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View Full Version : BMCC Camera Shootout by Andrew Reid (EOSHD)



Simon Shasha
11-19-2012, 02:14 PM
LINK: http://www.eoshd.com/content/9214/the-eoshd-blackmagic-cinema-camera-shootout

Kholi
11-19-2012, 02:51 PM
GH2 comes in looking like a champ, shows you how experience with a certain tool is just as important as the tool itself. If that shot of the railway (looking up below the rails) was the first thing I saw as someone trying to decide between these cameras, the GH2 would be the camera I'd buy. Tsk.

Scarlet at 2.5K is not why you buy a Scarlet. You buy it for 4K, so the comparison is Scarlet at its best and Blackmagic at its best. Weird to suggest that Scarlet at 2.5K even matters...

No further comments in fear of being slashed to mini chick fil a sandwiches. xD

Simon Shasha
11-19-2012, 03:27 PM
I thought the GH2 came out looking like the winner as well - demolishes everything bar the BMCC.

I'd really love to see more ProRes out of the BMCC too. I was playing around with your ProRes footage Kholi, and adding an unsharpen mask in post really made it pop - looked amazing.

dustylense
11-19-2012, 03:30 PM
I agree Kholi. I thing the Gh2 and the Gh3 held their own. And in some cases even the Mk3 held it's own. Other than the RAW ability of the BMC the Gh2 and 3 still look like very viable cameras for low budget shooting. If the Gh3 can get uncompressed out without issue and the production model shows a control over aliasing/moire, we might have have a great little camera with a nice UI built in.

Some of the prores stuff from the BMC that Andrew shot kinda threw me off.

I still like the BMC, but I also still like the GH cams and the MK3 (mostly for stills and video projects, multimedia stuff).

Simon Shasha
11-19-2012, 03:44 PM
I'd love if they could hack the GH3 and get 10bit out of it...considering Panasonic are getting 10bit out of the re-vamped AF100 (AF105A) and all...

AF105A: http://www.engadget.com/2012/11/05/panasonic-launches-ag-af105a-tweaked-pro-camcorder-with-10-bit-v/

Kholi
11-19-2012, 03:45 PM
I actually meant that Blackmagic wasn't used at its best and the Gh2 was. These examples are not what I would consider strong. What this shows me is that whoever handles the cameras has way more experience with certain ones. If I didn't know better I would almost think that Blackmagic wasnt very solid.

Again, pointing to the low angle shot of thE railway, blackmagic looks blown out and just not very appealing. That situation shouldve been cake.

Kholi
11-19-2012, 03:54 PM
I thought the GH2 came out looking like the winner as well - demolishes everything bar the BMCC.

I'd really love to see more ProRes out of the BMCC too. I was playing around with your ProRes footage Kholi, and adding an unsharpen mask in post really made it pop - looked amazing.

The Prores is solid as heck. I had some shots with a 30.00 70-210/4.5 zoom that I like to mess with and the original color is just outright broken because its just a horrid lens but I could fix it in resolve once I understood what was broken about it.

The raw was easier of course but BMd kills their flavor of Prores compression. I also tested sdi out to the hyperdeck upgrade and the Prores from the hyperdeck is pretty much identical. And we've long since discovered that not all Prores is created equal.

Looking at you, Ninja.

Still, this is what I mean by BMD being, in hindsight, the right company to bring this to the table because of their post experience.

PaPa
11-19-2012, 03:56 PM
hmm, why does it look like the BMC doesn't haev 2.5 stops more than the GH2? Something seems very off to me. Also, anyone else notice the GH2 seeming to have better DR than the GH3? I feel like something ain't quite right here..

Mattoid
11-19-2012, 05:29 PM
The bmcc raw shot under the bridge looks front focused to me. Where is the focal plane? It isn't focused on the background and it never seems to get more focused moving towards the foreground. Not that i'm blaming andrew-this test must have been a ball ache to complete- but if it is the case it would explain why it doesn't beat the others like in the other shots.

bowman
11-19-2012, 06:00 PM
Doesn't do the BMC justice, sometimes side by side footage with short clips don't always get across the big differences in quality. I recently saw a BMC compared with the 5D Vimeo clip and thought the 5D looked very similar......which I know is not the case.



We are at a stage where many cameras produce a nice video image which can also look filmic if treated right, but we as experts should be able to discern the differences in video from cinema by these days not much more than than simple instinct. The story goes that to help cashiers recognize counterfeit notes is to spend time feeling and looking at the real thing so they instantly know when something is a bit off. We been spending so much time with crappy codecs and sub par video cameras some of us can't see the wood for the trees.

Andrew Reid
11-19-2012, 06:29 PM
I think the difference is pretty stark but you guys are looking at compressed Vimeo footage, H.264 downloads, all on differently calibrated (and some not calibrated) screens. If your monitor is throwing off the highlights or changing the gamma it makes a big difference to what I am seeing when editing. The compressed H.264 is obviously not the same as raw either, especially in terms of colour. I'm going to make the Cinema DNGs available and you really need to read the blog post for what I think. The Blackmagic is a big step up from a DSLR even the GH2.

nickjbedford
11-19-2012, 06:50 PM
Can you make a high quality version available on Vimeo? I tried clicking the embed to go to vimeo.com but it gives me an uh oh screen.

morgan_moore
11-19-2012, 07:02 PM
The BMC looks best, maybe not in the real dark

Of course this test does nothing to show file flexibility which is where the BMC wil step up another level completely

nick its at https://vimeo.com/53821829

S

jambredz
11-19-2012, 07:24 PM
gh3 aint looking so good against the gh2 I can tell you that

Sicovanderplas
11-19-2012, 07:30 PM
I'd love if they could hack the GH3 and get 10bit out of it...considering Panasonic are getting 10bit out of the re-vamped AF100 (AF105A) and all...

AF105A: http://www.engadget.com/2012/11/05/panasonic-launches-ag-af105a-tweaked-pro-camcorder-with-10-bit-v/

you cant get 10 bit out of a 8 bit sensor, and the hdmi out is also 4:2:0 so in the matter the gh3 is nothing, compared to the bmcc

PaPa
11-19-2012, 10:59 PM
gh3 aint looking so good against the gh2 I can tell you that

My sentiments exactly. BMC is beautiful. Going in the right direction. I'm excited to see what this does to any market that wants to remain competitive.

Tim Joy
11-19-2012, 11:05 PM
Nice test. The little GH2 keeps on ticking. It will probably be one of the few cameras that I hang on to for a long time.

Lorenzo Straight
11-20-2012, 01:33 AM
Wow, very telling shootout. Blackmagic pulled the veil from the holy mgfr rooms. No more getting away with high prices and poor image quality. Jim, owner of Red has been preaching this same message for years. Can't wait til my BMCC arrives.

rheex
11-20-2012, 02:39 AM
Great job and thabks for sharing this!
The thing is I can't really judge from a highly compressed video. Of course the BMC raw goes above the rest and you can see it, but the rest I see small differences but mostly all look good. I mean, an iphone 4S would look just as good in the daylight shots!
We trust your words, but it would be great to get at least a high res grab of each camera in the different shots.
Thanks again for the effort,
Cheers.

rheex
11-20-2012, 02:40 AM
Ah ok, just saw you made a high res version available! Thanks!

Simon Shasha
11-20-2012, 06:57 AM
you cant get 10 bit out of a 8 bit sensor, and the hdmi out is also 4:2:0 so in the matter the gh3 is nothing, compared to the bmcc

Isn't the GH3's sensor 14bit (as it is designed for still photography)?

John Brawley
11-20-2012, 07:31 AM
Isn't the GH3's sensor 14bit (as it is designed for still photography)?

There's the bit depth of the sensor, the bit depth if the internal processing, then the bit depth of the record format.

The BMCC has a 16 bit LINEAR file generated from an even higher bit depth sensor RAW image that then gets recorded to 12bit LOG in RAW and 10 bit in ProRes.


jb

Simon Shasha
11-20-2012, 08:14 AM
There's the bit depth of the sensor, the bit depth if the internal processing, then the bit depth of the record format.

The BMCC has a 16 bit LINEAR file generated from an even higher bit depth sensor RAW image that then gets recorded to 12bit LOG in RAW and 10 bit in ProRes.


jb

Thanks for the info, John, but I was responding to the poster that claimed the GH3's sensor was 8bit - the GH3's sensor can't be an 8bit sensor because the GH3 shoots 14bit RAW when shooting RAW photos - it could be 12bit, I'm struggling to find official specs, but it's definitely not an 8bit sensor!

mintcheerios
11-20-2012, 08:18 AM
Here are some blown up crops. The detail of the BMCC's extra resolution really shows and the GH2 still shines.

http://i90.photobucket.com/albums/k259/mintcheerios/detailcomparison.png

Brian@202020
11-20-2012, 08:32 AM
The GH2 preforms pretty well here compared to everything. The GH2 has some major set backs in my opinion tho. The hackers need to figure out how to inject a LOG type of profile and a clean HDMI out. The lack of DR has pissed me off like no other camera has on set once, I almost chucked it in the lake. It will be my B camera once my BMCC MFT arrives. I just wish for LOG and clean HDMI out so it'll match better with my BMCC.

jambredz
11-20-2012, 08:38 AM
honestly from this test Im not 2 impressed with the BMC pro pres...luckily there are other examples and I actually have a file to play with. But from this test...it would not make me pay any $$. The RAW on the other had....:). But not alot of people will be able to shoot only RAW.

PaPa
11-20-2012, 09:57 AM
The GH2 preforms pretty well here compared to everything. The GH2 has some major set backs in my opinion tho. The hackers need to figure out how to inject a LOG type of profile and a clean HDMI out. The lack of DR has pissed me off like no other camera has on set once, I almost chucked it in the lake. It will be my B camera once my BMCC MFT arrives. I just wish for LOG and clean HDMI out so it'll match better with my BMCC.

The DR on the GH2 could be stronger, but there is some solid detail both in the highs and lows that can be brought back. I would give it at least 1 extra stop in ratings with a hack.

This is a horrible example because I was walking around using the Panasonic Stock lens ( very contrasty ) and not to mention I was at F22 which did it's own dark magic to the image and also shot at ISO 160 which basically made a combination for horrible DR, bad sky banding and image detail but, yeah, you get the point:

RAW:
http://imageshack.us/a/img855/8181/rawk.png

Graded:
http://imageshack.us/a/img688/3608/corrected.png

I think had I shot that at ISO 400 with some nice ND filters @ F5.6-F8 with a nice lens, there would be better detail in the lows and highs with less banding in the sky.

Kholi
11-20-2012, 10:15 AM
Well, the thing is with the GH2, profiles tend to still crush the heck out of things. If you've got your LCD and EVF set properly, you can see all 9 stops as you shoot.

It definitely isn't above 9, though, sadly. =[

I rewatched the high-res version and still come to the same conclusion. The Blackmagic ProRes is a lot better than what's being represented here, and IMO so is the RAW. But, as always, it's down to who's shooting with the camera.

Retrospective
11-20-2012, 11:25 AM
So Kholi, what could have been done better to represent the BMC's footage properly?

Kholi
11-20-2012, 11:28 AM
So Kholi, what could have been done better to represent the BMC's footage properly?

A colorist. =]

Retrospective
11-20-2012, 11:57 AM
A colorist. =]
Ah! :)



Can't wait to see a shorts or feature length movies shot on BMC.

Andrew Reid
11-20-2012, 04:35 PM
Well, the thing is with the GH2, profiles tend to still crush the heck out of things. If you've got your LCD and EVF set properly, you can see all 9 stops as you shoot.

It definitely isn't above 9, though, sadly. =[

I rewatched the high-res version and still come to the same conclusion. The Blackmagic ProRes is a lot better than what's being represented here, and IMO so is the RAW. But, as always, it's down to who's shooting with the camera.

I am quite sick of you attacking my legitimacy and skills as DP. If you think you could do a better job of a shootout why haven't we seen yours yet Kholi?

Andrew Reid
11-20-2012, 04:38 PM
I have been in touch with the colourist for Lars Von Trier in Berlin, and he is keen to get hold of the Blackmagic Cinema Camera from me and do some grading of the raw files. A shootout between the Scarlet and BMCC is also on the cards here.

Still a lot more to come.

Barrett Phillips
11-20-2012, 05:38 PM
Thanks for taking the time to do these camera shootouts Andrew; though it seems it's inevitable you'll catch flak (all camera tests seem to for one reason or the next) the general lurker such as myself truly does appreciate the effort put into these tests. Again, thank you!

fahnon
11-20-2012, 05:39 PM
I have been in touch with the colourist for Lars Von Trier in Berlin, and he is keen to get hold of the Blackmagic Cinema Camera from me and do some grading of the raw files. A shootout between the Scarlet and BMCC is also on the cards here.

Still a lot more to come.

I don't know if it's possible, but if you could also include the C100 in the next comparison that would be most helpful. Thanks and keep up the great work!

Sicovanderplas
11-20-2012, 08:11 PM
I am quite sick of you attacking my legitimacy and skills as DP. If you think you could do a better job of a shootout why haven't we seen yours yet Kholi?

Since when do shootouts involve skill, it's the same crap all the time.
it's more like marketing, money and being a blogger.
scout location, mount tripod, shoot, import, titles, export (in your case, since you never do interviews)

sorry but i don't like Bloom in general, this is for most (Money)Bloggers, who sell their soul and credibility for fame and money. But Philips (pre)view was more informative altho he only tested one cam.

i appreciate the afford in the film made, still.

Andrew Reid
11-20-2012, 09:57 PM
How many advertising banners are on my site???

nickjbedford
11-20-2012, 10:06 PM
I was going to do tests when I get my camera then upload them, but maybe I shouldn't bother.

dustylense
11-20-2012, 10:07 PM
How many advertising banners are on my site???

+1

Retrospective
11-20-2012, 10:12 PM
I was going to do tests when I get my camera then upload them, but maybe I shouldn't bother.
Your colour grading, editing and framing will be under scrutiny ;)

nickjbedford
11-20-2012, 10:26 PM
Your colour grading, editing and framing will be under scrutiny ;)

Most of me would just ignore it as I curate my own work heavily, but there would be a part which would want to defend my work with a giant broadsword ;)

I actually feel like I should go against the apparent grain and actually shoot a few minute short with actors instead of just static tests to test the camera.

But it's all conjecture until we get the camera!

Steve Kahn
11-21-2012, 01:28 AM
Thanks for the test. To really see colors it would be great to have RAW shots of static natural objects such as:
- close up of a flower petal
- close up of a leaf
- a brown leather chair
etc.

Looking at these kind of shots I'm very sure we'd see true color gradations - what we've been missing by shooting 8bit. The mini shot comes close to illustrating this but it's still a single color hit by light in different ways. Of course the sky works too but to my eyes, on my computer monitors I didn't see any 8bit sky banding. Maybe I missed it.

Faces would be nice too.

As others have said, the true power and flexibility of RAW wasn't illustrated here. The shots were all nice conditions to shoot in (I'd love to have seen how the iPhone would have done) but pick tougher shooting conditions and I'm sure the BMCC would have stood out all the more.

nickjbedford
11-21-2012, 01:39 AM
The funny thing is, we already know just how detailed and wide the dynamic range of the image is on the BMCC. No new tests are really changing my perception of the camera besides reinforcing the fact that it is Very Good™ (except the rolling shutter for action shots of course).

Sicovanderplas
11-21-2012, 02:33 PM
How many advertising banners are on my site???

Didn't mention any banners, did i?