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Nashville station deploys digital cinema camera for news promos

WSMV-TV, the NBC affiliate in Nashville, TN, is using the Blackmagic Cinema Camera to shoot promotions and PSAs for the station’s news broadcasts. The station also is using DaVinci Resolve for color correction.

Brian Hallett, creative services senior producer and writer at the station, chose Blackmagic Cinema Camera for its high-resolution 2.5K sensor, 13 stops of dynamic range and CinemaDNG RAW and Avid DNxHD codecs.

“When it came time to invest in a new camera, I didn’t want something that was more of the same,” said Hallett. “I wanted to take the production up a step and think forward.

“The Blackmagic Cinema Camera helped us do just that while providing an extremely efficient workflow. Time is of the essence in everything we do, and our deadlines are quick. Shooting with the Blackmagic Cinema Camera makes everything easier.”

For studio shoots, Hallett mounts a Blackmagic Cinema Camera on a slider, hooks up audio and headphones and is ready to go. “With other cameras, I would have to hook up a monitor and recorder as well as batteries, and before you know it, it has taken 45 minutes to set up. Now I slap a lens on the Blackmagic Cinema Camera, put it on a slider, and I’m good to go,” he said. “I try to keep everything as simple as possible because it’s faster that way.”

When shooting outdoors, Blackmagic Cinema Camera’s 13 stops of dynamic range prove useful.

“The camera’s dynamic range lets me shoot in broad daylight without losing any detail in the footage,” said Hallett. “I’m able to get a better look and more out of the camera, and the footage looks hands down better, which means there’s not as much time spent finessing in post. And the ability to shoot in DNxHD means I can pull the files right into Avid and start editing right away.”

Hallett also takes advantage of Blackmagic Cinema Camera’s 1/4in TRS audio connectors, which allow him to connect high-quality microphones to the camera and sync audio to footage while shooting. Hallett estimates he saves about two to three hours during the post-production process because he no longer has to import and transcode footage into the Avid codec, as well as spend time syncing audio. When shooting is finished, Hallett transfers media from the SSD onto his MacBook Pro for editing and then into Blackmagic Design’s DaVinci Resolve for color correction.