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Of Course Blackmagic Built A New 4K Pocket Camera For Film Makers

by on April 10, 2018
 
Stephan Jukic – April 10, 2018

If there’s one camera maker that’s going to make 4K UHD video recording a priority for its budget film maker products, it would definitely be Blackmagic Design. The pro video recording camera maker doesn’t have much previous experience when it comes to compact 4K pocket shooters but their chops in the areas of pro video apparatus, including cameras, broadcast equipment, other accessories and even industry-leading color grading software are well established. Throughout the development of all these other devices, reasonable prices and 4K video have been key parts of these Blackmagic technologies for years now.

With that in mind, we have some high hopes for the new Pcoket Cinema Camera, which promises effective, prosumer ultra HD video recording at a very decent price (another thing that Blackmagic has been big on for some time now).

The Pocket Cinema Camera really focuses most of all on its ultra HD video recording features, with photography taking a backseat to them. The compact device can capture video in 10-bit ProRes or 12-bit RAW and recordings in both formats can be delivered straight to external drives via USB-C connection. This of course means expanded storage right on the fly and that is always a good thing when it comes to 4K RAW files, which take up a huge amount of space.

Best of all, as we alluded to above, the camera will be selling for one hell of a reasonable price when it launches a bit later in 2018. It’s slated to start at $1,295, only $300 more than the original retail price of its 1080p HD predecessor.

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Now, the Pocket Cinema Camera is obviously very small by the standards of semi-pro 4K recording devices but it’s not literally pocket-sized. This new 4K model is first of all bigger than its HD predecessor and boasts a 5 inch display instead of the 3.5 inches offered by the 1080p version. The internal sensor is also larger, being a Micro Four Thirds version instead of a Super 16. This new feature in turn means expanded depth of field and better low-light performance.

The Pocket Cinema Camera is also compatible with lenses from a variety of brands including Sony, Panasonic, Olympus and others, which is one excellent thing if you already have lenses from any of these brands rolling around.

Moving onto the Pokcet Cinema Camera’s more specific features, there are plenty of them in such a small device. This little dude comes with a mini XLR connecter, LUT support, 4K recording at a full 60fps and the ability to take some excellent high resolution still shots mid-shoot. In fact, it most closely resembles a cross between a mirrorless camera and a DSLR instead of looking like a camcorder.

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On the other hand, the Pocket Cinema is far from perfect. There’s no in-body stabilization mechanism with this model and that’s a major weakness. In addition to this, despite low light improvements, its sensor will still have a tough time of certain murky locations. For film makers who don’t want these problems, a full-frame 4K shooter would probably be a better idea.

Blackmagic hasn’t always had the absolute best reputation with the entire spectrum of film making professionals but its compact cinema cameras are still extremely popular among budget film-makers due to their range of features, ease of use and prices that stay well below $10,000 dollars. At the same time, these prices do buy some genuine professional recording quality, with pro-grade tools as part of the package. In basic terms, Blackmagic is known for being supportive of the budgetary needs of budget videographers who want professional quality in their tools at reasonable prices.

Story by 4k.com

3 comments
 
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  • Michael
    April 11, 2018 at 3:44 pm

    Interesting that the author made a low light assumption on a camera that’s not even available to buy for 6 months. Weird.

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    • Stephen
      Stephen
      April 26, 2018 at 8:33 pm

      Hey Micheal, an assumption based on information from Black Magic Design. They themselves claim that their new pocket camera offers slightly better low light performance due to its sensor design and while we can’t yet confirm this obviously enough, we’re assuming it’s relatively true. their reputation is not a bad one for budget 4K video cameras. The sensor is however also not the best for low light to to the general nature of these sensor types.

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      • Mark Grgurev
        May 2, 2018 at 4:24 pm

        You’re very misinformed. It’s a dual native ISO sensor with the higher ISO being 3200. That’s a significant improvement and would theoretically put it ahead of the GH5s in low-light.

        Reply

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