Thursday, August 23, 2012

Blackmagic Design Cinema Camera News

The Blackmagic Design Cinema Camera  [B&H: $2,995] hasn't arrived yet - though some people are being promised it soon - but they have created a new forum for the camera, and have posted some files captured with the camera:

Blackmagic Forum | Cinematography | John Brawley | Forum
To launch this new forum, BMD are making Cinema DNG files available to download.
These DNG's from my recent shoot with director Ben Phelps, Afterglow. Afterglow was done with a shipping version of the camera though it's likely that the software will have been updated by the time many of you get your cameras.

AFTERGLOW – DNG’s are out in the wild | John Brawley | Blog
John writes about the content himself:
A RAW workflow means the sensor data is recorded in camera but not processed until the images are loaded in post where the user can either choose to keep the settings that were selected by the cinematographer at the time of shooting or choose and optimize for a different set of settings.

Blackmagic Cinema Camera | Stu Maschwitz | Prolost
While concerned about elements of the camera - notably the smallish sensor - Stu may be won over:
The interesting thing about the footage from this not-quite-cinema-sized sensor is that it is sexy. Not because of fetishistically shallow depth-of-field (although Brawley handily demonstrated that focus control is eminently possible with the BMC and some nice glass), but because it’s raw.

John Brawley has given an excellent overview of the Blackmagic Design Digital Cinema Camera at Sydney Institute Film Academy. Brawley has been in the unique position of working extensively with the pre-production Blackmagic camera. In the talk he gave some background to the camera’s design and also shows some footage. The Youtube video of the event has been posted and is well worth a watch.

Several people have been playing with the files:

Blackmagic Cinema Camera - BMCC from James Miller on Vimeo.

EOSHD grades the Blackmagic camera raw CinemaDNG files | Andrew Reid | EOSHD
I don’t think anyone will be disappointed.
Not much has lived up to the cliche ‘game changer’ recently and only having seen snippets of the Blackmagic via compressed Vimeo footage I was beginning to have my doubts.
These CinemaDNG files sweep any doubts into the gutter.
Resolution is superb. Best I have ever seen for the price. Better than the C300 and better than the GH2. At per pixel level from the 2.5K raw, it is sharp no question.

ColorGHear Grade of BlackMagic Design's Cinema Camera raw DNG files | Shian Storm | Vimeo
The files behave in much the same way as Raw R3D files in how AFX interprets them. There is a definite grain to the image. Not totally unpleasing. And, while it is a bit sluggish in AE CS6 (more so than 4k R3D) it grades VERY nicely.
The first shot is a saturated bleach bypass type look that has GHrain Killer applied to her face only - via power window. But the other 2 shots are very simple, 2 and 3 GHear grades respectively.

ColorGHear Grade of BlackMagic Design's Cinema Camera raw DNG files from Shian Storm on Vimeo.

The File That Can Go A Mile | Sam Morgan Moore | Blog
I mean this is stupid, but check out the lack of banding on the rear wall, even when subjected to an extreme grade!

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