Advice on DSLR/Camcorder combo?
I’m looking to make a new camera purchase (or two) and I’m hoping some of the folks on the forum can help me. I haven’t owned my own cameras (not professional ones anyway) for years, having either worked on projects with supplied gear or doing post.
My plan is to focus primarily on shooting commercials, music videos, training videos, etc (as well as narrative whenever I can) where I think a good DSLR would be the way to go, but – especially at first – I think I’ll also have to pick up some work doing events, weddings, concerts that would ideally require a video camera. My current plan is to buy both – I have a very limited budget, but also don’t want to skimp on the quality I’ll need to turn in professional work. Here are my thoughts:
DSLR: The two contenders for me were the 5DMarkIII and the GH2 (especially hacked). As much as I’m intrigued by the GH2 (and the MUCH lower price) I also need the ability to shoot very good stills (I occasionally shoot headshots, models, etc.) and the 5D seems like the clear winner in that department as well as having excellent video, so I’m thinking I’ll have to splurge for the 5D (even though it’s way more than I was hoping to spend) and some good glass. Does that sound right?
VIDEO CAM: As far as the video camera goes, I’m more uncertain. I’m thinking of either going with something that takes multiple lenses like the FS100 or AF100, but since I’ll have a DSLR, maybe something simpler like a used XHA1, EX1 or maybe an XF100? I used one of those on a shoot recently and it seemed like a decent camera.
Can anyone offer any advice to help me narrow down my selection?
We have been very happy with the combination of the Sony fs100 and the Nikon D800. I wouldn't suggest the EX1, nice camera (we have one) but it's old tech and the picture quality just isn't on the same level. Check out the D800, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.
"There's no point in filming if you don't have fun"
Incubate Productions South Africa
Hi Luke - Unless you absolutely need the full frame "look", I would save some money and get the Panasonic GH3 for stills (much better still camera than the GH2 - I own both) - it is also a more usable video camera than the 5D Mark III, D800, or the 70D (due to its combination of essentially unlimited clip length, articulated LCD, moire resistance and multiple bit rate & codec options). This camera is on sale at Amazon right now for $998 body only.
Here is the still image quality from the GH3: http://www.flickr.com/groups/2042242@N25/pool/
For video, I would get a Sony NEX-EA50 shoulder mounted, large sensor still/video camcorder with XLR inputs and 16MP stills. This camera is on sale at Adorama right now for $2949 (after manufacturer's $600 rebate).
Here is a wedding shot with the GH3 and the EA50:
Here is a still taken with this camcorder: http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/attachments/sony-nex-ea50-all-variants/28988d13...
With this combination, you will have maximum flexibility. Either camera can sit in the back of the church and record for hours at weddings (something neither the 5D Mark III, 70D nor D800 can do) - and either camera can take high resolution stills (something neither the AF100 nor the FS100 can do).
With adapters, you can use the same lenses on both cameras. And you won't have to buy a rig for your camcorder, because it's already a shoulder mount.
Hope this is helpful and good luck with your decision!
Hybrid Camera Revolution
5d3 is great but it may be overpriced if your goal is using the video functions more like music videos, commercials, etc. you can also consider the new canon 70d as it's video capability is really great, compared to 5d3 though it will have a bit more moire issue yet the camera does well on low light as well. Video af is great. So your subject is always in focus.
A dslr is good for short run recordings (since it stops on 30mins) so a camcorder is good for event recordings and such. If price is an up issue, you can consider also the hvx200, a used one is about $900 now.
I agree with the other fellow members on camera choices. Consider that: For any camera you have you need to get a decent tripod, shoulder mount, monitoring solution and, in DSLRs you need lenses. I'd advice to go to a cheaper body (used 7d, 70d, 60d, GH3, etc.) and spend the extra money in accessories and lenses.
Later you can always sell your old body to get a new one and keep the rest of your gear. Remember that if you start with, let's say a nikon DSLR you might stay very long with this platform since your lenses and accessories will match this brand.
On Video cameras, remember that FS-100, AF-100, C100, etc, are actually digital cinema cameras, they don't have the servo/autofocus ability, ENG lens, etc. of a real video camera. They are enhanced DSLR sensors for video. For event videography it can be better to have a real video camera if you'll do a lot of concerts, ceremonies, theater, etc.
For example a 60d and a XF-100 are very easy to match in post.