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Setup for my Blackmagic Cinema Camera

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Jordan McGehee
Setup for my Blackmagic Cinema Camera
on Jun 12, 2013 at 4:42:46 pm

Hello everyone,

I have been reading numerous articles on BMCC setups for documentary film making. Perhaps some of you could answer some of my questions.

1. Is a matte box really necessary for indoor interview work and some simple outside shots or can the lens hood for the specific lens work wonderfully?

2. What kind of ND filters should you use and for what situations?

3. What kind of audio setups work best for indoor interviews and which setup works for some simple outdoor noise and occasional short outdoor interviews?

Thanks from a true newbie!


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Peter J. DeCrescenzo
Re: Setup for my Blackmagic Cinema Camera
on Jun 14, 2013 at 1:15:51 am

[Jordan McGehee] "1. Is a matte box really necessary for indoor interview work and some simple outside shots or can the lens hood for the specific lens work wonderfully?

It's up to you. A matte box, just like most gear, performs specific tasks that you may or may not place a high value on. And, just like other gear, matte boxes are available with an extremely wide variety of prices, features, and build quality. For many shoots, an ordinary lens hood will be perfectly adequate. Other times a "naked" lens will work fine, and in many other situations a matte box will be a life saver. If you're not sure where to start, perhaps start without a matte box and see if you like the results you get. If you're in an area where there's a production equipment rental house or pro gear dealer, go see their matte boxes (and square/rectangular glass filters) and see if you like them.

2. What kind of ND filters should you use and for what situations?

Again, it depends on what features you want/need and how much money you're willing to pay for it. Like all cameras, the BMCC can benefit from or require using ND filter(s) depending on the "look" you're after. Separate screw-on, flat (matte box), and "vari-ND" ND filters are common equipment for controlling exposure. There are advantages & disadvantages for all of them. Many cinema-type cameras also require infared-cut (IR cut) filters, especially as the total amount of ND filtering is increased. There many types of IR-cut filters (including combination ND+IR-cut filters), and certain ones are a better match for certain sensors. This video explains why:


3. What kind of audio setups work best for indoor interviews and which setup works for some simple outdoor noise and occasional short outdoor interviews?"

Refer to the posts about BMCC-specific audio further down the page here in the Blackmagic forum.

Beyond that, there's a whole universe of microphone & audio techniques and related gear you can use with a BMCC camera. There are audio-related forums here on the COW (and elsewhere on the web) where you can read about & discuss the wonderful world of sound recording.

There's also a lot of really good info about "location" sound recording on Zacuto's website and Vimeo pages, for example:

http://www.zacuto.com/clinton-harn-sound-series

---

http://www.peterdv.com
Blog: http://herefortheweather.wordpress.com


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David C Jones
Re: Setup for my Blackmagic Cinema Camera
on Jun 14, 2013 at 2:13:13 pm

I agree with everything Peter said.

I just got back from a doc shoot with the BMCC and we used a Mattebox and ND filters. We used both much of the time. Some lenses, particularly telephoto lenses didn't need the Mattebox; the lens hood was adequate. If you're outside, you'll most likely want to at least invest in a French flag to control lens flare. You will definitely want to look into getting ND filters. You'll need the Mattebox to hold the square or rectangle filters; in a pinch, you can hold them in front of the lens but, a Mattebox is the way to go!

Dave J


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