Camera conclusions

posted by Jeff | Tuesday, April 17, 2012, 11:46 PM | comments: 0

Nothing particularly awesome was announced at NAB this week in terms of new cameras. Canon has this bizarre new video DSLR that will cost something like $15k. I still can't figure out who that's for.

In any case, I recently spent time shooting with my Canon 7D. I've spent a lot of time trying to get it to behave like a video camera, and it just keeps disappointing me. I followed Simon around a playground a few weeks ago, and the striping on his shirt caused awful moiré. Then I took it to the zoo the other day, and saw that animal fur also caused the moiré. Marry that with the "jello" rolling shutter found in zoomed-in pans, and the lack of built-in neutral density filters, and I've finally come to accept that it is not, in fact, a proper video camera.

I have a proper video camera, the HVX200, and it's a nice video camera. I used it today for some ENG-style shooting, and for the first time watched its output on my 55" TV. It's really quite stunning. The problem that I've been trying to overcome with it for years is that it looks more like video than film, and that's frustrating. As I fancy myself a documentarian, it's frustrating. The video DSLR's, with their big sensors and great lenses, were supposed to help with that, but the above mentioned problems (not to mention no serious audio capability and zero useful monitoring) cause it to fall short.

So I'm pretty sure I'm going to buy the AF100, which is almost a cousin to the HVX (at half what I paid for it, no less). With an adapter, I'll be able to use my Canon lenses. I can finally start approaching motion pictures the way I do photography, and that will make me exceptionally happy.


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