Best 6k camera?

Arpit_D
Arpit_D Website User Posts: 19 Just Starting Out*

In the upcoming year I am going to buy a 6k camera and I am little bit confused between two cameras:-

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro And Panasonic Lumix S1H

Are there any suggestions from you which camera I should buy? You can also suggest some more cameras that you think is nice. I am thinking that Canon EOS R5 is also good.

Best Answer

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 19,581 Ambassador
    Accepted Answer

    It's a tough call. Both are excellent cameras, and, ultimately, no one can truly say "BUY THIS OVER THAT." But we can break things down and make suggestions from there.

    The S1H is a stills camera that happens to have some excellent video features, the BMPCC 6K Pro is a video camera that happens to shoot stills. This can be important as the primary function of the camera will have an impact on the layout of the physical controls and the menus. Also, as far as I know, the BMPCC has no "continuous photo" mode. If your goal is to have a single "all in one" stills and photo camera the S1H has advantages, but, if you're buying for video-mostly... Well, read on.

    The BMPCC has a slightly higher maximum resolution, and is capable of shooting higher frame rates than the S1H at 6K. If you need slow motion at 6K the S1H can't do that. Both cameras go to 60fps at 4K. Bear in mind the purpose of 6K shooting is to have extra crop room in post, not 6K delivery, so this isn't as big a deal as it might seem.

    The BMPCC has two mini-XLR ports for external audio gear, as well as a single 1/8" stereo TRS port. XLR ports are typically more robust and cleaner than 1/8" TRS. The S1H has a single 1/8" TRS port. If you need to connect multiple audio sources to the S1H you'll need external hardware.

    The S1H records h.264 and h.265 video at up to 10-bit color. The BMPCC records ProRes or Blackmagic RAW at up to 14-bit color. As of Hitfilm 2021.1 Hitfilm cannot import Blackmagic RAW. This could be added in a future update, but, for now, you would be either limited to the ProRes options (which are great codecs) or to using other software to convert the Blackmagic RAW to something Hitfilm can read. Note that ProRes, h.265 and most of the types of h.264 recorded by the S1H are NOT hardware accelerated in Hitfilm. You'll need a beefy computer to handle any of those files smoothly. If you're a user who does NOT have a dedicate/discrete GPU in their computer you're going to have slow edit sesions.

    The BMPCC comes with the studio version of DaVinci Resolve, which, on it's own is a powerful NLE/VFX/Coloring program suite. It can also be used to convert Blackmagic RAW to something Hitfilm can read.

    The S1H records to two SD Card slots and has a USB port for connecting external SSDs. The BMPCC has a single SD Card Slot and one CFast card slot. CFast cards are extremely expensive per gigabyte compared to SD cards, but SD cards are not fast enough to record Blackmagic RAW. The BMPCC also has a USB port to connect external SSDs.

    The BMPCC is slightly larger and about 200g/1lb heavier.

    The S1H uses "L-Mount" lenses. L-mount is a new format created specifically for Panasonic's s1 and S1H. At the moment only Panasonic, Leica and Sigma make L-Mount Lenses. The BMPCC uses Canon's "EF Mount" lenses. The EF mount dates back to 1987, and, the bottom line here is you're going to find a lot more EF lenses at a wider variety of focal lengths than L-Mount lenses, including "vintage" lenses. There are a grand total of 20 lenses available for the S1H, none of them wider than 16mm none tighter than 280mm, and the L-series lenses are more expensive than EF-mount counterparts. EF lenses range from 10mm fisheyes all the way up to ridiculously expensive 1200mm lenses, with a reasonably-priced 150-600mm lens available. The majority of tv/film produtions are shooting between 24 and 200mm and you can find lenses covering that focal range in L-mount, but, if you want a super telephoto, or to go super-wide, or fisheye, you just can't. In the meantime, Rokinon has this beautiful and inexpensive series of cinema lenses that are EF, not L. Because the L-series lens mount is so new there's not really a used market for them yet, whereas with the EF mount there's a thriving used market. I've saved a lot of money by buying used lenses...

    I'm not kidding about lens prices. The "50mm" lens is often used in film and portraiture. The 50mm lens is considered to have the same field of view as the human eye. There are a grand total of three 50mm lenses available for L-mount. One is about $1000, the second is about $2200 and the third is $6000! You can get good 50mm lenses in an EF mount starting around $500 new. Less used.

    (You can buy adapters for connecting an EF lens to a S1H, but you'll spend a few hundred on the adapter and adapters aren't guaranteed to work with all lenses.)

    The S1H has in-body image stabilization, the BMPCC does not. certain EF lenses have IS built in, but, in general, if you think you'll be shooting handheld a lot you'll get smoother footage with the S1H.

    The BMPCC series is notorious for having terrible battery life. The 6K PRO changes to a more powerful battery than the 4K and original 6K, but a BMPCC 6K Pro still only shoots about an hour per battery. The S1H shoots about 2 hours on a battery.

    Are you shooting films, events, commercials, vlogs or livestreams? The BMPCC happens to interface with a lot of the Blackmagic switchers. ATEM switchers can control most of the features of the BMPCC remotely, so, if you're moving into livestreaming or potentially multi-camera production work, there couldbe long term advantages to the BMPCC. I happen to be getting ready to sell off some of my older cameras and purchase BMPCC cameras, but, I also happen to have an ATEM Mini Pro Extreme ISO, so having camera control from the switcher is a big thing for me.

    Finally, there's price. Both cameras are pretty new, so there's not really going to be anything on the used market. The BMPCC 6K PRO is about $2200 (USD) while the S1H is about $3500 (USD). That's a $1300 price difference. That $1300 will go a long way towards any other gear you might need, like LENSES (can't shoot without lenses), extra batteries, storage cards/external SSDs, microphones, lights, tripod/monopod, cages, computer upgrades, etc. If you're a hobbyist/vlogger and your video is not a significant portion of your income, it's probably better to save money where you can. Also remember the L-mount lenses are more expensive than the EF-mount lenses... In some cases by thousands of dollars.

    Unless you are, or aspire to be a working professional, money is no object, and you also need to shoot a lot of stills I recommend the BMPCC 6K PRO.

    Side note - the Canon R5 is also a great camera, but, it uses a new lens mount as well - the "RF" mount. Like the S1H, the R5 is well over a thousand dollars more expensive than the BMPCC, has a smaller selection of lenses to choose from and those lenses are much much more expensive than the EF lenses. Unless you really need 8K (No, you do not need 8K), there's no reason to consider the Canon R5 at this time.

Answers

  • Arpit_D
    Arpit_D Website User Posts: 19 Just Starting Out*

    Thanks for you suggestion, I will be going with BMPCC 6K. I have three PCs and one of them has RTX 3090 and I think this is a good graphic card, So I will install the 3090 on the PC I am using Hitfilm on, And this could solve any lags I would have and I also have the free version of Davinci so I will use it to convert the .braw files that BMPCC camera creates or if .braw files are supported in future then I would only use Hitfilm.

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