With the release of the first RAW footage of the Blackmagic Cinema Camera we can start to take a good look at footage that the camera will record natively. At first glance it looks like an Alexa with a 2.3 crop sensor. If you look closer, you will see it only has one flaw: A tiny bit of aliasing and moire. This is not as bad of a problem as it is on other cameras since we can fix this mostly in realtime with debayering settings and chroma blur.
Certainly for me the moire is a non issue, and since were dealing with raw footage, there will surely be better fixes to come along. All in all the RAW footage released yesterday shows that the BMC camera is unmatched by most cameras under 15k and provides and image quality that can be graded and changed with as much flexibility as a Red camera.
This should be a cheaper alternative to run native EOS lenses on m4/3 cameras from Panasonic and Olympus without resorting to the adapters with the built in iris. While no pricing information has been released, other adapters from Kipon have been very competitive in comparison to other brands. Also you can count on numerous other manufactures in China replicating this adapter if its successful.
The FCC whitepaper was released last week that showed a “vague” description of the new Playstation model. The model in the video is extruded out from that 2D render and made to be a combination of the PS2 Slim and the older PS3 model. We wont know for sure how the model will look until its released this fall, probably sometime around when the Wii-U launches.
What to expect form this model?
- Lower power consumption due to a die shrink
- New web technologies designed for the next generation of smart tvs
16 months ago I posted a video showing the Panasonic 42″ GT25 being used as a main 3D Computer Monitor. Most people thought there would be issues like burn-in very quickly. As it turns out, there have been no issues except for temporary image retention that goes away after a few seconds at most. I have the display calibrated in THX mode with screen being driven in component mode. The pixel orbiter is set to 1 minute (I’ve never noticed it active) and set the Windows 7 taskbar to hide unless the mouse is over the bottom of the screen. No burn-in anywhere.
The only change has been an improvement in the display quality over the past few months. High Frequency noise in black areas has decreased, and the gamma shift related to shifting black levels has also greatly subsided, possibly even gone away. The monitor was a fantastic purchase at the time, and you’d be hard pressed to do better at the size. Pixel density may not be the greatest, but it’s as close to a large OLED screen that you will be able to purchase in the foreseeable future.
This is a lens design you don’t see often in older zooms. The focus is in the rear and the zoom ring is in the front.
Lens construction is completely metal, made in Japan, extremely durable with well dampened focus and zoom rings. The front element is a large 72mm, and the lens mount on this model is Konica AR. I’ve seen these offered in FD as well on ebay.
Here’s some basic specifications about the lens when it comes to film/video usage:
* Manual aperture ring: Yes
* Direct-coupled focus ring: Yes
* Focus ring rotation: Canon direction
* Non-rotating outer barrel: Yes
* Non-extending outer barrel: No
* Constant field of view: No
* Constant f-stop aperture: Yes
* Rotational zoom ring: Yes
* Internal Zoom
The biggest advantage of the lens is the constant aperture. It does not vary even in the slightest from 28-80mm. The front element only extends slightly with focus, and it has an internal zoom so the lens stays a constant size while changing the FOV. Another nice advantage of this lens over many zooms of the 80′s is that the front element does not rotate with focus. It is a true dual touch design. Unfortunately, it is completely varifocal, which means you wont be zooming while recording with this lens. The varifocal nature of the lens carries over to the MFD which goes from .23 meters at 28mm to a few feet at 80mm.
Being an older lens, quality will very greatly from model to model. Fortunately, this lens looks like it was kept in a closet most of its life and has hardly any use. Stopped down past f5.6 the lens performs fantastically across the entire zoom range. While its large front element makes it susceptible to flare, I find lenses with little coating to be preferable in giving the option of the “flared” less contrast look – especially when combined with anamorphic adapters. At f3.5 the image quality is still nice. Much nicer than comparable sigma zooms of the day at the same aperture. There is a bit of organic glow that keeps the lens resolving around 2-4Mpx on this sample. I’ll make a video review later that will show more of the qualities of this lens.
Overall this lens would be perfect if it weren’t for the fact that it is Varifocal. But as a variable prime, it is a great lens for the price, comparable with Tokina in quality in fact. Just make sure you get the constant aperture version, as there is many 3.5-4.5 versions that go for the same price or more.
Quick Still Samples:
This is my first trial for making a scripted GUI conversion tool for the Blackmagic Cinema Camera and converting the output to Cineform RAW. Why do this? Cineform RAW is very similar to Redcode in that the RAW files can be manipulated on the fly with Firstlight and it has very good performance with most NLEs.
On to the software. At this time it’s limited to CinemaDNG files only and is basically for testing purposes for once we get RAW files from the new Blackmagic camera. You can download sample CinemaDNG footage to test with here: http://www.ikonoskop.com/dii/footage/
How to use: Download the software here New Version – Added framerate options, and filename is set by the time you make the file – so no way to overwrite previous files.
1. Make a new directory containing DPX2CF.exe – This comes with Cineform Studio Premium and is a command line utility. It needs to be in the same directory as DNGtoCineform.exe
2. Start the program, follow the prompts. It is all very simple with no choices on frame size or frame rate at this time.
3. Do not use this program on any footage that you are not afraid to lose! Right now that would be Ikonoskop users. Also, this program will overwrite its output.avi file everytime without asking first. Another issue with the compiler is that you cannot save your output.avi file to the directory where this program exists.
Fourth in the Hacked GH2 Tutorial Series. In this episode we start with the footage loaded and ready to test with the streamparser software. This software will tell us that the footage has recorded at the correct bitrate, and has all red frames which represent I-frames (GOP 1) which makes this essentially a CBR Intraframe AVCHD codec. Very impressive for a $600 camera. Following this we have information on the ISO Bug which affects ISO 320 and 640 and can be countered by setting a higher ISO and returning back downward. This segment was recorded in true anamorphic which I will talk about in a later video. The video ends with using Kelvin for white balancing.
Brought to you by Cavootle.com
This second video shows the process of not only loading the firmware onto the camera, but where to download the patches, firmware, and basic instruction on how to use Ptool to save a modified firmware file.
What is Cavootle?
Technically this isn’t 4k. It’s not even 2k, but it is the best way to upload your footage to youtube or Vimeo for the absolute best quality and for future-proofing your work. Here was the first test of “4K”
click “ORIGINAL QUALITY”
So what is going on here, and why should I do this? First, I created a 4000×1800 project in Sony Vegas 11. I interpolated the anamorphic footage shot to the correct aspect ratio, and “graded” the footage in Magic Bullet looks – Let me show you some examples of the benefits.
Taken sample from this video (which was done at 2k)
Now, if you control the master that you upload, every downsample will be from that file, but if you upload at 1080p or below, your future footage can only be upsampled from that lower quality master and who knows what method will be used to upsample when the age of 4k or 8k hits us in the upcoming decade. Also if you upload at 1080p with anamorphic footage, its quite posible that you will actually lose vertical resolution if your footage is encoded with bars. 4k or even 2400×1080 will make sure that your footage wont be downgraded before it goes through your favorite host’s compression.
Here’s an example of the cheap +1 Cokin P diopter in the cinetactics Matteblox. It is a velcro mounting system, so the adapter is mounted in velcro and can firmly attach close to the lens. There is no possible chance of this falling out accidentally.