Blackmagic Begins Shipping URSA Mini 4.6K, Micro Cinema Camera
Blackmagic Design’s URSA Mini 4.6K and Micro Cinema Camera have commenced shipping and that the specifications of the two cameras have been changed.
Blackmagic Design have also announced the release of a short film that shows off the power of the URSA Mini 4.6K camera as well as a “making of” video that shows how the camera was used on this shoot. This short film is available on the URSA Mini product page at www.blackmagicdesign.com/
Since being announced, Blackmagic Design have been working hard to get the new URSA Mini 4.6K and Micro Cinema Cameras into production and to fill backorders. The good news for our customers is that both these cameras are now shipping.
However the development of the global shutter in these cameras has taken longer than expected, and has been the reason the cameras have been delayed in shipping as problems in implementing the global shutter feature has been holding up their release. Both cameras have problems with their global shutter but the problems are different between the URSA Mini 4.6K and the Micro Cinema Camera.
For the past six months, Blackmagic Design engineers have been working extremely hard to resolve the issues. As the performance of the global shutter is not up to the high quality level that Blackmagic Design strives to give it’s customers, Blackmagic Design have decided to ship both of the cameras without the global shutter feature.
The prime reason for this decision is that over the last few months, professional cinematographers and DOP’s who have been beta testing the cameras on all types of different projects have reported incredible results. Their feedback is that the cameras should not be delayed for this feature as the main benefits of the cameras are the wide dynamic range, and that this dynamic range is only available when running without global shutter. The beta testers working in high end digital film and television production are urgently wanting to use cameras such as URSA Mini 4.6K to obtain the advantage of the 15 stops of wide dynamic range and high frame rate capabilities of the rolling shutter.
With the release of URSA Mini 4.6K, customers will be able to choose between two very different models of URSA Mini. Originally URSA Mini 4K was intended to be the entry level model and the URSA Mini 4.6K to be the higher end model with more features. However, now these two cameras are targeted for different kinds of work as customers can choose between URSA Mini 4K if they want global shutter for fast action sports and URSA Mini 4.6K if they want wide dynamic range for high end digital film work.
The URSA Mini 4K model has been received well since it started shipping and is the global shutter model, being able to shoot global shutter high frame rate 4K footage at up to 60 frames per second, making it the perfect camera for shooting fast action live sport. URSA Mini 4.6K is the high dynamic range model for high-end digital film work with its extremely wide latitude at 15 stops of dynamic range. Customers can now simply choose between the two models depending on the work they do, either high frame rate global shutter or wide dynamic range models.
The good news is the high-end customers who have been beta testing the camera, have been shocked by the extremely high quality and film look to the images they have been getting from it. They understand that wide latitude and film color science built into the cameras is the most important feature and the URSA Mini 4.6K has impressed them.
“Traditionally, I have worked with cameras that cost five times as much and am amazed at the capabilities of this new 4.6K sensor,” says Jody Eldred, Emmy award winning DoP, cameraman and Director whose credits include JAG, NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, Good Morning America, National Geographic, and more. “The claim of 15 stops dynamic range is a reality, and my RAW footage of extremely high-contrast images graded in DaVinci Resolve 12 is clear testimony to that. Very clean blacks too. I’m pleasantly surprised, as was my colorist. I really think Blackmagic Design has captured some lighting in a bottle with the URSA Mini 4.6K camera.”
Blackmagic Design understands and accepts that some customers who have back ordered an URSA Mini 4.6K may like to change their order as a result of this feature change.
Blackmagic Design’s own design team wanted to experience the camera being used on set first hand, so we have produced a short test film that gave Blackmagic staff first hand experience with using the camera.
This short film was shot in a variety of conditions, ranging from a low light night time scene to extreme direct sunlight daytime shots using everything from tripods, to shoulder mounts, on a dolly, gimble, and even mounted on a drone. The short film can be downloaded in 4K from the Blackmagic Design website at www.blackmagicdesign.com/
Blackmagic Design has also added a gallery page to the URSA Mini website that showcases the amazing work our beta testers have produced using the Blackmagic URSA Mini 4.6K. This gallery can be viewed at www.blackmagicdesign.com/
“We’re deeply sorry that it has taken much longer than expected to ship the Blackmagic URSA Mini 4.6K and Blackmagic Micro Cinema Camera, and extremely disappointed that we are unable to deliver a feature that we had previously announced,” says Grant Petty, CEO, Blackmagic Design. “As an engineer, I have always felt that my job is to build a stage for customers to perform on, but until we ship a product we never know what kind of stage it is. This camera is truly amazing and images are just so filmic. The beta test cameras have been received so well that they have already been used on national campaigns and feature films. The images they have shot so far are way beyond anything we could have imagined when we first started making cameras, and I can’t wait to see all the incredible footage that will be shot on the new URSA Mini 4.6K camera.”