Blackmagic Pocket Cinema 4k Camera – A Game Changer for Video Enthusiasts

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema 4k Camera – A Game Changer for Video Enthusiasts

If you are a video enthusiast who already has a DSLR, this is the one to save your pennies for, and it comes out September of 2018 with a price tag of around $1295 US. The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema 4k camera is a game changer for me, and it may just be for you as well.

I own a Canon 70D DSLR. It’s a nice DSLR, and checks many of the standard boxes. It has a flip out screen, has Canon’s automatic face detection, and can be used easily for vlogging, still shooting, or respectable quality HD video in up to 60p, albeit at 720p.

Now let’s look at where Canon has always fallen short. The 70D has no 4K. You can get the new Canon M50 mirrorless that shoots 4k, but the trade off is that auto face detection stops at 1080p. Really, Canon? For audio monitoring, Canon added a headset jack only starting with the 80D.  Maybe like many of you using a similar DSLR and features set, I have been looking at the Panasonic G5 and G5s, and the Sony A7iii and A9. The features list is strong; 4k video, dual card slots, in body image stabilization, on and on. But at twice the price or more of the 70D, the G5 offers no face detection, and the focus issues are well documented. The Sony A7iii and A9 are strong and beautiful cameras, but at a large price tag for the body, and the highest priced glass on the market for new lenses, not to mention no flip out preview screen for vlogging.

All of these choices had me thinking that if I wanted better video capability, but did not want to pay for stills features that I already had adequately enough, my only real option was a dedicated video camera like the Canon G40 to best compliment my DSLR.

Then along came the Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema 4K camera.

What I love about this camera is that its features list rivals many prosumer video cameras on the market, in a small form factor with an incredible 5″ preview screen. Possibly the biggest thing for me is the fact that it still takes 4k images for getting thumbnail shots when on a video shoot, and it does not compete with my DSLR’s still capability. It’s light form factor makes it small enough to vlog with, but in no way does the Cinema 4k need to compete as a vlog set-up. I still see myself using my 70D with flip screen for vlogging, though you could get a top mounted preview monitor, but why would you?  I will have more on this camera at the end of 2018 and the start of 2019.  I hope this article has been helpful, and as always, thanks for taking the time.




Video Killed The Screen Shot Star!

Video Killed The Screen Shot Star!

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The old saying is that a picture is worth a thousand words. Now consider that video can pack 30 images per second.  That’s a lot of image snagging conservation!

I do a fair amount of platform and software training projects.  I am also of the school that believes that the best way to learn a computer-based job task is in the same context, on a computer.

Screencasts allow me to not only teach new hires on my team how to do team procedures, but allows us to simultaneously train existing staff on new procedures with little time away from their work, and a chance to replay the training when the time is right for them.

They also give me a chance to work with subject matter experts in a capacity that makes them the star of the end product.  If I have a trainer who is doing a bang-up job in the classroom and the students are constantly asking where they can get more information after class is over, then we have their request fulfilled!  This leads to better rapport with my stakeholders, trainers and subject matter experts and leaves them eager to help me again. SME rapport – priceless!

I also find that updating a screencast is so much faster than digging through mountains of PowerPoint slides with dated screen shots that need to be managed and updated at an alarming rate, not to mention the time it takes for an end-user to digest mountains of fact-based course contents.

Having said that, there are many times I will use screen shots for a quick teaching moment.  These usually are saved for embedding in emails for a very short process or doing some fast tech support.  So TechSmith if you are reading this I wont be giving up Snagit anytime soon, and thank you for including video capture in your base tool. Kudos!