Blackmagic Video Assist 4K announced, Plus New OS/User Interface for URSA Mini cameras

Some of the major Blackmagic Design announcements at NAB 2016 are the brand new Video Assist 4K recorder and 7-inch monitor, some really exciting new features in their colour grading DaVinci Resolve 12.5 suite, and a new and completely overhauled OS/User Interface for URSA Mini 4K and 4.6K cameras.

BMD Ursa mini OS new NAB 2016

Starting with the new User Interface for the URSA Mini cameras, which Blackmagic Design calls URSA Mini camera OS, it looks like a thing of beauty. The whole look, interface and navigation has been streamlined as to eliminate menu digging and allow users to quickly change camera parameters such as ISO, white balance, shutter angle, iris, frame rate, frame guides and more without ever having to navigate through any menus.

BMD Ursa mini OS new interface

In addition, users can now adjust custom white balance and thanks to a custom and white balance presets, along with tint control settings. The new URSA Mini OS offers more accurate shutter angle selection, including a large easy to use on screen keyboard for easy entry of settings.

And what's even cooler here is that when entering the shutter angle, the new URSA Mini camera OS will even offer smart flicker free shutter angle suggestions to assist the camera operator.

The URSA Mini OS will be available as a free upgrade to URSA Mini owners later this year.


Moving on to the 4K version of the very popular Video Assist monitor/recorder, Blackmagic have upped the screen size to 7-inches and 1920 x 1080 full HD resolution allowing cinematographers to have access to a larger monitoring tool with built in zebras, peaking and histogram.

In addition to being an all-round awesome monitoring tool, the Video Assist 4K can also record camera signals, as the name implies in high quality 10bit 4K UHD ProRes or DNxHD broadcast compliant file formats.

The Video Assist 4K also now features dual mini XLR inputs for professional audio, as well as full size 6G-SDI connectors in addition to HDMI connectivity. The dual slot UHS-II SD card support is fantastic as it allows users to record in high quality 10-bit ProRes for hours on end.


In terms of recording times, in UHD 3840 x 2160 at 24fps users can expect around 38 minutes of the highest quality 10bit ProRes 422HQ or DNxHD onto a 256GB U3 UHS-II SD card, or the more than 1.5 hours on equivalent card if they drop the resolution to Full HD at normal speed.

The Video Assist 4K is available to order now for £645 + VAT. To place your order simply get in touch at 0208 977 1222.

Resolve 12.5 NAB 2016 update

At NAB 2016, Blackmagic Design also announced that their latest public beta for DaVinci Resolve 12.5 is available for download.

The latest version of the popular grading software suite is packed with more than 1,000 enhancements and 250 new features which includes major additions to the editing toolset, new and enhanced colour features, including improved HDR support, and powerful new effects.

“The overwhelming success of DaVinci Resolve 12 has been incredibly exciting. Originally we planned DaVinci Resolve 12.5 to be focused on all the little things that make colorists' and editors' lives more productive, however its turned out that DaVinci Resolve 12.5 has become a major upgrade with a huge number of innovative new features,” said Grant Petty, CEO, Blackmagic Design

Here is a quick summary on just some of the new features in Resolve 12.5. For a full list head over here.

  • New editing and trimming features - including new swap and shuffle edits
  • Seven entirely new trim operations, paste inserts
  • Expanded edit overlay with ripple overwrites and append edits, and much more
  • Improved Timeline performance for faster editing
  • Navigate clips using audio waveforms
  • Metadata can now also be imported or exported via CSV files
  • Media Pool metadata columns can also be customized and saved, colors can be assigned to specific clips, and markers can now be single frame or durational
  • New Power Bins in the Media Pool allow sharing of content between projects, making them perfect for graphics, stock footage and sound effect or music libraries that are used across multiple projects.
  • HDR support with major advances in HDR grading controls
  • nodes can now be set to HDR mode which enables the grading tools in Resolve to work in an extended dynamic range especially designed for HDR deliverables such as Dolby Vision and HDR10
  • ProRes 4444 XQ and DNxHR now support extended dynamic range to serve as an efficient storage alternative to uncompressed 16-bit float files
  • ResolveFX - a powerful new framework for native GPU and CPU accelerated effects.
  • The new update includes ResolveFX plug-ins such as GPU accelerated color space and gamma transformations, along with more traditional effects such as lens blur, light rays, emboss, dent, vortex, mirrors, gaussian and other blurs, glows, ripples, and more.

The public beta of DaVinci Resolve 12.5 and DaVinci Resolve 12.5 Studio are now available for download from the Blackmagic Design website free of charge for all current DaVinci Resolve customers.