1080i HD-SDI camera with telephoto or macro lens


There’s a good chance that this topic will be merged with some other thread, but I’m going to try anyway.

Looking for a video camera appropriate for capturing a highly detailed image less than 10cm wide. Must have HD-SDI connectivity. Genlock desirable, but not absolutely required. CCU would be great, but again, not required. Basically anything with a telephoto or macro lens is a good place to start.

I spent the morning scouring the Internet. Assumed that since broadcast facilities in the USA are upgrading to 4K, there would be a flood of used HD gear available. Didn’t really come up with anything. The studio rigs with CCUs I found are still in the tens of thousands of dollars.

Regarding camcorders, I really don’t know where to start. There are just too many models out there. Hoping someone here can at least point me in the direction of general makes and model ranges.



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I think the Blackmagic Micro Studio and/or Micro Cinema, with the right lens, would meet your criteria. If you only need HD and not 4K you can use one of the cheaper older models.


Thank you @Dewb … I am bewildered once again by the Internet. I can’t seem to find a 2K/HD model for the Micro Studio. It may exist but I can’t get any search engine to find it. Even if I tell the engine to exclude -4K – the only results I get are for the 4K model. And apparently that has been discontinued.

Definitely want the Micro Studio, not the Micro Cinema. Don’t want to deal with HDMI. One of the use cases for this camera is latency-free feedback. I have an Aja HD-SDI → YUV converter that I think will do this job well in combination with one of the upcoming Syntonie YUV decoders. Worried that there are no good options for HDMI → YUV conversion. (The BMD ones are 4:2:2 chroma subsampling, fie on that.) Also my switcher has way more HD-SDI inputs than DVI/HDMI.

So does anyone know, does a BMD Micro Studio 2K / HD model exist? If so, does it have a model number? The BMD website is completely useless, I am not able to find anything due to excessive noise. So many hits for 4K and later models, so many “latest” this and “new” that. I have to manually scroll through a long list of irrelevancies and maybe stumble over something, or not.

Extremely frustrating. Same deal everywhere, on every site or search engine, I’m only getting hits for 4K models.

Ugh. Finally found a manual for the Micro Studio 4K, and it’s 4:2:2. Not going to work for me. Anyone who has ever tried to cut a chroma key on chroma subsampled video will know that it’s complete garbage.

I guess if I could find something to convert 3G-SDI to 1080i YUV it would be OK? The subsampling issue would be negated in the downsampling from UHD to 1080

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My switcher is only HD-SDI, which I just found out doesn’t even support 4:4:4. Bogus. Downsampling from 4K to 1080i YUV is starting to sound like the only option to preserve all the bits.