Being able to remotely control a camera is becoming an essential tool for filmmakers. Blackmagic Design has its Camera Control app which allows you to control any of its cameras, including the Pocket Cinema Camera 6K/4K and URSA Mini Pro 4.6K G2.
The app was originally released with the URSA Mini Pro and connects to the camera via Bluetooth, providing control from up to 30ft (9m) away. The user interface is very similar to the UI found on Blackmagic cameras. There are options to change camera settings, control the lens, adjust metadata, and trigger recording. The latter is one of the handiest features, especially when there's distance between you and the camera, whether that be because of a crane, drone, or gimbal.
The company has updated the app to version 1.0.3 which addresses iris control and improves start/stop recording when using an SSD, among other fixes and enhancements.
Camera Control 1.0.3
- Improved support for Pocket Cinema Camera 4K and 6K
- Improved support for URSA Mini Pro, G2, SSD Recorder and URSA Broadcast
- Fixed iris control bug with active lenses
- Fixed ‘power off’ button not functioning with some models
- Fixed record stop and start bugs for SSDs
- General performance improvements
For now, the Blackmagic Design Camera Control app is only available for Apple iPads. If you are an iPhone or Android user, there are third-party options available. SayEffect Tech Solutions has an iPhone/iPad app that costs $5.99 which supports the BMPCC 6K/4K, URSA Mini 4.6K, and URSA Mini Pro 4.6K. The caveat to the app, besides the price, is it does not currently support EF lenses used with the BMPCC 6K. This should be updated in the future. The company also has an Android version for $6.99. We Are Empire makes another iPhone/iPad app for $4.99 and features similar control found on the Blackmagic Design app.
No Film School hasn't tested any of these third-party options, so be on notice. If you have had good results with one of them, share it with the No Film School community in the comments below.
Blackmagic Design's Camera Control app is available for free in the Apple store.