Student Rig

The place for questions about shooting with Blackmagic Cameras.
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Alan Bourhis

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  • Joined: Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:57 pm

Student Rig

PostFri Dec 29, 2017 11:17 pm

Hi everybody,

I’m actually a student in cinema and I would like to upgrade my video setup for two main reasons : dynamic range and colors depth.

For the past two years, I shot two short-films and many other video with a Canon 100D but I’m starting to feel like I need to level up the technical quality of my image (8 bits to a good 10bits).

As a student my budget is a bit limited, I would like to keep my actual lenses ( 50mm and 70/300mm on EF mount and maybe my 18-55mm with a EF-S mount).

I had thought of the BMMCC or BMPCC but I know I will need to rig it, like a lot. In your opinion, first, should I buy a speedbooster or directly go on a camera with an EF mount ? (I saw on the internet that the BMPCC could possibly be available with an EF mount).

I also know that vignetting could appear or distorsion. That’s why I would like some proud owners to guide me toward my final choice !

And last, I already own a monitor and sound gears but I would like to know what are your must have accessories to equip these cameras (cage, matte box, filters... as I’m going from a DSLR to a video camera)?

My budget would be around 500-1500€ (pre-owned camera or accessories are not a problem).

Thanks a lot and sorry for my English.
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Andrzej Kryt

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  • Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2017 3:14 pm

Re: Student Rig

PostThu Jan 11, 2018 4:15 pm

Alan, you will find useful information on this forum, for instance in these threads:
https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=65442
https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=45826
You can search further for more threads.

I have Canon as well and I was considering speed booster to reuse EF lenses but finally I preferred to spend money on MFT lens instead.
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Ryan Payne

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Re: Student Rig

PostFri Jan 12, 2018 2:39 am

The pocket and micro cameras are only available in micro 4/3 mounts. You can get adapters such as the metabones speed booster to mount EF glass however it does not fit EF-S glass, for that you need to modify the back of your EF-S glass to make it mount to the adapter.

You may have found articles referencing the black magic production camera (BMPC) which shoots 4k and comes in an EF mount natively but is rated at 12 stops of dynamic range where as the pocket/micro is rated at 13 however the production camera does have a global shutter sensor but generally the trend has been in favour of the pocket cameras image from my perspective.

Another cheap option, in some cases you can find a used black magic cinema camera quite cheap, which also needs to be rigged up but it's an option.

Otherwise you can dump the money youd spend on rigging into something like the GH5 or GH5s. They have lower dynamic range than the pocket/cinema camera, much better than your canon camera though when using v-log. So you'd be giving up dynamic range for 4k, slowmo, better handling. Also of course you wouldn't have what a rigged out BMMCC/pocket would have such as a rail system, shoulder mount and large 1080p monitor but it all depends on what you need and how much money you have. I'd say at this point to be ahead in terms of tech the GH5 or GH5s is a solid investment if you plan to make money with your camera. The black magics however teach a much better professional cinema workflow, lighting, grip work, camera movement etc but theres no arguing again'st the easy use and abilities of the GH5/s such as the dual card slot, etc.

The Gh5 option is obviously more expensive especially vs picking up stuff second hand but it is easier to work with if your on your own especially.
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Stephen Press

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  • Location: New Zealand

Re: Student Rig

PostFri Jan 12, 2018 4:17 am

My advice would be don't buy a camera. I worked for 30 years without buying a camera :)
"A cameraman with out a camera is just a man"
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Anatoly Mashanov

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Re: Student Rig

PostFri Jan 12, 2018 12:30 pm

For BMPCC and BMMCC (You need a viewfinder for BMMCC):

1) Native MFT lenses. Expensive.
2) Vintage C-mount lenses. Nice choice in condition that you have enough skill to buy them on E-bay and restore them to the working condition and machine their mounts to fit into C/MFT adapter as I do. Also, you should expect that some of them vignette.
3) Vintage full frame photo lenses and corresponding adapters. Again, it depends on your skill in repairing the lenses.
4) EF and other electronic lenses and corresponding Speedbooster. From my point of view, the Speedbooster is too expensive.

For BMCC EF: Sorry, it's sensor is too small, you need a short focus EF lens.

For BMCC MFT: It's MFT is passive, electronic lenses don't work.

For BMPC4K EF: You reuse your EF lenses and use all the spectrum of vintage full frame lenses but what about the price of the camera itself, will it fit into your budget? It's 4K so the quality is high enough. It would be my choice in condition that I film more often.

For any URSA: Similarly but will it fit into budget with CFast cards? If so then it's the best choice except big URSA which is simply too big.

For anything except BM: I doubt it could give good enough footage for the comparable price.

Then:

If you want a so called cinematic look (motion blur as in old film cameras) then you should set your shutter angle somewhere near 180 degrees (which corresponds to stills 1/60 second or so), and ISO of BM cameras is fixed at 800 or 400. So in daylight either you lose the cinematic look by decreasing the angle or you need some neutral density filters. Unfortunately the ND filters are deficient in infrared area, so you need IR-cut filters too. Your choice.

You also need a tripod with fluid head, batteries, flash cards, microphone or sound recorder, charger and some adapter to move the footage to your computer. It's a bare minimum.

Add here a matte box or lens hood, shoulder mount, remote control, rig, etc as you like. Especially you want a rig if you use HDMI since it's fragile and is to be protected by all means.
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Dmitry Shijan

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Re: Student Rig

PostFri Jan 12, 2018 1:11 pm

There is also BMMCC rigs collection https://www.dropbox.com/sh/z4ly1jdtpirx ... wmkOa?dl=0
All my custom made accessories for BMMCC/BMMSC now available here https://lavky.com/radioproektor/
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Dennis Sørensen

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  • Location: Denmark

Re: Student Rig

PostSat Jan 13, 2018 1:50 pm

lights, lights, lights.... and sound.. Really, that is so much more important.

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