Blackmagic dynamic range pulls out the stops — 13 of them

Blackmagic Design says many current generation video cameras suffer from a “video look” due to a limited contrast range, a maximum HD resolution sensor, poor quality optics and lenses, the use of heavy video compression for file recording, and poor integration with NLE software metadata management. “With these limitations, they cannot be used for high-end work or feature films,” the company says.

Its new Blackmagic Cinema Camera “has been designed to eliminate these problems so customers get a true feature film look, and at an affordable cost can shoot high end television commercials, episodic television programming and feature films.”

The Cinema Camera is billed as a “revolutionary digital cinema camera” with a “super wide” 13 stops of dynamic range, and a reasonable price of just $2,995. The dynamic range allows for feature film quality images, the company says. “Commonly people focus on more pixels. However, often this just creates higher resolution “video” looking images that suffer from highlight and black clipping that limits details.” The new camera’s wide dynamic range provides dramatically more detail in the black and white areas in the image, Blackmagic says.

The 16.64 by 14.04 mm sensor has a 2592 by  2192 pixel resolution. To eliminate the damage that low bit depth and high compression video storage creates, the company says, the solid state recorder captures the full sensor detail in 12 bit Log RAW files in the open standard CinemaDNG format. “The full 2.5K sensor data is stored in the files completely uncompressed, because the SSD has the speed to store video data at the required rate,” Blackmagic adds.

The camera has a large capacitive touchscreen, microphone, external mic/line level jack, speaker, and headphone jack.

More information is here.

About Paul Worthington

Paul Worthington is a journalist and consumer imaging consultant. He produces the annual Future Imaging Summit at PMA@CES, and writes for PMA Newsline and PMA Magazine, as well as other publications.