Video advice needed

24 posts
29 April 2015
DP_Photography
Photographer
DP_Photography
I am currently pricing up different cameras to create video for projects in work however I have different people giving me different views on cameras to buy. We don't need anything to high spec so I was looking at the Canon 70D but some people are saying that we should go for a dedicated camcorder, so I have also been looking at the Canon LEGRIA HF G30. Although the Canon XA10 is a possibility as well.

I have friends who produce professional video and they all use DSLR's and swear by them, but I'm wondering if they just use them due to cost. Does anyone have any experience of either they wouldnt mind sharing.

Thanks, Dave

Posted 29 April 2015
Edited by DP_Photography 29 April 2015
redbaron
Photographer
redbaron
Not my expertise but I would think you need to start by establishing what it is you need to shoot. How long? What resolution? Is this simple static stuff with camera on tripod pointed at talking head, action photos natural light studio lighting, knowledge of those using the camera? Any one of those could determin what you need to go for.

Owning a 5DII and DIII though I'm sceptical that an SLR will prove the best choice. No question the quality of the video in the right hands is stunning but there lies the catch. The right hands and teamed up to the right gear. A few thoughts immediatly spring to mind having just started to play with the video on mine for a project.
  • SLR's only shoot for 15 minutes at a time. I believe you have the jolly EU to thank for this.
  • Full HD resolution generates huge files and you will need a serious beast plenty of hard disk and some beefy software to edit things
  • Focus in a lot more fussy on full framed SLR and nothing like as easy to carry out as it is with a dedicated digital camcorder
  • Dedicated recorders tend to have extra features that make things simpler, if at the expense of some high end quality
  • The fixed viewing screen on an SLR can be a pain shooting from very high or low postions
  • You will probably need seperate sound recording facilities as the on camera one is prone to pick up camera noise such as focus motors
Hopefully that will at least put your topic at the top again. I know there are others on here with a lot more experience in this area who I am sure will give more concrete advice
Posted 29 April 2015
Edited by redbaron 29 April 2015
PHP_Photography
Photographer
PHP_Photography
redbaron
SLR's only shoot for 15 minutes at a time. I believe you have the jolly EU to thank for this.
No, it's 29 minutes.
Posted 29 April 2015
HowardJ
Photographer
HowardJ
It depends what you're trying to shoot e.g. slow or fast moving objects, whether good audio is important, etc. I believe SLRs tend to struggle with recording fast moving objects such as cars.

It's a case of horses for courses and what your budget is.

You could always buy a Canon C300 and have the best of both worlds.

Posted 29 April 2015
Edited by HowardJ 29 April 2015
DP_Photography
Photographer
DP_Photography
Thanks for the replies.

A lot of the video will be tripod based just recording someone talking into it, however at times it will be used for some motion recording, just walking around showing things, nothing fast paced. I do how plan to borrow it at times for shoots, but again nothing to intensive. We already have all the kit for recording audio but good on camera (or hot shoe attached) would be a benefit.

I cant see a lot of the videos being more than 10-15mins but that's after editing. We are leaning more towards the Canon XA20 now as I have had budget approval for it. I was given £4k to play with but don't want to be cheeky, plus we don't need anything that high end.

Posted 29 April 2015
HowardJ
Photographer
HowardJ
I think it depends on whether you want the film look that a DSLR can deliver. DSLRs also handle low light situations better.

A camcorder will probably be easier to use, but it will give a fairly standard camcorder look unless you go for an expensive one that has a big sensor and can handle lenses e.g.the C100 through C500 range. I think a C100 without a lens is around £3500. Note: there are two versions of the C100 (mk I and a mk II). The mk Is are going cheap at the moment at around £2400 then you'll need lenses on top.

XLR audio connection and separate mic(s) is probably where you want to go from an audio perspective. You can get separate kit that will give you XLR connections for feeding into a DSLR.

You'll find lots of x camera vs y camera/camcorder style videos on YouTube which might help in your decision process.

You may also want to think about workflow for editing and how you plan to backup/archive your footage.


Posted 29 April 2015
Edited by HowardJ 29 April 2015
TheChrisS
Photographer
TheChrisS
I think a lot of your decision depends on the type of filming you intend to do... What sort of project are you working on? How much video work have you done?

Posted 30 April 2015
TheChrisS
Photographer
TheChrisS
I think a lot of your decision depends on the type of filming you intend to do... What sort of project are you working on? How much video work have you done?

Posted 30 April 2015
w4pictures
Photographer
w4pictures
The camera choice is staggering at the moment and is the easiest part. However, unless you budget is unlimited, forget formats and cameras until you have looked at the edit. This is what you shoot for.

Check transfer times, formats, codecs and workflow. Preferably hire the camera you like and edit some material in anger.

If you are looking for even vaguely professional sound, forget DSLRs and look at a camcorder with at least P48 powering, manual gain and a monitor circuit that sounds sweet rather than shite. If you use a DSLR, use a separate sound recorder and sync up in the edit and that's a process you really should try before you buy.

Posted 30 April 2015
Having used both systems have to say the video camera is a better choice when shooting video. Have been using the Canon XF305 for most work until the XA20 came along which is so much easier to use. Much lighter, smaller, easier to handle and better low light quality. The lenses on both these cameras is simply outstanding - if they sold them for dslr you would not need another. Great IS and AF as well.

The video cameras have great viewing units, sound capture and recording times. With a dslr you need to add these to the must haves to get some decent results, especially in bright sunlight and focusing can also be problematic.

Have to say that GoPro is a great camera (Hero 3+) if you need to work in very tight spaces etc.

Just my 2p worth.

Posted 2 May 2015
scubie
Photographer
scubie
Personally I believe in horses for courses, dslr for stills-- video camera for videos.

Posted 3 May 2015
Chandos
Photographer
Chandos
scubie
Personally I believe in horses for courses, dslr for stills-- video camera for videos.
http://i1240.photobucket.com/albums/gg486/ovalan2/Mercury%20HF-8%20Whisper-_zpsqc5bwwpg.jpg~original
Posted 3 May 2015
Edited by Chandos 3 May 2015
Orca_photography
Photographer
Orca_photography
I understand that 'red' have just slashed their prices in a very big way, worth looking at
Posted 6 May 2015
Chandos
Photographer
Chandos
It is about time RED slash their prices faced with increasing competition. I weren't always impressed with RED IQ especially highlight control and magenta skin tone. Some of the new cameras coming out in the next 6 months put their Dragon sensor to shame at fraction of the price.

Posted 7 May 2015
DP_Photography
Photographer
DP_Photography
Thank you to everyone for your input. We have decided to go for the XA20 in the end. We don't need anything to high end but good enough to produce decent HD quality content. Most of the filming is going to be done static on a tripod or with very low movement (i.e. following someone around a house). I'll be using a range of After Effects CC, iMovie and Final Cut Pro to do all the editing on my Mac. Here is the one we found - http://slrhut.co.uk/product/ID567C13/CNXA20PALBSLR_Canon-XA20E-Professional-PAL-HD-Camcorder-+-Accessory-Bundle-/ Also managed to throw in some wireless lapel mic's, a shotgun mic, and a new tripod for it
Posted 7 May 2015
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