Blackmagic Design has introduced a new version of its Pocket Cinema Camera, and it has some important improvements for 4K video.
First and foremost, the new Pocket Cinema Camera 4K can actually record in 4K, unlike the original version, which was limited to 1080p. Like its predecessor, the new model can capture that footage in 10-bit ProRes or 12-bit RAW; but unlike its predecessor, it can record directly to external drives via USB-C, which is a great advantage when recording immensely large 4K RAW files. The new version is expected to be launched later this year for $ 1,295 ($ 300 more than the original).
Although the camera is small for a film camera, it is not very small, and it is definitely larger than the previous one. This new model leaves space for a 5-inch screen on the back, instead of a 3.5-inch screen. And it includes a full-size Micro Four Thirds sensor, while the old model was closer to Super 16. That will be useful for depth of field and low light (which are already sore spots in Micro Four Thirds cameras), while even allowing you to use any of the common lens lenses used by Panasonic, Olympus and others.
Blackmagic is known for creating professional video tools, from cameras to transmission equipment, to the standard color classification software of the industry. He has been launching smaller film cameras in the $ 1,000 price range over the past five years, which have gained followers among amateur and low-budget filmmakers.
All cameras offer tools and options at a professional level at a dramatically lower price than what you would have to pay for a real movie camera. While this is getting less and less special as these features go down to cameras like Panasonic's GH5, the Blackmagic line continues to stand out by clearly focusing on the needs of video and video-shooters.
The new Pocket Cinema Camera 4K has a lot of features that will attract that market, such as a mini XLR connector, LUT support and 4K recording at 60 fps, but still has limitations that will keep the camera confined to a specific audience (which , to be fair, it is a kind of truth of each camera). Basically, unless you're a filmmaker who normally controls the lighting and the general environment in which they will shoot, this camera is probably not for you. It has no stabilization in the body, and the small sensor will have problems in low light and you will need adapters to get the depth of field you would get from the full frame or even Super 35 cameras. That might not be important for some filmmakers, but it could be a problem for people in quick filming or traveling to unfamiliar places.