Hot! (bad pun) Blackmagic Cinema Camera ingnites during shoot!

by planetMitch12 Comments

We found this last night and wanted to post immediately but we also wanted to check some facts first…

Forest Gibson reported just the other day that his 6 month old Blackmagic Cinema Camera started smoking during a shoot in his apartment and provided the short film seen below.

While Forest later tweeted that he thought it might be the battery, I contacted Switronix, maker of the battery used in this shoot, and they just told me:

We actually spoke to this client and our battery is in perfect working condition. Black Magic is looking into their camera to see if it was an internal short.

Forest also tweeted that the battery (tho he yanked it out immediately) was cool to the touch:

Black Magic Camera Battery Exploded (Aftermath)


I've been trolling the ‘net and haven't found any other reports of this happening to Blackmagic Cinema Camera cameras so I certainly don't think it is a major issue with the camera.

So we certainly don't want to set up any kind of panic – thousands of people are using their Blackmagic Cinema Cameras without incident. But it is also good to know BlackMagic is looking into this situation quickly!

Cheers to them for the quick action. [source: cinescopophilia]

(cover photo credit: snap from the video)


  1. My Black magic cinema camera burned up on a shoot this past august. Was not told that others had burned up it also fried my SDI converter and a monitor. It was fixed and nothing more was said from black Magic.

    1. That now makes four of us. Mine erupted into flames and thick gray smoke. Total loss. I had just turned it on and 30 sec. later the flames and smoke started pouring out of it. I had a Lanparte battery pinch with a Anton Bauer battery on it. Neither were damaged. There is absolutely no warning that this may occur. This was not an overheating situation. I tested all batteries and the pinch with a multimeter and sent the video to BMD. Although BMD would not talk to me directly about the problem it appears that it was some kind of internal short circuit. They are replacing the camera, the SSD and some burned cables. They have been great about that but I was disappointed that would not give me any info on the problem or any potential risks. There are certain situations where I would not use this camera because of this fire risk. I might perhaps feel better with a pocket camera with the batter removed and use a AB NiCD. I think BMD realizes there is huge product liability risk as well as a possible product recall. You also have to think that it is just one of those random QC problems that can raise its ugly head occasionally. I wouldn’t want to be in BMD’s shoes with this. I like their products and I have some empathy for them. Unfortunately since we now know of 4 cases I believe they are obliged to report this to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

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  4. That’s not good. It sounds like others are dealing with said problem as well. I was really interested in the Blackmagic camera, but after hearing about this and a few others experiencing the same problem, I think I’m going to wait until they address this problem and make sure it doesn’t happen again.

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  6. I know a fellow film maker who dealt with an overheating problem, but he never got it checked out. It works find for him now, it was just weird at the time. My suggestion, make sure to keep checking if it’s hot or not, if it is, it’s probably time to turn it off for a while.

  7. I can honestly say I have had no problems with my blackmagic cinema camera. I didn’t see much on it anywhere either, just here and a small amount of others on the web. I’m glad it’s not every camera or a lot, because that would not only hurt the ones who own them, but it’d hurt blackmagic big time.

    I hope everything works out for everyone who had problems.

  8. I will admit that this is kind of bad news, but I will also say I’ve never had a single problem with my blackmagic camera, and I use the thing a lot, I mean I have it on a long time whenever I use it. I figure it’s just a select few that’re having this problem. If I do encounter it, I know who to contact first.

  9. Yeah I doubt this is going to occur for everyone. It’s probably some wiring problems or something isn’t built right. If anything does happen to your blackmagic cameras, please inform blackmagic about it as soon as possible.

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