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shoottheshot

2-3K Camera Body - Sony A7S II?

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Hey there - I just wanted to get any perspective on a camera purchase.   I've been shooting with my trusty T3i w/ Magic Lantern and Nikon AIS lenses for years.  Knowing its limitation, the images are still great coming out of the camera.  But at long last, I need to move to 4K.  I do a lot of doc shooting and the ability to punch in for post is a must.  Plus a little help in the lowlight dept would be nice.   So I'm looking to spend roughly 2-3 grand on a camera body that shoots 4K.   The only caveats are that it cannot overheat and very minimal moire, "jelly effect".   Any thoughts?

It seems that the Sony A7S II is the best on the market in that range?    I've considered GH4 but I used it on one project and it just felt less cinematic in vibe, Samsung NX1 but this is discontinued which brings a little concern and also Blackmagic Ursa Mini.  Any other options I'm missing?   Been hoping for a 5D Mark IV w/ 4K announcement.   Anyhow, would love to hear any thoughts... thanks!

 

 

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

I love my NX1, and you can get it and a 16-50s f2-2.8 + 50-150 2.8 lenses for under 3 grand total if you hunt for them.  But low light is not the best, but may work well enough for you in documentary situations. RS is not good either. These may be deal breakers for you. The battery life is far, far superior to the Sony E line.

A7R 2 if you can afford it is a great option. (https://www.cinema5d.com/sony-a7s-ii-vs-a7r-ii-test-which-one/) Good 4K and the best 4K RS performance for it's price if you use the full frame mode. RS on the a7s 2 is just as bad as the NX1.

You can still rent these from Lensrentals and give them a shot. I recommend renting a Sony camera and the NX1 with adapters for your Nikon glass and seeing which one you prefer. Spend $200 to make sure your spend $2000+ properly.

 

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Thanks for that link.  I was under the impression A7s II was better.  But agreed, you can't beat trying one out so renting is a good idea.   There is something about the NX1 that still seems like a solid option.  I know its discontinued but many people seemed to like it.   Plus at that price point, if say a Canon Mark IV was around the corner I'd feel ok about about a shorter term investment.  

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I never used the a7sii but I am considering it since I've had good experiences with the a7s (aside from the blue channel clipping which is terrible). The nx1 for sure is nuts in good lighting. Ridiculous at base iso but when you hit 1600 and up the a7s performs better. Much cleaner. The nx1 at default settings with just -10 sharpness looks good straight out the camera, something most people cant say about the sony line of cameras. Definitely something to consider...they are both great cameras but I am an nx1 owner... I may get an a7rii as a second body

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1 hour ago, shoottheshot said:

I can live with that ISO performance and to hear it looks solid right out of the camera (something I always liked about Canon) is a good thing.  The severity of the RS would be the only deal breaker...

Yeah it is an issue sometimes, but the A7s 1 & 2 are barely better. (http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?303559-Measuring-rolling-shutter-put-a-number-on-this-issue! ) Which is why if you were to go Sony I would recommend the a7R 2. It has a great 1080p and 4K FF mode that gives decent RS performance. Or you can use the Super 35 4K for best image quality. Again most of all I would try these cameras, they are both very different ergonomics and menus than your Canon.

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Yeah, nx1 has very similar rolling shutter to the a7sii, and seemingly a very logical step up from a t3i.. I've heard it quite a few times. I've also heard some people use it up to iso 2000 comfortably, and that in comparison with the t3i, you just don't need as much iso to get the same exposure, not sure anyone could confirm that, though. It is really sharp though, probably the same cause of a digital feeling from the gh4, but idk.. done better in the nx1? So that's also unscientific.. also, not sure what actual issues you'd be caused by it having been discontinued.

There's the ls300 at $3000 new, which looks real nice, though not sure about straight out of camera footage from it if that matters to you. You'd still have some punch in ability from a bmcc, which is an amazing camera. Not sure what else to consider in that range. I'm honestly not sure I'd be more interested in a 4k 5div than an nx1, if it even happens

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5 hours ago, Geoff CB said:

Yeah it is an issue sometimes, but the A7s 1 & 2 are barely better. (http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?303559-Measuring-rolling-shutter-put-a-number-on-this-issue! ) Which is why if you were to go Sony I would recommend the a7R 2. It has a great 1080p and 4K FF mode that gives decent RS performance. Or you can use the Super 35 4K for best image quality. Again most of all I would try these cameras, they are both very different ergonomics and menus than your Canon.

Huh? How are the 1080p and 4k ff a7rii modes great? They line skip quite a bit so they have a lot more aliasing and noise than 4k s35. A7rii is nice for 4k s35 but all other modes are inferior by quite a bit, which is why I traded mine for an a7sii which looks good in all modes. 

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I liked my NX1 more than the A7sii. But in the end I liked the 5Dmkiii with ML Raw better than both of them. The 1DC I had was cheaper than the A7sii but I didn't like it as much as the 5Dmkiii.
Also my LS300 cost me less than an A7sii, which basically is a C300ii alternative. 
My Red One MX also cost way less, but thats not really a Run N Gun camera.

If you want to play the waiting game, the upcoming Fujifilm X-T2 might be a killer.
Im fighting the urge to buy a X-Pro2 every day, some of the nicest colors Ive ever graded from an 8-bit camera.

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2 hours ago, Mattias Burling said:

I liked my NX1 more than the A7sii. But in the end I liked the 5Dmkiii with ML Raw better than both of them. The 1DC I had was cheaper than the A7sii but I didn't like it as much as the 5Dmkiii.

5dmkIII RAW is a goddamn miracle. It'll keep on outweighing a lot of cameras way past it's expiry date (thanks to magic lantern).

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2 hours ago, hmcindie said:

5dmkIII RAW is a goddamn miracle. It'll keep on outweighing a lot of cameras way past it's expiry date (thanks to magic lantern).

Yup it is imo the ultimate combination of Stills-, Video- and Cinema Camera currently available. 

And its very affordable as well (used).
 

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8 hours ago, Noah Yuan-Vogel said:

Huh? How are the 1080p and 4k ff a7rii modes great? They line skip quite a bit so they have a lot more aliasing and noise than 4k s35. A7rii is nice for 4k s35 but all other modes are inferior by quite a bit, which is why I traded mine for an a7sii which looks good in all modes. 

Rolling shutter is a concern for him, so in situations where he needs better RS performance he can use these modes.

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18 hours ago, shoottheshot said:

Hey there - I just wanted to get any perspective on a camera purchase.   I've been shooting with my trusty T3i w/ Magic Lantern and Nikon AIS lenses for years.  Knowing its limitation, the images are still great coming out of the camera.  But at long last, I need to move to 4K.  I do a lot of doc shooting and the ability to punch in for post is a must.  Plus a little help in the lowlight dept would be nice.   So I'm looking to spend roughly 2-3 grand on a camera body that shoots 4K.   The only caveats are that it cannot overheat and very minimal moire, "jelly effect".   Any thoughts?

It seems that the Sony A7S II is the best on the market in that range?    I've considered GH4 but I used it on one project and it just felt less cinematic in vibe, Samsung NX1 but this is discontinued which brings a little concern and also Blackmagic Ursa Mini.  Any other options I'm missing?   Been hoping for a 5D Mark IV w/ 4K announcement.   Anyhow, would love to hear any thoughts... thanks!

 

 

What kind of documentaries do you shoot?

In other words, how often has the jelly effect ruined a shot up to now? There are ways of shooting and cutting that render rolling shutter issues completely mute. 

Regarding the Ursa Mini, they do not ship with global shutters.

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The jelly effect hasn't come into play - I've been mostly shooting T3i/5D/C300 on projects.  Correct me if I'm wrong but the 5Dmkiii with ML Raw although amazing is still not 4K and it'd be great to have the ability to punch in more than 15-20% in post.  Just throwing it out there to see if there's a better alternative to it as the 5d is still a workhorse with little in the way of moire/aliasing/overheating.  I'll also look into the LS300.  Thanks for all the info/perspectives!

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13 hours ago, Mattias Burling said:

I liked my NX1 more than the A7sii. But in the end I liked the 5Dmkiii with ML Raw better than both of them. The 1DC I had was cheaper than the A7sii but I didn't like it as much as the 5Dmkiii.
Also my LS300 cost me less than an A7sii, which basically is a C300ii alternative. 
My Red One MX also cost way less, but thats not really a Run N Gun camera.

If you want to play the waiting game, the upcoming Fujifilm X-T2 might be a killer.
Im fighting the urge to buy a X-Pro2 every day, some of the nicest colors Ive ever graded from an 8-bit camera.

So in your experience, between all those cameras (I'll need a 4k run and gun) - you'd most recommend NX1 or L300?

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The only way to solve all your questions is to get the a7Sii, a7Rii, and NX1 in your hands and see how you like working with them and also review the footage for the character that you are after.

I shoot run-and gun style primarily (though not documentary output in the end) -- sometimes tripod sometimes handheld. My experience is as follows...

More than a year ago I was trying to decide between the NX1 and GH4; I got both in my hands and the NX1 was the clear winner in all fronts. So I got the NX1. But it was big and I didn't always want to carry it so I also got the carry-anywhere Panasonic LX100 which was the best 4k compact at the time.

I was also excited about coming to 4k from HD for those post editing possibilities you mention. But the real deal is to forget about punching in, etc and just to shoot better footage and/or film a close up and a wider shot in 4k and output 4k. If you really want to punch in then save up and get a cheaper second 4k camera later than fills different needs.

The a7Sii and a7Rii came out and I was already frustrated by the NX1 transcoding process and how heavy, as well as front heavy it is with the 16-50mm pro lens. (Yes obviously I could put a different lens but changing between primes often isn't an option for me; Samsung didn't have a small stabilized lens anyway. And Yes I know Adobe CC now supports h.265 but I am sticking with CS6 for now instead of paying them every month). Then I was a bit frustrated by the low light. 1600 is very usable but I started to find this a real limitation in certain situations.

So, I bought an a7Sii. I am really happy with the character of the full frame image, which seems better than the NX1. I find the image more cinematic and the rendering of motion more natural. The lowlight performance completely changes how I am able to shoot. Want to shoot f11 inside? No problem. Want to shoot after the sun goes down? No problem. Entirely new creative possibilities will open up. I mainly use the Sony 24-70 f/4 lens. It is fine for video and covers a lot of focal lengths. Downsides of a7Sii are obviously bad rolling shutter and poor autofocus. And yes ergonomics are a bit cumbersome, but I actually find that because the a7Sii and 24-70 lens package is noticeably smaller, lighter, and better balanced than the NX1 that I actually like using the a7Sii more.

If you want to use a gimbal the better autofocus on the a7Rii is something to consider. And yes you can take care of rolling shutter a bit when shooting in full frame. But I found the overall quality and character of image to lag behind the a7Sii if light wasn't really ideal. And I often don't film in ideal settings.

So I have actually been carrying around the a7Sii, Sony 24-70 lens, the Sony 1.8/55mm lens, the NX1, and the Panasonic LX100. (I carry the NX1 because I actually need a crop sensor camera for shooting through a microscope and not getting vignetting...) I always reach for the a7Sii or the LX100. I am tired of carrying around the NX1 and since I already have a second Sony Lens, I am considering selling the NX1 for an a7Rii body for times when I need to shoot motion (to avoid RS), to try to start using a gimbal w/ its AF, and for really incredible stills (the stills on the a7Rii with the 1.8/55mm lens are incredible -- really something to behold!)

That's been my experience...

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