Blackmagic’s New Micro Camera is the GoPro of Cinema Cameras

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The newly announced Micro Cinema Camera seems to be following in the footsteps of the popular action cameras, with Blackmagic advertising it as a multi-purpose camera that can be taken almost anywhere (which makes sense considering yesterday’s leaked poster).

Touted as the world’s smallest digital film camera, the camera is advertized as a being perfect for drones, as a crash cam, mounted to a helmet or the side of a car or hidden on the set for reality TV.

Along with its compact size, it is the advanced camera features, interchangeable lenses, remote operation and monitoring, expandable connections and professional recording formats that make this a great camera for high-end products.

The ease of use, reasonable price and wide flexibility, however, mean this camera will not be used only in Hollywood.

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Chimpanzee Uses Found Branch To Knock A Camera Drone Out Of The Sky

Chimpanzees are one of the cleverest animals in existence, it is not for nothing that they are called our relatives. (Then again, octopi are quite clever too) They are considered one of the first animals to use tools. The Royal Burgers’ Zoo in Arnhem, Netherlands just reinforced that about them as one of the Chimpanzees in the zoo used a stick to knock a camera drone out of the sky.

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More Drones: DJI Announces The Phantom 3 Drone

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If I had to pick one topic that I get pitched about the most with regards to NAB, it will have to be DRONES. With a Capital D. And it does seem that they will be a hot topic during 2015.

One of the first birds to arrive is the new DJI Phantom 3 announced today from Chinese company DJI.

Unlike their GoPro line, this Drone from DJI comes with its own integrated camera. There are two versions to this new drone: The Professional version showing off golden stripes, which shoot up to 4K at 30 fps, and an Advanced version (silver striped) that shoots at 1920 x 1080 resolution at up to 60 fps.

The price tag of both will not make you drop, and range between $999 (advanced) to $1,259 (pro).

Features wise, it seems like this drone is a natural evolution from the DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ with a similar 3 axis integrated gimbal.

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CNN Partners With FAA To Establish New Protocol For Drone Usage By Photojournalists

8746586571_1ea6d66c3d_kIn a statement issued on January 12th, from CNN, the news agency revealed it has teamed up with the FAA in an effort to experiment with various UAV’s (unmanned aerial vehicles). CNN reports the Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRDA) between them and the FAA will serve as a means to establish new regulations and a framework regarding the safe integration of drones into news gathering practices.

CNN also stated they and the FAA will combine it’s study with Georgia Tech Research Institute, with whom CNN had partnered with in the summer of 2014 to conduct similar research. In the statement found on CNN’s website, FAA Administrator, Michael Huerta, explained the partnership:

“Unmanned aircraft offer news organizations significant opportunities. We hope this agreement with CNN and the work we are doing with other news organizations and associations will help safely integrate unmanned newsgathering technology and operating procedures into the National Airspace System.”

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Kangaroo:1 – Drone:0 (Or Why You Want To Keep Your Kangaroo Distance)

Over the years we’ve seen quite a bit of people being extremely unsatisfied with being photographed by drones. Turns out that the animal realm is no different. But what may end up with some yelling at the human kingdom, can cost you a drone over at Australia.

A videographer over at Hunter Valley, Australia found this out the hard way. The videographer was shooting Red Roo Kangaroos (yes, the ones you think about when thinking about jumping and boxing). Apparently, the big animal was not too happy with the noise and gave the drone a big blow and knocked it out of the sky, as they say.

Let this be a cautionary take to every drone operator to be aware of how being annoying can cost you a drone.

How to Build Floating Landing Gear For A DJI Phantom

I guess the only thing worse than crashing a quadcopter is getting it drowned. I mean there must be some stuff you can salvage from a crash, but total immersion? Not as much.

This is where Floating landing gears come into the play. We have seen a few designs, what they all have in commons is that they are dirt cheap, and really easy to make.

Now I am not sure that if a DJI Phantom hits water falling from 30 meters, this is what’s going to save the day, but I do think that it can help if you want to shoot lots of video over water and are concerned with battery or just want an extra layer of security.

The other big plus is that floating landing gear will get your drone to float, as even if you have waterproofed a DJI (which can be done) once it goes below water level, it loses orientation and just runs around in circles.

The first video, by Buddhanz shown at the top is the quick and dirty way. 4 Styrofoam bars hot-glued together and held with a rubber band, but you can get a bit more sophisticated. (Which we do after the jump)

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DJI’s Newest UAV Adresses Function Over Form, and Manages to Keep its Form As Well

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As UAV photography continues to become more prevalent in today’s technology, DJI is undoubtedly the leader in the field. With how many times its products have popped up in news stories and controversies in the past few months alone, it’s clear that photographers have spoken on who they choose to shoot their aerial footage. So when DJI makes announcements for a new model, you can bet on a lack of gimmicks. This isn’t a trend, and DJI knows it; they’re ready to bring improvements to UAV photography, and they’re ready to become its household name.

This isn’t the DJI Phantom that many of you may have come to know. With the Phantom lineup categorized for “Everyone” on the company’s website, this one is placed under the “Experts” tab, and rightfully so. Meet the new Spreading Wings S900 Hexacopter.

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VAL: Out! Drone Lighting: In! Drones Used As Lighting Stands

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A team of researchers from MIT and Cornell are expected to present a protype of a drone they have been developing specifically designed to ease the task of ‘holding lights’ this August. To be clear, drones have already been used by numerous photographers and filmmakers as a way to light scenes, but this particular drone has a couple interesting abilities that help set it apart from the crowd. The most incredible being it’s ability to detect motion of the camera and subject before automatically correcting it’s own position to provide consistent lighting.
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