Finalist 2021

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro

Blackmagic Design

A revolutionary digital film camera combining a suite of professional filmmaking features in an ultra-compact, lightweight DSLR form factor.

The Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro is a revolutionary digital film camera combining a suite of professional filmmaking features in an ultra-compact, lightweight DSLR form factor. Costing just $3245 it is a fully self-contained solution that pairs Hollywood image quality and unmatched flexibility for indie filmmakers, television and web broadcasters.

Design Brief

A cinematographer or live broadcast camera operator moves dynamically and discretely with the action in a scene or event. Constantly monitoring and adjusting focus, composition and audio quality throughout, they must simultaneously adapt to changing lighting conditions to ensure consistent, professional quality video footage.

For many independent creators, the primary advantages of DSLR camera for video production are price, familiarity and portability. Designed primarily for stills capture, they are ill-equipped to deal with the practical and technical issues common to filmmaking and live broadcasting without the addition of expensive, bulky peripherals that invariably negate the key benefits the format offers.


This project was developed by:

Design Process

The Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro represents an affordable versatile, all-in-one solution equipped specifically for cinematography and broadcasting:

  • Built-in, motorized ND filters allow spontaneous adaption to changing light conditions.
  • Four integrated professional microphones provide high fidelity audio recording.
  • A flexible architecture featuring adjustable OLED viewfinder and high brightness, tilting HDR LCD enables various shooting positions.
  • Natural ergonomics offer responsive control and setting adjustment.

Enhancing the workflows of creative people with accessible, professional video technology remains central to Blackmagic Design’s ethos. This is underpinned by an holistic, multi-disciplinary strategy in which diversification is driven by products and software that connects people to other segments of the Blackmagic ecosystem in a seamless and intuitive way.

Never has this been more impactful than the last twelve months. Embedded with DaVinci Resolve post-production and ATEM live broadcast features, the affordable Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro has empowered users to become self-reliant, arming themselves with the professional end-to-end tools to realise their creative goals remotely, independently and safely.

  • Lightweight, durable construction and advanced thermal management ensure on-going performance and reliability despite the processing demands of high-frame rate, 6K video.
  • Proprietary Blackmagic RAW codec generates efficient, lossless video files optimised for quality, speed and storage.

Design Excellence

Form
Aesthetics and form play a critical role in connecting Blackmagic Design products with the professional people that use them. The Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro’s high performance visual language is a decisive response to the ergonomic, technical and contextual requirements of filmmaking and live broadcasting.

The tapered lens mount blends seamlessly into the camera’s compact body, in which subtle surface cambering reduces perceived size without compromising internal architecture. Underlining the camera’s professional nature, angled heatsink fins direct air to critical internal components, hinting at the Pocket Cinema Camera’s cutting-edge thermal management system.

Function
Working with traditional RAW formats is difficult because files are very large and extremely processor intensive, which makes them slow and inefficient. Traditional video codecs like H.264 are faster, but heavily compressed, deteriorating quality with noise, undesirable artefacts and lost sensor detail.

Blackmagic RAW is a revolutionary new format designed to capture and preserve the quality of the sensor data from Blackmagic cameras. Featuring multiple new technologies, such as an advanced de mosaic algorithm, BRAW outputs visually lossless images ideal for Hollywood workflows with better performance and even smaller file sizes than traditional video codecs.

Quality
The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro has a native resolution of 6144 x 3456. With 13 stops of dynamic range and a ‘cinematic look’ professional filmmakers aspire to, the cutting edge 6K Super 35 sensor is designed to reduce thermal noise, retaining more detail in the lightest and darkest limits of an image than traditional DSLRs. This means exceptional low-light performance and maximum post-production flexibility.

Featuring the same colour science as the high-end URSA Mini Pro 12K, the Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro delivers an even greater advancement in image quality with stunning, accurate skin tones and faithful colour.

Design Innovation

The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro features high-end, motorized IR ND filters that quickly reduce the amount of light entering the camera. Matching the colorimetry and colour science of the camera, the 2, 4 and 6 stop filters provide additional latitude even under harsh lighting.

Using high quality coatings for extremely consistent light transmission across the visible spectrum, IR filters are designed to filter both optical and infra-red wavelengths evenly, avoiding colour-shift and eliminating contamination in images.

Ground-breaking Thermal Control
Capturing and processing 6K gives filmmakers additional latitude to stabilise, zoom and re-frame shots without losing detail. This generates heat that can deteriorate image quality and performance if left unchecked.

Cooler sensors can run at higher frame rates and capture cleaner images. The Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro’s two-way thermal management system silently dissipates heat, drawing air through a series of heatsinks to cool critical components, preserving maximum detail for professional post-production flexibility.

Monitoring
The vivid 1500 nit 5" touchscreen HDR monitor is brighter than the world’s leading smartphones and is significantly larger and sharper than DSLR displays, allowing for accurate evaluation of framing and focus. It can be tilted up to 180 degrees flat and down to 47 degrees, enabling shooting from any angle without additional rigging or monitors.

The interactive, graphically rich UI is designed specifically for filmmaking, allowing gestural control of camera settings. This immediacy allows filmmakers to see the effects of adjustments in real-time, ensuring focus remains on the creative aspects of filmmaking.

Professional Audio
Four built-in, shock resistant microphones with extremely low noise capture incredibly clear, high fidelity audio.

Haptics
Familiar and comfortable, logically placed external controls offer quick access to essential functions.

Soft-touch silicone grip inlay has a bespoke, 45° pattern providing perfect resistance against fingers, with ‘pistol grip’ scallop for added engagement.

Design Impact

The Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro is a timely response to the needs of filmmakers, networks and independent web creators impacted by social distancing measures associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Costing just $3245 it requires nothing but a lens and storage media to start shooting, offering broadcasters, small businesses and educational institutions a self-contained solution to quickly and affordably establish home studios for remote presenters.

The versatile all-in-one functionality and embedded post-production features have also provided a way for cinematographers to continue producing solo content, reducing the reliance on multiple support crew to achieve professional quality content.

Circular Design and Sustainability Features

The advanced Carbon Fibre Polycarbonate composite body of the Pocket Cinema Camera 6K pro is 50% lighter than die-cast metal, yet possesses comparable strength, rigidity and finish for half the cost. The durable design of the Pocket Cinema Camera 6K ensures a long working life, with many sub-assemblies able to be re-used in future product variations.

Regular updates to the intuitive proprietary Blackmagic Camera OS further enhance the longevity of the camera, eliminating the need for wasteful regular hardware replacement. Reusable packaging further reduces waste, acting as a protective insert for transportation in a standard road case.

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