I just received word from BMD that the BMPC 4K is shipping as of today. I checked B&H and a few other sites and they are still showing it as a pre-order item but the press release just hit a few hours ago. Along with the terrific news of official shipping it is also making it’s debut at a lower price point $2995. Down $1K from the original MSRP. It is still shipping with a full copy of Resolve and appears not to have lost anything in the process. First thing I checked was the BMD site for the specs and everything still appears to be there so it’s all good. Hopefully as the units start making their way into the market a few review units will drift into bloggers hands =) I’ll keep you posted. For now please see the full press release below and let me know your thoughts.
Fremont, CA – February 10, 2014 – Blackmagic Design today announced the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K is now shipping and with a new low price of US$2,995. This new low price will be available for all customers, including existing pre-orders. Blackmagic Production Camera 4K is available now from Blackmagic Design resellers worldwide for only US$2,995.
“The support from the creative community for the Blackmagic Cinema Camera and Production Camera 4K has been amazing,” said Grant Petty, CEO, Blackmagic Design. “As with all of our products, we work hard in production to reduce costs so we can pass along the savings, even to our first Blackmagic Production Camera 4K customers. The Blackmagic Production Camera 4K is a perfect companion for ATEM Production 4K switchers and we hope the new low price will help more customers to expand their Ultra HD live production set ups with even more camera angles!”
Blackmagic Production Camera 4K is a super high resolution 4K digital production camera for Ultra HD television production. Featuring a large Super 35 sensor, professional global shutter as well as EF and ZE compatible lens mount, the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K captures high quality ProRes™ files, giving customers a complete solution to shoot amazing high resolution music videos, episodic television productions, television commercials, sport and documentaries.
The Blackmagic Production Camera 4K has everything customers need right out of the box including a built in SSD recorder, rechargeable battery and a large 5” LCD touchscreen. In addition to focusing and monitoring shots, the touchscreen also lets customers enter metadata and change camera settings all on a single easy to use interface. Customers also get a full copy of DaVinci Resolve for amazing quality color grading and finishing for Mac OS X and Windows computers.
- Ultra HD 3840 x 2160 resolution
- ProRes 422 (HQ)™ recording
- Super 35 sensor
- Global shutter
- EF and ZE compatible lens mount
- Built-in SSD recorder
- 5” LCD touchscreen
- Metadata entry
- 6G-SDI output for 10-bit HD and Ultra HD
The Blackmagic Production Camera 4K is available now for US$2,995 from Blackmagic Design resellers worldwide.
Until next time, Good shooting
I was just notified by BMD that they have updates that now support Mavericks OS X 10.9:
- The new updates include OS X Mavericks compatibility and interface enhancements for the new operating system and are immediately available for DeckLink, UltraStudio and Intensity Desktop Video products.
- Customers can now download the Blackmagic Design software updates free of charge from the Blackmagic Design website.
If you have been reading any of my recent posts regarding the saga of OS 10.8.5 and the never ending grey screen then you know I am very happy to hear I can move up to Mavericks and still continue using my BMD cards and software.
Please visit their web site to read the full press announcement from earlier this week.
Thanks for stopping by.
Until next time, Good shooting
What a great monitor…. The End
OK, ok. Maybe a little more is needed =)
Earlier this summer I was prepping a project and the DP had asked for a larger monitor with a really good sun shade. I was using an older 5″ HDMI monitor. We were shooting on my 5D3 and were going to be on the move over the 5 days of shooting. So I started looking at my options.
I had checked out the SmallHD AC7 and it’s bigger brother the DP7 at CineGear and was very impressed. Both monitors had a really nice look and feel and were well built. I’m very partial to the way SmallHD handles their focus assist features. The peaking in these monitors reminds me of the peaking in my old BetaCam cameras. When you’re on, you are on!! and you can see the focus plane coming/going as you are rolling through focus. Really helpful with DSLR shooting. The 5D3 staying in HD during recording is also very nice.
So as I said I was going to be in the field (or actually on an island) for 5 days shooting mostly “Run and Gun”. We weren’t going to be able to charge batteries during the day and the rig had to be really light and nimble. Pictured here is my Hand Held rig:
I found the easiest thing was to set up the 5D3 on a Manfrotto raiser with 12″ rods and use a Ultralight 15mm rod accessory to add the monitor via a cine arm. (Say that 3 times fast =) This put the monitor almost right over the camera body and still left access to the battery door and CF card slot. To keep the weight down I used the Canon battery plate from SmallHD. This allowed me to use all the same batteries for the monitors and cameras. In this config we really didn’t need a follow focus and normally left the mattebox off as well. At night we could run without the sunshade leaving a much wider angle of view for the shooter and any one around him. I didn’t have it at the time but have since added a LockPort to protect the mini HDMI connection on the side of the camera.
The monitor was flawless. The HDMI port is on the bottom so it was very easy to run the cable under the lens and straight up into the monitor. It is very light weight. The screen is quite bright and clear. The shade helped the daytime shooting immensely. We could make it about 4 hours on one pair of batteries. ( the plate is set up for 2 batteries to run together extending the over all running time.) When the batteries are down to about 10% the screen changes to the AC7 logo and starts flashing. (Can’t miss that warning =) Pop two fresh batteries on and you are ready to go another 4’ish hours. You can get a variety of different battery plates to match your kit batteries and needs.
The monitor comes in two versions: an HDMI only version or an HDMI / HD-SDI version. I went for the HDMI version at the time but am now thinking about getting the combo HDMI / HD-SDI version. That way I can hang it off my EX3 or the H2S converter on my 5D3 / Blade kit.
The menu is easy to navigate and has a dial entry approach along with two assignable button for shortcut features and menu functions. There are a number of guides that can be assigned as well as false color, etc. Truly a well thought out monitor.
Well just my first impressions of the monitor. Very happy. It now lives in the 5D3 bag. I’ll give an update as I use it more this year. Thanks again for reading my post.
Until next time, Good shooting
So, the afternoon that the Samurai Blade was first in stock at B&H, I ordered it. I had been waiting a while for it to be available and was happy it was finally on it’s way.
At CineGear I was able to check out quite a few recorders including the Atomos Samurai Blade and the Convergent Design Odyssey 7. Both are excellent recorders. Both have terrific feature sets. Both are priced at $1295 USD.
I went with the Blade.
- It’s 5.5″ screen makes it a nice tiny recorder to hang on any rig.
- It has a non proprietary storage media solution. (the Odyssey uses Convergent Design’s own SSDs to ensure compatibility with the recorder)
- With the Blade, you can use SSDs or spinning 2.5″ hard drives right from your local computer store (as long as they meet the specs required by Atomos) The fact that you can use spinning drives is one of the main reasons I went with the blade. I can use a 500 gig laptop drive for tripod shoots and it will only cost me $60 or so and yields almost 5 hours of ProRes HQ. For “run and gun” I’ll probably want to use SSDs because of the risk of shock to the drives.
- I can run all day on a couple Sony NP-F970 batteries.
- The Blade works well with both my EX3’s SDI out and my 5D3’s HDMI out. For the HDMI from the Canon 5D3 I use the Atomos H2S converter. It converts HDMI to HD-SDI and does 3:2 pulldown removal in real time.
- The focus assist features work like my Zacuto EVF and SmallHD AC7 monitor. I can see the focal plan coming my way as I roll through focus.
- The waveform feature is very handy and pretty much a necessity these days on DSLR shoots.
One of the other things I’ve been waiting for in a recorder is the ability to delay the audio coming into the recorder to compensate for the 5 frame LAG the Canon 5D3 has on it’s clean HDMI output. When feeding the recorder audio directly you’ll end up with your picture behind your audio 5 frames. Those clips will then need to be slipped back into sync on the timeline during editing. However, (this was great) I wrote Atomos about the LAG and asked if there was anything in the works at Atomos to help. The next day (at 3:02 am) Tech support sent me an e-mail saying they had released a new firmware update that morning and added an audio delay function and way better audio meters. I was stoked as those were really the last 2 minor things that disappointed me about the Blade.
The Convergent Design Odyssey 7 and 7Q look like excellent recorders as well. At the time I needed my recorder the Odyssey units weren’t shipping and did not yet offer ProRes. They are projected to ship a little later this year. The 7Q will be able to do up to 4K resolutions and also record in camera raw formats.
All in all I think the Atomos Samurai Blade is a great choice for a flexible external field recorder and one that I will be able to use for some time to come. As we all move ever closer to the 4K world new technology is going to keep sneaking up on us. But for now HD recorders are a great way to go.
Until next time – Good shooting
Well, we just finished recording the narration for our new animated short – working title: “The Birthday Princess”. It’s a cute story about a princess and her mother, the queen. The princess learns many life lessons during one wonderful afternoon.
We recorded at Stewart Sound in Santa Ana, California using ProTools as our DAW. All the files are in straight AIFF. Dave Myslek, “Wookie”, our engineer was awesome!!! From there we will move almost completely into the Adobe Production Premium CS6 suite. We are editing the dialog in Adobe Audition for the rough cut. We’ll also use Audition for the final sound design and mix out at the end of the project. In the middle we will use a combination of Premiere Pro 6 and After Effects to bring the animation to life.
Once the dialog is roughed in we will be giving it to our animators. We’ll continue the sound design during the animation process and give them the final audio locked dialog + M&E tracks in the home stretch for fine tuning. We’ll then use Premiere to do the final video edit and layback of the mix. Output will be done with Adobe Media Encoder.
We are using Smart Sound to create the music. Their product, Sonic Fire, is a fantastic tool to create an “almost” original score. If you haven’t checked this software out yet, I highly recommend it. You can create very original sounding pieces of music from their library and tailor the cues to meet and match your project. Add hits, mood changes and even variations in side of one long piece of music. We pulled our temp tracks while we were editing the narration selects – Very Cool.
This is one of the new projects we are starting for 2013 at Polydactyl Pictures. We hope to have good luck with it at the festivals. It will also allow us to build “the machine” a little more before jumping into some of the larger projects we have on the horizon.
I realized this piece sounds a lot like a sales pitch for many of the software companies – but I really just want to show a step by step of the process. I want indie filmmakers have yet another road map to follow showing different kinds of projects and their workflows. Indies (including ourselves) need to have resources at our fingertips to help keep us creative and forward thinking =)
Stay tuned. I’ll be posting our progress on “The Birthday Princess” as we go. When we find out something cool (or problematic) I’ll give you an update and suggestions.
Until next time, good shooting, editing, animating, mixing….
Still loving the Rokinon Cine lenses. I have three now: the 24mm, 35mm for a few months and the 85mm just came in last week. All the lenses are at a T1.5 max exposure.
The 85mm is a little smaller than the 24 and the 35. It still has both an iris gear and a focus gear. Very handy for jib work. Since this one just came in, I haven’t had a chance to test it in the field yet – but plan to in January.
The build quality is just as amazing. The markings are nice and bold (although still only on the driver’s side). The gears seem to work nicely with my FF. And… the 85mm has a deep filter thread. I ordered from B&H so I also ordered a Tiffen UV filter to go with. The pair shipped as one and I knew that I would have the lens protected as soon as it arrived.
I’m hoping the rumors about a 50mm Cine lens are true. I would like to round out my basic prime set now and then start adding T&S lenses and other more specialized glass later in 2013.
I’ll keep you posted as I put this one through it’s paces on the F3 and the 5D2…
OK. So we didn’t all blow up today – YAY!!! Now it’s time to start thinking about questions for the big man in red ( and I don’t mean Jim Jannard =)
Here’s my wish list for my Sony F3 from Sony in 2013:
- Could we get an upgrade for 4:2:2 internal recording with 50 m/bits throughput?
- Is there enough processing power to give us RAW out of the F3?
- If the sensor is 4K can it be De-Bayer’d down to 2K to an external recorder?
- Can we us the new faster SxS cards with an upgrade to the firmware?
- If not free, could this be done for a purchased upgrade under $2000?
So, obviously what I’m aiming for here is a 2K RAW F3 upgrade for under $2000 to extend the life of our cameras as we start to save up for the F5 and F55. I think we’ll need another year or two for 4K to be requested by clients and this gives us a path to stick with and the ability to use our current configurations a little longer.
Seems like there is ‘a storm a brewin’ for the 4K market but we won’t know anything until it passes. If these cameras can be upgraded for a few bucks now and stay relevant until the new crop (no pun intended ) of sensors is released – could be a good thing.
Just thinking out loud… Santa Sony are you listening???
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone. I look forward to hearing from you in 2013 =)
Black Magic Design released the Beta version of their new DaVinci Resolve 9 Lite week before last. You can download it for the Mac here
It’s a great new look and feel to this wonderful application. I love the new layout. Still has all the tools you need — they are just in a better placement now. And, you don’t have to be as much of a rock scientist to figure out how to “make it go” =)
I decided to jump in with both feet. My friends are on the home stretch of their first feature and asked if I would be willing to have a go at the grading. I said…Suuuure, why not. It’s a fun vampire flick with all sorts of twists and turns. It was shot on the Panasonic HVX 200. INT’s, EXT’s and mixed lighting – a real good test. Check it out here
The new layout only took a little while to get familiar with and helped to really speed things up. Things I liked best right out of the gate:
- Improved Layout
- Better Scene Detection feature
- Smarter HSL keying
- Easier access to Primaries and Wheels
- Smart gallery access
- Fantastic Motion Tracking!!!!!!
- Super easy to use and link
- Delivery TAB for outputting
- Premiere Pro 6 support
This is all from me using the Beta 3 version for only about a week. As I dig into the app I’ll update this post. Feel free to add comments to help all the readers =)
I got this project as a full length ProRes movie and used the scene detection feature to split it up and conform it. Took just a little tweaking and it worked great. A lot of the content is set in a dark or flat location so I had to pickup a few of the cuts as they were hard to discern for the detection threshold I had set – No biggy.
The vignette and power window features are very nice. Made it easy to correct windows, clothing, walls… everything!!!
The delivery TAB is now super easy to use. You can make your own custom output settings and then save them for future use or just take advantage of one of the many presets. A new feature I like is the fact that you can set multiple outputs and then place them in the render que and walk away. Each output can have it’s own settings and destination.
Well, that’s it for now. I’ll add more as I go. Just wanted to give props to BMD for delivering such a great update to an already awesome tool.
Until next time, good… grading