In an already crowded camera market, here comes another manufacturer presenting a unique cinema camera for entry level filmmakers. Here’s our exclusive review of the affordable Blaupunkt CR 8010 that features a global shutter sensor.
It is likely that the Blaupunkt CR 8010 is the camera you’ve been waiting for and that it will send the engineers of the competition back to the drawing board. But it is also likely that it is not. At the recommended price point this camera certainly got our attention as it has a few interesting features up its sleeves. We took the Blaupunkt CR 8010 for a spin and tested it in our lab. Here are the results.
Blaupunkt CR 8010 Review
When I first got my hands on the Blaupunkt, I knew this camera had something entirely unique about it. Recently the Blackmagic URSA Mini 4.6K and Sony a7S II have impressed us, but I must admit the ergonomics of the Blaupunkt CR 8010 are unlike anything else we’ve seen in the last years and actually seem to simplify the shooting experience quite impressively. The buttons layout is logical and intuitive and supported me during my review of the camera and the built-in autofocus tv-zoom-lens and directional microphone really made shooting a breeze.
At cinema5D we always put each camera in a real life shooting environment and while filming this documentary piece, it seemed that I could blindly rely on the camera’s performance, which is a feeling I can only call “new.”
Of course, each camera has its downsides, and while the minimalist approach is something to applaud, there are also quite a few features missing. As such the camera lacks some essential manual controls. For example, there is no support for different picture profiles or LUTs. You have to take the image you’re getting.
Regarding image quality we do have some concerns as well. We tested the Blaupunkt CR 8010 in our lab and found that the picture is a little on the soft side, especially when watched on a 4K screen. On that point we received an official statement from one of the CR 8010′ product managers Wolfgang Luts who actually sounded a bit frustrated when we mentioned the camera’s resolution.
“You give customers PAL/NTSC quality; they want HD ready. You give them that, they want Full HD. You manufacture HD, they want 4K, you produce 4K they want 8K. Where is the end, where is the logic?” When asked “what can you do about it?” he answered: “Less is more!”
Another “feature” of the Blaupunkt CR 8010 is its sensor size—it is not a full frame format sensor. When talking to Mr. Luts about large sensors he mentioned: “There is little intelligence in manufacturing large sensors. The assembly of something that large on a large board is very easy, compared to assembling a small sensor on a small board.”
The CR 8010’s sensor might not be a full frame, but in turn, it offers a global shutter readout which puts most current cinema cameras to shame. Just this month we reviewed the new Sony a6300 and in our lab we found the rolling shutter was actually quite severe. Let’s admit it; we’re all tired of rolling shutter. It’s refreshing to see some manufacturers taking the users’ concerns seriously here.
In our cinema5D test lab my colleague Seb could confirm that the Blaupunkt CR 8010 has a global shutter and when tested further the measured dynamic range seems to max out at 7 usable stops. That is not among our best ratings and actually rather on the low side. But on the other hand this rating is almost two stops higher than the Blackmagic Micro Camera 4K and just a little weaker than the AJA Cion.
Here is a list of all the Pros’ and Cons’ of the Blaupunkt CR 8010 in no particular order.
- CCD sensor
- Global shutter
- Great ergonomics
- 4×3 sensor. Great if you are after shooting anamorphic
- Built-in lens and microphone
- Motorized zoom
- Quick Autofocus
- Monochromatic beautiful EVF
- Instant material back up by shooting on a tape
- Limited menu and functions
- Only 7 stops of dynamic range
- Camera is a bit noisy when loading the tape
- Some parts feel plasticky and smell bad
- There was quite a lot of dust on the camera, and we can’t work out why
We hope you enjoyed this exclusive review of the Blaupunkt CR 8010, manufactured in 1987. How far have we come in terms of technical advancements of video cameras in 30 years? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
EDIT: As most of you have realised by now, this was our April Fool’s post for this year :-) … a lot more work than it should have been, but worth the giggle ;-)
Music by Art-List – Music track: Born Twice by Mark Tracy