of the image has nothing to do with the h264 from the canons. To me it's not that different to use from a DSLR. It just has its own quirks.
I got a second hand BMPCC and I am really happy I did it.

September 11, 2015 at 5:03AM

Andres Mata
Camera, Editor, Director of Photography

Thank you all guys!
In fact i was looking at the micro and it seems to be a good next step to move for. The lack of a monitor might be an issue but as Gal says i can easily get one and not spend serious money on it.
But overall it seems to be a really nice upgrade from canon DSLRs and if so, i will be geard up for a few time. And since no one knows if the BMPCC will have a younger sister soon, it might be better to be shooting with the micro instead of waiting for something that might just not happen.
Once again thank you all for the comments!!
Have a nice day!!!!!!!

September 11, 2015 at 8:47AM

Pedro Nuno Pinto

It's a fine camera. If you get a battery solution, then you will enjoy it immensely. I've had it over a year now. BUT... I would wait for some smoking firesale like last summer when it was a whopping $500.

September 11, 2015 at 6:36PM


I too was first a Canon user (5DMIII), and I could produce pleasing results (to me at least) with that camera. I still love my 5DMIII. But I purchased the BMPCC because I enjoy color-grading and wanted something that would give me more to push around without all the resultant artifacts from trying to stretch 8-bit color. I also liked the film-like look of a lot of the BMPCC test footage I found online. So I thought the BMPCC would be a good buy, just for fun, to try something new, nothing I'd stick with long term.

But then now I can say it is my favorite camera to shoot with because of the images that come out of such a small, high-quality-feeling, piece of equipment. I love the really small size, yet the increased quality of product over my Canon.

You can absolutely do documentaries with it! That's the ONLY thing I use mine for. People say it's not good for documentaries, but I disagree. It's just as good, if not better because of the images, than my Canon.

Sometimes I don't understand why people even say not to use it for documentaries. One of the only things I can think of that makes sense in that regard is that the battery life certainly is poor (around 40 minutes). If you're out there trying to catch all the action as it is happening, not knowing when and where you'll be running your camera, then I can see how a short battery life is a drawback to doing documentaries. My solution has been to carry 4 batteries with me, and this has worked out fine. Granted I don't have a speed booster to suck up the power, and I also do turn the BMPCC off when I'm not using it.

Many also say a speed booster is the way to go with these BMPCCs. I disagree with this too, not only because the battery life is drained by the speed booster (from what I gather from reading about it), but because there are great MFT lenses that are manual (preferred by those like myself who want to be all indie-filmer-type, wannabe real cinema person) and that can give you a wide angle of view and wide aperture, something that can be a challenge on a super16 mm sensor. I think it's good thinking to want to be able to use your lenses on both your full frame cameras and the BMPCC, hence the speed booster, but really the price of the speed booster and the usability of the MFT lenses have made me decide that it is just as good, if not better, to buy lenses specifically for the BMPCC. A lens that is considered wide on the BMPCC would be probably too wide for most filming purposes anyway on a full frame (or super35 mm) sensor. Also, that Metabones speed booster is kind of expensive. Like buying a whole other lens!

Anyway, the short answer to your question is that, if you buy the BMPCC, you will not be disappointed with the quality (and pleasure) it brings to your work. The thousand dollars it costs (plus maybe a thousand more for accessories) is relatively cheap for something that you can certainly find a use for and really enjoy.

The micro cinema camera sounds kind of enticing, but I would rather have the small form factor of the BMPCC (at least for my purposes) than have to manage the micro with a separate monitor. This doesn't appeal to my want for something small and fast that I can take around with me wherever and shoot with unobtrusively on a whim. Yeah, the screen probably isn't the best in broad daylight, but I'm not in this situation very much. It's about tradeoffs, and I choose the small dark screen over having to have another accessory to carry with my camera. You can always use your hand to shade the screen from the sun too.

Whatever you do with whatever camera, enjoy it, and shoot a lot! It's the only way to have fun and get better at creating good stuff ;)

Hope this helps!

September 13, 2015 at 9:58PM

Harlan Rumjahn
Low-level government official

You are talking a lot of wonderful MFT lenses, but which MFT lenses do you use?

Lutz Leonhardt

September 14, 2015 at 11:29PM

In my opinion is an awesome toy, very good quality sensor but too small and for this reason difficult to find a good wide lenses. Then for work well you need a good rig, spare batteries, external monitor...
I shot a short with the BMPCC with a PL adaptor and the Canon S16 zoom lens 8-64 T2.4, and I was very happy about the look.

September 14, 2015 at 2:16AM

Eloy Zecca
Director of Photography

Hey Lutz,

I was referring to MFT lenses that are good "wides" for the BMPCC. Specifically, I was talking about lenses that are anywhere from 12mm down to 6mm, which gives you a field of view of about 35mm and 18, respectively. I myself have the 12mm lens made by Kowa. For some reason these Kowa lenses are not well known here in the States. I had to order mine from Japan (through ebay).

Do you have any experience with these, or other good manual lenses that are considered wide on the BMPCC?


September 15, 2015 at 7:55PM

Harlan Rumjahn
Low-level government official

At the wide end for MFT there is not much to look at. Panasonic has the 12-35mm, 12-32mm (low speed), 7-14mm (expensive again), and than Olympus with 12mm, 12-40mm, and 9-18mm, SLR Magic has a 12mm (expensive) and the Kowa you mentioned. So for going really wide there is only the Olympus 9-18 and the Panasonic 7-14mm. This is not a great choice you have. 12mm is 35mm on the BMPCC, not so wide at all. I went with the BMPCC Speedbooster, because I had canon lenses already, but sometimes I wish I had smaller, more lightweight lenses.

Lutz Leonhardt

September 16, 2015 at 4:32AM

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