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Does Canon Rebels have real 1080p

Jed I. Clampett

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I see references sometimes that Canon Rebel camera footage is not 1080p. The settings on the camera say it is 1080p. If it is not true 1080p can you explain or confirm its resolution? This makes a huge difference for me since I have the settings in my NLE for 1080p. 

I am planning to output my work in 720p so I can crop video with minimal noise.

I use a T3i and an Eos-m

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Magic Lantern proved this, they are upscaled from a lower resolution and not only that but heavily line-skipped on the sensor.

If you want better you need to go considerably higher up the Canon line, ideally to the $5500 C100 Mk II, or shoot raw with the 5D Mark III and Magic Lantern (with resulting huge file sizes). So don't use a Rebel for video, they're really not fit for purpose. There's so much great YouTube content let down by it - mushy, false detail. If only they had listened to EOSHD and shot GH2 / 3 / 4.

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Your two cameras -- the EOSM and T3i -- are somewhat unique in that they both have Tragic Lantern builds and they both have a native crop mode.  Ain't nothing wrong with either of them.


The Tragic Lantern capability is a significant advantage, primarily because it allows you to shoot h264 with all I-frames (and with boosted bit rates, just like Magic Lantern).  Here is an early example of such footage (the video's notes are informative).  Here is more info on TL.


The native crop capability is important, because it means that you can eliminate moire/aliasing that results from sensor line-skipping, even when using the built-in video function.


The EOSM is particularly special, in that you can shoot raw in crop mode (just like the T3i), but, due to its short flange-focal distance, you can also use 16mm lenses in crop mode.


By the way, I  that there are a few examples of 720P raw on the EOSM.

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I wouldn't go so far as to say the Rebel cameras aren't fit for video. I think if you know what you are doing (and yes, use Magic Lantern) you can get a terrific image out of them. Even the upscaled video with a good color correction and sharp lenses (I use Rokinon) deliver pretty impressive results for the price. I shot a whole feature film on one that's been in several festivals. Heck, the surprise hit of Sundance was shot on an iPhone 5s.

I don't think you should be concerned about whether it's true 1080p. All DSLR cameras, save a few of the highend ones like the A7s do some sort of line skipping, algorithm. Where you start to run into limitations IMO is when you want to use an external recorder, or shoot 60fps in 1080p, or need something for greenscreen. It's obviously not going to match higher end cameras, but then again you can get a T3i body for $350 on ebay right now or even less and it's a remarkable tool.

But back to your original question. If you shoot 1080p and drop into a 720p timeline, I'm not sure it really sharpens up the image much. Unless you want the ability to crop and reframe (as you mentioned) use a 1080p timeline in your NLE. It will save rendering time.

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lafilm, $2,500 vs. $350 is a very big difference. If it's the barrier between you making your film and not making your film, then put your money on stuff in front of the camera and not the body itself. I've shot loads with the T3i and think it looks pretty good. I did just upgrade to an A7s, but when you want to charge more for your work, you have to bring out the big boy tools.

You can see my reel (all shot with a T3i) here: https://vimeo.com/115577741

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