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Blackmagic Announces Latest Firmware Update for Cinema Cameras

By James DeRuvo (doddleNEWS)

Well, it’s not a huge update, but it’s a solid one. Blackmagic announced today firmware update version 1.9.3 for all Cinema Cameras which, amongst it’s main added features is a histogram for camera users. But there are a few other improvements which should help out in the field.


Like I said, it’s a small update, but it does have these features for both the Pocket Cinema Camera and the BMCC.

For the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, there’s the aforementioned added histogram, plus time remaining and audio level indicators. Finally! But in addition to now being able to monitor and adjust your audio precisely, users can now adjust the matters themselves by using Up and Down buttons to reveal and hide the meters while Left and Right will adjust the aperture of the camera’s micro four-thirds lens. Meanwhile, the BMCC will get the histogram, time remaining and audio level indicators.

Users can download the firmware update here.

Click for larger

In other Blackmagic news... internet phenom Felicia Day’s Geek and Sundry has announced it will be exclusively using Blackmagic for its new ongoing web show Morganville: The Series, which follows a rural Texas town that’s controlled by vampires. They will also be doing all color correction with DaVinci Resolve 11.

The production will rely on the Blackmagic Cinema Cameras as their A cameras, but will deploy the Pocket Cinema Camera for aerial drone shots and smaller locations which require a tight fit. In addition, the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K camera will be used for wider establishing shots and motion shots deployed on the Freefly MVI. Look for it to premiere on YouTube later this Fall. They will also be doing all their color grading with Davinci Resolve 11.

In addition to Morganville, Blackmagic announced that Modern VidFilm is using the color correction suite for grading of the hit ABC comedy Modern Family. The suite is beneficial to producers who look to preserve the documentary like vibe of the show, which follows the adventures of a mixed extended family in Los Angeles.

“Grading at times is more difficult on a show like this because I'm actually trying to hide complicated tricks, preserving the authenticity of the documentary look,” said Aidan Stanford, colorist at Modern VideoFilm. “Luckily DaVinci Resolve has all the tools that I need to achieve this. In general, footage is given a very subtle low contrast grade trying to achieve very readable blacks and shadows on air. We really want the show to feel as filmic as possible, but still give things a nice treatment when needed.”

Stanford also remarked that he loves being able to grade on the fly using Resolves “track grade” feature, so if there are last minute changes during the creative process, he can make subtle or major color grades in real time that won’t impact down the line.

"I love being able to toggle a grade on and off as a whole, or mark it individually, Stanford added. “Also I'm able to turn a LUT on or off as needed in a node, either in the tracker or the clip mode, which is very helpful and most importantly quick for the client. As a colorist I never feel stuck with DaVinci Resolve, and I know I can achieve what the DP is asking me to do, and everyone is happy with the results.”

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