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In depth test - 5D Mark III and 7D Raw vs Blackmagic Pocket vs GH3


Andrew Reid

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Strange conclusion, huh, 5d mk 3 best of the 3 ???????

First of all, playing with ML shooting raw is not an option for a paid job, unlles you have some low end jobs where people don't care much for the work you do and get the "cheapest one", I guess you can screw up there, nobody cares.

Then the pocket cinema, good video quality but very poor ergonomics, how much will you pay for that quality, well, less than 5d mk 3 but still, you can't go shoot a wedding with one little pocket cinema, you need a few and some patient people.

Then the gh3, the most balanced out of the 3, amazing ergonomics, for chirst sake you could do rack focus by tapping on the back of the screen, instant auto exposure by pressing one button, you can even go all auto and works like a camcorder but we are pro's so no need.

In the world of event videographers those 5d's are dying in favor of modern tools made for video, fs100,fs700,gh3 DUH,c100,c300, all of these little babies have good ergonomics and image that looks professional, not that plastic look of the standard canon DSLR's.

My point is who the heck uses 5d mk3 shooting RAW an event like a wedding, or uses pocket cinema with that tiny sensor, in the real world where money is made you can't be toying like that.

My rating for money making in event shooting is 1. gh3 by far for anything 2. 5d mk3 as a second camera for details and use of full frame sdof 3. pocket cinema for moments when you have all the time in the world from shooting to postprocessing.

 

 

LE

OR none of the above in favor of fs700 or c300.

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For real. Like we've never had the content is king rant here before. Thanks for stopping by bro. We had no idea.. Lol

If you expose for blown out highlights, push shadows, clean with neat video, you can capture just as much dynamic range from the GH3 as you can from Magic Lantern RAW.   https://vimeo.com/76030718

hello friend, you seem lost.   this is a thread about nuances in cinematography: its an "In Depth Test" of Camera A vs Camera B vs Camera C vs Camera D

What I loved about this review is that Andrew assumed his readers would understand the trade-offs between the GH3 and BMPCC and 5D3.  I don't look at the GH3 footage to answer the question if it is as "good" as the 5D3 RAW, but if the speed, ease-of-use, etc., benefits of the camera would be worth what I'm thinking about shooting.  D.L. has shot both 50D RAW and GH3.  He has chosen GH3.  That carries a lot of weight from me because 1.) His talent is obvious to anyone who watches his stuff and 2.) He spent a lot of time with the 50D Raw, even shot a whole piece with it.  Does that mean the GH3 is for me?  No, but who knows what I'll want tomorrow?  

 

As for other cameras, these are the 3 most representative DSLR type consumer cameras.  

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In the end people are free to make their own choices and choose the right tool for the job.

I can just put the information out there and show it how it is, as well as stating my own opinion because EOSHD is a personal blog as well.

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Astro, I wonder what are you doing in this topic. Do you think that a camera test with objects not moving is something entertaining? Is this a topic about camera performance or about content and entertainment?

 

If you are a talented shooter, you just have to look to the camera performance and judge for yourself. If its good, buy one and make better videos. Please, make a topic about awesome content and wait for the answers. ;)

 

And please, look at that beautiful painting while you read my text, so you can be entertained and appreciate some art. I dont want to waste your time with technical stuff.

 

This is not the right thread for discussions about the art of filmmaking.

 

We don't go on scriptwriting forums to talk about how important 14bit raw is at the expense of story discussions, so I won't tolerate the derailing of camera tech and cinematography discussions with that tired old obvious argument "content is king". Nope! There's no such thing as ONE most important aspect in filmmaking, it all matters right down to the details.

 

It isn't that I don't want discussions about content and ideas creation on the forums, it is just that I don't want it derailing the camera discussions!! So put the right debates in the right topics please people.

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Nice comparison.

 

Hmmm, the GH3 looks a hell of a lot better than the 7D in low light. Not sure how they both share a score of 5? The 7D in RAW seems to have less DR than the stock GH3 also. Whats going on there?

 

Dealing with RAW is not an option for many people. The most complete camera of the bunch here is the GH3, especially with the Speedbooster. For narrative, sure the 5DIII with ML Raw is a great cam but for most other uses the GH3 still wins in my eyes.

 

I use my GH3 for paid work having moved over from the 7D. The 1080p50 has proved essential on some shoots, a feature some cameras costing 15 times as much don't have. The Black Magic cameras are nice but not knowing how much time is remaining on your card is simply not acceptable when using/relying on a camera in the field. Its a non starter.

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You guys are not getting the REAL concept of dynamic range. You guys are thinking that a great dynamic range is just a detailed sky or detailed shadow. Nope! When we talk about dynamic range we are talking about highlights, midtones and shadows - and the gradations between them - those are the steps of dynamic range.

 

This is a good point, it is the quality of the colour and detail in the shadows, mids and highlights that a wide dynamic range goes towards improving.

 

There's no point having 13 stops of dynamic range if the shadows are ruined with noise, banding and compression. No point if the highlights have a sudden roll off. No point if the mids have about 12 colours in them. No point if the grading is poor or shooter error.

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The good thing about the GH3 is the files are easy to handle if you're shooting a lot of stuff and to a tight deadline.

 

And often a lot of paid work doesn't need to have the ultimate image quality.

 

In terms of cinematography as an art form and shooting paid work you have to balance the artistic choice of tool with the practical realities of using them.

 

Raw is not that difficult in reality, you press a button, record, fill the card up and put a new one in.

 

The problem is when you are shooting 7 hours worth of interviews in raw and have to edit a cut together by lunch time the next day, especially if you don't have the hardware required to crunch through it and store it.

 

For raw think ProRes but with a transcoding step.

 

You don't have to edit raw, you can convert to ProRes but it takes time.

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I'm once more amazed by the GH3. It blows away the 5DMk3 (non-raw) and the 7D (in raw). Heck it even competes with the 5d raw and the BMC ... I have to pixel peep to see the differences. I think in most controlled (!) situations, you can make these camera's look very similar. And that says a lot, when the GH3 is just a cheap, small 8-bit h.264 camera... 

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If you expose for blown out highlights, push shadows, clean with neat video, you can capture just as much dynamic range from the GH3 as you can from Magic Lantern RAW.

 

https://vimeo.com/76030718

this came out very very clean how far are you pushing the shadows and under what settings? natural normal -5's ? I use a GH3 im honestly trying to become more fluid in my CC but im such a minimalist for certain things I do. Shorts id love to stop things down and become better at CC.

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So I'm looking at my 2.5k bmc like it farted while I was eating. ...From what I'm to gather as of recent, the pocket cam not only has no "black hole sun" issue, it apparently does better in lowlight than it's more expensive, bigger sibling?

(Sigh.....Blackmagic must be sending my bmcc's from the lemon dept. clearance rack.)

The 5D3 raw is probably my next venture. Even if it is about 2 stops shy of the blackmagics in the highs, it blows out pretty sexy. That's one thing I always thought Canon did well with the Mark 2 even with the 8 bit limitation. (I still like the "look" of the Mark 2 sensor more than the 3, lol) The Mark 3 raw stuff seems to really do it well when people aren't grading everything to show off how "raw" their footage is. (No shadow left dark, no highlight blown). Though I probably couldn't fathom a perceivable difference between 12 bit and 14 bit color, you can't deny how vivid
and rich the 5D3 raw stuff is compared to Blackmagic's cameras. If you can have a desirable image in the world that doesn't have the words "film look" attached to it, ML raw with Canon color science is a gorgeous aesthetic.
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this came out very very clean how far are you pushing the shadows and under what settings? natural normal -5's ? I use a GH3 im honestly trying to become more fluid in my CC but im such a minimalist for certain things I do. Shorts id love to stop things down and become better at CC.

 

I shot with Natural picture profile with everything set to -5. Some shots had i.Dynamic turned on. I exposed to keep highlights from clipping without severely under exposing. I'm right there with you on the color-correction. I usually hire a colorist to handle my short films so - with that - this quick test I did after working 10 hours on set was crude and as some pointed out, may not do the camera justice.

 

GH3 is the over all winner for me. Top features: Full HD at 60 fps, continuous recordable time, time code (for mutli cams), easy post workflow, practical ergonomics.

 

https://vimeo.com/72737956

 

This is beautiful! Absolutely amazing that such high-quality images can come from an 8-Bit camera. If I did not know it came from a GH3 - I would have assumed it was shot on RED.

 

These forums are like a warzone sometimes. Poor D.L Watson for sharing his work on the GH3, I don't see anyone else coughing up and showing their jpeg-like masterpiece eh? 

 

I think D.L should go out and make a Zack Snyder inspired masterpiece with an iPhone 5s, like of some ninjas chopping up mangos or something and grade it in Resolve while hanging upside down. Or you could get a raw camera, sit on a bench and get a really shallow focus shot of a leaf. 

 

Oh, and the 7D footage sucks a bit. Doesn't matter though. It's a Grandpa now in camera years. 

 

lol It's all a learning experience really. Helps create a thicker skin and a drive to keep doing more and better. Not sure about chopping mangos though. :)

 

What I loved about this review is that Andrew assumed his readers would understand the trade-offs between the GH3 and BMPCC and 5D3.  I don't look at the GH3 footage to answer the question if it is as "good" as the 5D3 RAW, but if the speed, ease-of-use, etc., benefits of the camera would be worth what I'm thinking about shooting.  D.L. has shot both 50D RAW and GH3.  He has chosen GH3.  That carries a lot of weight from me because 1.) His talent is obvious to anyone who watches his stuff and 2.) He spent a lot of time with the 50D Raw, even shot a whole piece with it.  Does that mean the GH3 is for me?  No, but who knows what I'll want tomorrow?  

 

As for other cameras, these are the 3 most representative DSLR type consumer cameras.  

 

That's kinda my point. For me, the GH3 provides an ease of use which - in my opinion - evens the playing field a little more with the RAW 50D, 5D, 7D, and Pocket. I was trying to say that the GH3 can be pushed suprisingly far and I believe it could be mistaken for a much high-quality camera (with proper lighting and shooting conditions).

 

Thanks for the support!

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This might be off topic for this thread, but how does recording to a external capture device look like with the ML hack on the 5D MKIII?  I know it'll capture at 4:2:2, but does it look better than the OEM firmware or is it the same?


Unfortunately this does not work for two reasons. Firstly the current version of ML does not work with the current Canon firmware that supports clean HDMI out. Secondly ML can only write RAW to the compact flash card & not to HDMI out & an external recorder.
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No point if the highlights have a sudden roll off. 

 

That's funny because every camera that shoots RAW has a sudden roll off. That's just how digital sensors work. Even Alexa, when you watch the raw material, not the prores ones. You can create a nice highlight rolloff afterwards. A lot of color science is done afterwards to get that roll-off going but everything after a certain point just clips in the sensor.

 

Now ACR does a bit of highlight magic when used with 5d files but that magic works even on jpegs (try it out in Photoshop, it's a filter). It uses all the channels to reconstruct the highlights.

 

Sometimes people are a bit confused. An iso 3200 file with the 5d will retain quite a lot more highlight information than an iso 100. Does it have more DR? No.

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In the video posted above you can clearly see that. In the video, everything looks like its made of plastic. You have no gradation in the midtones. The cars look like a colored stain.

 

To be fair, you can get 16-bit images to look like that easily too. 8-bit lcd monitors with low contrast just have quite a bit of limitations. 

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We don't go on scriptwriting forums to talk about how important 14bit raw is at the expense of story discussions, so I won't tolerate the derailing of camera tech and cinematography discussions with that tired old obvious argument "content is king".

 

How about derailing it with actual camera tests? With a bit more scientific style? Instead of shooting a random scene, you could actually shoot a resolution chart and a dynamic range one. You could check out how much sharpening is doing to the image (now you compare a heavily sharpened 5d raw to the BMPCC, with god knows what software used).

 

Instead of getting some random information and "scores" we could actually get something usable? If you are doing scientific camera tests and discussions, I would agree, but these are quite far from them.

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