I know this very particular Pocket Cinema Camera I have in my hands may have some weird internal noise, but when using an external mic it actually sounds pretty darn good. Yesterday I had a few hours to play with the BlackMagic Pocket Cinema Camera, but I decided to try something different.
I had a Rode VideoMic Pro connected to the Pocket Cinema Camera and BOTH Audio & VIDEO were captured from the HDMI output directly to the Atomos Ninja 2. I did not use an SDXC card in the camera. I also only wanted to use Micro Four Thirds lenses instead of adapting larger Canon/Nikon lenses.
(somewhere in this mess is a Pocket Cinema Camera)
First problem, I have no spare batteries for this camera. Any current Pocket Cinema Camera owner will tell you how poor a single battery is. You’ll be lucky to get 20 minutes of run time out of it. So I DIY’d my own battery cable to connect to my Tekkeon Battery Pack as an external power source. I was able to run all day and my Tekkeon didn’t even take a hit. So that’s why I needed rails to mount my battery.
I didn’t have enough SD card storage, so I decided to bring out the Atomos. With a 240GB Solid State Drive, I could capture hours of footage. Plus I was curious how capturing from the HDMI would turn out.
It looks ugly I know. Believe me, I never want to use this camera in this configuration, but I am waiting for extra gear to use this camera.
Now that I had all of this extra weight, I added a Top Handle with an LCD Mount. The rig was heavy enough that I needed to bring out a heavier duty tripod. In the future, I simply plan on just stocking up on a dozen batteries so that I don’t have to mount a power source to the camera. If I can get enough SDHC / SDXC media cards, then I can get rid of the Atomos Ninja.
Without all the extra junk, I can get rid of the rails, carry a smaller Tripod, and finally make it a truly pocketable Cinema Camera. Moral of this story – get a lot of batteries and SD cards if you want to stay pocketable.
Shooting Parrots with Panasonic 45-150mm
So here’s some footage I shot yesterday while making plenty of mistakes. Focusing was difficult on the LCD Screen especially in bright daylight. I tried to rely on the built in Focus Peaking feature (green lines) but I can tell many of the shots were out of focus.
The on screen Zebra lines helped let me know what was blown out, but there was no indicator if the shadows were being clipped. At times I would use the false color feature on the Atomos to help judge, but even that screen in daylight was difficult to use. An LCD View Finder or external EVF will definitely help when working with this camera.
I couldn’t use my ND Filters on these Lenses. Panasonic 7-14mm & Rokinon 7.5mm Fisheye
I carried two very wide lenses a Panasonic 7-14mm & Rokinon 7.5mm fisheye. These lenses are sharper at a wider aperture, but because these don’t come with a threaded mount, I could not use an ND Filter. I tried stopping down the aperture to F/22 but in the end the footage was very soft. I guess to use these lenses, you’ll need to carry around a Matte Box.
The Audio in this video was from a Rode VideoMic Pro (no preamp) directly into the BlackMagic Pocket Cinema Camera (set to 0). The audio was sent over the HDMI and recorded into the Atomos Ninja 2. I thought it sounded pretty darn good for no preamp. If you see closeup footage in the video that’s typically from the Panasonic 35-100mm F/2.8, or Panasonic 45-150mm. The wider shots are on the Panasonic 7-14mm and Rokinon 8mm Fisheye. I definitely need more practice working with this camera.
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