April 14, 2015

Blackmagic Micro Studio Camera 4K

The “world’s smallest Ultra HD live studio camera”, the Blackmagic Micro Studio Camera 4K, has been launched by Blackmagic Design. The tiny Ultra HD and HD camera will be available in July for $1,295/£929/€1,545.

Although it will work at no more than 30 frames per second in Ultra HD, which would make it rather poor at capturing sports action (which is where Ultra HD will inevitably make its initial impact for live production), it would be useful for studio programmes, such as chat shows, and its combination of size, facilities and price will make it a great buy for HD production, particularly as its UHD capability should give it a longer life.

Its features include: a built in colour corrector; talkback; tally indicator; PTZ (pan, tilt, zoom) control output; B4 lens control output; and a flexible MFT lens mount that can be easily converted to other lens mounts via third party adapters.

When used for HD, the extra resolution on the sensor eliminates any colour loss from the sensor’s Bayer pattern, to give full bandwidth RGB HD colour and superior sub pixel anti-aliasing for fine detailed HD images that Blackmagic claims will “look better than most of the bigger, more expensive cameras used in studios today.”

Its small size and open design make it ideal for live multi camera production of reality TV shows, news magazines or concerts, as it can be hidden almost anywhere on set.

It has a magnesium alloy core in a body that’s not much larger than the lens mount itself, and is compatible with affordable, high performance MFT lenses, or buyers can add a B4-mount adapter to work with traditional broadcast lenses. The camera also has 6G-SDI output and a programme return input that allows it to be controlled remotely from a switcher using Blackmagic’s SDI control protocol. This lets users change camera settings, colour balance, black levels, gamma, lens focus, iris, zoom and more from any ATEM switcher.

There’s also a flexible, new expansion port that equips the Blackmagic Micro Studio Camera 4K for remote use. This supports multiple control connections, such as a PTZ serial output connection that can be used with motorized heads and a B4 data link output for controlling broadcast lenses. Users can even build their own camera control systems using the S.Bus input (as used on the new Blackmagic Micro Cinema Camera). The expansion port uses a common DB-HD15 connector so users can make their own cables or use the breakout cable that’s included. The expansion port also includes DC camera power in, LANC and reference input.

  • Frame rates: 2160p23.98, 24, 25, 29.97, 30 in Ultra HD or 1080p23.98, 24, 25, 29.97, 30, 50, 59.97, 60 or 1080i50, 59.94 in HD
  • Supports SDI camera control protocol allowing full remote control via single SDI connection
  • Has 6G-SDI input and output ports
  • HDMI output
  • Has buttons on front of camera for quick access to menu navigation and settings
  • Has 12v DC power input or users can add a Canon LP-E6 compatible battery for backup power
  • Two way digital quality talkback connector using iPhone compatible headsets
  • Integrated stereo microphone, plus 3.5mm audio input

By David Fox

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