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Current state of BMMCC Micro Cinema Camera in 2019

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  • Current state of BMMCC Micro Cinema Camera in 2019

    I have an opportunity to purchase a BMMCC at a good price and I'm curious about the pitfalls (and workarounds) of this camera now that it's been out for a few years. Clearly the Pocket 4K probably addresses many of the issues but for me, the S16 sensor of the BMMCC is a big draw because of the access to different kinds of glass. And now that the prices have dipped...

    I almost ordered one of these cameras when it was first released, but decided against it because of a few factors that may have now been addressed (at least, according to my searches around this forum):
    • Moire & Aliasing - It sounds like Rawlite and Mosaic both offer quality OLPF options, with Rawlite being the sharper of the two but with slightly more moire. It seems that both products include shims as part of the kit so that there are no backfocusing problems.
    • Colored Circuit Board Grid - I read that this was only an issue with raw footage, not ProRes, and that it is solved with a third party OLPF(?). According to one user, this can be "partially fixed by shifting XY position to 0.5px and apply chroma noise reduction".
    • Fixed Pattern Noise - Is this still an issue? Firmware update 4.7.1 says that they "fixed a bug where there could be display errors in the data from the sensor in rare situations." That is pretty vague, but I'm wondering if it applies to this.
    • Access to Basic Camera Settings - It seems that there are many different controller options out there. Is there a standout? Did anyone ever figure out how to fit everything into a usable grip?
    • Form Factor - Many cages and handle options are now available.

    Is there anything else to consider when purchasing one of these cameras in 2019? Are there any better options that I'm not thinking of? I'd love a Digital Bolex, but they've become a collector's item at this point

    Thanks for your input.
    Last edited by QuickHitRecord; 02-16-2019, 09:53 AM.

  • #2
    It may sounds strange but with me getting my hands on the tilta nano, i'm considering revisiting my micros with the ergonomics of being able to hold and focus comfortably. Its strange but I like the image that comes out of micro and original pocket a little more than the p4k. It had character.

    you will need an OLPF. I didnt like how it performed with wide angle shots. Its amazing with mid to tele though. A break out box is a must, changing settings with original buttons is painfully slow. You can also pair it with an URSA handle for stop start and quick exposure. I modified a mini 12v powerbank to snap into the back of the Canon battery compartment for quick mount and switching running it through the break out box.

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    • #3
      To me the biggest downside is that it is not 4k. Or at least 2.8k.
      So the image is allways a little bit soft. But still .. the BMMCC is my A-Cam and I love this thing.
      With a good remote. Somethign like "One little Remote" by http://onelittlegoat.com/

      It is a must have, IMHO

      About Moire. If you know how to set up a scene it is not a big issue. You can avoid it.
      Not allways. But often.

      About fixed pattern noise. Not on my camera. Never got any issue. And it was my biggest concern and I did many tests. But no problem.

      ...

      But I think the better option is to buy the new Pocket 4K.
      You can also use Super16 mm lenses and later crop in in post.
      4K files are big but braw is coming. I think with dualISO sensor and all
      the other features it is a much better option.

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      • #4
        BMMCC is my favorite camera. I have already made several movies with. Recently I had the choice between BMMCC and the Pocket 4K but I prefer the BMMCC'look even more cinematic. Over time, I have accessorized it and it is consistent with my way of working (fiction and documentary): on tripod, on a rig or a Ronin, it is simple and functional. It can weigh 10 kg when I install a super zoom 16 & all the stuff around, or only a few hundred grams on the Ronin if I use the essential. I do not use OLPF options, I do not think it's necessary. I bought Shijan's tool to have a battery connector and a Lanc remote. The only BIG problem for me is the buttons on the menu, which are inaccessible and difficult to activate, but in fiction, that's fine, well, we've time. One little Remote is good but I don't want to spend so much money just to be able to change the color temperature ...

        If I had to make it evolve, I will choose as you say: the ability to shoot in 2.8k and still be able to use the optics super 16. But also all others: micro 4/3, nikon, etc.
        I would also like to have the opportunity to release a viewing with integrated Lut. This would be comfortable for an EVF. At the moment, I'm using a Blackmagic video assist 4k just to watch the work with the Lut. It's ok on a tripod but on a rig, it's little too big. BMPCC 4K is a good option but I prefer to work with BMMCC.

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        • #5
          BMMCC is still alive. There were a lot of threads about rigging and ideas for Micro Cameras http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?20396

          Here is also some of my current projects and custom made accessories for BMMCC/BMMSC:
          Angle Breakout Expansion Box Module http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?20371
          Offset ARRI type Rosette Mount Module http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?20993
          Angle HDMI Clamp with Ugreen angle HDMI adapter Module http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?19313
          PWM Side Handle Grip Module (under development) http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?21220
          14.8V 18650 Battery Module (under development) http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?21668

          See also BMMCC/BMMSC Rigs Collection: https://bmmccrigs.tumblr.com

          Buttons are tiny but if you shoot RAW the only actual thing you need to change is framerate and record/stop. Instead bulky controller it is better to get variable ND filter and some other useful stuff as OLPF and ColorChecker chart.

          Moire & Aliasing is less visible if you shoot ProRes. IR pollution is a problem. OLPF filter must have if you shoot RAW. I done some tests of Mosaic filter here http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?20918 Mosaic filter is easier to install but there are always huge delays and poor communication with their company. Even not sure if they are available now. Rwalite seems similar quality filter and always online.

          FPN may be visible in deep grey levels when shoot in very low light. There are some workflows to remove FPN but they all very complicated and don't produce 100% perfect result. Usually FPN is not a problem.

          Cross-Hatching - read last pages of this forum thread https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/v...03e0&start=500 Setting pan tilt to XY 0.5 (and then second node XY -0.5) completely removes pattern and in addition acts as very very light low pass filter. But due new scaling algorithms there is a bug in new versions of Resolve. When you do pan tilt to XY 0.5 - it is 1px Edge line appears. Overall Cross hatching mostly visible at solid colors in combination with oversharpening.

          For perfect colors starting point you also need ColorChecker chart. Factory color calibration and color science is far from perfect but once you create your own color profile, you can use in in any future project (No need to use ColorChecker chart at every shoot)

          When shoot RAW or LOG most of the things depends of workflow. As i told earlier BMMCC color science is far from perfect so you need deeply learn Resolve. Some tips about extending dynamic range here: http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?20965

          Also monitor with LUT support is preferable for proper smooth highlights monitoring. Something like SmallHD 500 or Focus series, Atomos Shinobi. It is also possible to use Video Assist or Atomos recorders devices but they are larger and heavier.
          Atomos Shinobi monitor looks nice but unfortunately as usual they put HDMI inputs at the side edge which is against ergonomics and cable management
          Last edited by shijan; 02-16-2019, 11:53 AM.
          All my custom made accessories for BMMCC/BMMSC now available here https://lavky.com/radioproektor/

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          • #6
            After rigging up the micro with all the necessary accessories it will surpass the new p4k in cost. I would still use my micro in some situations but given the choice it’s a no brainer. Bmmcc is inferior to the p4k in every way except size. It’s finally found itself falling into it’s original purpose, and that now is a cheap drone camera, crash cam, stashed cam, bagged cam etc.

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            • #7
              Thanks for all of the feedback so far. It's good to know that there is still life yet in these cameras, and that some people actually prefer them to the more current options. And shijan, thank you for all of useful info and links. I've got my homework cut out for me. Lots of great resources.

              Was the last applicable firmware build 4.7.1?

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              • #8
                Yep, 4.7.1 is the latest BMMCC firmware. It fixes a bug with strange random oversaturated pixels all over the frame, but it is not related to cross-hatching.

                Here is also thread about different BMMCC controllers options:
                http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?20363

                Overall BMMCC is not a direct competitor to Pocket4K, they just a very different cameras with completely different ergonomics, size, weight and image "look". BMMCC is more like lego block. Pocket4K designed as ready to shoot camera, but it is also not a perfect and "problems free" camera as many people may think (Battery stuck, battery door problems, screen light leaks, too flex body, dead pixels, Red Color clipping, expensive media to record 4K RAW, external bulky SSD, strange DC connector, large size, more powerful computer needed to process 4k).
                Last edited by shijan; 02-16-2019, 07:46 PM.
                All my custom made accessories for BMMCC/BMMSC now available here https://lavky.com/radioproektor/

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                • #9
                  I think an IRCut OLPF is worthwhile to get for the IRCUT itself. Shooting fine hair and grass without it is a real pain. It would be cheaper now considering demand would be less. I have both Rawlite and Mosaic engineering. Mosaic is my preference because i can take it out and stick it in my original pocket in seconds

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                  • #10
                    Interesting to learn about this new SD card compatibility issue that seems to be popping up: https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/v...hp?f=2&t=80355

                    There may be a thread here too, but I haven't been able to find it.

                    I looked it up after the card I purchased from BM's list of recommended cards for the BMMCC was not recognized by the camera.

                    Fortunately, I have two 128GB SDXC cards from Transcend that I bought a few years ago that seem to be working just fine. But the fact that BM has not addressed this in any way other than saying that they are looking into it is kind of alarming.

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                    • #11
                      Yep, I'm running into this as we speak. I sold my original Pocket (and still have my Micro), and bought a Sandisk Extreme Pro 95mb/s card, just like I've always used, to give to the new owner. He texted me back, said the card was dropping frames. He tried an older, slower card, and no problem.

                      So now, the only option for Micro/Pocket users is to buy a used card off of eBay. This is a big issue going forward for classic BM camera users.

                      I'll have to guard my old 256gb Sandisk Extreme with my life

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Some reports that Samsung MB-MC128GA/AMZ 128 GB 100 MB/s Class 10 U3 Memory Evo Plus MicroSD card with Adapter works well

                        James David
                        Re: "No Card" Issue BMPCC
                        Unread postFri Dec 07, 2018 5:03 pm
                        as per someone else recommendation i can confimr that -

                        Samsung MB-MC128GA/AMZ 128 GB 100 MB/s Class 10 U3 Memory Evo Plus MicroSD card with Adapter


                        is working in the Micro camera Recording RAW. just did 6 minitue test... All looks good so far.
                        All my custom made accessories for BMMCC/BMMSC now available here https://lavky.com/radioproektor/

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          This card situation really sucks. I've been out of the look as I hadn't needed to buy new cards in a while. I noticed that this class of cards have finally gotten cheap enough to get some 128 or 256, guess not.

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                          • #14
                            I also had adventure with those SD cards mess. Purchased on this forum sale two 128gig used cards because they where out of stock everywhere. Few weeks later i found that new Sandisk cards on Adorama costs slightly less than i pay for used stuff and was slightly disappointed with my deal. But month later found those warnings on the forums about incompatibility with new cards and understand that my deal was actually lucky because i got compatible cards from old batch.
                            All my custom made accessories for BMMCC/BMMSC now available here https://lavky.com/radioproektor/

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              As far as the Extreme Pros, they have to be the ones with these numbers (I didn't read every post so someone may have mentioned it already):

                              _____

                              Sandisk 32GB Extreme Pro 95 MB/sec SDSDXP-032G-A46 SDHC UHS-I
                              Sandisk 64GB Extreme Pro 95 MB/sec SDSDXP-064G-A46 SDXC UHS-I
                              Sandisk 128GB Extreme Pro 95 MB/sec SDSDXP-128G-A46 SDXC UHS-I
                              Sandisk 256GB Extreme Pro 95 MB/sec SDSDXP-256G-A46 SDXC UHS-I
                              Sandisk 512GB Extreme Pro 95 MB/sec SDSDXP-512G-A46 SDXC UHS-I

                              ** When purchasing SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s SD cards, please ensure that the Product Number Prefix is SDSDXP.
                              ** SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s SD cards with Product Number Prefix SDSDXXG are not supported.
                              _____

                              Sandisk media problems with BM cameras have been common in the past (although the cards that worked were practically flawless). If anyone remembers, the same thing happened with their SSDs for the BMCC and BMPC. BM ended up saying don't use the new ones (Extreme II) and stick to the old ones (Extreme Pro).

                              And the first batch of their CFast cards available for consumers in 2014. They were taken off the approved URSA list a few months in and replaced with a different version.

                              It cost me $1200 for 120GB!

                              (ha...it still worked fine though. Just not with 444 or 444XQ 4K/60p/80p which was crazy back then for the overall price.)

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