Raw Comparison: Magic Lantern Canon 5D VS Black Magic Cinema Camera

Still hot with news on the Canon 5D Mark III being able to shoot continuous raw video footage with Magic Lantern, comparison videos are starting to hit the net. In this video, you'll see the Black Magic Cinema Camera footage alongside the hacked 5D, with ISO information to give you a better idea of the noise difference. Even with Vimeo's compression, you can see the difference for yourself.

Watch it in HD on fullscreen to see for yourself, or even download the source file.

The main takeaways from this (non scientific) test:
• 5D has an edge in dynamic range
• 5D has great ISO performance

More information can be found in my previous article here.

Stay tuned for more updates on this, and I'll post when a stable release of Magic Lantern has been made available.

[via Cinema 5D ]

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20 Comments

Christopher Sztybel's picture

Absolutely incredible. Huge news.

Pixyst's picture

Can't really see the difference. I guess I don't know what to look for.

Jason Vinson's picture

i think thats the point. the Black magic Cinema camera is a $3K camera designed for video. the 5DMIII is a great camera for stills and now rivals the Cinema. i dont know anything about video. but thats what i got from it?

BM Cinema Camera footage looks so amazing, sharper and more detailed, also the colors are a lot more lively and fresh. Unfortunately the camera seems to be prone to moiré. Hideous amounts of moire in the gravel path and on the check pattern skirt.

Slightly sharper, yeah. Though the h.264 files of the mk3 are also kind of soft but handle sharpening pretty well. I'm not sure to what extent the colour saturation and vibrance difference has to do with the grade rather than the camera. I have to agree,the moiré is pretty bad on the BMCC.

I think this only shows how bad Canon is crippling its cameras. I don't think it really trumps the BMCC as they were kind of different beasts. It's still MFT vs Full Frame and the BMCC offers much higher quality compressed video in ProRes which is obviously a very nice option as RAW on the Canon will chew through CF cards and be a pain to work with on anything less than a stelar computer.

This should be the wake up call Canon needs. Their stuff is overpriced and purposely crippled, oh they might want to take a second look at the mirorless market too...

The Canon is RAW video, so I assume it's much like a RAW still image, it's a little dull and flat but with more information compared to a JPEG. It needs post processing and color grading.

why was the Black Magic Cinema Camera utilized at ISO800 while 5D shot at 160??

Mike Wilkinson's picture

From what I gathered in the Vimeo description, it said the BMCC native ISO is 800, so that was used in the test.

That's a HUGE difference... Can't wait till they come out with something for Nikon, Not switching to Canon anytime soon lol

They shot it at 800 ISO because when you're shooting in raw the black magic cinema camera will only shoot at 800 ISO the video readout on the back however can be adjusted

Spy Black's picture

The difference isn't that great. Also, notice how a lot of the Canon shots were zoomed in closer, allowing for greater detail. You wonder if you would've seen the same or similar kind of moiré in the duel scene if it had been at the same magnification. Sooner or later you'll hit a similar snag on the Canon anyway. Color fidelity seemed better on the BM camera as well to me.

No doubt that this is a great asset for Canon shooters, but the presentation here seemed a little skewed to me. Finally, think of the rig you need to capture footage with the Canon versus the BM. Much simpler with the BM. Obviously if you're going to do a well financed production that won't be that big of an issue, but on smaller productions the BM would be a much better candidate.

Aaron's picture

The Canon footage looks great, but shouldn't we take into consideration that the Canon is shooting 1080p while the BMC is shooting 2.5k, giving the BMC the edge?

From my understanding there could be several factors why whoever did this test only shot at 1080p. One reason being the memory card speed. ML can shoot 3k, 3.5k and probably even higher. In this test to show the strength of the ML+mk3 they probably shot at 1920x1080. If they were to have shot at 2.5k, I am sure the difference would have been even greater for a few aspects. We do not know the lenses used in this test so this could have an impact with clarity and color. ...just some thought.

Do remember this is the first ever full frame camera shooting raw. The ISO's cannot be compared.

Does the raw thing really matter? Great if you have the 5D already, but if you're on the fence wouldn’t the upcoming Blackmagic 4k steal most of this thunder? The Global Shutter, the live 4k out, etc. And if not, the current Blackmagic is right around the same price. The way the forums/blogs are blowing up you would think the 5d was a 10th of the price or something. Don’t get me wrong, I salute the magic lantern group, and hope to see even better things for my old 7d, but I don't get the extent of the excitement?

The Blackmagic 4k will be awesome! But, I think full-frame is a big deal for most people. Also, the low light is ridiculous on the 5D compared to any camera. Plus, you get a top of the line stills camera. See, I take pictures and video. So I could buy both or just get a 5D.

So once again a flawed comparison. The only comparison that can be done is having the exact same framing with the exact same footage. They change angles, framing.

Here is a well done comparison of lenses and they way this test should have been done - http://vimeo.com/28712292

great. now we can concentrate on shooting rather than gears... :)

The framing difference in the test is due to the two cameras having vastly different sensor sizes, it's hard to match like that. Don't forget to budget for a few 1000x cf cards

Joe, I agree, but they turn the camera away from the front/side of the person holding the sword to the side for the other camera. And how hard is it to match? If you're using a prime, walk the camera in or out to match or switch lenses. I'm only saying that a comparison need to be just that, a true comparison. How about a scene shot like the one I linked to. Same scene shot with controlled light. Also a walk through what they did in post with each is called for.

And you said, don't for get the CF cards and the formatting of magic lantern on each. And what happens when magic lantern disappears off the 5D? Reinstall. FYI, I have both cameras and for whatever reason(I'll chalk it up to user error), I'm always losing magic lantern off my camera and need to constantly reinstall.

Why are people saying they don`t see any difference or that the BMC is sharper etc ... search the net to see that the untouched 5D Mk3 is inferior to BMC ... this hack shows that the 5D can be equal to BMC.