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5D Mark III or Blackmagic Cinema Camera?


Andrew Reid
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With both cameras around the $3000 with a Canon lens mount, and the DSLR being such a popular choice for video, I thought I'd examine the reasons for buying one or the other. Which should you choose?

http://www.eoshd.com/content/8841/5d-mark-iii-or-blackmagic-cinema-camera
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No shit sherlock! But I'm EOS *HD* in case you haven't noticed that yet in all your negative commenting.




I'm aware you are on EOSHD but shouldnt you be promoting Canon EOS rather than slating it in all your negative comments?

The 5DIII costing £2.5k is largely for its ability to take stills. For argument sake if 90% time people buy it for stills that leaves only 10% of the time people bought it for video purpose and that is around £250 most people would have spent for its video ability. Only a few people daft enough to spend £2.5k for a stills camera exclusively to shoot video. The VG100 is primarily a video camera so it better be good but I doubt it will be in the same ball park as BMC. This is what I'm saying!
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While I appreciate the content Andrew, this comparison doesn't address a lot of the questions I have about the BMC.

For all of its faults, my Mark III is predictable, easy to work with (especially compared to my hacked GH2 with some of the more space and SD card intense Driftwood patches) and I know how to make it sing. My clients still 'ooh' and 'ahh' as much as they ever did when they see my footage.

Here's what I still want to know:

What does a raw workflow really entail on a project by project basis? I can guess that I'm definitely going to need to increase the amount of media storage space.

Does raw necessitate that I edit from an SSD to get any kind of usable speed? What about Resolve and rendering speeds associated with that? Am I going to have to upgrade my systems to handle it? I'll bear the burden for my shorts and music videos but is it worth working a corporate video in raw?

I know the answer to those questions should be the ability to shoot in Pro Res and DNxHD but how does that performance compare to a MK3 or FS100?

What about audio? Are the preamps quiet enough to work on their own or do they need a juicedlink beachtek type solution like MK3?

Lastly - as amazing and exciting as a solution like the BMC is, I can't help but feel like this is only the beginning of the affordable raw revolution. I'm excited for the technology and what its going to do to our footage but does it make sense from a business standpoint to wait and see how the early adopters fare?

And as fast as things are changing, will we see a sub-$5000 camera feature not only raw but maybe built-in ND and high speed capabilities in the next year?

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I find it interesting that a ton of people have received their BMC cameras and have yet to upload any sample footage. Editing RAW video isn't exactly a simple process and I couldn't imagine editing 3 or more RAW video layers in a single project that required a quick turnaround.

The frame grab from Sebastian looks pretty amazing and am looking forward to seeing what he has shot.

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I'm aware you are on EOSHD but shouldnt you be promoting Canon EOS rather than slating it in all your negative comments?



I am in their marketing team now?

I don't promote, I write about what I use as a filmmaker. When Canon do something good, I will be singing their praises until the cows come home.
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I find it interesting that a ton of people have received their BMC cameras and have yet to upload any sample footage. Editing RAW video isn't exactly a simple process and I couldn't imagine editing 3 or more RAW video layers in a single project that required a quick turnaround.



The frame grab from Sebastian looks pretty amazing and am looking forward to seeing what he has shot.




It is as simple as you want it to be. Flick the ProRes switch in-camera for a fast turn around.
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I am in their marketing team now?



I don't promote, I write about what I use as a filmmaker. When Canon do something good, I will be singing their praises until the cows come home.




Canon do produce very good if not the best FF video dSLR but just that it is out of your price range.
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For all of its faults, my Mark III is predictable, easy to work with (especially compared to my hacked GH2 with some of the more space and SD card intense Driftwood patches) and I know how to make it sing. My clients still 'ooh' and 'ahh' as much as they ever did when they see my footage.



It depends what you are used to shooting with. All the DSLRs are predictable once you learn to predict the outcome.


Here's what I still want to know:



What does a raw workflow really entail on a project by project basis? I can guess that I'm definitely going to need to increase the amount of media storage space.




You sure will if you want to keep old projects in raw format, archived away for years to come. I've looked at drive space and you can get a 6TB (6000GB) block for around £350.

30 minutes of raw footage takes up around 250GB.

You can convert it to high bitrate H.264 once basic grading is done, and make more minor changes to the archived project / re-edit the timeline, just as you would with AVCHD. I won't be storing all my projects in raw, only the most important or stuff with a lot of artistic merit

Does raw necessitate that I edit from an SSD to get any kind of usable speed? What about Resolve and rendering speeds associated with that? Am I going to have to upgrade my systems to handle it? I'll bear the burden for my shorts and music videos but is it worth working a corporate video in raw?



You don't have to edit the raw files directly. You can do it by proxy. Or simply transcode, or use the ProRes workflow for a faster turn-around for a corporate video and 1080p delivery.

On personal projects I'll be using raw. When I just want to slam an image out there I'll be using ProRes.

You have the choice.

I know the answer to those questions should be the ability to shoot in Pro Res and DNxHD but how does that performance compare to a MK3 or FS100? What about audio? Are the preamps quiet enough to work on their own or do they need a juicedlink beachtek type solution like MK3?



Likely far better. I haven't seen this from the camera yet though apart from via Vimeo from John.

Ditto on the audio, unlikely to be a problem but cannot say for sure yet.
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I think the 5D mk3 makes much more sense for an aspiring pro. It gives you the opportunity to makes cash as photographer in between shoots, and is plenty good for most low budget comercial video work.

On the otherhand, the BMC seems to be the superior tool for making video art.

So if was going into film school, i'd take the BMC. If was graduating from school, and was still looking for a way to feed myself as an artist, i'd take the 5D3.

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I disagree. Surprise.

Look at the day rate of a Red shooter, raw moves you the ladder in the eyes of a client. I know a lot of clients who are keen to avoid the DSLR kid look now having been stung before by a cack handed shooter clutching a Canon 7D.

Making cash as a photographer is a completely separate issue to making a living as a videographer.

If you cock up a shot with the 5D Mark III on a job you can't save it later. What if your white balance is off, or your exposure, or one shot doesn't match the other when you cut them together? Maybe you come back to do a re-shoot the next day and your exposure is different, then it doesn't match on the timeline - with a raw codec that isn't an issue. Far more safe.

Then there's the focus issues you get with a large sensor and clients really are getting tired of having their subject coming in and out of focus. On a smaller sensor again you have that extra safe margin.

The Sony full frame E-mount camcorder will be the final nail in the coffin for the 5D line in pro video world. There are numerous reasons why, but we'll have to wait till September to find out if it has any major drawbacks that could stifle its potential.

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Maybe you know more than me at this point, but don't you think you should at least wait for BM camera tests?

Sony could still fuck things up too.

And please Andrew, change the name of your website so these trolls can stfu about the name of your site. I swear simco must be that guy on nofilmschool crying bout EOSHD.

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If you client cares about raw, then they probably arn't looking to hire someone who is just starting out. They'd probably be more scared if you tell them you are using a Black Magic Camera (they''ll think you are into Vodoo). :D

I'm talking return on investment. For all the advantages raw offers in post, it also comes at the cost of workflow drag. Plus, being able to do stills really broadens your market.

All that being said, if all I cared about was doing video, and getting work wasn't a problem, I'd get a BMC.

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If you client cares about raw, then they probably arn't looking to hire someone who is just starting out. They'd probably be more scared if you tell them you are using a Black Magic Camera (they''ll think you are into Vodoo). :D



I'm talking return on investment. For all the advantages raw offers in post, it also comes at the cost of workflow drag. Plus, being able to do stills really broadens your market.



All that being said, if all I cared about was doing video, and getting work wasn't a problem, I'd get a BMC.




Or they are looking for a DP with a RED camera. I know guys right now who won't touch the GH2, because they also do a lot of still work with their video. Some don't touch full frame for that matter, because they don't feel they really need it either.
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