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ghostwind

Canon gear advice for pro photographer getting into videography

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1 hour ago, Django said:

..well here is a recent test showing just that (C100 external to ProRes upscaled to 4K vs C200 4K internal):

other than high ISO noise level, IQ is astonishingly similar imo!

Thanks for that. It does look like the C100 is about 2 stops noisier, but that's a way older sensor and processor than the C200's, so to be expected. Otherwise it holds up well. I wonder how the C100MKII fares against the C100 in terms of noise. Funny enough, I never cared much about high ISO noise in photos (even before I had the 1DXMKII), but in movies it bothers me. 

I wonder what the difference in DR is though. 2 -3 stops?

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On 9/13/2019 at 12:33 PM, ghostwind said:

OK, so back to square one :) Really I want the best looking 2K/1080p that Canon has to offer today in its cinema line. And I want to shoot internally, so it will have to be with whatever codecs each camera can record internally.

Is that C100MKII even though it's again a low bitrate codec, so not sure how it holds up in post in less than ideal run & gun situations?

Is it the C200, shooting in 4K 4:2:0 8bit and down converting to 2K/1080p in Premiere?

Or is it the C300MKII, shooting in 2K/1080P RGB444 12bit, or 4K and downsampling in Premiere?

Which camera will offer the best 2K/1080p? The rest I can figure out (the clear benefits of all other features, value vs. cost, 4K itself, etc.). I guess answering this simple question is more complicated than I originally thought.


This posts sounds like you're getting a little obsessed with seeking out "the best" image quality, and forgetting that this is but one aspect of the overall big picture. 

What does it matter if one camera has 1% better image quality over another if you give up a million other things? (features that might lead towards a better image in the long run... far exceeding that 1% theoretical gap)

Plus there is the tricky problem of how do you even define what is "the best" (which in itself is very subjective), the best SOOC when perfectly shot? The best looking image after you've fv%ked up everything possible on the shoot day then spend a hundred hours in post trying to "save" the image? The best image under circumstances somewhere between those two extreme scenarios?
 

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1 hour ago, IronFilm said:


This posts sounds like you're getting a little obsessed with seeking out "the best" image quality, and forgetting that this is but one aspect of the overall big picture. 

What does it matter if one camera has 1% better image quality over another if you give up a million other things? (features that might lead towards a better image in the long run... far exceeding that 1% theoretical gap)

Plus there is the tricky problem of how do you even define what is "the best" (which in itself is very subjective), the best SOOC when perfectly shot? The best looking image after you've fv%ked up everything possible on the shoot day then spend a hundred hours in post trying to "save" the image? The best image under circumstances somewhere between those two extreme scenarios?
 

Well this is a "gear advice" thread, so yeah! Of course it's one aspect, but right now the costly aspect. Give up what million things for example? What features specifically? Should I talk instead about lighting and composition in this thread? Sound? No, no need for that here. I know what you mean, but again, this is about the best Canon camera for 1080p. I said earlier on, I want the best 1080p camera Canon has to offer. After 5 pages, it's still not very clear :), and it should easily be. And Canon is to blame for that, but yeah...8bit crippled here, 10bit there, RAW somewhere else, etc. I'm just navigating the Canon landscape, marketing decisions and all leaving consumers scratching their heads. So it takes some time to figure it out, which is OK.  I'm appreciative of the people contributing to this thread. It's all good. The other things -  the feel, the ergonomics, button layout, other features one camera may have over another - things  I spoke about, are personal decisions I will (and already have for many) figure out on my own. Usually those take longer but in this case it's the other way around. The tech stuff should have clear answers. It was very easy for me to choose my 1DXMKII or 5DMK4 for stills work, even if there were better sensors out there or whatever. It was not a mystery like the cinema stuff!

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C100mkII is still a classic and for the money the best Canon C deal.

ISO capabilities far exceed everything else in their hybrid line up anyway.

C200 is NOT going to be a classic, but of course it is 4K, for some this is enough to go that route. Here is double the money and a bit more of an C100mkII.

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5 hours ago, ghostwind said:

Well this is a "gear advice" thread, so yeah! Of course it's one aspect, but right now the costly aspect. Give up what million things for example? What features specifically?


Canon cripples their cameras in weird and wonderful ways, the give with one hand, and take with the other hand. 
So which features specifically depends on the camera. 
 

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5 hours ago, ghostwind said:

I know what you mean, but again, this is about the best Canon camera for 1080p.


No, based on your comments I don't think you know at all what I mean. 

I really think you're getting a little overly focused on this vague concept of "what is the best"

You've got three broad options:

1) stick with your Canon 1DXMKII & Canon 5DMKIV for now (and by "now" that could easily mean the next few months, or a whole year, or even longer), especially as you never even thought about video until a month ago. Certainly for someone at your stage a Canon 1DXMKII & Canon 5DMKIV is great! Take those two cameras and run as far as you can with them, you can go very far with them before you "outgrow" them!

2) prematurely jump to a "cinema camera", "the best" one even! (oh boy is that a can of worms to open up.....   which is that? Sony FS5mk2? Sony FX9? UMP G2? JVC LS300? BMPCC6K? Panasonic EVA1? Panasonic VaricamLT?? etc etc )

3) ignore #1 & #2, and go for the last (I say last, because even though you have Canon lenses, that isn't a solid reason by itself to buy a Canon! Plenty of Canon users choose something else for their video/film cameras. And as the competition gets better every year at AF and color science, then the only two remaining "reasons" to choose Canon dwindle away) option.....    and buy a Canon C series camera. Which broadly speaking means:

a) C100 mk1, the bargain priced option! (although spending a little more for the DPAF version is worth it, seeing as that is half the reason to buy Canon in the first place), a C100mk2....  like a mk1, but now with 60fps "slow motion"!
b) C200 the ultra low budget (by Canon standards! ha) option to buy 4K (but you're forced to choose between 8bit or raw! Nothing in between)
c) C300mk2/C500mk2/C700, for if you have lots of money to spend
d) a dark horse option, such as C300mk1 or C500mk1 (and if you're shooting mostly/only 1080, then these aren't such a bad idea, with how dirt cheap they are on eBay now)

 

 

6 hours ago, ghostwind said:

The tech stuff should have clear answers.

Yes and no. 

Because when you're asking extremely subjective and vague questions like "which has the best 1080 image" then there are not going to be any clear cut answers. 

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To give a photography analogy:

Which has "the best image":
Canon 5Dmk4 or Nikon D750 or Sony a9?

According to DXOmark the answer is the Nikon D750. 

Yet you picked the 5Dmk4 which has (according to DXOmark) the "worst image' of these three, even though the Nikon D750 is much much cheaper. 

Clearly you rate "image quality" on different criteria, or measure it differently, to how DXOmark does. 

Or perhaps you rate some other non-image quality related factors as more important than a split hairs width of image quality counting in either which direction. 

I'm trying to give a hint here of the complexity / factors to consider in photography, which I'm sure you're well aware, so you can understand that when it comes to filmmaking (which is even more subjective/complex!) then it is even trickier to answer these questions in a clear cut yes/no way. 

 

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The guy has done his homework.. he is heavily invested in Canon glass, that’s why he chose 5D4 & 1DX2. 

Sony/Nikon DXO scores are therefore irrelevant.

He wants the best FHD in Canon ecosystem. 5D4 & 1DX2 are soft in 1080p & shoot 4K in MJPEG making downscaling cumbersome to say the least.

Cinema line models pros/cons have already been covered and he’s not interested in switching systems as you lose Canon DPAF/CS.

EOS R is I think the only option that hasn’t been mentioned. In FHD crop mode it shoots a very detailed 1080p downscaled from 4K. Unfortunately it retains the severe RS and heavy crop.

 

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1 hour ago, Django said:

The guy has done his homework.. he is heavily invested in Canon glass, that’s why he chose 5D4 & 1DX2. 

Sony/Nikon DXO scores are therefore irrelevant.

He wants the best FHD in Canon ecosystem. 5D4 & 1DX2 are soft in 1080p & shoot 4K in MJPEG making downscaling cumbersome to say the least.

Cinema line models pros/cons have already been covered and he’s not interested in switching systems as you lose Canon DPAF/CS.

EOS R is I think the only option that hasn’t been mentioned. In FHD crop mode it shoots a very detailed 1080p downscaled from 4K. Unfortunately it retains the severe RS and heavy crop.

 

I saw this after I posted, but pretty spot on! I looked at the EOS R, but even if excellent at 1080p (with the caveats you spell out), it's still easier to shoot video with a dedicated cinema camera for reasons stated in my prior post. I also found working with it (when I was playing with it for stills) frustrating, as I like to have dials, buttons, and an OVF. If I had to, I would get used to it, but man, it was like I was fighting the camera to work fast.

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7 hours ago, Django said:

The guy has done his homework.. he is heavily invested in Canon glass, that’s why he chose 5D4 & 1DX2. 

Sony/Nikon DXO scores are therefore irrelevant.

He wants the best FHD in Canon ecosystem. 5D4 & 1DX2 are soft in 1080p & shoot 4K in MJPEG making downscaling cumbersome to say the least.

Cinema line models pros/cons have already been covered and he’s not interested in switching systems as you lose Canon DPAF/CS.

EOS R is I think the only option that hasn’t been mentioned. In FHD crop mode it shoots a very detailed 1080p downscaled from 4K. Unfortunately it retains the severe RS and heavy crop.

 

Is the EOS R full frame 1080 worse than Sony's or Nikon's 1080?

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20 hours ago, Django said:

Sony/Nikon DXO scores are therefore irrelevant.


Think you've missed my point as well, that what is "the best" (such as DXOmark scores) is not as important as he is making it out to be. 
Especially if you're just subjectively splitting hairs over which image or another is "best".


Remember the OP had "not even thought about video" until a month ago. 
So a "soft 1080 image" or "cropped 4K" is the least of his worries! 
He should instead be focused on just making as much content as possible, to fail and learn from, to improve on his big weaknesses first rather than relatively minor technical details. And if is to buy anything, have it be anything *but* a new camera body in the next couple of years. Let it be some quality wireless, or a few lights, or a slider, or a fluid head, or....  well, as we all know, the possibilities are endless!

 

 

20 hours ago, ghostwind said:

it's still easier to shoot video with a dedicated cinema camera for reasons stated in my prior post. I also found working with it (when I was playing with it for stills) frustrating, as I like to have dials, buttons, and an OVF. If I had to, I would get used to it, but man, it was like I was fighting the camera to work fast.


I'd encourage you to slow down and think about what you're doing, but if for whatever reason you're doing madcap fast paced shooting and you really really want to ditch the DSLR, then perhaps get any one of a C100/XC10/XC15?

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2 hours ago, IronFilm said:


Think you've missed my point as well, that what is "the best" (such as DXOmark scores) is not as important as he is making it out to be. 
Especially if you're just subjectively splitting hairs over which image or another is "best".


Remember the OP had "not even thought about video" until a month ago. 
So a "soft 1080 image" or "cropped 4K" is the least of his worries! 
He should instead be focused on just making as much content as possible, to fail and learn from, to improve on his big weaknesses first rather than relatively minor technical details. And if is to buy anything, have it be anything *but* a new camera body in the next couple of years. Let it be some quality wireless, or a few lights, or a slider, or a fluid head, or....  well, as we all know, the possibilities are endless!

I'd encourage you to slow down and think about what you're doing, but if for whatever reason you're doing madcap fast paced shooting and you really really want to ditch the DSLR, then perhaps get any one of a C100/XC10/XC15?

1000 times this.

You already own the tools to produce great looking video.

If you definitely want to buy a video centric camera a C100mkII should be enough and mix and match and all.

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Guy starts thread about gear, ends up being told to slow down and learn from mistakes??

Iron and Kisaha I really appreciate all your contributions but I don't think he's looking for this. Shooting anything other than staged narratives is reason enough for cameras that are built first and foremost to be video cameras, or at least have built in zebras and ND, etc. And even in slow situations, I'd pick practically any camera over a Canon DSLR.

4 hours ago, IronFilm said:


"cropped 4K" is the least of his worries! 

I'd say it's always a worry when switching between stills and video - it makes every lens different and increases the  number of lenses that have to be taken on location and the time to switch back and forth. 

Anyway - I'm a vote for a C200 unless it's just way out of your budget.

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Guys (Tony Stark mainly), look, I truly appreciate all the replies and wanting to be helpful, but I'm not looking for advice on (or to talk about) framing, lighting, the history of cinematography, sound editing, pulling focus, video shooting 101, or whatever else you may assume I may or may not need to know before getting a decent cinema camera. I've discussed my background briefly and some other things early on in this thread as they pertain to the question I posted originally. I also discussed what I will be filming and plan/want to. I went over the fact that shooting with my DSLRs is a headache and described why. So no real need to keep at it, as it's not complicated really. Some of the analogies made don't quite work, but I don't need to go into details because it's pointless and time consuming. 

Yes, I'm "obsessing" a bit about the details, because as I've said, I like to do my research before investing in something. And I've learned a lot in the past few weeks since starting this thread. There are a lot of questions I don't need to ask, because I know the answer to them. The Canon 1080p threw me off, because although I've come to somewhat understand it, it should have been more clear. As you move on up the line, things should improve (which they do for the most part), and basic things should not get worse! Like I said in a prior post, I still use the single, AF point in SERVO mode for my sports photography (heck for ALL my photography), even with all the fancy AF modes the 1DXMKII has. For me it's the simplest way to work, and I'm glad Canon didn't remove it if you get my analogy. 

For what it's worth, I finally rented a C100MKII and a C200 yesterday morning and did a lot of testing. I shot in low light, in harsh and bright light, played around with all the settings, internal vs. external to a Ninja V, imported and played around in Premiere, etc. I spent about 10-12 hours doing all of this. Basically dedicated my entire day and night to it. I went to a track meet to see how the DPAF would work, and to have real things to film instead of brick walls, cats, and trees, etc. I wanted to see which camera would also feel best in my hands for a long period of time in terms of weight, ergonomics, etc. For the latter, I prefer the C100MKII. For 1080p, which was my big question, I was surprised that the C100MKII is pretty much up there with the C200 in terms of acuity and detail if not better in some cases. This is from external Ninja V ProRes 422 HQ. Internal to SD @ 24Mpbs is pretty damn good, but not as good in post as external to the Ninja - no surprise there I suppose. I wish the C100MKII would have more ND stops than 6, like the C200 does with the 8 & 10, but it's OK. For the C200 I compared internal UHD 420 8bit downconverted to 1080p in Premiere and also external 1080p 422 10bit to Ninja V. To be honest, it was hard to see a difference between the two methods - with the C100MKII it was more clear that external is the better way to go for IQ. I was also surprised that the 4K is kind of soft on the C200. In terms of the sensor, yeah, the C200 has more latitude for exposing, less high ISO noise, and a different color to the files (though I can't say it's better - just different). I did also shoot RAW for a bit out of curiosity, and yes, indeed that looks exceptional. For the other things, I don't think it's worth it over the C100MKII. So yeah, I confirmed a lot of what was said or what I thought - the C200 is great, but if you don't plan to shoot mostly in RAW, for me it's not worth 2x+ the cost over the C100MKII for the 1-1.5 stop more DR, less ISO noise, etc. And I suppose this should be obvious - it's meant for people that want to shoot RAW. I was just wanting to see if the C100MKII could do as good in 1080p. I didn't rent the C300MKII, but that's what I would use if someone wants to pay me extra for 4K shoot/delivery. Otherwise it's overkill for me now, and the C100MKII is the cheaper/safer bet until I wear it out. I was honestly surprised at just how good it really is, so many years later. 

EDIT: Oh yeah, I forgot to talk about the DPAF. Yes, on the C200 it's a lot better, but not worth it in the end for me. The screen is also nicer on the C200, as are the audio inputs on the body, etc. But since I'll be using the Ninja V most of the time (and not just for recording, but for having a larger screen to monitor, to see framing, focus, outdoors in bright light, etc.), the Canon screen is not critical. I actually like that I can move the C100's screen off to the side or even close it when shooting. Simpler and more compact.

 

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Hey Ghostwind

A bit late to the discussion but I owned a C100 Mark 1 for five years and replaced it with a C200 about a year ago. From my POV some additional factors worth considering:

- If you spend several thousand bucks on a Camera for professional use in 2019 I'd consider 4k mandatory. If you plan to use this Camera for several years to come, not having 4k will eventually become a disadvantage. And it brings benefits for HD delivery too. If 4k slows you down in post now you'll soon need better hardware and/or software anyway.   

- I get the impression Audio is a crucial factor for what you do. It is so much better in the C200. Once you have a Microphone and Audio-Reciever on your C100 it gets front-heavy because the XLRs are on the handle. C200 also has 4 channel recording so you can have lower leveled backup tracks of your XLR-feeds in case audio clips for some reason. Having audio controls on the back and not on the handle is a big advantage in fast shooting scenarios too. 

- The C200s touch to focus can be very helpful for documentary work, I'd assume for sports too but have no experience in that field. Compared to the C100 the monitor is way more flexible and can be mounted to different points. For longer handheld shoots I found the position of the C100-monitor annoying and too close to your chest. It forces you to hold the camera further away which makes it heavier.

- RAW might be a hassle now but I'd expect it to only get easier and less expensive to handle in the years to come. Having the possibility to record RAW might give your camera a longer lifespan. No doubt the C200 will also have a better resell value in the years to come so from my POV is a better professional investment in 2019.   

- Are you sure you want to rely on an external recorder for all of your shoots? From my experience they are pain in the ass to work with on one man shoots. It takes longer to rig the camera up and they somehow constantly need to be repositioned. Plus you need more batteries, cables, cards... 

- In general I find the C200 is more thought-out and easier to use in uncontrolled shooting scenarios that require fast reactions.

Just some additional food for thought...

Cheers  

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@Michi Thanks for the input, I appreciate it. But I'm ready to bite the bullet on a C100MKII and start shooting. I just think for me it makes the most sense given what I said in my last post (and initial post really). I think the C100MKII does 1080p extremely well, but I don't think the C200 does 4K very well at all, unless you shoot RAW, which I don't plan on doing for reasons stated. I do think RAW is the future on more and more <$10K cameras, as I've said,  but I don't want to get into it yet and not with the single slot / Cfast card that is on the C200. 1080p isn't changing, it's proven/known, and it's still most of what's out there. So getting the best 1080p camera for relatively cheap (C100MKII) makes the most sense now, even if the camera is old. I'll wait for a <$10K proper 4K camera from Canon in the next 1-2 years. Until then, as I've said, if a client requires 4K, I'll rent. I do plan to use my DSLRs in conjunction with the C100MKII, and they can do 4K and HFR, gimbal, etc. So I have a good mix. C200 would overlap too much. The DPAF is very good, but my 1DXMKII is better I feel. And for when I need that, I can use the 1DXMKII in 4K. This would be mainly for sports, where I have to track an athlete for example, or other special cases. For most use, the DPAF in the C100MKII is plenty fine for me. I'll use a lot more MF anyways on the C100MKII / for video work, because well, it's nicer looking and I have total control. Yes, the C100's monitor is not in the best place, but at the same time it sort of is because I can tuck it away and be more compact. As I *do* plan on using the NINJA V most of the time, it makes sense. I know what you mean, but I cannot use any of these C100/200/300 LCD for critical focus, framing, bright light conditions, so yeah, I like the 5" NINJA. I'll put it on a small ballhead cold shoe mount and move it around as needed. I shot this way yesterday and loved it. Loved having the larger screen, brighter screen, with aspect ratio markers, focus peaking, waveform, etc. I can see people hating it, but to each his own. I can shoot in ProRes 422 HQ for like 12hours on a 1GB $340 SSD. And I'll have backup files to both SD slots too. And it will all be sensible in terms of file sizes but at very high quality on the ProRes side. This C100MKII can shoot forever and battery lasts long too. So I do understand and appreciate your points, but for me yeah, the C100MKII is a bit more special. More importantly, it's the right tool for me, now. I don't think I'll ever sell it. I think it's going to be one of those cameras that you keep. I still have my original 5D, my film 1V, and some others. 

Anyway, again, this thread has been super helpful and informative, even if we have different opinions. I did learn a lot, and will continue to. Thanks to all, especially @kye, @User, and @IronFilm!

 

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Thanks @ghostwind. And a big hats off to you for climbing through this process and taking the time to intelligently articulate your process as it very much informs my decisions in going forward with Canon. Yes many are pissed at Canon, but for me, despite their shenanigans, their (C)inema line continues to deliver in a way that the others just can't.

38 minutes ago, ghostwind said:

...I don't think I'll ever sell it. I think it's going to be one of those cameras that you keep. I still have my original 5D

This is exactly where I am at as well... and that old 5DM2 still gets me paid work once in a while 😂

Best wishes in going forward... and feel free to drop by EOSHD from time to time if'n you have any questions or feel like a laugh... a good handful of talented folks in the mix here.

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Hey ghostwind

While I don't agree with your statement that the C200 doesn't do 4k very well at all (opinions vary and that's ok), I sincerely hope you'll enjoy shooting with the C100. It's a fine little Cine-Camera and been my workhorse for years. Have never regretted the investment. And it seems you have weighted your pros and cons carefully.

Happy shooting!

 

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35 minutes ago, Michi said:

Hey ghostwind

While I don't agree with your statement that the C200 doesn't do 4k very well at all (opinions vary and that's ok), I sincerely hope you'll enjoy shooting with the C100. It's a fine little Cine-Camera and been my workhorse for years. Have never regretted the investment. And it seems you have weighted your pros and cons carefully.

Happy shooting!

 

@Michi Thanks! Perhaps I should have clarified or expanded on my statement. What I simply meant is that no 4K sensor does actual 4K, because of the deBayering required off the sensor. True 4K would require a 5.7K sensor for example, like the Panasonic EVA1 for has. A 4K sensor produces about a 2.7K image. Now some cameras do it better than others, but in the end you still end up with artificial sharpening that's not in the source and aliasing. This is why the Canon C200/300 4K is soft. They are less aggressive than Sony in processing, but in either case it's not real 4K. Does that matter? Yes and no. My comment was in the context that a 4K sensor (like in the C100MKII) can actually do a true 1080p, while no 4K sensor can do a true 4K on output (C200). So that's why the difference is actually not that much between 4K and 1080p. It's more like 2.7K vs 2K :)  

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1 hour ago, ghostwind said:

A 4K sensor produces about a 2.7K image. Now some cameras do it better than others, but in the end you still end up with artificial sharpening that's not in the source and aliasing.

While this is true for every sensor that does not oversample, so far I have never experienced much aliasing in the C200 image and I'd assume there's no sharpening at all done in camera. At least the XF-AVC files are in no way sharper than the RAW files, quite contrary...  

But anyway, I don't deny the oversampled HD of the C100 looks great and that this principle is valid for higher resolutions too. But regardless of that, for me the C200 still has a nice image straight out of camera 😉  

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