Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6k has 120fps!

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6k

The folks at Blackmagic design are at it again when it comes to destroying spec sheets compared to price. The BMPCC 4k was already one of the best-reviewed and popular choice among budget filmmakers that needed excellent quality and dynamic range. At only $1,295 that camera was a smash hit but had only a four thirds (4/3) sensor which was not ideal in size and required speed booster adapters to get the needed depth of field to simulate an S35 image.

Now the BMPCC 6k  ($2,495.00) with EF Canon mount comes in with a  full APS-C sensor with dual ISO characteristics like before but with the added imager size and full electronic lens support for EF glass.  It would have been in our view ideal to use an electronic mount with shorter flange like the Sony Alpha or the new Canon RF mount so you could adapt even more lens combinations but they are catering to a large installed base of glass owners.

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6k Specs:

Recording Modes ProRes 422HQ: 
4096 x 2160 at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps (24.25 to 117.88 MB/s)
3840 x 2160 at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps (22.4 to 110 Mb/s)
1920 x 1080p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60/120 fps (27.5 MB/s)
ProRes 422: 
4096 x 2160 at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps (78.63 MB/s)
3840 x 2160 at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps (73.6 MB/s)
1920 x 1080p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60/120 fps (18.4 MB/s)
ProRes 422LT: 
4096 x 2160p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps (54.63 MB/s)
3840 x 2160 at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps (51 MB/s)
1920 x 1080p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60/120 fps (12.75 MB/s)
ProRes 422 Proxy: 
4096 x 2160 at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps (24.25 MB/s)
3840 x 2160 at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps (22.4 MB/s)
1920 x 1080p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60/120 fps (5.6 MB/s)
Image Sensor
Image Sensor Size 23.1 x 12.99 mm (Super35)
Sensor Type CMOS
Sensor Resolution 6144 x 3456
Shutter Type Rolling Shutter
ISO 100 to 25,600 (Expanded)
Advertised Dynamic Range 13 Stops

Dual Native ISO 400 & 3200 ISO to 25,600

Lens Mount Canon EF
Lens Communication Yes
Built-In ND Filter None
Built-In Microphone Type Stereo
Recording Media 1 x CFast 2.0 Card Slot
1 x SDXC UHS-II Card Slot

External Recording
Video Output 4:2:2 10-Bit via HDMI: 1920 x 1080p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps 
Raw Output USB: 
6144 x 3456 at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50 fps 
6144 x 2560 at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps 
5744 x 3024 at 23.98/24/25/29.97/30/50/59.94/60 fps 
Video Connectors 1 x HDMI Output
Audio Connectors 1 x Mini XLR Mic/Line Level (+48 V Phantom Power) Input
1 x 1/8″ / 3.5 mm Stereo Mic/Line Level Input
1 x 1/8″ / 3.5 mm Stereo Headphone Output
Other I/O 1 x USB Type-C Video Output
1 x 3.5 mm Timecode Input (Shared with 3.5 mm Mic/Line input)
Wireless Interfaces Bluetooth Control
Display Type LCD
Screen Size 5″
Touchscreen Yes
Screen Resolution 1920 x 1080

What about the 120fps?

As you can see the BMPCC 6k camera is capable of recording up to 120fps in 1080p full HD in all flavors of ProRes codec even HQ which will mean impeccable quality if you intend to use that frame rate.  However, you will note that the 120fps mode is a cropped 2X area of the sensor which will effectively double your focal lengths. This is to maintain 1:1 pixel quality in slow motion without introducing artifacts. You will have to forego the APS-C area for 120p and it effectively becomes a 4/3 sensor sized image in slow motion.

The BMPCC 4k also had a crop but that was on top of the already smaller 4/3 sensor so you are getting a larger image here. We estimate image quality to be better on the 6k camera as the 4k version had some softness to the image. You can see in the video below how the Panasonic GH5 is better at slow motion than the BMPCC 4k at 120fps.

Blackmagic Pocket 4k 120 fps vs Panasonic GH5 120fps – Slowmotion battle by Arber Baqaj:

2.8k at 120fps is also an option using Blackmagic RAW codec:

2.8k 17:9 – 2868 x 1512 is also an option for this camera. ProRes will not do this at 2.8k but the Blackmagic RAW codec unleashes the full power of the camera.  We recommend you use their codec to get better specs with this camera. After all 2.8k even with the slightly wider image, trumps full HD if you need stabilization.

Slow Motion samples of the 6k at 120fps:

Neumann Films has already shot with the camera in all frame rates and we are happy to report that the video quality in the 120fps mode at 2.8k is astonishingly good.  It may be the clearest 120p image 1080p and under 3k for under $3,000 USD you may be able to find.

BMPCC 6K Frame Rate Tests by Neumann Films:

We at HSC look for high frame rates as our main focus, the new 6k Blackmagic camera is only shooting up to 120fps in very good quality but it is missing 240fps, 480fps and other frame rates that could have made it an incredible slow motion camera option. It is good to have and very usable in production but it will not break any records or will be a viable option for motion analysis.

Amazon has a deal for the BMPCC 6k with an extra battery, memory card and wipes here!  for $2,549.00

At only $2,495.00, the BMPCC 6k with EF mount is an incredible value for an all in one RAW recording cinema camera for budget-minded shooters.  We would like to see Blackmagic Design go out and get us 240p and maybe up, at a better price point than the competition with the use of their BRAW (Blackmagic RAW codec) to get the utmost quality.  We can recommend this 6k camera for up to 120fps without reservations but not for more serious slow motion uses.  It is a great package with a price that is almost ridiculously low for the quality it delivers. And did we mention it includes DaVinci Resolve free of charge? -HSC

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