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Thomas Morter-Laing
DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 12:53:29 am

Hi All, so I've searched and also posted this in the Canon section of the Cow, but thought I should get some editors perspectives as well (about FPS etc especially- although general advice is seeked!).
So I'm thinking about getting a 500D (for budget reasons I can't get a 5D)- my budget is about £400 ($630ish). But what the HECK is 20FPS all about? How would I work with this on a 25FPS timeline and would it be a big problem? Also, 20FPS seems low, especially as film is 24FPS.... I watched some youtube examples and they SEEMED ok, but Im skeptical- is it worth getting this camera? I also have Sony Z5 as it happens, but want this one for when Im doing static shots or need a shallow DOF/ a more cinematic look- and for low light shooting I believe it's bigger sensor renders it better?
Also it's very difficult actually getting proper specs for this in terms of data rate etc- how compressed is this video shooting?

Also, Im not keen on the fact I have to rely on auto exposure- I know you only pay for what you get, but can people offer suggestions/ alternatives?

So my questions summed up are,
Best camera for- budget/ nonauto exposure?
Is 20FPS going to cause problems with anything anywhere?
How does working with 20FPS footage work in regards to my 25P Z5 footage in the same timeline?

Cheers!
Tom

:D
Tom Morter-Laing
Certified Apple Product Proffessional, 2010
Degree; TV Production

iMac 27" intel i7 2.93GHz, 12GB RAM, ATI HD5750 [1GB GDDR5], 2TB Int. SATA with 2TB External HDD; (FW800).



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Gary Askham
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 1:19:35 am

If your budget really can't be stretched then I would recommend the Lumix G2 from Panasonic. 20fps is not a usable video format.

But really - you get what you pay for. You're not going to get Canon 5DMkII-like images from a camera that costs a fraction of the price. And you must remember that the 5D costs the fraction of the price of pro gear.

------------------------
FCP and Avid Technical Support
Air Post Production
Shoreditch - London


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Michael Gissing
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 1:29:34 am

The 500D is useful for timelapse. A friend has shot some good timelapse with this camera but it isn't as light sensitive as the 5D or 1D.

20fps is hopeless if you want to integrate into any real frame rates. The 7D is really the entry level for DSLR video. I would wait and save or look for a second hand 7D


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Thomas Morter-Laing
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 2:55:47 am

The Lumix G2 only has 720p though, no 1080, which may be noticeable alongside my 1080p Z5 footage- I'm having a look and you guys are (as usual) annoyingly correct- they're a little crud at this price range. Even an extra $120 makes quite a difference. So am now looking at a 550d instead, or a Panasonic Lumix GH1, Lumix DMC-FZ100 (not an SLR but specs seem surprisingly good?) or a Nikon D3100. What dya think? They all support at LEAST 24FPS. I think they're all H.264 AVCHD, but MPEG streamclip is a close friend now....
Incidentally, I'm not worried about sound, because my other camera would always be the recording device (if that effects anything).

What dya think?

:D
Tom Morter-Laing
Certified Apple Product Proffessional, 2010
Degree; TV Production

iMac 27" intel i7 2.93GHz, 12GB RAM, ATI HD5750 [1GB GDDR5], 2TB Int. SATA with 2TB External HDD; (FW800).



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Alf Hanna
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 2:58:13 am

I would recommend saving your money up for a 550d(t2i). You'll likely end up doing that anyway. It has the framerates you need to be professional, and having used one for six months, it is a great camera. I just upgraded to a 7d. Almost as good picture quality as a 5D, for a fraction of the price, yet all the manual controls you need to turn out professional looking stuff.

I've not been impressed, nor have clients of mine, with the bokeh on the 5D. I've had clients say it's too 'squishy', muddy, etc. The 7d & 550 seems to do more of a photographic bokeh. But don't tell the 5d users that (G)

Alf


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John Christie
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 3:08:19 am

I agree with Alf, the T2i is the place to start. Identical video quality to the 7D and 60D, but not as solidly built and not as good of a still camera as the other cameras. I've worked with all three and own a 60D and a 7D.

Cheers

John Christie


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Bret Williams
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 2:38:14 pm

Specs for the rebel T2i are same for video as the 7d actually. And it's about $700. Not a shabby still camera either. Spend another $400 and get the 60d which is mire focused on video with it's tilt out screen. I think 60d is the best bang for the buck. Pro controls, same video, some newer tech even.


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Gary Askham
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 3:08:44 am

I guess it all depends what you are going to use it for.

I've successfully used a Nikon D90 (the first and worst of the DSLR cameras) for filming promo stuff that has gone up on YouTube which has now been viewed by thousands of people. That was shooting 30fps and I even matched it with DVCPro HD material shot at 25fps (not that I'm recommending repeating that).

But there is no way I'd even think about using it for broadcast work.

------------------------
FCP and Avid Technical Support
Air Post Production
Shoreditch - London


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Thomas Morter-Laing
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 3:12:50 am

Yes I did consider a D90- but my colleague has one, and whilst he is capable of getting good results, there is some kind of odd 'banding' which happens under certain lights. I also don't think there's any manual exposure control-or is there?
Cool, looks like the extra £200 for a 550D is worth it then, thanks guys you've been really helpful and deterred me from making what could have been dumb decision. If anyone else has any good suggestions, please let me know...

:D
Tom Morter-Laing
Certified Apple Product Proffessional, 2010
Degree; TV Production

iMac 27" intel i7 2.93GHz, 12GB RAM, ATI HD5750 [1GB GDDR5], 2TB Int. SATA with 2TB External HDD; (FW800).



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Michael Sacci
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 3:57:34 am

The 500 is not the camera to get, it is throwing money away if you want to do video get the 550. You will have to add pull down to get it up to 24fps. At least get the 550 that does all the video frame rates. 30 or 24p in 1080 or 60 in 720.

The 60D is even better but that is big jump and you are getting feature differences and not that much quality difference.


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Phil Balsdon
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 8:21:00 am

If your budget is really tight consider any purchase of an HDSLR very carefully.

The reality is HDSLRs require a lot extra bits to make them work efficiently for video.
Viewfinder and or LCD monitor.
More lenses, at best you're only going to get a 3 X zoom. You'll also need better more expensive lenses, the whole point of these cameras is the low depth of field, the cheaper zooms are often only f4 - 5.6 which defeats the purpose really. With the faster lenses you'll then probably need some ND filters to get a large f stop in bright light.

If you want to record quality audio you're talking a few more costly bits.

They're not really cheap kit once made useable, their popularity solely is due too the low depth of field they yield. I love my 7D but I could have bought Sony EX3 or similar for the same funds I've invested in it. That said the producers and directors I work with love the results, actually "result" singular a picture with low depth of field.

Cinematographer, Steadicam Operator, Final Cut Pro Post Production.
http://www.steadi-onfilms.com.au/


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Jason Porthouse
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 17, 2010 at 10:15:31 am

I'll second Phil's sentiments here. DON'T get the 500, wait till you can afford the 550, or look for a secondhand one - avforums is a good place to look in the UK. They do come up occasionally...

But think long and hard about what you want to achieve out of it - if you're thinking 'second camera' I'd think again, as DSLR shooting is a very different discipline. As Phil mentioned, you'll need to really budget for a Zacuto finder, some kind of mount, and a few lenses to turn it into a rig that is suitable for anything other than very controlled shooting. Sound requires at very least a Beachtek adaptor, or seperate recording device. You will also need to be sure you have a foolproof method for ingesting and backing up media in the field - or lots and lots of SD cards.

I'm not saying don't - just do your homework before you commit yourself. DSLRs are not the magic bullet route to instant film-like quality.

Jason

_________________________________

Before you criticise a man, walk a mile in his shoes.
Then when you do criticise him, you'll be a mile away. And have his shoes.

*the artist formally known as Jaymags*


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Bret Williams
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 18, 2010 at 6:16:41 am

I'll tell ya why I want one...
I currently have a Canon Rebel XT. Great camera 3 years ago and still takes amazing 8mp pics. But with 2 kids now I'd love to be taking HD videos of them. And being an editor, it sure doesn't hurt to have a quality HD camera around to shoot a pickup shot. I already have a lens I'm happy with on the XT (sigma 70-200) and it would port to the T2i (550) no problem.

I have a general dislike for zooming shots, so a DSLR's lack of good live zoom is fine with me. It's leaps ahead of shooting video on my iPhone and Sony snapshot camera. Sure, we have a couple old DV camcorders laying around, but I think my iPhone shoots better images and it fits in my pocket.


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Matt Surf
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 18, 2010 at 4:39:17 pm

Hi Thomas,

I also have the Z5e and recently invested in a 550d because I wanted to start experimenting with the reality of using DSLRs instead of my normal video camera on corporate jobs.

I would say go for the 550d as it is a great camera in terms of quality and is a real good in-road into DSLR shooting. I have been toying with the idea of selling the Z5e and using the proceeds to fully deck myself out in a DSLR setup but I think l will miss the run and gun approach and end up kicking myself. As others above say, when you consider the extras you have to get (decent lenses are around £500 each for a start) it really doesn't seem to make financial sense.

In my opinion it isn't going to be too much longer before either the DLSRs get all the extra capabilities of existing video cameras or video cameras are going to get the DoF appeal of the DSLRs (this is already starting to emerge with the new Panasonic offering). Therefore, I'm going to keep my Z5E, continue to experiment and improve with the 550d and then maybe sell both of them and buy the next generation leap of camera capable of that I mentioned above that I reckon will be out in 18 months or so.

Hope that garbled message actually helps a little??

Matt


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Thomas Morter-Laing
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 18, 2010 at 10:11:27 pm

Matt, thank you, that was both informative and a little encouraging as well, which is always nice (not like when I went onto another "shall not be named forum" about my Z5 and everyone was like "WAH WAH WAH ITS CRAP COS ITS HDV" I was like... "thanks guys....for the friendly advice...." haha). And thanks to everyone else so far as well, of course.
Anyway, what do we think about the Lumix GH1 in comparison? Does the 550D still come out on top for Video purposes?
Also (this has been asked somewhere else as well)- whats the bitrate of the 550d? Is it about 50Mbps like the 5D?

:D
Tom Morter-Laing
Certified Apple Product Proffessional, 2010
Degree; TV Production

iMac 27" intel i7 2.93GHz, 12GB RAM, ATI HD5750 [1GB GDDR5], 2TB Int. SATA with 2TB External HDD; (FW800).



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Matt Surf
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 19, 2010 at 8:52:59 pm

Hi Tom,

I think the 550d is 48Mbps, great in terms of quality. Personally, I'm not sure on the Panasonic Lumix but can certainly vouch for the 550d.

I have shot a few films with it with the intent of putting them online but just haven't found time to do it yet!

Thanks for your comments, in terms of a return favour how are you getting on with your Imac 27" and I7 processor. I just bought one (waiting for it to ship) with same processor, but 8GB RAM and want to run FCP, Adobe After Effects, Photoshop, Colour etc on it.

How do you find working with it?

Matt


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Thomas Morter-Laing
Re: DSLR Questions...
on Nov 19, 2010 at 11:27:43 pm

Firstly I just realised- hi Jason, I didn't know you were on here! I'm the guy who phoned from that production company that time... Haha (don't wanna be specific cos I'm not sure what the rules and etiquette suggest )!
Hi Matt- I just got back from editing a TV Documentary on a slightly older albeit 8 core mac pro with hyper threading with 16GB of RAM and honestly don't notice much difference between that and my current iMac config. I mean, I wasn't timing or anything, but I remember when I had the old 2.93ghz 24" iMac I really noticed a huge difference, which is hopefully an encouraging sign for you- you should love it! I obviously use FCP with a few olivine, and frequently render out stuff from HD acquisitions such as the EX series, and it runs like a dream- obviously top spec HD is a little tougher, but prores everything and it's all as cool as the new old spice adverts.

:D
Tom Morter-Laing
Freelance Editor
Certified Apple Product Proffessional, 2010
http://www.depictproductions.co.uk

Sony Z5, with Rode NTG2.
iMac 27" intel i7 2.93GHz, 12GB RAM, ATI HD5750 [1GB GDDR5], 2TB Int. SATA with 2TB External HDD; (FW800), with Elgato Turbo H264HD.





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