Blackmagic stills?


Mu-43 Veteran
Jun 20, 2011
Reggio Emilia, Italy
Real Name
Daniele Frizzi
It's been a lot since my last login... And there was no Blackmagic section at the time :)

A friend of mine (not into m43) was talking me about the great videos that the pocket camera takes. I knew about the camera but I've never been good in taking videos.

Now, my question is this: if you even ever tried this, how good is the pocket camera for stills?
I was thinking about that for events : I usually take photos and... How good would be the quality taken from a movie still? I assume it would be limited at 1920 X 1080 resolution, so just a 2mpix image. Still good for Web, that is my main use...

What are your thoughts on this? The idea would be to get stills from short, 2-3 second videos.


Mu-43 All-Pro
Sep 15, 2012
Grand Rapids, Mi
Real Name
Karl Blessing
If the videos are saved progressively, you would be able to get a 1280x720 (0.9 Megapixel) still from a 720p or 1920x1080 (~ 2.0 Megapixels) still from a 1080p video or 3840 x 2160 (~ 8.2 megapixels ) from a 4K video.

If not progressive, then what you may get with a single interpolated frame you may get the appearance of scan-lines or something like that since it has a mix two neighboring frames.

So like you said, 2MP may be decent for web, but you may notice artifacts and compression in a single non-moving image than you would in a series of moving frames.

My question would be, why get a video camera solely for stills, when you can probably get quite a decent still camera for the same price if you're not going to bother with the video? Unless of course you already have one laying around.


Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Jan 29, 2010
South Gippsland, Australia
Real Name
Ray, not Oz
If the still examples from the Panasonic GH4 are anything to go by, then the stills that you can get from the Blackmagic should be pretty good. Of course the non-4k Blackmagic stills won't be as good, but for web use they should be more than fine. I've taken still from video shot with my E-M1 and they are quite usable. From memory, this is one from a video sequence:

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Mu-43 Top Veteran
Feb 29, 2012
Make sure you do your research. The pocket cinema camera is truly just a movie camera, there isn't even a shutter button, the sensor size is Super16, much smaller than m43 so you'll have difficulty get wide angles. It shoots in CinemaDNG, so you actually get a DNG raw file for each frame but it's only 1920x1080. AF isn't anywhere near what your typical m43 stills camera can do.

You'll notice I call it a movie camera rather than video, since it's not designed to be used like a regular video camera either, it works better with some rigging or support.


Mu-43 Veteran
May 15, 2013
Stills isn't their thing really, they can shoot 2, 2,5 or 8mp Raw in sequences of 24-80 per second for unlimited time.
So yeah the gh4 and them have nothing to brag about in that department.
Sadly that's where it ends :)

Like someone said, if you shoot Raw instead of Prores you get individual DNGs.
But Raw isn't exactly event friendly.

Some use the time-lapse function so the shutter button will act pretty much like a normal one (press twice). But thats more for BTS or if it's all you got.

All in all, better to bring a cheap gf5 or something alongside the Pocket for events.

With that said, here is a frame from the other day.

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Super Moderator
Feb 6, 2015
Salt Lake City, UT, USA
You might look at the LX100 if that is your goal. It shoots 4K video, which has 8MP frames. They even have a special mode for shooting video intended to be used as still photos. Doesn't have a lens mount, but it's got a pretty good lens on it for events already.
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