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BlackMagic Cinema Camera
EF & MFT lens mount / 2.5K CinemaDNG RAW


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Old January 25th, 2013, 07:56 PM   #16
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

Exactly right, Noa. I certainly wouldn't want his high saturation look for a narrative film (unless the story revolved around the amazing colors in Thailand or something similar), but that he can pull such deep blues out of the ocean shows how much latitude is available. Try that with an 8-bit, h.264 cam and things would get ugly, quick.

The nice thing is that anybody with a DSLR can practice shooting RAW stills to practice their grading chops. If you find a look that you've gotta have but you just can't get there with h.264, a BMC (or RED) might just be the ticket.

On the other hand, if you can't get there with RAW stills, you're definitely not getting there with RAW video.

What impressed me the most is that the color is pushed that far without camera coding artifacts popping up.

Still, my concerns would be 1) lens availability, 2) deeper focus than my preferred style, 3) possible DR or ISO limitations. (The video seemed to clip some highlights, but that might have been done in post. This was all shot in bright light, so it doesn't show low-light range.) I also noted the fast shutter, but he might not have had an ND filter on hand.
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Old January 28th, 2013, 05:50 PM   #17
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

I'm probably giving too many props here, but videos like that really make we want to go out and shoot. Then when I see that it's only 10 degrees outside, I get turned right back around.
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Old January 28th, 2013, 07:00 PM   #18
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

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,..... but that he can pull such deep blues out of the ocean shows how much latitude is available. Try that with an 8-bit, h.264 cam and things would get ugly, quick.
I think this is more than just grading. I think he is actually changing color within individual elements. DaVinci is supposed to be able to do that, right ?
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Old January 28th, 2013, 07:25 PM   #19
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

Grading can include masks. I use Colorista II, which provides rectangular and oval power masks. Not sure if he was using more complex masking, but it's still valid. Even with RAW stills and masking, it can be tough to pull that much blue out of the ocean without falling apart.
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Old January 28th, 2013, 07:35 PM   #20
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

My experience with most shoots I have had of the Pacific Ocean is that it is more green than blue. Thats what leads me to believe he actually had to change color in most of the surf shots. Obviously that a just a bit of a move along the color wheel but its still a big change. I have to believe eht same was done with the golden hues in some of the shots.
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Old January 29th, 2013, 12:20 AM   #21
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

The anatomy of color tweaks aside, this is a lovely piece. Like all really good photography, it is interpretive.
I've shot a lot of stuff up in that area and appreciate the fact that he shows us not just how it looks, but how it "feels". Reminds me of a 4x5 "chrome" look from back in the day.
Well done.

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Old January 29th, 2013, 10:47 AM   #22
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

I don't have a problem with the editorial changes, ie., changing the feel by color change. Its done all the time in narrative film. And I am not knocking the camera. I've got one on order. But this film sparkles because of heavy post treatment. I think the OP film was not treated very much in post.
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Old January 29th, 2013, 11:01 AM   #23
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

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But this film sparkles because of heavy post treatment.
Maybe this guy works for Black magic and is a very experienced colorist but he doesn't tell :) I see everyone getting the camera now and exactly the same lenses as he has to find out they can't get anywhere near his results.
I will be looking out as more videos start to roll out and see what other's can achieve, I just bhought another camera but for the price of the bmc, and when it finally is easily available, I don't see a reason why not to get one, in a year or so.
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Old January 29th, 2013, 03:15 PM   #24
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

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Originally Posted by Chris Barcellos View Post
I think this is more than just grading. I think he is actually changing color within individual elements. DaVinci is supposed to be able to do that, right ?
I do it a lot in FCPX with pieces similar to this.
We do a lot of outdoor scenes that depend on the right conditions that just don't exist in day to day production.
Moving masks are really simple and powerful in X for this...from creating sunsets to blue skies, colorful forests etc.
It's another reason I really like shooting everything flat and creating the finished look in post.

And yes, the original OP and the latter example are simply night and day regarding the grading techniques and really don't say anything about the BMC, other than it has a good negative to work from.
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Old January 29th, 2013, 07:22 PM   #25
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

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...other than it has a good negative to work from.
And that's really the point of this camera, isn't it? It's not ideal as far as lenses, DOF, and ergonomics, but if we can pull a good negative for grading, that can make it worthwhile.

I'd love to use this camera for a gritty western. Hard hitting westerns are best with deep focus, IMO, (as compared to a rustic, romantic western.) And to be able to push everything into the burnt orange corner while preserving realistic (but toned) sky, clouds, and water would be cool. It would also be great for an urban gang story where you want gritty streets, yet bright, saturated graffiti.

I'm of two minds when it comes to horror. I think I prefer shallow DOF for horror in order to hide things to add mystery. That said, being able to push the silver/green look while retaining red blood and lips is the way to go. Scarlet/Epic might be the better choice in that you also get shallow DOF and more frame rate options. But if the story is best told in deep focus, the BMC looks to be a great budget solution.

Then again, I just did a shoot with the good-old 5D2 and VAF filter, using gels to set the tones and enough light to keep the ISO in range. The footage looks great. When you can control the light, costumes, make up, and art direction, RAW isn't such a big deal. :)
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Old January 31st, 2013, 12:17 PM   #26
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

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He has some more beautiful videos on his vimeo account and it looks like he surely knows his way around color correcting. I"m also sure it's not a matter of just buying the camera, shoot in raw, do cc and expect to have the same results he has. There is some more bmc videos online that don't even look half as good meaning not everyone is capable to get the most from that camera. The magic seems to happen mostly in post and that seems to require experience. Eventhough his video's look colorwise amazing they are a bit over the top for me sometimes, some colors are so strong it doesn't look natural anymore but it shows how far you can push the color.
+1

Thought I was watching Avatar for a second ...

I prefer a natural representation rather than making a video look so unrealistic.
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Old February 1st, 2013, 09:27 AM   #27
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

I thing the whole point of the Big Sur grading was to demonstrate how far you can go without the BMCC raw image falling apart. It was not to be reviewed as to what individual's personal tastes of the piece was (which I personally found beautiful).

Grading decisions and artistic visions can be all over the place for any given project and is what a director/colorist collaboration is all about. But that is not what is going on here... it is showing the capability to BMCC raw/Resolve workflow. As someone coming from tweaking 8 bit material, I am amazed at this new capacity.

Now back to the OP ... think we can agree that it is time for a true forum for this camera. While I appreciate that BM has it's own, many of us value the tremendous expertise and help the DV Info folks provide.
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Old February 1st, 2013, 11:58 AM   #28
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

Even when you want a "natural" representation, having all that color information can be quite helpful. Say you film a scene as the light and weather change - especially in a tough environment like on snow. You might grade for a "natural" look, yet still need to mask to adjust the snow, skin tones, and jeans to look real and consistent, cut by cut.

This isn't such a big deal under controlled lights, but on-location, even natural productions can benefit from RAW.
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Old February 3rd, 2013, 03:20 PM   #29
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

not to needlessly, and a bit savagely, i might add, beat a dead horse, but there are a few things i despise about this camera.

Sensor size - I am used to HDSLR's and glad im done with HDV with 35mm adapters for shallow DOF shots. Crop sensors are bad enough, 16mm DOF is not shallow enough for me.

Frame rates - WAY too limited, i prefer to shoot at 48P or 60P for slow mo, not use software. I film auto events, and Twixtor sometimes 'drags' flying debris or smears colors when a car or bike whips a corner.

Touch screen controls - i like buttons, not a smeared LCD. 800x480 at 5" is a little on the low ppi side (186), i just bought a Lilliput 7" with 213 ppi for $330, and its LED IPS backlit.

Integrated battery - granted there is an optional external mount and obviously DC, but why not a V or Bauer mount, or battery plates instead?

Integrated speaker and mic - these i could do without. And 1/4" inputs? why not standard XLR's?

HD-SDI video out - an additional HDMI out would do wonders here; i dont have, nor intend to dish out the cash for an HD-SDI 720P monitor, not when i can get two very nicely featured HDMI 720P monitors for less than that.

12-bit RAW, 13 stops of DR, and mount choices look great though; its mostly the sensor size that kills it for me. Ill keep shooting with cheap T2i's, and maybe wait for the Kinefinity S35 Mini.
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Old February 3rd, 2013, 03:49 PM   #30
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Re: Black Magic Cinema Camera

Hopefully the new metabones speedbooster will render all issues of sensor size on MFT cameras moot. :)
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