The Blackmagic Pocket 6K Pro is a camera that delivers amazing cinematic images, but which lenses make the most sense to combine them with?
If you’ve recently invested in a Blackmagic Pocket 6K Pro, you are probably wondering which lenses make the most sense for creating truly cinematic moving images. There are hundreds of lenses available with its native EF mount, but don’t forget the good folks at Wooden camera make a PL adapter that works with the Pocket 6K Pro to open up the world of cinema lenses new and old even further.
An important factor to consider is the back focus focal length; The flange focus distance on the Blackmagic Pocket 6K Pro is 44mm, which means you should focus on lenses that are natively available in the camera’s EF bayonet as it cannot support lenses designed for a smaller flange distance (like the popular Meike primes for example).
While you can convert the camera from Wooden Camera to PL-Mount (with 52 mm flange spacing) with this adapter, this makes the most sense if you have already invested a lot in PL-Mount glass. If you want to start your lens collection now, the most cost-effective option is to stick with the EF mount and purchase suitable lenses.
First, let’s take a look at the prime lens options that make the most sense when paired with the Blackmagic.
While premium cinema glass like the ARRI Signature Primes and the Zeiss Supreme Primes are obviously wonderful lenses, each lens costs 10 times the price of the 6K Pro, making them more of an occasional rental item than an everyday shooter. For lenses that you may rent or even buy more often, there is still a world of popular options that offer great image quality and repeatable focus and large apertures that filmmakers are looking for.
Zeiss Compact Primes
One of the first major manufacturers to bring cinema lenses in an EF bayonet onto the market was Zeiss with its Compact Prime series, now up to version 3. While the prices for individual lenses may be a bit high (in the $ 4-6K One of the beauties of lenses is that they don’t age as quickly as cameras.
The original CP and the CP.2 Lenses still offer amazing optical quality without some of the fancier modern features of the CP.3s, and you’ll likely find better deals on these lenses in the second-hand markets as they were widely available.
Irix is pursuing an interesting strategy with their new cinema lenses: a pincer movement, which you may have heard from a little film called. have heard principle and its “temporal pincer movement”.
Instead of starting with a standard 18-85mm lineup, Irix started with a 150mm macro, and then came out with one 11 mm super wide-angle prime. They come both ways at the end of the spectrum with interesting lenses that offer something that other manufacturers don’t. We’re always big fans of filmmakers who have a macro on standby when they need it, and from a cost-benefit perspective, the Irix 150mm cine macro can’t be beat.
While Laowa doesn’t offer a full line of cine primes, they do have a few offerings in the cine world that people should have on their radar.
First is that Zero-D Range of ultra-wide-angle lenses in 9, 12 and 15mm options that, while lacking cine lens rings, still offer the repeatable focus filmmakers want. These lenses offer incredibly low distortion for wide angle lenses (hence Zero-D for zero distortion), which is useful for an independent filmmaker.
If you regularly work in small spaces, take photos in cars, bathrooms, or studio apartments in New York, consider the wide-angle Zero-D range.
Laowa has another lens that needs to be mentioned, her Probe lens.
With a 24 mm 2X macro, this lens enables absolutely breathtaking close-ups that almost no other lens can compete with, especially not at this price. It only opens to F14, so it’s not a great lens for working in low light or at night (although the Blackmagic’s dual ISO setting can help compensate for this). But when you have the light, this piece of glass will give you amazing shots. It even comes with a built-in LED to illuminate the subject as the lens can practically take pictures by touching the subject, which can make lighting difficult.
One lens set to consider for use with your Pocket 6K is this XEEN CF Primes. While each is roughly the same price as the 6K Pro ($ 2,500 or so), they offer an incredible amount of visual quality for that price point.
With large apertures (often T1.5), smooth bokeh and crystal-clear focus, these lenses clearly exceed their weight. Add in the compact size and light weight, and these are great lenses for a gimbal setup or long days of handheld use.
Zhongyi is relatively new to the cinematic lens landscape, but they are worth considering as they focus on ultra-wide apertures.
We could test them 50mm T1 Lens with the Pocket 6K, and the combination of that T1 speed with the native dual ISO 3200 makes a dynamite combo for low-light work that few other setups can do.
While cine zooms have traditionally been too expensive to ever consider buying, there are some manufacturers who offer exceptional quality zoom lenses with repeatable focus and cine housings that you should definitely consider when equipping your system.
Sigma cine zooms
Not only does Sigma make great cine prime lenses (just a hair too expensive to make our list to pair with the Pocket 6K, but still wonderful), they are absolutely wonderful too Cine zoom lenses, a paired 18-35 and 50-150mm set that offers an amazing T2 aperture for both of them over the entire zoom range.
These lenses are fast, light, sharp and a great companion for documentary filmmakers. While they’re not parfocal lenses (they don’t hold focus when zooming), with the modern focus assist tools built into the Pocket 6K like zooming in and focus assist highlight, this isn’t the problem it would have been in the movie days .
Last but not least, they are Image zooms by DZOfilm. DZOfilm is a new entrant in the cinema lens space, but it’s already growing in popularity, especially since these lens designs are truly parfocal, which means that when you zoom in and focus, it maintains focus when you zoom out, which is a feature common to the Sigma zooms is missing.
Both have a T2.8 aperture and a creamy look. Some users complain about chromatic fringing in highlights, but keep in mind that this will look different from sensor to sensor as fringing and flare are an interaction between your sensor design and the lens design.
It is always good to test a lens before buying it to see not only its performance in general, but also the performance of the camera of your choice.