Last week I flew out to Las Vegas alongside the Fiction crew for NAB. The show covers everything from post-production and computer hardware to lenses, cameras and lighting. It’s hard to summarize everything that I saw because I was constantly in overload, so I decided to pick the one product that stuck out, the Blackmagic Digital Cinema Camera.
The Digital Cinema Camera is a Raw ( Cinema DNG 12-Bit ), 2.5K ( 2432 x 1366 ) camera for 3,000.00 USD. There’s a laundry list of features that the camera offers but mainly…it’s very, very cheap and it’s output at 2.5K is RAW. They implemented a Canon EF mount, so everyone transitioning from Canon can do so, easily. Also, it’s all touchscreen and uses off the shelf SSDs as media. The sensor is Micro 4/3 so it’s smaller than a Super35mm ( 7D / Red Epic ) and much smaller than the 5D which is close to 65mm ( In film terms, not still ), but they’re claiming 13 stops of dynamic range on it. The camera only shoots up to 30fps, so it’s not a camera that just beats all the others, but it definitely puts an option out there that a lot of people have been interested in.
From my perspective, it’s not about what the camera looks like, it’s what it delivers when it’s in the timeline. I think this fills a gap that’s been around for the past few years where the Canon DSLRs work for a lot of stuff that’s non-commercial or internet only…this offers professional level images at a bargain price. I think what I’m excited to see is the creativity and quality that’s about to change. I feel like a lot of motion designers and directors starting out use Canon DSLRs for low budget and experimental work and while it looks great now, imagine if these guys and girls are shooting 2.5K RAW and able to really work footage in terms of color, overlays, etc. The camera ships in late July, and they’re also including Davinci Resolve with it. I’m having a hard time not clicking “Add to Cart”.
Here’s a video detailing the camera completely from DSLR Newshooter. I wanted to get in and shoot a little interview but the booth and the 3 or 4 cameras they had out were swarmed every day I was there.
As of right now, I’m heavily invested in a RED Epic and I’m hoping to get together a techincal post on the camera and answer any questions on it in the next month. However, if I didn’t have it, I’d be all over the Digital Cinema Camera.
If you’ve got some time, hop over to their specs page and check it out.
Also, I hope to never hear the phrase “game-changer” again.