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Andrew Reid

Sony FS7 Review – Shooting 150fps in the dead of night

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Ferrari have a DNA. Cinema cameras have a DNA. You have to go back decades to see it evolve into the force it is today. For Ferrari it is the very specific engine sound and the looks. Arri are that spirit to cinema cameras. The DNA of the Sony FS7 is a compromise. Half EX1 and half cinema camera, the ergonomics of the buttons, dials and menus need a complete overhaul in my opinion. So Sony haven’t got it all right yet but what they have done is put a Ferrari engine inside. The FS7 for £5199+VAT is an absolute bargain, with an ‘engine’ almost on par with a £18,000 F55 (though without global shutter). It’s a much more capable camera than the Canon C300 or Panasonic GH4.

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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

Does it still have the same problem of only being able to dial in random shutter speeds (rather than just setting a degree), like the FS700? and only 3 preset ISOs without having to mess around?

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I'm glad you picked up the menus and button layout being "complete and utter dog shit." 

With the menus I feel like I'm reading another language, and with the buttons I feel I've forgotten how to use a camera. To open the media library on the card you have to select this tiny button called "Thumbnail"... just one of the many naming issues concerning functions on the camera.

Overall it's a different story. You will get used to the crappy menus and buttons, you will be forced to. The quality of the tools on offer for this price is unbeatable. 

The only challenge is Slog3. Exposure needs to be pretty much PERFECT. But if you know what you are doing and have the talent, you will get amazing high quality results for years.  

Another thing is soul. I don't think this camera has it out of the box (like the Alexa, D-Bolex). But that will come from lighting, grading, composition. There is a lot of soul to give. Just feed it and the camera will deliver. :) 

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Eventually once the camera is set up, I find the menus less of a problem but you still have to wonder how the heck it left the factory like that.

And I don't think I'll ever be able to use the left panel blind and instinctively, I'm always looking at it to search for a button.

With the 1D C or GH4 I have an instinct and can feel where the button is without having to look down at the damned thing and tilt it to one side.

The EX1 user might be happier with it but the camcorder ergonomics were never ever much cop and won't cut it in the world of cinema and Arri.

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Eventually once the camera is set up, I find the menus less of a problem but you still have to wonder how the heck it left the factory like that.

And I don't think I'll ever be able to use the left panel blind and instinctively, I'm always looking at it to search for a button.

With the 1D C or GH4 I have an instinct and can feel where the button is without having to look down at the damned thing and tilt it to one side.

The EX1 user might be happier with it but the camcorder ergonomics were never ever much cop and won't cut it in the world of cinema and Arri.

 

I don't know anything about the internal electronics concerning the buttons, but is it possible that Sony are able to keep the camera cost down by basically recycling the same electronics for that button layout? It just seems a bit dinosaur, mini DV age with a 2015 sheen. 

I don't own it yet, but I've been offered a substantial discount to buy it with some batteries and XQD cards. With a toolset this impressive, I don't think I can turn it down. 

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

This is what I love about this forum, I get to understand and experience every bit about the gear I don't have a chance to use on the market from both Andrew and Members, best reviews on the web. Thank you guys.

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"I’d say the menu system on the FS7 is dog shit. Complete and utter dog shit"

Guess I'm lured back for a moment.  There is a difference between being CRITICAL and PERSONALLY OFFENSIVE.  Let's say there's a guy "Joe" at Sony who made the menu system.  Okay, I may not like his decisions about the menus, but should I just be constructively critical about WHAT those problems are and WHY I need it differently.  I left this forum because you felt I was calling your GH4 setting "complete and utter dog shit" when I wasn't.  Why talk to people who dish it, but take offense at things you never said?  I tell you how I feel, as others have here (who are also critical like you), and you show that you value our feelings also, as complete and utter dog shit.  So you need to think about how YOU feel, Andrew, when others are critical of your work, and then you may start to see that though you may feel ignored, you are anything but.  You hurt real people, which, as I've said a gazillion times, is a real shame because you have important things to say.  And, as I've said, one day you WILL SEE.  If you don't see it, you will become a bitter old man.  You will marginalize yourself.  People get tired of people who can't see the mote in their own eye.

I'm not telling you what to write.  I understand that you need to keep the fire in your belly stoked.  No one is perfect.  Maybe the world DOES NEED your style of nasty criticism, but don't try to have your cake and eat it too.  You can say what you have to say, using expletives, about the FS7, without hurting the feelings of people at Sony.  People you DO NOT KNOW.  You've never worked in a corporation.  You have no idea the real issues involved in building large-scale technology.  A little humility never hurt anyone.

As for using Steve Jobs.  He built things.  You just tear them down.  When he criticized the people at Xerox Park he didn't write a blog about it.  He build a BETTER computer.  Be part of the solution.  When you write, take a walk around the block.  Make sure you people feel welcome in your home.  Make sure you're focused on your ORIGINAL mission, making DSLR video work for others.  Make it so Sony might invite you their facilities and talk to you so you can help them face to face.  No one changes if you curse at them LEAST OF ALL YOU ;)  Where for you, IS the point where one crosses the line?

Finally, when you use such language like that you are NOT respecting the intelligence of the reader.  I don't need to read "utter dog shit" to know if it's bad.  I respect your opinion.  If you say it makes studio work difficult, for example, I'd take that seriously.  Why do you need to curse?  People who curse don't take the time to find the right words, the right language.  For educated people "complete and utter dog shit" is not respectful. It's the kind of stuff you'd read in a novel about a drunk at a pub.  What's incredible to me is you are a fantastic writer.  I just don't get it.  You sing beautiful songs then spit on the audience.

So ask yourself, why do you need to use personally offensive language?  What's really in it for you?  Does it really help the reader?  I stopped reading your article because though I was VERY interested, how can I know the real OBJECTIVE truth when you seem so emotionally charged up?

If you ever want to fix this the solution is simple.  You send your articles first to a friend you trust and if they say something has crossed the line you take it out.  That's what I did when I realized, sadly as late as my 40s, that I was guilty of all the above.

 

 

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If you ever want to fix this the solution is simple.  You send your articles first to a friend you trust and if they say something has crossed the line you take it out.  That's what I did when I realized, sadly as late as my 40s, that I was guilty of all the above.

 

 

"You CANNOT make friends with the rock stars. That's what's important. If you're a rock journalist - first, you will never get paid much. But you will get free records from the record company. And they'll buy you drinks, you'll meet girls, they'll try to fly you places for free, offer you drugs... I know. It sounds great. But they are not your friends. These are people who want you to write sanctimonious stories about the genius of the rock stars, and they will ruin rock and roll and strangle everything we love about it."

-Lester Bangs from Almost Famous

 

That being said, I like unfiltered reviews.  If Eoshd was filtered, it would lose a lot of it's audience.  That is one of the reasons Eoshd is popular.  Right or wrong... Uninformed or misinformed.  The reviews are one man's opinion.  It's good to have views that are not filtered through the "system"....  If I wanted the official talking points, I could go to the manufacturer's press release (or various other sites which are not as popular but kowtow to the manufacturer).  Soooo yes.  Keep up the good work.  Complain and rip apart.  It will ultimately help the manufacturer's build camera's that are more useful in the video field.  Besides, revenue can be generated from other sources than the camera makers.

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One of the most harmful and devastating errors in civilisation is based on the assumption that there must be a correlation between wise contents and the use of an elaborated codec in communication. wtf.

 

 

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Let's discuss what's really important..and I mean RIGHT NOW!!!

We need to pull ALL our money together - $$$$$ - and get - MAXOTICSlaid right now!!!!

There must be a chick somewhere that will fuck this guys head on correctly!!

Some girls really do like DOG SHIT!!! ( i hear ER likes these crazy bitches)

Ive seen it on the German Tele!!

HURRY!! - before he finds EOSHD and assassinates him!!! PLEASEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

:P:wub::o:ph34r::lol::P:P

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Aaaand.... it's done. Another topic ruined. It's easy really:

1. take a topic where you think Andrew is being offensive
2. start caring
3. wait

Guys this is no joke, it really works!! If you're being loud enough, the loyal dog of eoshd (lafilm) will come out of his dungeon and bark at you! You don't see a sight like this every day, so grab your FS7 and take your shots, the world needs to see this! :D

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@eleison Andrew bring this subject up, not me "It’s tricky at the moment to find a tone in my EOSHD reviews that is brutally honest enough to be of use critically but not too blunt that it upsets the many fine people working at the camera manufacturers. "

I'm only pointing out that there is a difference about being brutally honest about your technical findings and brutally honest about your EMOTIONS.  

As for my getting laid, I have 3 daughters.  And still a wife!  lafilm, YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE TRUTH :)

I've been over this territory with Andrew in private messages.  It's difficult to support him and criticize him at the same time.  It is difficult for all of us.  I write here because I still hold out hope he can find a way to keep his fire and rock-star ways and NOT alienate people like me.  Okay, I'm selfish, sue me ;)

I don't think the topic is ruined.  Camera equipment is part of the Art, as Andrew has pointed out, and I share the same attitude.  Again, I'm NOT disputing what Andrew thinks or feels.  As soon as you try to express yourself you must deal with this stuff--how much to express your raw feelings, how much to use artifice.  Every artist I believe must pander a certain extent.  Or compromise.  

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Let's discuss what's really important..and I mean RIGHT NOW!!!

We need to pull ALL our money together - $$$$$ - and get - MAXOTICSlaid right now!!!!

There must be a chick somewhere that will fuck this guys head on correctly!!

Some girls really do like DOG SHIT!!! ( i hear ER likes these crazy bitches)

Ive seen it on the German Tele!!

HURRY!! - before he finds EOSHD and assassinates him!!! PLEASEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

:P:wub::o:ph34r::lol::P:P

​Utterly uncalled for.  Why stoop this low just because you assumed a different viewpoint from someone else?  I see preschool and grade school children that conduct themselves with much better manner and less reproach.  I have seen a good number of genuinely kind and even altruistic gestures from the gamut of photo/video forums across the blogosphere, but occasionally it's posts like this that flies in the face of basic decency and humility. Not only that it does not adds, but I believe it is outbursts like this that has a deleterious effect to the visual artisans and technicians community as a whole.  If this trend continues, then I think we will have much more to loose than gain in our common pursuit for knowledge and growth here.  Perhaps the great veil of anonymity through the iron curtain of the internet is conducive to malicious behaviors.  I can hardly imagine such things being said in the physical presence of another person with so many to witness.

No one is infallible, I had my own blunders just as you had yours and everyone else here and elsewhere.  If you're having a bad day or for whatever reason had succumbed to your own emotional impulse, then that's understandable (though not excusable).  I think a simple apology maybe in order here, of course that's entirely up to you.

I don't know Max, I have read some of his blog comments, and believe him to be a learned and cultivated man. Although I may not necessarily agreed with some of the viewpoints he espoused, I do feel that he was offering constructive and cogent feedback to Andrew for the betterment of the blog.

Everyone can exercise and benefit from a bit more civility, especially toward another artist and/or technician who shared the same passion for filmaking.  Lets hold ourselves to a higher standard. Vitriol and ad hominen attacks are better left at the landfill.

=========================================================================================================================================

On to the topic at hand. I don't doubt that the FS7's menu layout and operations are atrocious, though I much rather that Steve Job was not employ as a reference model, not because he was incapable of conceiving some of the most functional and beautiful design in gadgetry that the world has ever seen and put to good use, but precisely because he may have accomplish more by being more tactful and less corrosive/coercive with his interpersonal dealings/interactions. It's one thing being assertive and quite another being aggressive, and for some, that's a fine line.  Shortly after Job passed, one of the senior executive at a top management consultancy asserted that Job exhibited his personal traits and management style not because they were particularly effective, but because they required less skills--soft skills that is.  Agree or not, there is no denial of the man's legacy in technical and design prowess and the success that persists to this day.

Personally, I think a more apt example for us here in the community is none other than James Cameron, whose personality is very much fungible with Job's, but has gone through a long evolution through his time spent out in the field in scientific explorations and expeditions. Cameron has recounted and acknowledged his shortcomings early in his career in directing the performance and work of his cast and crew.  He readily admitted that a more collaborative approach, one that he had cultivated through his work with countless teams of scientists, deep sea explorers, and technical personnel would have suited him better as a filmaker in those formative years.

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I'm glad you have this new 'unfiltered' environment here.

That FS7 footage you shot? Total dogshit. Absolute joke. 
Some of your work is fine if we embrace your limited aesthetic, but this? This is appalling. 

I agree the menus are difficult initially, particularly if you're coming into the Sony CAM eco-system cold.
But its a very good camera for the money, which you realised despite shooting without a doubt some of the most egregiously awful footage I've ever seen come out of it.

Also, I'm pretty sure that the reference to the NX1 comparison was a joke/dig, and I love that you just drove right past it, as did one of the other people here. 

Every time I think - hey that Andrew Reid isn't as much of a amateur as I thought (the Canon 1DC is indeed a fantastic camera, especially for 2011 tech) you go and post something as inane and stupefying as this footage. 

But I'm very glad I can now be open and honest with you about it. A blow for freedom of the internet! 

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