Camera Questions

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by fox10078, Jan 20, 2011.

  1. fox10078 macrumors 6502

    fox10078

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    #1
    Hello, I'm looking to buy a camera that shoots HD video, with manual focus and exposure and high quality imaging, I've been looking into a Nikon D7000 because I have a good amount of the lens's that would be compatible with it. But in school I've used Panasonic Solid State Camcorders and have had good results.

    The point is, I want to know how if Nikon would be able to give me the same results as the Panasonic, or would I be better off just getting the Panasonic.

    Cheers


    http://catalog2.panasonic.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ModelDetail?displayTab=O&storeId=11201&catalogId=13051&itemId=361001&catGroupId=112502&surfModel=AG-HMC40
    http://imaging.nikon.com/products/imaging/lineup/digitalcamera/slr/d7000/index.htm
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #2
    The Panasonic is a dedicated camcorder, the Nikon is a D-SLR with video capabilities added onto it.
    As nice at it is with having the possibilities to change to different lenses with the Nikon, the Panasonic would still win because of its dedication to video compared to the Nikon, though the Nikon might actually deliver better pictures due to DoF and the variety of dedicated lenses.
    For me personally it is about the proper handling of the camera, how you can hold it and walk around with it and have one hand dedicated for the focus and zoom rings.
    I began to shoot with shoulder cameras (Beta SP) and also used many camcorders (VX 1/2000, FX-1, DVX-100, ...) and once used a EOS 5D Mark II and the EOS was pretty much tied to a tripod, once or twice we used it hand held, but it was a "bitch" even with a focus puller. Unless you have the additional money to get additional gear to make the Nikon a dedicated camcorder, and there is gear out there, I would go with the Panasonic, unless you plan to shoot only from the tripod and need the versatility of the lenses.

    I don't know what your time frame is and even your budget (2000 USD as it seems), but if you can hold off until NAB (April), maybe you can get your hands on a Scarlet.
     
  3. handsome pete macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2008
    #3
    The Scarlet is going to be just as modular as a DSLR and is still going to cost a lot (much more than $2000 at least). This is also the first I'm hearing about a release at NAB.

    I agree with your points on shooting with DSLRs vs. dedicated video cameras. What will really help decide for the original poster is what he plans on shooting and his actual budget. It really does take a good amount of money to make a DSLR a quality video camera.
     
  4. fox10078 thread starter macrumors 6502

    fox10078

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    #4
    I have a budget around 2000 USD, I'm going to be shooting short stories, or whatever I can come up with. It's basically going to be a dedicated video unit.
     
  5. puckhead193 macrumors G3

    puckhead193

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #5
    as long as you take the time to focus and all that good stuff the DSLR is ok. If your doing a lot of movement forget about it.

    I personally am not a fan of DSLR for video. For my needs it doesn't work. (I shoot mostly sports)
     
  6. Macnoviz macrumors 65816

    Macnoviz

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2006
    Location:
    Roeselare, Belgium
    #6
    I have a camcorder because I need it for videojournalism, where you don't have time to really focus and adjust settings between shots. But for short stories, films, etc. I think I would prefer a DSLR, where you have a shallower DoF and better low light conditions (and interchangeable lenses). But you won't be able to move it around very much, unless you get a shoulder mount or something, and you'll have to take time before each shot.
     
  7. THX1139, Jan 22, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2011

    THX1139 macrumors 68000

    THX1139

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2006
    #7
    There is quite a bit of difference between the formats.

    The DSLR is great for shooting narrative work where you plan to cut multiple scenes together. It shines if you need to have control over the visual style that is achieved with depth of field & interchangeable lenses. The relative weakness (for some people) is lack of good audio inputs (no XLR), lack of good autofocus, especially for fast moving subjects. DSLRS also have a tendency to create moire and noise due to the size of the CMOS chip and downscaling the resolution. You also have to deal with the "jello" effect on side pans. Shooting on a DSLR is a lot like shooting with regular movie camera - plan to have a focus puller, and limited record time AND limitations on editing codecs. You also can't shoot by hand due to camera shake - you would need an expensive steadi-tracker/shoulder rig or lock the camera on a tripod. If you can live with this, then the DSLR shoots beautiful footage, but only if you know what you are doing.

    Video allows for more continuous action and longer record times. You also have excellent autofocus and XLR inputs for capturing great audio to the camera as you record (whereas, the DSLR audio is best captured from a secondary recording device). Video is easier and somewhat faster to work with. It's excellent for documentary, weddings, news, etc... The drawbacks (for some people) is that video looks like video. Unless you buy an expensive ground-glass focusing device, you'll have little control over depth of field. Unless you are willing to spend a lot of money, you also won't have interchangeable lens. The plus side, is that you have better options for zoom and you don't have to buy extra lenses. If you want a "film look" on video, you have to do a few tricks to make it look like film. Some can be done in camera and lighting, and others during the editing process. Oh... and one more thing that is kind of debatable. Video cameras have a tendency to have more noise in low light situations. Of course, that depends on which camera you buy! However, video cameras are easier to light for.

    In summary: if you are looking at shooting stuff that gives you the greatest creative control and looks more like it was shot on film - then buy a DSLR and prepare to deal with the short-comings of the format and the relative expense of buying accessories (they are more expensive than video).

    If you are looking at shooting documentaries or anything that requires a run-and-gun shooting style... AND you don't mind the look of video, then buy a video camera. The final caveat to that - in my research, I have found that video cameras that compare in visual quality to DSLRs cost 2 to 3 times more than DSLRs. Although, you do get more in return.

    By the way... the RED Scarlet is vapor-ware. They have been talking about it a long time now and many people think it's not going to happen. The DSLR market is moving much faster and RED just can't catch up. But if it DID manage to get produced, you would be looking at several thousand bucks just to get a basic setup. If you are willing to wait for RED, then you might as well wait to see what Canon does in the coming year. The RED scarlet would be over-kill for most people.
     
  8. fox10078 thread starter macrumors 6502

    fox10078

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    #8
    What kind of accessories would be needed to do filiming with a DSLR? (Besides the general lighting and sound equipment)
     
  9. handsome pete macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2008
    #9
    First up would be an audio solution. On board audio through most DSLRs is terrible. There are a couple of ways to go with this, but the best solution is still recording externally and syncing in post. You have more control and will get better quality.

    Next would be some sort of viewfinder or monitor. The LCD screens on DSLRs are pretty good, but you really need something bigger for critical focus. So you can either magnify with a viewfinder, or attach a portable monitor.

    Going handheld without some sort of rig or support can be difficult. This can get quite expensive, although there seem to be some decent budget solutions. And there's always the do it yourself route.

    Maintaining and pulling focus is another issue with DSLRs. While it can be done without one, it is strongly recommended to use a follow focus. These are also not cheap (at least the good ones aren't).

    The most important part is the lenses. This can range from affordable to insanely expensive. A lot of still lenses simply aren't good for video. You want to find ones with long focus throws and if you go with zooms, then you want something with a constant aperture.
     
  10. fox10078 thread starter macrumors 6502

    fox10078

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    #10
    Is there any specific one you'd recommend?
     
  11. THX1139, Jan 23, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2011

    THX1139 macrumors 68000

    THX1139

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2006
    #11
    What you are asking is very subjective. You should be willing to do your own research and not depend too much on how other people think you should spend your money. If you want to know about specific products, then go to youtube and search DSLR and make your own choice based on your budget and need. Seriously, if you search for DSLR follow focus, you'll get all kinds of comparison videos to help you with your choice.
     

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