blackmagic cinema camera test

It almost feels like the day when Vincent Laforet posted Reverie online back in 2008 which led to the DSLR video revolution. Marco Solario has uploaded probably the first production that's been shot entirely with the new Blackmagic Cinema Camera.

No doubt about it, this camera is causing big waves in the industry, just checkout how many people have downloaded the demo footage of the woman playing pool and posted their grades onto Vimeo. Test footage is fine, but is exactly that, test footage, so this Vimeo video from OneRiverMedia gives us all a chance to see what the camera is capable of. Some information from Marco afterwards...

The biggest reason for attempting this shoot, (“Texting is 'gefährlich'” or, “Texting is ‘dangerous’” translated from German) on such short notice was to really see how well the new Cinema Camera could hold up under a real production environment, and in the end, it worked very well for us. A few main factors I wanted to specifically test for in this production were the following:

- Low light abilities (among others, the opening shot only uses city lights).
- Dynamic range (we literally shot INTO headlights).
- Image sharpness
- Tonal range
- Narrow DOF
- Extreme wide angles
- RAW CinemaDNG image data quality
- Functionality and ease of use

In all regards, I feel the camera was able to accomplish all of these tasks with no problems and exceeded my expectations in many situations. In the end, I’m very happy with the results from the camera. The short film, which is currently getting funding as a PSA, isn’t the next Hollywood blockbuster, but it did allow us to test the camera in extreme situations, and on such short notice. In all accounts, this was truly a 24-hour film production and we had fun doing it. We will upload a 1080p24 version once funding is completed.

We used the following lenses on this production: Canon 24mm f/1.4L, Canon 50mm f/1.2L, Canon 135mm f/2, Sigma 8-16mm f/4.5-5.6 zoom. The Sigma lens ended up working perfectly for super wide shots, and ended up being used a lot. Surprisingly, we ended up using fewer lenses than we expected.

Did we learn anything on this production with the Cinema Camera? Absolutely. Are there things I may change in future productions using the Cinema Camera as a results of shooting this one? Absolutely. Stay tuned as we’re going to be presenting a lot more info on this production, including behind-the-scenes footage.

Many thanks again to the entire cast and crew for being available on such short notice, staying through the night and giving your 100%. I love working with great crew!

A great posting from Marco at OneRiverMedia, although no word on the NLE used in post. You can follow him on Twitter or go to the company Facebook page.

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