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Activity Forums Blackmagic Cameras BMPCC4K Playback + ProRes Files Freezing

  • BMPCC4K Playback + ProRes Files Freezing

    Posted by Bryce Fuller on April 25, 2019 at 8:36 pm

    Hi all,

    Long story short, I’m an aspiring filmmaker working on an indie movie, and I recently got the new Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K to help out with this. Just in testing the camera, I’ve come across some issues I need help addressing:

    1.) Playback on the device is freezing up bad on more than one of the test clips I recorded. I was able to determine that the clips were not corrupted, but just would freeze randomly when watching them back on the device. From what I’ve read, if dropped frames were the issue, the camera should have alerted me of that.

    2.) The test clips I filmed were recorded in ProRes HQ 1920×1080 and are also having a hard time playing back on my editing computer (Windows 10), at times freezing completely both in Quicktime and in Premiere Pro. Premiere specifically gave me a bunch of random error messages. From what I’ve heard, this sounds more like something I’d expect from CinemaDNG (large file size issue), but not ProRes. And I would think Premiere being a professional software, would be able to handle ProRes files better than what I’m seeing, especially since this is just HD resolution.

    These clips were filmed and stored on a new external Samsung Solid State drive, that is compatible with the speed requirements of the BMPCC4K.

    Needless to say, this is pretty much rendering the camera useless at this point if I’m unable to play back or edit these clips.

    I have some film shoots coming soon that I’ll need to use this for, so any help would be greatly appreciated!


    Chris Gomersall replied 1 year, 10 months ago 6 Members · 8 Replies
  • 8 Replies
  • Kalleheikki Kannisto

    April 26, 2019 at 7:27 am

    I often find that I have to use 1/2 res preview on Premiere or — if any effects applied — pre-render the footage for actual real-time preview.

    Alternately — and this is far from an ideal solution — I remember reading that you could edit using mp4 and once done editing replace the footage with ProRes files in one go. Since I have not done that myself, you should test if that is actually workable. Considering the problem will return once you switch back to ProRes, that would really be just to get the beginning part going. And converting takes it own time as well…

    Kalleheikki Kannisto
    Senior Graphic Designer

  • Bryce Fuller

    April 29, 2019 at 12:12 am

    Thanks for the response Kalleheikki!

    I tried 1/2 res previewing in Premiere and I have one clip in particular that still seems to freeze, while others did run smoothly. Still trying to determine whether Premiere is the culprit here or the BMPCC4K had a recording glitch. I did more testing with the camera in different ProRes flavors and for the most part, (minus one exception) I was not able to replicate the error. The error doesn’t seem to happen consistently, and the affected clips still freeze on the camera and my PC.

    I’m just a bit worried about the reliability of the camera at this point.

    I’ll look into your mp4 suggestion to see if that is a viable option for my workflow.

    By the way, do you know by any chance if DaVinci Resolve handles ProRes files better than Premiere at all?


  • Mike Most

    May 2, 2019 at 10:49 pm

    You haven’t said anything about your playback computer. What kind of storage? What kind of video card? If you don’t have a GPU equipped video card you’re going to have problems in Premiere Pro as well as just about any other program. HD Prores files shouldn’t require 1/2 res playback, any modern computer should be able to play them just fine, as long as you have a properly equipped machine. That said, you should check your settings in Premiere and make sure you’ve got the Mercury Engine enabled and working (it won’t be if you don’t have a GPU).

  • Bryce Fuller

    May 5, 2019 at 1:10 am

    Hi Mike! Thanks for the post

    Here’s more equipment specs:

    – My Windows 10 computer has an Intel core i9 9900K, Nvidia RTX 2080Ti, with a 500GB Samsung 970 Evo NVMe SSD, along with additional SSD and hard drive space. I agree with you, I would think there wouldn’t be playback issues with more modern computers, let alone with these more robust specs. Where would I look in Premiere to make sure the Mercury Engine is enabled?

    Also, the Premiere errors I was getting mention ‘Error retrieving frame (random number here)’ at a specific timecode from the file path of the Samsung T5. The affected clips still freeze on the camera playback, as well as on my PC, but not always in the exact same places. Again, not sure what’s the culprit.

    – I’m recording my files from the camera on a 1TB Samsung SSD T5 that is on Blackmagic’s list of recommended drives.

  • Bryce Fuller

    May 5, 2019 at 1:19 am

    Don’t know if this is helpful at all, but during the times that this freezes on the camera playback specifically, it is accompanied by a short but loud volume spike. Oddly, I watched one clip through that was fine, no errors – then scrolled back and played it from the middle – and suddenly some of these freezes and volume spikes happened out of nowhere.

    As it stands now, this hasn’t happened with the majority of my test clips, but I’m concerned with reliability.

  • Vlad Romanovski

    May 6, 2021 at 2:52 pm

    I have had the same problem with my project.
    Filmed QHD ProRes HQ with my BMPCC 4k on a T5, with average temperature of weather, and no longer as 4 minutes per shots.
    Since I had a technical problem with my save file on Premiere Pro CC, I continued my project in Premiere Pro Beta (v15.0) on my flashed Mac Pro 5.1

    The corrupted frame is in my original footage.
    I find it strange that I didn’t notice these multiple corrupted frames (over multiple shots) earlier since I’ve scanned the footage over and over many times.

    I had to make a still frame sequence per glitch on the timeline and mask-out the glitch in order to fix it.

    Maybe this is my GPU hard baking a glitch onto my original footage?

    My setup:
    Editing via usb-C from my Seagate 8TB HDD
    GPU: Geforce GTX 680 – 2 GB
    OS: Mojave 10.14.6

  • Justin Goudreau

    May 21, 2021 at 2:23 pm

    Out of curiosity can you transcode the glitchy file in media encoder to see if the file is salvageable? Should this happen again you would at least know the file can be saved. Just try transcoding it to another flavor of prores.

    The issue sounds like a camera or drive problem at the time of recording.

  • Chris Gomersall

    August 30, 2022 at 6:04 pm

    How are the SSDs connected to the computer?

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