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Gear HELP!

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adam chesbrough
Gear HELP!
on Jan 25, 2010 at 3:01:23 am

I am going to be shooting with a DSLR and editing in final cut, all projects are going to be for the net...I purchased a Canon 5D Mark ii to try it out. Is the Mark ii overkill. It was recently recommended that I should get the Lumix and spend money on lens (50MM for low light). Here are my questions:

1. what is responsible for low light video performance, the camera/lens or both? What are recommendations for the best low light lens for DSLR video(can't drop money on f/1.0 leica or canon lens ($6K)

2. why Canon 5D or 7D over Panasonic lumix?

3. should I even be shooting in HD if everything is for the new macbook pro (2.53GM, 4GB RAM, 5400 harddrive...I know this is a major problem) can't handle the 1080p .mov (H264) footage (I use effects and multiple layers with various composites and opacities.

4. Should I shoot in HD and then shrink the footage prior to editing. Are there third party external decks or software that people have used that will make this process much easier?

5. I am about to pull the trigger on a new imac quad core, i7 with 12 gb's RAM...will this allow me to edit without having to render every time I enter an effect? Should I hold off until the mac pro's come out (will a pimped out mac pro finally give me the freedom to do what I want without having to render all the time?)

I really appreciate any and all help.

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Richard Harrington
Re: Gear HELP!
on Jan 26, 2010 at 7:05:54 pm

short answer

1. Lowlight is sensor size (full is better) and speed of lens (low number better)

2. Flexibility, support, broader options, being a "cool kid"

3. Of course HD... for way too many reasons to list. TRANSCODE your footage if using an edit app that requires it. At this time, H.264 files are NOT an editing codec.

4. No... do not shrink... TRANSCODE. search posts for this and look for specific workflows for your editing app.

5. They are very different machines at very different price points. iMac is a grat value and I use it all the time as home machine... MacPro kicks its ass if you can pimp it out... but will cost twice as much to do so,

Richard M. Harrington, PMP

Author: Video Made on a Mac, Photoshop for Video, Understanding Adobe Photoshop, Final Cut Studio On the Spot and ATS:iWork

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Hunter Mossman
Re: Gear HELP!
on Jan 26, 2010 at 10:44:20 pm

I don't think the 5D Mark II is overkill at all. Probably just right for what your doing.

1. If low light shooting is a must. Then fastest lens you can afford is the one to go with simple and plain. I think you'll be pretty happy with the acceptable ISO range of the 5D.

2. The 5D uses a full 35mm frame sensor allowing for the full Field of View of the lens's available. The 7D uses a cropped sensor therefore a 14mm lens on the 5D is really more like a 18mm on the 7D.

3. Defiantly shoot HD. Too many reasons to list. Convert everything you shoot to apple Prores before you edit. I don't think our computer is as much of an issue as the codec. I'm hoping Cannon will change that codec in the near future giving us less compression to work with.

4. Don't shrink. Again size is not the issue. It's the H264 codec. Convert to apple Prores before you edit.

5. Go with what you can afford. An I-mac will do the job. But a mac bookpro will do the job faster and with less issues.

Hunter Mossman
Director of Photography

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