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Best Canon under $2000?

Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 5:36pm

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JUIDAR

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So I've got $2000 bucks for tax return and want to use it to buy a new camera for personal and professional photography and movie making.

Now I've been pointed in the direction of the SLR's and all the video clips I've seen look amazing and have done some homework but now I really want to hear from FXHOME users especially the one's that own one of these cameras.

T2i, 7D, 60D

What is the BEST one that will give me the best film like look or the most professional looking video?

Also should I bite my tongue and save up for the 5D and if so why?

Thanks appreciate any feed back.
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 6:19pm

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RodyPolis

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As far as I know, the t2i, 7d, and 60d will all give you identical video image. The difference is in the features. Maybe you could get a t2i, and spend the rest of the money on lenses and other equipment.

The 5d has better low light capabilities, it is supposed to make the bokeh blurrier (which I don't get what the big deal is), and it gives wider shots. So a shot with a 50mm lens on a 5d will look wider than a shot with the same lens with a t2i,7d, 60d.
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 6:57pm

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DVStudio

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If I had the $2K, I'd buy the 60D with the stock lens and another IS Canon lens as well and then spend the rest on a decent tripod/lights/microphone/battery grip. I would suggest the 60D over the T2i because, from what I gather, you can turn the audio gain off, which is a most have feature with the Canon DSLRs for video.

That being said, if there is a feasible option to purchase the Mark II, I'd go with that personally, because of the low-light capabilities (which are far superior) and I generally like the image they give off better.

If you take a lot of photos, I'd recommend the 7D because it's video quality is equal to the T2i/60D, but it has a number of additional advantages for photography purposes. Such advanatges include (at least) the top LCD screen, the 8 fps shooting, a larger viewfinder, and a more rugged camera body. wink

Overall, the best bet (provided you don't do a whole lot of night sooting) is the 60D with all of the equiptment to go with it.

Hope that helps! Cheers man...

Last edited Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 6:59pm; edited 1 times in total.

Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 6:59pm

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Arktic

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As RodyPolis says, the video quality is pretty much similar across the 7D, 60D and 550D/T2i.

The main difference between those cameras and the 5D is that the 5D has a full-frame sensor and those have a cropped sensor.

So the image quality on the 5D *is* better, especially in low light. But, to my mind, it's not so astoundingly amazing to make it worth the extra money over the others.

From the remaining three, my money is on the 60D. Having used all of these cameras for professional broadcast work, the 60 is my favorite. It's not as heavy as the 7D, but more rugged than the 550D. It's got manual audio control, manual white balance, a full range of ISOs, and separate controls for aperture and shutter - all of which are missing from the 550 but present on the 7D. But the thing that makes the 60D hugely better than the 550D (and even the 7D, imho), is the flip-out screen, which makes shooting high angles low angles, and even round corners a breeze. I can hold the camera at waist height and still film exactly what I want in perfect focus, which is difficult to do without an external monitor on the 7D.

It's a bit more expensive than the 550D, but cheaper than the 7D. For me, it's the best of both worlds. There are a couple of niggles I have with it, but it's my favourite from the three by far.

Edit: I forgot to mention, I don't know if this is just something that I've noticed, but the 60D doesn't overheat as often as the others that I've used. IIRC, I've not had the 60D overheat once, and I've been shooting on it fairly regularly since the start of the year - whereas I remember the 5D overheating several times during a short drama shoot. Thought it could just be a coincidence.

Also, just in response to DVStudio's comment - I thought I'd mention that the low-light performance of the 60D seems to be on a par with the 7D. I film mainly in pretty low light situations (mainly nightclubs), and using a Canon 1.4 50mm, it does a pretty admirable job. There's still some noise (as there will be with all digital cameras in low-light), but certainly nothing that NeatVideo can't sort out. So I wouldn't let low-light performance steer you away from the 60D towards the 7D.

Another thing to bear in mind though - the 5D mk III is due to be announced in the coming months, I believe. I don't know when it'll be available, or even what features are confirmed, but you might want to hold on a *bit* longer before you make your investment; you wouldn't want to spend $2k on something and then kick yourself when the MKIII is released.

Cheers,
Arktic.
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 7:42pm

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DVStudio

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Arktic wrote:

Also, just in response to DVStudio's comment - I thought I'd mention that the low-light performance of the 60D seems to be on a par with the 7D.
Perhaps it was a misunderstanding, but the fact is, I said the 5D Mark II was superior to the other three in low-light situtations. I never compared the 7D and 60D on that matter... wink
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 8:02pm

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JUIDAR

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Thanks guys I really appreciate all the feedback and key points I think I'm sold on the 60D.

The flip screen is def a mega bonus for video shooting!

smile
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 8:18pm

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ben3308

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Get the 60D body, the Canon 50mm f/1.8 II, the Sigma 30mm f/1.4, and an aftermarket battery grip, a Zoom H1, and some UV filters. You may think you want a more versatile wide angle, but you'll find that for video the mid-range is what you'll use 90% of the time. The 30mm is incredible as a versatile, fast prime and the 50mm is cheap but basically only a hundred bucks to get an extra 20mm when you need it.
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 8:28pm

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JUIDAR

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ben3308 wrote:

Get the 60D body, the Canon 50mm f/1.8 II, the Sigma 30mm f/1.4, and an aftermarket battery grip, a Zoom H1, and some UV filters. You may think you want a more versatile wide angle, but you'll find that for video the mid-range is what you'll use 90% of the time. The 30mm is incredible as a versatile, fast prime and the 50mm is cheap but basically only a hundred bucks to get an extra 20mm when you need it.
Thanks again Ben!

So the "Zoom H1" fits on the 60D with out any adapters?
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 9:26pm

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DVStudio

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JUIDAR wrote:


So the "Zoom H1" fits on the 60D with out any adapters?
Well, you can mount it on the camera, or even better, on a seperate tripod. If I gather correctly, you use this as a seperate mic, so it doesn't need a cable to the camera per say...
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 10:43pm

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JUIDAR

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DVStudio wrote:

JUIDAR wrote:


So the "Zoom H1" fits on the 60D with out any adapters?
Well, you can mount it on the camera, or even better, on a seperate tripod. If I gather correctly, you use this as a seperate mic, so it doesn't need a cable to the camera per say...
I was just going to pick me up one of these. biggrin

http://www.fullcompass.com/product/235523.html
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 10:51pm

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Arktic

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uhm...

Neither the Canon nor the H1 has XLR input, so I don't quite understand why you'd want that?

Also, I'd suggest that you don't mount it as suggested in that picture - you'll end up with a lot of noise being picked up from handling / focus pulling etc. And as ever, the golden rule of sound is to get the mic as close to the action as possible - so when you're doing a medium or long shot, the mic will be too far away to get decent sound (the Zoom recorders are excellent, but very atmospheric, rather than directional - so at long distances or in noisy environments, you'll struggle to get clean sound when it's far away from the subject).
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 11:04pm

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JUIDAR

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Arktic wrote:

uhm...

Neither the Canon nor the H1 has XLR input, so I don't quite understand why you'd want that?

Also, I'd suggest that you don't mount it as suggested in that picture - you'll end up with a lot of noise being picked up from handling / focus pulling etc. And as ever, the golden rule of sound is to get the mic as close to the action as possible - so when you're doing a medium or long shot, the mic will be too far away to get decent sound (the Zoom recorders are excellent, but very atmospheric, rather than directional - so at long distances or in noisy environments, you'll struggle to get clean sound when it's far away from the subject).
No no Arktic look at the link again it converts the XLR so that you can hook it up to the DLSR that way I can keep using my XLR cables and my boom mic with the 60D.
Posted: Sun, 6th Feb 2011, 11:26pm

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Arktic

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No, I think you need to look at the link again wink - "mini jack 1/8 to male XLR adapter", which means it will take a minijack microphone, and connect it to something with an XLR input (an XLR male being output and female being input).

It's not designed to work the other way around. That connector *may* work to cobble an XLR mic into your Canon by running a male to male 1/8 jack from it - but you're taking a balanced, grounded signal and jamming it into an unbalanced connector and additional unbalanced cable, which may possibly introduce hum/noise into the recording.

Plus, if your mic needs 48v phantom power, it just won't work. And you run the risk of damaging the minijack input by running heavy XLR cabling from it.

Beachtek make devices that take XLR microphones and run them into minijack inputs, without compromising on sound quality or damaging the input, and can also run phantom power: http://www.beachtek.com/dxaslr.html

But, instead of that, why not just get a Zoom H4n? It's got XLR and jack inputs - and you can run two mics into it at once, making it a very flexible solution.

Cheers,
Arktic.
Posted: Mon, 7th Feb 2011, 10:45am

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Simon K Jones

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These H4N things look pretty nifty. How suitable are they for recording other audio, such as podcasts, interviews, voiceovers etc?
Posted: Mon, 7th Feb 2011, 11:16am

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ben3308

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My friend Chase has used his H4n to record stage and live-action events/shows with me to get source audio, to record separate vocals for film, to record his grand piano, and to record his voice.

The two supplied microphones with the Zoom H4n are small, stereo condensers that work really well, all things considered, even more-so when you connect another XLR mic. The Zoom H1 features the EXACT SAME onboard mics, sans the XLR option, or the option to channel the hooked-up microphone to the same file as the onboard mics.
Posted: Mon, 7th Feb 2011, 1:30pm

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Arktic

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Tarn wrote:

These H4N things look pretty nifty. How suitable are they for recording other audio, such as podcasts, interviews, voiceovers etc?
That voiceover I recorded for this guy was recorded straight into the H4n with no external mic. I just used one channel from the stereo recording, and that was it. Also, I just recorded it right in my bedroom, which doesn't really have the greatest acoustics in the world.

I've used it on location to record pieces to camera when I just needed to run-and-gun something, as well as using it for live atmos / crowd atmos at gigs and performances.

And because you can record from the internal mics AND from two XLR inputs at once, it's an awesome bit of kit. Worth investing in.

Cheers,
Arktic.
Posted: Mon, 7th Feb 2011, 4:04pm

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Serpent

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A good setup for on-camera/run-n-gun, is mounting the H4N/recorder on a shoulder mount away from the camera and lens, and placing a long shotgun mike on the hotshoe, like so:



So if you are into that, a shoulder rig is a great investment. Really it's a great investment overall, makes camera-work awesome, and the SLR more versatile. I've added dual handles and a counterweight to mine since then, which I'd also recommend. Shoulder rigs can usually mount to tripods, or the camera can disconnect from it very quickly.

Yeah, mo' money.
Posted: Mon, 7th Feb 2011, 7:19pm

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JUIDAR

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Arktic wrote:

http://www.beachtek.com/dxaslr.html

Awesome this is what I was looking for!
Posted: Mon, 7th Feb 2011, 8:50pm

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ZenithProductions

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T2i/550D is the best if you ask me and since it's the less expensive, it let you some money to buy a mic, tripod, LCD or even another lens [I recommend f/1.8]
Posted: Mon, 7th Feb 2011, 10:25pm

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RodyPolis

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Canon just announced the t3i. So maybe you should wait just a little bit for that.

http://www.amazon.com/Canon-T3i-Digital-Imaging-Body/dp/B004M170YC/ref=br_lf_m_1000656541_1_1_ttl?ie=UTF8&s=photo&pf_rd_p=1288005122&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_t=1401&pf_rd_i=1000656541&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=0MR4GA7AKZBAN7FPDFWN

It got manual audio, and the swivel screen found in the 60d, along with some other new features. So I would wait and get this one instead.

One off topic question: How long do you think the current DSLRS will go before being severely outdated? Right now the image quality they produce look awesome and they're great cameras to have, but so were VHS cameras at one point. I think I should still be able to use my t2i 2-3 years from now for professional work (not that I will want to). Sure there will be new cameras coming out, but unless 3d takes over everything I think the image from the current DSLR's will be able to compete.
Posted: Mon, 7th Feb 2011, 10:30pm

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swintonmaximilian

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Hmm, I think that the image quality coming from dslr's will be substantially better in a year, and when they get rid of the line skipping and moire, and lessen the effects of rolling shutter, the current crop are going to look bad. That said, anything that allows you to get a good image now, will allow you you get a good image forever.
Posted: Mon, 7th Feb 2011, 10:59pm

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Aculag

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Why do they insist on putting out these incremental "replacements" instead of focusing on getting the problems that every one of their cameras has worked out? I can't wait for the 8D, which is exactly the same as a 7D, except it has a swivel LCD.

Canon, a swivel LCD and manual audio control is awesome, but inconsequential. You're making an imaging device. Get the moire, aliasing, and rolling shutter fixed, and THEN put out a new version. It's been like two years since the 5DMkII came out, and every camera they've made since then has had these issues. It's about time they start working on it. Panasonic already have cameras out that mostly solve these issues (not sure about the rolling shutter, but I know the GH2 has almost no aliasing/moire at all. Though it does have a smaller sensor [which doesn't really seem to make much difference, since the video doesn't use the entire sensor anyway]) and it doesn't even seem like Canon is even trying. They're too busy making sure that there's a DSLR in every price range, and every price range in between. rolleyes

These cameras are awesome, but they could be so much more awesome with just some simple (probably not really that simple, actually...) fixes. It's crazy.
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 12:24am

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JUIDAR

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WOW!

Is the Canon EOS Rebel T3i 18 MP just as good as the 60D?
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 12:44am

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Aculag

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JUIDAR wrote:

WOW!

Is the Canon EOS Rebel T3i 18 MP just as good as the 60D?
It's exactly the same as the T2i, 60D, and 7D.
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 1:31am

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Pooky

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Aculag wrote:

These cameras are awesome, but they could be so much more awesome with just some simple (probably not really that simple, actually...) fixes. It's crazy.
I'd go further in saying that nearly every big business in the entertainment sector seem to specialize in completely missing/ignoring/fighting against huge market opportunities.
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 2:02am

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JUIDAR

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Aculag wrote:

JUIDAR wrote:

WOW!

Is the Canon EOS Rebel T3i 18 MP just as good as the 60D?
It's exactly the same as the T2i, 60D, and 7D.
What no way why is it so much cheaper then?
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 2:12am

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DVStudio

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JUIDAR wrote:

What no way why is it so much cheaper then?
The T3i and T2i are exactly the same. They changed the label, box and fixed the audio issue and added a stupid screen. Big deal. The T2i and 7D are the same except for an LCD screen on the top and a bigger/more weather proof body (and one or two of the features I spoke of before).

Canon should have fixed this stuff, rather than realese a whole new camera. Still get the Canon 60D, I'd say. Don't wait for these ridiculously minor changes. Plus, the 60D already has these features...
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 3:17am

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ben3308

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The Canon 7D has different ergonomics and controllable, Kelvin temperature values to use for white balance, and a bigger ISO range.

The video difference aren't that drastic, but the white balance values are probably worth noting.
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 5:03am

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JUIDAR

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DVStudio wrote:

JUIDAR wrote:

What no way why is it so much cheaper then?
The T3i and T2i are exactly the same. They changed the label, box and fixed the audio issue and added a stupid screen. Big deal. The T2i and 7D are the same except for an LCD screen on the top and a bigger/more weather proof body (and one or two of the features I spoke of before).

Canon should have fixed this stuff, rather than realese a whole new camera. Still get the Canon 60D, I'd say. Don't wait for these ridiculously minor changes. Plus, the 60D already has these features...
If they are the same why would I spend a $1000 for the 60D when I could get the EOS Rebel T3i for $700?
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 5:06am

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ben3308

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The T3i is newer. Technology goes up, price goes down.
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 5:10am

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JUIDAR

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So I should def buy the T3i over the 60D then? lol
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 5:36am

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ben3308

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Honestly, just go do your own research. People here don't know about the T3i, really, it just came out. The research and clarification we could give would be exactly the same as the information you could find on your own.

Just saying, go do some comparative analysis. Pull up the B&H or Amazon or Canon US pages of either and see what the differences are, what you think they'd affect, and how much you value that price difference. A good way to look at the problem is that as long as you're sticking with cropped-sensor cameras (so just NOT the 5D Mark II), any money saved in the camera body purchase can go toward pricier (not more, but better) lenses.

Save 300 dollars here, pick up a Canon L-glass for the price of the Sigma 30mm, plus the 300 saved. Or something like that.
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 5:42am

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Aculag

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JUIDAR wrote:

So I should def buy the T3i over the 60D then? lol
The more you ask this question, the longer it will take you to get a camera. Newer and better cameras will come out all the time, and there is no sense waiting for a newer camera with minor changes, because you'll always be waiting. Stop asking people what to buy, and buy what you want. Nobody has even used a T3i yet, so how can anyone really answer your question? For all we know, it'll turn out to be the worst of the bunch. Just because it's newer doesn't necessarily make it a better choice.
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 7:03am

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Pooky

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Hell, I've been messing around with a Nikon D7000 and it holds up quite well (why does everybody ignore Nikon, anyway?).
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 7:09am

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ben3308

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Because Nikon doesn't really have their sh*t together, development since them actually conceiving the video SLR idea has been ridiculously slow, and the consensus amongst people who test these cameras exhaustively is that Canon (and in some instances Panasonic) outclasses Nikon in DSLR video in almost every category.
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 7:11am

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Pooky

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ben3308 wrote:

Because Nikon doesn't really have their sh*t together, development since them actually conceiving the video SLR idea has been ridiculously slow, and the consensus amongst people who test these cameras exhaustively is that Canon (and in some instances Panasonic) outclasses Nikon in DSLR video in almost every category.
There's that big of a difference? Footage looks great to me. Agreed on the slowness thing, though.
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 9:30am

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Simon K Jones

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As well as the extra features, the 60D has a generally much nicer control layout. It's considerably less fiddly to use than the 550D, especially when you're just getting started.
Posted: Tue, 8th Feb 2011, 10:01am

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Arktic

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Tarn wrote:

As well as the extra features, the 60D has a generally much nicer control layout. It's considerably less fiddly to use than the 550D, especially when you're just getting started.
Agreed for the most part - except for the annoying 'lock' button on the mode select dial - I've literally never accidentally changed modes without meaning to, but sometimes I do need to switch from one mode to another quite quickly, and the lock button makes it a two-handed task.

Hardly the world's biggest bugbear, but still...

It's still my favourite of the Canon range, though smile
Posted: Tue, 1st Mar 2011, 2:02pm

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jotoki

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Just a reply to what Ben said on here. It is true the Nikon has lagged behind with development on the video front. Indeed its been quite frustrating for me being invested in the nikon standard. All that has changed with the release of the D7000 which in all the reports I've read, at least matches if not surpasses Canon in the video department while also being a thumping photographic camera also with close on fully professional results and facilities. I myself will be buying one in the next month or so now the price has come down. Well what are company bonuses for wink I am as much a photography as a video person though.

All I would say is sometimes it's better to release one very good peice of kit after some delay than just bang out a slightly modified unit and change the name of it each year. You just ask fxhome (he says assuming the long long awaited new software releases are worth the wait when then are finally complete). Don't make me a liar fxhome!!!! *laughs manically*
Posted: Tue, 1st Mar 2011, 10:22pm

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3dmus

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As much as I like my Nikon D7000, there are a few things I'm not so happy with:

- no manual audio control
- allegedly captures audio in a fairly restricted range (like up to 12Khz or something, can't recall exactly). Haven't tested this myself though.
- can't change aperture in live view (but you can change ISO and shutter speed). Bit problematic, especially if you would use a loupe (b/c you would need to go out of live view to change aperture, so need to look through viewfinder)

Other than that, takes great video and I ordered myself a H4N to record audio seperately (oh, and stills are great too!)
Posted: Wed, 2nd Mar 2011, 12:30am

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ben3308

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No aperture change in Live View? How do you deal with that? biggrin
Posted: Wed, 2nd Mar 2011, 7:22am

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3dmus

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Yeh, bit of an issue. I tend to set all exposure via the viewfinder and then go to live view for recording. But indeed, for less than static shots, changing on the fly is a pain. I am hoping that this is something that can and will be corrected in a firmware update!
Posted: Wed, 2nd Mar 2011, 7:27am

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3dmus

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sorry, should have been more accurate: you can change aperture in live view if you have a lens with an aperture ring...just not via the body.

And also, this all applies to manual mode...in aperture mode you can apparently change the apperture in live view (I never use aperture mode though).
Posted: Wed, 2nd Mar 2011, 4:13pm

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FCRabbath

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I'd get the T3i for sure. Then a H4N, and you are set. Make sure however you get a decent lens.
Posted: Thu, 3rd Mar 2011, 9:09am

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Simon K Jones

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I just got my hands on an H4n. Amazing bit of kit!
Posted: Thu, 3rd Mar 2011, 11:57am

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3dmus

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me too! Arrived yesterday. Very versatile...and initial impressions re sound quality are certainly positive.
Posted: Thu, 3rd Mar 2011, 8:59pm

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DVStudio

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FCRabbath wrote:

I'd get the T3i for sure.
Ehh, I dunno FC, personally I'd buy the 60D and the H4N might not even be necessary in that case...

Regardless, they're great cameras! Out of curiosity, do you use the 7D or the 5DMk2?
Posted: Fri, 4th Mar 2011, 3:09am

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ben3308

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He used the 7D for a few comedy shorts, then switched to the 5D Mark II with the 28-135mm kit lens for his dramatic stuff on the DSLR.
Posted: Fri, 4th Mar 2011, 3:32am

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DVStudio

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Cheers, Ben! wink
Posted: Fri, 4th Mar 2011, 4:01am

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FXhomer32915

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Rating: -1

The camera is not as important as what you do with it. Go to http://www.405themovie.com/Home.asp and look at their FAQ page. They explain what they used and their post-production work as well as the tools they used to accomplish it. Optimally, you want a “three-CCD chip” camera, but it’s not written in stone. The camera they used for the 405 movie was a very inexpensive low-end “single chip” Canon camera and they got spectacular results, mainly due to their post-production work. While they are professionals and used some pretty expensive 3D and editing software, you can do just as well with the free open-source 3D Compositing software, Blender http://www.blender.org/ and FXHome’s Effects Lab or the Video Lab package. First, the “3 CCD chip” designation simply means you have one chip for each of the primary colors, red, green, and blue, which allows for some pretty spectacular resolution and color separation, but it’s not necessary in order to get a great picture. First of all, getting a white balance with a white image (like a piece of copy paper) is one of the problems. The better option in to use the white balance circuitry to remove the undesirable elements of the picture leaving the quality you want. For example, using Microsoft Paint, you can create a very light blue and a very light green sheet in lieu of the plain white paper. Using the light blue, the white balance will remove the “blue” cast common to videoed images and will impart the clean and warm film-like picture you’re looking for. The light-green sheet will remove the “green” haze fluorescent lighting casts over videoed images to achieve the same warm film-like result. This works on any digital video camera. While the 3-CCD is defined as “broadcast quality,” a single chip camera will give you a surprisingly great picture and will leave you more money for post-production equipment and software. Speaking of software, your FXHome software will do almost anything you can do with many high-end packages, like those from Adobe. The benefit is, they don’t cost anywhere as much as the Adobe packages either. Go on to http://www.videocopilot.net/tutorials/ and compare them with the FXHome tutorials. Much of the http://www.videocopilot.net/tutorials/ can be adapted to work with the FXHome packages. The bottom line is, get a good camera made by a reliable manufacturer, like Canon, Panasonic, Sony, etc. and only pay for what you need. As I said, the post production work is more important than the initial photography, provided you get a good, clean picture and any good camera will give you a good, clean picture.
Posted: Fri, 4th Mar 2011, 6:10am

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ben3308

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FXhomer32915 wrote:

Optimally, you want a “three-CCD chip” camera


Three-CCD cameras are vastly and increasingly outdated by CMOS sensors inside HDSLRs and higher-end video sensors.
Posted: Fri, 4th Mar 2011, 9:25am

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Arktic

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As I said, the post production work is more important than the initial photography
What? They have software to sort out poorly lit, badly framed and out of focus shots now? Great!