New family of professional all-in-one studio cameras include advanced broadcast features in a portable design.
Blackmagic Design has launched a new family of Blackmagic Studio Cameras for live production. The new compact all-in-one design is aimed at giving live production customers who need cameras with professional features a quick set-up on location. The new Blackmagic Studio Cameras include design features such as carbon fiber reinforced polycarbonate and large integrated 7″ viewfinders so they are very light weight making them much easier to transport and setup than large traditional studio cameras.
The Blackmagic Studio Cameras range is available immediately from its resellers worldwide from $1,295.
Blackmagic Studio Cameras have the same features as large studio cameras, miniaturised into a single compact and portable design. With digital film camera dynamic range and colour science, the cameras are designed to handle extremely difficult lighting conditions while producing cinematic looking images. The sensor features an ISO up to 25,600 so customers can create amazing images even in dimly lit venues. Advanced features include talkback, tally, camera control, built in color corrector, Blackmagic RAW recording to USB disks and much more.
Although designed for live production, these cameras are not limited to use with a live switcher. That’s because it records Blackmagic RAW to USB disks, so it can be used in any situation where customers use a tripod. The large 7″ viewfinder is designed for chat shows, television production, broadcast news, sports, education, conference presentations and even weddings. The large bright display with side handles, touch screen and physical controls makes it easy to track shots while being comfortable to use for long periods of time.
Large broadcasters tend to use large and expensive studio cameras typically for studio shoots. This option features a lightweight carbon fiber reinforced polycarbonate body with new technology in a miniaturised design. The camera is designed for live production so it’s easy to track and frame shots with its large 7″ viewfinder. The touchscreen has menus for camera settings, and there’s knobs for brightness, contrast and focus peaking. Plus a tripod mount with mounting plate is included for fast setup.
The Blackmagic Studio Camera features gain from -12dB (100 ISO) up to +36dB (25,600 ISO) so it’s optimized to reduce grain and noise in images, while maintaining the full dynamic range of the sensor. The gain can be set from the camera, or remotely from a switcher using the SDI or Ethernet remote camera control.
The 4K sensor combined with Blackmagic generation five-colour science gives customers the same imaging technology used in digital film cameras. The colour corrector can also be controlled from the switcher. With 13 stops of dynamic range, the camera has darker blacks and brighter whites, perfect for color correction. The sensor features a resolution of 4096 x 2160 which is great for both HD and Ultra HD work. Plus, all models support from 23.98 fps up to 60 fps.
With the popular MFT lens mount, Blackmagic Studio Cameras are compatible with a wide range of affordable photographic lenses. Photographic lenses are incredible quality because they’re designed for use in high resolution photography. To eliminate the need to reach around to adjust the lens zoom and focus, the optional focus and zoom demands let customers adjust the lens from the tripod handles just like a large studio camera. It gives customers the same feel as an expensive B4 broadcast lens.
The large 7″ high resolution screen will totally transform how customers work with the camera because it’s big enough to make framing shots much easier. On screen overlays show status and record parameters, histogram, focus peaking indicators, levels, frame guides and more. Customers can even apply 3D LUTs for monitoring shots with the desired color and look.
Unlike consumer cameras, the Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K Pro model has SDI connections that include talkback so the switcher operator can communicate with cameras during live events. That means the director can talk to the camera operators to guide shot selection, eliminating the problem where all cameras could have the same shot, at the same time. The talkback connector is built into the side of the camera and supports standard 5 pin XLR broadcast headsets.
Blackmagic Studio Cameras have lots of connections for connecting to both consumer and broadcast equipment. All models feature HDMI with tally, camera control and record trigger, so are perfect for ATEM Mini switchers. Customers also get headphone and mic connections, and 2 USB-C expansion ports. The advanced Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K Pro model is designed for broadcast workflows so has 12G-SDI, 10GBASE-T Ethernet, talkback and balanced XLR audio inputs. The 10G Ethernet allows all video, tally, talkback and camera power via a single connection, so setup is much faster. That’s just like a SMPTE fiber workflow, but using standard Category 6A copper Ethernet cable so it’s much lower cost.
The Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K Pro model supports connecting cameras via a single Ethernet cable. Traditional broadcast studio cameras use SMPTE fiber to communicate and power cameras, however SMPTE fiber is very expensive. Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K Pro model has 10G Ethernet as an alternative to SMPTE fiber so it’s much lower cost. The Ethernet includes all camera video, program return feeds, tally, talkback, camera control and also power. The Blackmagic Studio Converter handles all video conversions at the switcher end plus adds power to the Ethernet cable. That means customers don’t need to connect power to the camera.
The Blackmagic Studio Camera features a high speed USB-C expansion port that allows customers to record to external disks or connect to a wide range of accessories. Plug in an external USB flash disk and the camera can record high quality 12-bit Blackmagic RAW files for later editing and color correction. That means customers can just move the disk to a computer to work, and customers don’t need to waste time with file copying. Plus the USB port will power any phone or disk that’s plugged in.
Some file formats such as H.264 are highly compressed, so add noise and artifacts, causing sensor detail to be lost forever. Blackmagic RAW eliminates this problem so customers get stunning images with incredible detail and rich color throughout the whole post production pipeline. Blackmagic RAW also saves camera settings as metadata so customers can change ISO, white balance and exposure later in DaVinci Resolve. Plus the files are small and fast, so editing responsiveness is incredible.
The cameras include built-in microphones so customers get sound included in the design making setup much faster. Plus the built in microphones are shock and wind resistant, so customers get great sound even in tough conditions. There’s also a 3.5mm audio input for connecting video camera microphones as well as a 3.5mm headphone jack.
Because the most common location to place microphones is near to cameras, the Pro model includes the best audio ever designed into a studio camera. The professional 2 channel balanced XLR inputs support +24 dBu line level and have an ultra low noise microphone preamplifier with P48 phantom power alongside an equivalent input noise (E.I.N.) of -131 dBV(A). That’s followed by two 117 dB high dynamic range analog to digital converters, so customers get the high end audio demanded by broadcasters and audio engineers. This means any microphone plugged into the XLR inputs will have a higher level of noise than the camera’s audio.
To allow quick mounting onto tripods and faster setup, all Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K models include a tripod mount with a machined metal design and quick mounting plate. The quick mounting plate allows the camera to slide onto the tripod and customers get forward and rear adjustment of the camera so customers can adjust the position to get the perfect camera balance.
Blackmagic Studio Cameras have lots of different power options. All models have a common 12V DC locking power connector so the cable won’t be accidentally pulled out. However if users are using a single Ethernet cable to connect to the Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K Pro model, then the whole camera and its accessories can be powered from the Ethernet connection. The Blackmagic Studio Converter has a large power supply that adds PoE power to the Ethernet cable so customers don’t need any power connection to the camera. This is especially useful when there’s no power available where the cameras are placed.
The optional zoom and focus demands can be added to turn affordable photography lenses into broadcast lenses. The focus and zoom demands have USB-C connections so they work with all Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K models. Each zoom and focus demand has 2 USB-C ports, so customers can daisy chain them then connect to the camera with a single USB connection. The design has a precise feel and so customers get very fine lens control, and can frame and adjust the lens without taking their hands off the tripod handles.
With 10G Ethernet on the Pro model, users can connect all signals to the camera with the one Ethernet IP link connection. That means the camera feed, return program feed, timecode, reference, tally, talkback and control are all sent down the single cable. That’s the same benefits of SMPTE fiber, but the standard 10G copper Ethernet cable is much lower cost. The Blackmagic Studio Converter allows breakout of all the video, audio and talkback connections at the studio end. It also includes a massive power supply that powers the camera down the Ethernet cable, so customers don’t need a power source near the camera.
Grant Petty, Blackmagic Design CEO, said: “These new studio cameras are built on all the knowledge and customer feedback from the original Blackmagic Studio Cameras. These new models are a big step forward and they have been designed to be high end cameras, not entry level cameras. They might be small and self-contained, but the features such as the built-in 10G Ethernet, low light capability and professional viewfinder design make them very high end cameras for high end work.”