Pool Shark.

This is the moving footage for the little test shoot I did with director Ben Phelps.  He wanted to try out some visual ideas for another project he’s doing so it was a chance for me to steal some shot for you guys to see !

As mentioned previously, I kept lighting very simple.  It’s a Kino diva in mixed grill, and a 1×1 Litepanel in daylight mode.

I also had a few pracs on in the background.

Lenses were the lovely Zeiss Compact Primes supplied by my good friends at Lemac.  The 18mm for the wide, 35mm for the panning shot of Casey at the table and most of the closer shots were the 50mm or the 85mm.

Exposures were mostly T2.8 or T8 for when I was looking back at the windows.  Shooting at ISO800 to ProRes 422 (HQ) in film mode.

Post on this was that I pulled the clips into FCPx.  I threw a quick edit together of some shots, then XML exported to Resolve V9.  In Resolve, I did a grade using single nodes and primaries only.  Rendered ProRes 422 (HQ) back into FCP and then exported to 264 for upload here to Vimeo.


EDIT.  BTW, the wonderful actor in this demo is Casey Burgess and is represented by Mark Byrne

About johnbrawley

Director Of Photography striving to create compelling images
This entry was posted in Black Magic Cinema Camera, Equipment and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

89 Responses to Pool Shark.

  1. M Ryan says:

    YES! 😀

  2. Joe says:

    Beautiful! Thank you as always!

  3. M Ryan says:

    Is there a downloadable ProRes 422 version available somewhere to get passed the compression? Thanks, John!

    • Nick Bedford says:

      Even as a 29mb 1080p MP4, it still looks better than original 1080p source footage from a DSLR.

      • M Ryan says:

        Yes, it does! I have a 27′ iMac (2560×1440 display) which tends to make any and all footage stretch and fall apart… I enjoy downloading the original 1920×1080 clips to view them in their proper resolution ratio. I have downloaded this video (31.4MB), but it’s H.264 compression and the noise signature of this camera is not visible to me. Also, editing it for testing has stood up surprisingly well, however ProRes 422 would have been Ideal, or even better the original source footage.

  4. Greg says:


  5. Ant says:

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE give us files off the camera! Vimeo compression isn’t ideal …

  6. Mickael says:

    Could you put the original FLAT sequence here?

  7. dpoglesby says:

    Looks great! Can’t wait to see it in person.

  8. HOLY#$)*#%)(@$)*@# says:

    I need to change my underpants. The revolution is here.

  9. Joe says:

    Looks great! Thanks for sharing!

  10. Guy says:

    Will have to look at it again, as I got a bit distracted! 😉

  11. carlosdurm says:

    Lovely image quality!!

  12. Lorenzo S. says:

    Wow. All the detail in the world can be seen. Very beautiful images and great subject. The close ups are amazing. The first wide shot is my favorite.

  13. Thanks John for your hard work.

    Pixel peeping aside, the footage looks pretty amazing.

    I think footage over the next week will be increasingly more impressive.

    BlackMagic Design is more about real results than hype (that we are used too)

  14. Lorenzo S. says:

    Who is the Actress?

  15. Joe Gonzalez says:

    Looks great!!Got my BlackMagic on its way!! We are ready to shoot as soon as we get it!

  16. Donnie King says:

    Wow even with compression!!

  17. Ron Coker says:

    Looks stunning!

  18. Brian taylor says:

    Looks great!
    And who said shallow depth of field couldn’t be achieve with this sensor.

  19. Paul Edwards says:

    You have just made a lot of people very happy. (I’m one of them.)

  20. CinemAloha says:

    Looks awesome. Can’t wait to get my hands on it! Thanks for the post.

  21. John, thanks so much. Now I wonder how you’re going to cope when we all have our own cameras. Are you going to be OK without all the attention? 🙂 Until then, thanks!

  22. brandon says:

    Just got a boner! JB, how hard was it controlling focus compared to dslr?

  23. You did some cinematic magic with BlackMagic.

  24. Figs says:

    Happy to see new footage, it seems there is some buzzing going on in the back rest of the rolling chair. What are your thoughts on the minimizing this/ if this will be something users will really have to work around?

    • johnbrawley says:

      There is currently no AA filter in the prototype camera I have.

    • Petr says:

      The patterns in the chair have nothing to do with the camera, at least in this shot. I would guess it’s some “real” moire that you would also see with your eyes because the chair has two layers of slightly transparent fabric (basically a very small grid) stretched around it which is causing moire.

      Your eye will always see moire patterns when two grids are held one behind another and are a little tilted. Moire in camera appears also because of two grid layers, the one being filmed, like a brick wall or some fine fabric (you won’t see moire here with you eye, only with some cameras) and the other being the pattern of pixels on the sensor of the camera itself.

      So correct me if I’m wrong, but this as I think is moire filmed by the camera that you will also be seeing with your eyes. So there is nothing to worry.

      A workaround would be not using the chair in the shot at all, cutting one of the back rest fabrics out of it or leave it because it’s real world moire that is not camera specific.

      Just look around you as you go. There are lots of moire patterns you can see with your eyes.

    • Hi,
      wich lenses you used for the first two shots? It looks not like 18mm…

      • johnbrawley says:

        The first shot was an 18mm. I think the second shot might have been a 35mm.


      • Thank you john. It looks great.I was just suprised that 18mm is enough for such a wide shoot on that smaller sensor. But it`s amazing how you can cover in and outside light!

      • when i remember the old s16 times, i would say for shoot 1 and two 12mm…..or is it a mistake to compare the sensor size with s16?

      • my mistake! the factor to 35mm film should be 1,39? that means 18mm is like 25mm…great sensor!!!

      • Andie Moepse says:

        Actually, the sensor is in fact one of the things about the camera that AREN’T “great”. By no stretch, since it’s even SMALLER than a four thirds, for whatever reason, so the crop factor is in fact MORE than 2,00.

        I’ll be waiting at minimum for the second generation, in the hope that they’ll also have an *exchangeable* battery along side a more acceptably sized sensor.

      • johnbrawley says:


        Crop factor is very misleading when talking to a cinematographer.

        Compared to Super 35 the crop factor is actually 1.6x.

        The crop factor compared to Vistavision is more than 2.0 Let’s be realistic here. Aside from the 5D, what other cameras are shooting Vistavision ?


      • Andie Moepse says:

        Nonsense. If anything is misleading then the use of *super*35 as any measure of anything. No one does that. Full frame is 1.0x and by what crop factor is measured by, so let’s not shift the goal posts to it’s advantage. An *APS-C* has a crop factor of 1.6. Again, at LESS than 16x9mm the crop factor is more than 2.0, period. So this is effectively a step DOWN from any camera using an APS-C sensor of which there are many, of which I own two, and which are all *far* cheaper than the DC. So I’ll definitely be waiting to see if it’s other advantages stack up high enough once it’s in fact released. But like I said, the chances that I’ll be jumping on the v1.0 bandwagon is extremely unlikely.

        And there are *several* cameras that use a full-frame sensor aside from the 5D, but that really has nothing to do with this either.

      • johnbrawley says:

        >>Nonsense. If anything is misleading then the use of *super*35 as any measure of anything. No one does that.

        Andie. You have to be joking mate. Only STILLS photographers and people that shoot VIDEO with a 135 DSLR talk about full frame. How many cameras shoot 135 Andy ?

        Name me an actual professional motion picture camera that isn’t a DSLR that shoots full frame. I can think of only a couple. I wonder if you can name them…

        That is clearly what your experience is. No DOP talked about crop factors UNTIL the 5D came along. We happily talk about field of view and angle of view when comparing formats.

        Here in the motion picture industry, cinematographers have always called what YOU call full frame, 135 format or VISTAVISION.

        The crop factor of the BMCC compared to SUPER 35, the STANDARD size cinematographers are used to, is 1.6x.

        Super 35 has been with us since 1954. That’s been the cinematographers frame of reference for a long time. Not so called “full frame”.

        The thing with crop factors is that it allows you to compare one format to another. It doesn’t mean that the full frame format is suddenly the default gold standard format, but that’s what’s happened.


      • Andie Moepse says:

        Gee, thanks John, but guess what? I in fact started in FILM over 20 years ago. How bout you?And yes, I’m quite aware that “crop-factor” is a term introduced with digital sensors. Duuh! So yeah, how exactly could any DOP have spoken about it before the advent of them?? (X_x)

        Who’s joking here?

        Oh yeah… that’s what we’re in fact talking about: sensor sizes and not “field of view”! I’m sorry if you can’t keep them apart… so I seriously have to wonder what YOUR experience is. When talking about sensors and crop-factor a full-frame sensor is the 1.0x reference… PERIOD. http://bit.ly/QpzBK4 … notice the last column?

        Ergo: the BMDC’s *CROP-FACTOR* is over *2.0*. Not it’s field of view not it’s aspect ration not it’s pixel density yadda yadda yadda.

      • johnbrawley says:

        Andie, you never gave me the full frame motion picture cameras that aren’t DSLR’s ?

        I’m not arguing that the crop factor to full frame isn’t 2.3X. I’m saying that compared to what cinematographers are used to, super 35, it’s 1.6X.

      • Andie Moepse says:

        Hmmm… maybe because that’s in fact completely *irrelevant* to the subject at hand?

        Name me any 35mm that won’t shoot full-frame. Equally irrelevant.

      • Petr says:

        Here is a good way to compare sensor size of different cameras:

        I don’t really get this why so many people complain about sensor size. Major films are being shot on s35 sensors, which depending on what camera you are using, have a crop factor between 1,4 and 1,6 compared to the 5D. Then there are also many films that have been shot on s16mm film, which has a crop factor of 3 compared to the 5D. The Black Magic has a crop factor of 2,3 in comp. to 5D. But then again a 5D is not the standard for film, S35 is. So to s35 the BMCC has a crop of 1,6 which is not that bad.

        I have the feeling people are kind of spoiled with sensor sizes because of DSLRs. I hear a lot saying: “Oh no, I want to get myself the 5D because it’s full frame, the 7D has a much smaller sensor so the 5D is much better” But then again the 7Ds APS-C sensor is almost like an s35 sensor which is the standard for film that major movies are being shot on. With BMCC you are getting a real digital cinema camera for 3K $ and it shoots RAW and has software with it worth a 1000 $, it has a bigger sensor than s16. Yes it has it’s flaws and yes it would be better to have a s35 sensor, but what would be the price then?

        As Black Magic mentioned in an interview that it would have been a 25k camera if the sensor was fill frame (http://filmmakeriq.com/2012/07/exclusive-blackmagic-answers-your-questions-about-their-new-cinema-camera/)
        If you are looking for s35 that shoots RAW then get yourself a RED or an F3 and C300 (only s-log) for around 15k. Complaining about a camera for 3K not having an S35 or a full frame sensor is, I’m sorry to say that, kind of whiny.

        There are so many flaws in DSLRs if you want to make films with it. But so many people managed to find workarounds. Don’t you think they will also find good ways to work with the BMCC?

      • Andie Moepse says:

        Sorry, but you’re obviously missing the entire point, and I’m really not going to repeat it either. If you don’t understand the disadvantages to higher crop-factor’s, then, oh well. Go look it up.

        And if you had followed what I had written, you’d also have caught that I in fact have TWO cameras with NON full-frame sensors (meaning a crop of *1.6x*) that I FAR prefer shooting with than with a full-frame such as the 5D, which I would personally never buy for filming. And I also said that it’s crop-factor isn’t even the most deciding factor for me at the moment and I’ll have to wait for an actual REAL and final product to come to any final conclusions.

        But the other feature’s will have to be VERY convincing for me to pay more than triple for a camera that (amongst other things) means a noticeable step BACK in sensor size. If you don’t care either way (or even understand the difference), hurray for you.

      • johnbrawley says:


        It is relevant Andie because full frame has no history in MOTION PICTURE IMAGING aside from a few films in the 50’s that were shot VistaVision.

        That means Andie it’s VERY relevant because we somehow made films for YEARS without worrying about the crop factor compared to full frame.


      • Andie Moepse says:

        Dude… you know what? Whatever.

        If you want to be THAT thick or if you’re simply incapable of grasping the concept that whether there are full-frame digital cinema cams out there or not, doesn’t have the LEAST BIT of bearing on the validity of your crop-factor nonsense, which is the only thing I was talking about (by myself obviously), then fine. Ramble on. It’s your sandbox. I’m actually tired of talking in circle’s and watching you move the goal posts around to fit your arguments. The list of all the logical fallacies committed wouldn’t even fit into this space. Ta.

      • Andie Moepse says:

        In fact, you’re so caught up in yourself, that you don’t even grasp that whether you want to measure the crop-factor by full-frame or s35 or by your left pant-leg… it’s COMPLETELY irrelevant to my only point in the matter: the BMDC’s crop-factor IS LARGER i.e. the sensor is SMALLER than what I’m using now, which in turn effects my DOF, my choice (and need) of lenses and obviously THE QUALITY in some way shape or form (to what extent has yet to be seen). PERIOD.

        But feel free to show me your bizarre, contrived connection to some existent or non-existent full-frame cinema cams, that could somehow factually change any of that and therefore be of ANY relevance whatsoever.

      • johnbrawley says:

        Andie I’m only trying to make a simple point.

        Generally speaking, people aren’t used to using a 1.X crop camera for motion imaging.

        Your experience is different to the majority of cinematographers who are used to super35 being the frame of reference or comparison. Not full frame.

        I’m arguing, that our usual frame of reference is super 35, the format the very vast majority of films over the last 60 years have been shot with. Not full frame.

        When compared to Super 35, the DOMINANT origination format for most of our motion picture origination history, the crop factor of the BMCC is 1.6x

        The full frame crop is 2.3X. I don’t have a problem at all with acknowledging that. But to use it as a point of reference ignores a heck of a lot of film-making history and experience.

        Andie, try to be civil in your tone if you respond. This is my place after all and you don’t need to resort to personal attacks. This is a debate mate not a pub brawl.

      • Petr says:

        @ Andie:
        My respond was not specifically directed to you, but more to everybody bothering about the sensor size of the BMCC. Being that you own a full frame camera or an APS-C camera.

        I perfectly understand disadvantages, and also, depending on what you are aiming for, advantages of higher cropped sensors. All what I’m saying is that you don’t need to have an s35 sensor to produce cinematic pictures. It can be much smaller and still look good. It won’t look the same as s35 but it can still look cinematic and very pleasing, just look at the vimeo clip.

        You stated that you will be waiting for a more acceptably sized sensor. What sensor size is more acceptable to you?
        If s16 (which is even smaller then the BMCC sensor) is used also for some major films like The Wrestler or The Black Swan, then for me the BMCC sensor is more than acceptable. Of course it is a little different to work with if you are accustomed to APS-C/s35, but not that big of a deal.

        What cameras exactly do you own?

        For film I would basically always choose RAW or ProRes over H.264, 4:4:4 or 4:2:2 over 4:2:0, full sensor readout over line skipping etc. and rather go with a slightly smaller sensor that still gives me enough DOF (which is the case with BMCC). That’s just the price you have to pay (or not to pay since it only costs 3K) because there just won’t be a camera for that price with that features that also has an s35 sensor, at least not in the near future.

        But if those advantages aren’t convincing to you (or you don’t even understand the difference), then I guess…hurray for you?

      • Andie Moepse says:

        Thanks, Petr, I generally agree, yes.

        Just to summarize: I at no point was saying that the BMDC’s sensor is crap *per se*, nor did I suggest it. I was merely saying nothing more than: it is in fact a smaller sensor than what I’m using now (7D & 650D on the low-end) and it costs more than THREE TIMES as much. Whether the other features are enough to make up for that discrepancy (which I in fact believe they very well could, since RAW, ProRes and Thunderbolt connectivity is a big deal for me in general), then I can see myself getting one in it’s second incarnation. That is, should they have done away with the RIGID BATTERY (sorry, that’s just STUPID) by then, since that is currently a deal-breaker for me, either way.

      • anyway, it`s a great sensor, larger then s16mm and useful for a lot of nice lenses wich are on the market for years. I remember the time when we did expensive blowup from super 16…this sensor is really closed to this time…..

      • johnbrawley says:

        >>If you want to be THAT thick or if you’re simply incapable of grasping the concept that whether there are full-frame digital cinema cams out there or not,

        Just name a motion picture camera Andie that isn’t a DSLR or a stills camera that shoots video.


  25. Gerald Baria says:

    That final shot of thin dof with the billiard balls, what lens was that? WE HAVE DOF PEOPLE!!!!!

    • Andie Moepse says:

      Uh… yeah… for the FIRST TIME EVER!!!

      :scratches head:

      • Quobetah says:

        Uhm….Full Frame is NOT a format in Motion Picture cameras Andie. And if your primary concern is DOF for good filmmaking..then you gotta suck bigtime as a filmmaker then.

        :sitting down eating popcorn:

      • Andie Moepse says:

        * COMMENT DELETED. No personal attacks please

      • johnbrawley says:

        Cmon Andie.

        You’re a big boy. There’s no need for personal attacks or bullying insults. I’ve already deleted your other grossly insulting post. Let’s have a debate where you don’t insult people for having a different opinion to yours.


  26. alvin says:

    in a couple of hours I will test it in my TV shop, on a 70″ sharp acquos …mmh…I guess I’ll be very pleased .. 😀

  27. Hi John, footage looks promising – vimeo stream isn’t a good way to show us a possibilities of the camera. Could you give us a ungraded footage in prores. I know you cannot do this without BM permission, but maybe you can talk with them on that matter. The camera shipping starts in 3 days. It is the right moment to give us some answer to the most important question. Is the BMC solution we want to buy.

  28. Mark Fry says:

    The fact that we forgo the AVCHD bug is really obvious in this footage ..My goodness look at the stuff visible outside while the interior still looks great..closeups are stunning..and all this while running over vimeo?..Wow original must be killer after grading!

    Thanks John, really instructive


  29. vidanaselva says:

    It’s looking good!!!!!

  30. Chris says:


    Is there a plan to release native files (raw and compressed) ?

    …before the cameras start shipping?



  31. The footage is like ‘footage’ of the kind I used to shoot on film rather than a ‘tape based’ digital image quality. I have been looking at the films and photography you and your friend have been up to out there in Australia. The Christenberry feel of some of the work and your downtown footage of the street footage with New Kate Bush soundtrack and the coastal material………It is these types of tryouts of the new camera and now this more directed piece you are putting together, that really gives a maker a view into the potential of this camera. I am now looking to use this camera on a forthcoming maritime arts project I am making in 2013 – thank you very much for sharing your thoughts and work over these last months.

  32. THADON says:

    im in love with this cam already, the DR seems impeccable

  33. Pingback: First Blackmagic Cinema Camera Footage Since NAB, Camera Won’t Have Optical Low-Pass Filter - NoFilmSchool

  34. snoopyrawdogg says:

    Now we talking..

  35. Travis Jones says:

    I’ve read about the raw option being 2.5K…. but that’s before debayering, right?

    John, have you shot any raw? If so, what the’s effective pixel count?

    • johnbrawley says:

      It’s a 2.5K image. That 2.5K image gets created by a bayer sensor and intrinsically, it must be de-bayered. So you can have 2.5k RAW, or a 1920 ProRes that’s created from a scaled version of the 2.5K sensor.


  36. Great stuff. Has anyone noticed noise in the blue channel?

  37. Pingback: Blackmagic Cinema Camera – Premières images | Nicolas Desmet

  38. alvin says:

    ok, tested on a sharp 70le745 ..compression apart is awesome..stunning for € 2800..and even for higher price point..but dont tell BM 😀

  39. Pingback: More footage from the Blackmagic Cinema Camera » cinema5D news

  40. Petr says:

    Hey John,
    great looking picture.
    Just wanted to tell, that there are some weird aliasing artefacts on your other versions of pool shark (neutral, pop and so on) e.g. in 0:21 on the sofa, the cue and the white thing next to the chair. Looks like non square pixel or to me or something. Some people are thinking it is moire caused by the camera. But these artefacts are absent in the original video.

    Also what is this room the video takes place in? Looks pretty cool.


  41. THADON says:

    your comments are indicative of a newbie…anything u say otherwise is unbelievable! you have only shot with 7d and 650d, others have experience ranging from 16mm film, 35mm film and alexa, red so full frame logic is irrelevant, has nothing to do with the shallow dof you newbies clamour for….features are shot with deep focus in lots of scenes cos it gives that grandios which alot of dslr shooters lack because they always shoot wide open….and if full frame is not your argument then why showcase your ignorance on a public forum with a great camera as the black magic camera is? grow up and work on feature films then comeback and have a civil discuss

    @john brawley: keep up the good work, keep shooting tests and ignore the extreme shallow dof freaks / newbies

    • THADON says:

      you’re welcome, now grow up

    • KGBDK says:

      I don’t care if Andie is Vittorio Storaro himself, Andie’s juvenile behavior here is inexcusable and unwelcome. I’m amazed that Jonathan has allowed him to continue posting here with these kind of vulgar and disrespectful personal attacks even after a friendly warning.

      • snoopyrawdogg says:

        I think he’s a plant from Canon,Nikon or RED they are all scared of this tech and camera.Thanks John for the footage

  42. Pingback: New Blackmagic Design Cinema Camera Footage Hits the Net

  43. Christian says:

    Hi !
    I wonder why the wall, from the opposite building is overexposed ?
    Can you give us more information about it, please ?

    • johnbrawley says:

      Well, the sun was hitting that right hand side side of the building outside, and those were white masonry. White stone in more or less direct sun. I actually set the exposure in this scene by setting that white at 100%. So I created the TOP of the exposure bracket by setting that as the whitest thing in the scene.

  44. Sandy Campbell says:

    BMC targets a grey area of the market, that being aspiring creatives. Those who are not technically minded and “fiddle” to get things working. They can’t afford you blokes. A proper motion camera, some audio, some lights, a computer and heaps of “in front of camera” ideas equals content and the web for profitable distribution. Someone can pay for transfer to cinema release media, once the bank balance is healthy.

  45. Pingback: Blackmagic posts Cinema Camera RAW files | Another Video.com

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