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Blackmagic goes full-frame

Posted on Nov 18, 2023 by Samara Husbands

Blackmagic has finally produced a full-frame model in its affordable camera range – the Cinema Camera 6K, which has 13 stops of dynamic range, L-Mount lens compatibility and dual-native ISO up to 25,600 with recording to CFexpress cards

It allows simultaneous Blackmagic Raw and H.264 proxy recording for cloud workflows, and costs just £2539/$2595.

The new camera is based on the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Cameras and can use accessories from the range. But it now has a 24x36mm 6K sensor and a built-in optical low-pass filter to cut down moire. The native 6048×4032 resolution grants a shallow depth-of-field and the use of anamorphic lenses uncropped for a true cinematic look. There’s dual native ISO up to 25,600 for impressive low-noise images, and frame rates go to 36fps at full-sensor resolution or 120fps windowed.

Using the full area of the sensor gives a unique open gate 3:2 image, or true 6:5 anamorphic without cropping. There’s also a classic Super 35-sized window on the sensor to create an instant close-up version of any shot.

The camera now takes L-Mount lenses, and thanks to a short flange distance of only 20mm, it has compatibility with new and vintage optics. The large, 51.6mm diameter of L-Mount works with full-frame Leica, Panasonic and Sigma lenses.

There is a choice of resolution from HD up to DCI 4K and 6K, as well as 24.6-megapixel stills. It will record 6K up to 36fps at 6048×4032 3:2 open gate, or 60fps at 6048×2520 2.4:1, plus 60fps at 4096×2160 for 4K DCI. For higher frame rates it shoots up to 100fps at 2112×1184 in a Super 16 crop. 

For true anamorphic 6:5 recording, the camera goes as high as 4.8K/24p at 4838×4032. And there’s 120fps in 1080HD.

Recording is to a CFexpress card or via a USB-C expansion port for an external SSD. CFexpress media also can record full-resolution, 12-bit Blackmagic Raw files. More than an hour of full-resolution 6K images can be recorded onto a single 256GB CFexpress card.

The camera has a large and bright five-inch HDR touchscreen with screen overlays that show recording settings, histogram, focus peaking, levels, frame guides and more. 3D LUTs can be used for monitoring shots with the desired look. The LCD monitor can be tilted up by 180° and down by 47°. This is an HDR display with 1500 nits of brightness.

There is also an optional EVF with a 1280×960 colour OLED display. It has a built-in proximity sensor and four-element glass dioptre. The camera uses the popular, high-capacity NP-F570 batteries. A locking DC power connector is provided, and the included AC plug pack can power the camera or charge the battery when the camera is not in use. The USB-C expansion port can also trickle-charge the battery, and there’s an optional battery grip that allows extra batteries to be fitted so you can film for longer between charges.

Originally published in the November/December 2023 issue of Pro Moviemaker.

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