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GlamourDave

Seeking Video Advice for my Canon Gear

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The last 6+ years I have not been active with my photography career due to my having to care for my father for all his numerous health problems.  I decided in 2017 to pursue my interest in learning video and film making.  As I knew that my father would pass away sometime this year and I needed to restart my life and pursue new career directions.  To begin that process I started taking classes thru my local public access tv studio.  And in recent weeks I earned my certification as a studio producer, and am now working towards my field production certification.  I will be producing 6 shows during the summer where I will be producing and hosting the shows.  I will be taking 3 more advanced classes during the summer to continue to advance my knowledge and skills.

Prior to caring for my father I shot fashion and glamour for various fitness models.  My existing camera kit which has not been seriously used the last several years consists of the following:

Canon 7D body

Canon 70-200mm f2.8 IS Mark II lens

Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6 IS lens

Canon 135mm f2.8 lens

Canon 85mm f1.8 lens

Canon 50mm f1.4 lens

Sigma 17-50mm F2.8 DC EX IS

I have a Manfrotto tripod and a Manfrotto grip head.

What I need advice on is what additional equipment I should consider for finally producing video with what I have already.  I know I will need a video head, a mic, some form of stabilizer, a focus follow mechanism, some sliding track platform. Anything else?

I'm limited to a budget of no more than $1,500 for now to get me started.  So I am looking for recommendations based on what I have already and that can help to get me started in video.

I thank you all in advance for your suggestions / recommendations.

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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

You need good audio and maybe some decent ND filters. Other than that, you'd be fine. 

Not sure why you think you need a slider, video head, stabilizer, or follow focus.  

I don't have any of those things and my productions work out okay for me.  I've been "started" for 30 years now. 

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Sell the 7D and whatever lens you don't need (keep 2-4 of those, certainly the 70-200, or sell everything except the 70-200 and the 50, and buy a 18-135 to cover most angles, C100 has incredible high ISO quality, so don't worry about the 3.5-5.6f) and buy a used Canon C100mkII.

Sound is a completely different thing, you should work with a sound man, just buy a cheap-o mic for on camera sound (or scratch), and/or Rode wireless lavalier (they are big, but cheap and reliable) may be more useful.

Then light is a completely different thing, tons of advices for that.

Sell your tripod/head as well, and buy the Sachtler Ace L, but it isn't so comfortable with the C100+70-200 combo, but is just perfect for everything else, and it is the minimum for good motion.

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7 minutes ago, Kisaha said:

Sell your tripod/head as well, and buy the Sachtler Ace L, but it isn't so comfortable with the C100+70-200 combo, but is just perfect for everything else, and it is the minimum for good motion.

That's going to eat up most of his budget isn't it? if he decides to keep his Canon gear.

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@Chris Oh Not exactly, as I advised him to sell most of his gear already, and the C100 is not manageable to any smaller tripods, not for pro work anyway, and the Sachtler is 783$, half of its aforementioned 1500$ https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1284243-REG/sachtler_1015_system_ace_l_75_2.html

In anyway, the starting point is a capable camera, a work horse lens (the 18-135 is one, 70-200 is a perfect compliment), a scratch microphone (that can be really anything, Audio Technica has a bunch of them), a proper camera bag (that is, also a very important accessory!) and a worthy tripod, being able to produce some stable and worthy footage. Everything else is an extra.

I don't ever remember 7D image anymore, and he talks about the version 1. Even latest Canon dSLRs (80D) are not producing great video, I am not sure what is achievable with the 7 right now.

Video is not photography, you can't get away with out a good tripod, there is constant motion, camera moves, things are moving in front of the camera. Tripod: #1 necessity.

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Plus he specifically stated he wants to keep his 7D and existing lenses... So he should probably just sell them and buy an Alexa. 😏

I think the more important question should be... what are you going to be shooting? 

The 7D can have ML Raw, so he can have some decent footage, if he keeps his current set up.

If he wants to stay with a DSLR for photo and video work... a tripod head and maybe an upgrade to the 7D2 might be a good idea for DPAF and the higher bitrate 1080p.

Hell, I know they're frowned upon on this site but if I was just starting out, I would seriously consider an 80D, especially with his lens collection. He can still sell his 7D without losing any money by picking up the 80D and then still have that extra money to buy support gear, audio and lighting.

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Aren't they deactivating the Hubble space telescope soon? Maybe you can get a good deal on it. 

If you want to breathe major new life into your 7D, look for a used Mosaic aliasing filter on eBay. It will also sweeten 7D raw in a big way. 

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@Liam He has 1500$ ADDITIONAL to the equipment he already has. So he already has the basic lenses for a C100, he can sell the rest (and the 7D) and buy a used C100mkII.

I thought the point was to make money out of video, not hobby-ing.

With a C100 you can record students shows, weddings, make a documentary, and most low budget things with just one box (the camera it self), a mic and a lens. 

I don't remember the 7D exactly, but my impression at the time was that when the GH4 was out, every little Canon seemed primitive. And I did a full feature length political documentary with the 60D back in the day.

How are you going to record the sound in a production you do? He specifically states "I will be producing 6 shows during the summer where I will be producing and hosting the shows", do you know a cheap way to get sound for 6 different shows? It is much cheaper to find a young, or recently started sound man and grow together. One  can invest on cameras, the other on sound, it is more doable and cheaper.

There is no cheap -good - sound equipment, and not an easy task for a fashion photographer that wants to become a cameraman, to try to boom a 3 person's conversation, while rotating his ND filter in front of his 7D, and pull focus on his 70-200 on a photographic tripod that can barely hold the lens alone.

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I would sell off the 7D (outdated IQ and ergonomics), 100-400 (longer than you'll need unless you're doing nature shows), and 135mm (duplicated length and aperture in the 70-200). Grab an 80D, a Rode VideoMic Pro, an acceptable-minimum fluid head (Manfrotto 500 or 504 or Bento S8). If you won't have an audio person then get a basic external recorder, mic, and boom pole. Maybe a small 3.5mm recorder and matching lavalier. Depends on what you're shooting.

If that leaves you with extra money, go for a C100 or C100II instead. Then look at sliders and stabilizers.

You could also look into switching to a Sony or Panasonic mirrorless cam, paired with a Metabones speedbooster, which will give you much better video IQ than the 80D, or even the C100 in good light.

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I thank everyone for their feedback to my request.  As a studio producer for my local public access station the station uses Canon XF 305 cameras for the studio produced shows. That equipment never leaves the studio.  When I complete my field certification for public access I will have access to the Sony NX 100 camera.  But there are over 20 certified studio producers and over a dozen field producers.  And there are not enough cameras for all the available producers that want to go out in the field and produce show content.  So I feel its essential that I get whatever else what I need to take my existing gear and make it work for producing video content when I am unable to get equipment from the studio or when I can get studio equipment to have my own gear for secondary video content and backup.  While selling off my 7D body may be an idea the camera is still in nearly new condition and would prefer to keep it and make use it for both my photography and new video work til I make the necessary funds to get a Canon or Sony camcorder similar to what I am learning on at the public access studio.

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1 hour ago, GlamourDave said:

I thank everyone for their feedback to my request.  As a studio producer for my local public access station the station uses Canon XF 305 cameras for the studio produced shows. That equipment never leaves the studio.  When I complete my field certification for public access I will have access to the Sony NX 100 camera.  But there are over 20 certified studio producers and over a dozen field producers.  And there are not enough cameras for all the available producers that want to go out in the field and produce show content.  So I feel its essential that I get whatever else what I need to take my existing gear and make it work for producing video content when I am unable to get equipment from the studio or when I can get studio equipment to have my own gear for secondary video content and backup.  While selling off my 7D body may be an idea the camera is still in nearly new condition and would prefer to keep it and make use it for both my photography and new video work til I make the necessary funds to get a Canon or Sony camcorder similar to what I am learning on at the public access studio.

Ok, well in that case, since the XF100 is a primary goal for you, an XC10 or XC15 could be perfect for you. It has better specs than the XF100 (4K) and still meets broadcast specs with its 4:22 codec. Plus with your budget and maybe selling off a couple of your redundant lenses, you can keep your 7D and still have money for a video head, simple audio equipment and maybe even an inexpensive slider. Then with your 7D, you can test Magic Lantern Raw since it's free. 

Plus the XC10/15 has really good IBIS, so you can go handheld with most of your work.

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The 7D is a depreciating asset. I would seriously consider selling it off and getting an 80D to replace it, before the 7D loses any more value. The 80D image quality is better in photo and video, and its ergonomics are definitely better than the 7D's. It also uses cheaper media.

Outside of the camera/lens debate, I would concentrate on 1. audio and 2. support. What you get in each category will depend on what you're shooting and how you want to shoot it, but the basics I outlined above will apply to most any situation.

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5 minutes ago, aldolega said:

The 7D is a depreciating asset. I would seriously consider selling it off and getting an 80D to replace it, before the 7D loses any more value. The 80D image quality is better in photo and video, and its ergonomics are definitely better than the 7D's. It also uses cheaper media.

Outside of the camera/lens debate, I would concentrate on 1. audio and 2. support. What you get in each category will depend on what you're shooting and how you want to shoot it, but the basics I outlined above will apply to most any situation.

Yeah, this is solid advice.

@GlamourDave

ML Raw aside, which I love, but I understand it isn't for everybody, the 80D/XC10 combo could be perfect.

Throw in an H1/H2n, a lav or a Rode Video Micro and a video tripod head and you will have a solid set up.

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