NAB 2012: Blackmagic Design pulled off one of the surprise product launches in Las Vegas when it unveiled its first ever camera.

The 2.5K device (pictured), with 13 stops which was announced on 16 April, supports the capture of 1080 HD resolution at up to 30fps and is compatible with Canon EF and Zeiss ZF mount lenses.

Blackmagic chief executive Grant Petty said there was a gap in the market as current digital cameras were “too heavy, way too expensive and need costly accessoriesto work”.

He said that while other cameras’ focus on a greater pixel count created a higher resolution, they were still affected by a limited contrast range that can result in a “video look”.

Blackmagic said its camera, which is priced at $2,995 (£1,883), could be used to shoot episodic television as well as high-end commercials and feature films.

“There are three ways people relate to cameras: creatively; in a studio; and in more rugged situations. It’s possible to change the personality of our camera according to its use,” added Petty.

A built-in SSD recorder captures CinemaDNG RAW, Pro Res and DNxHD files.

It also has a touch screen for adding metadata. A microphone and speaker are built in to the camera, which has external jack-based audio connections and a headphone socket, as well as embedded audio on the SDI output and Thunderbolt connection.

The SDI output includes timecode, transport control, shutter angle, colour temperature setting and ASA information.

A copy of grading software DaVinci Resolve 9.0 is also included with the camera, which will be available in July.