It’s the most affordable of Canon’s “cinema cameras” and sports the same sensor as the much more expensive C500 and C300 cameras. It has high dynamic range, very good response in lowlight environments and delivers a sharp and unpolluted, filmic image. As a documentary camera this one is my number 1 choice no questions asked. In terms of ergonomics here’s a huge difference to everything else that’s out there making one-man-band shooting a reality.
The price seemed steep at first, but when I started working with this camera I realized that it offers so much more than just another new video body, this one is an all around professional solution.
The internal codec is not very strong, but using a harddisk recorder via hdmi will give you the compression quality required for serious productions. Highly Recommended
The C100 is the little sister of the C300, features the exact same 4K sensor (yet 1080p output), but it’s a lot cheaper. It’s also smaller, and its form factor can really compared to a bigger DSLR. Its screen is attached to the back of the camera which makes it less versatile then the C300’s solution, but it’s rotatable too. The viewfinder is much worse than on the C300 and I don’t recommend using it. The main difference between the two cameras is the much weaker AVCHD codec (24MBit vs. 50MBit and 4:2:0 vs. 4:2:2 color space in the C300) that the C100 uses. This can be worked around however using an inexpensive external recorder like the Atomos Ninja – because the C100 outputs 4:2:2. Imagewise the C100 is very close to the C300 (which is logical due to the same sensor), but using an external recorder puts it VERY close to its bigger brother. Small downside: the C100 doesn’t do any slow motion at all. Other than that, I think it delivers by far the best image in this league of entry-level 35mm cameras.
This is my main working horse camera these days. Its shape and form make it extremely versatile – the flip-out screen can go any direction and many positions without attaching it to a rig. The camera itself is very small and can go into places where other cinema cameras simply can’t. It’s very easy to rig on your shoulder and works beautifully from there. The best thing about its ergonomics is that you can work with it like with a DSLR but its screen and connectors make it so much more versatile even for higher end productions.
The image out of this camera is astounding and broadcasters and production companies alike have fallen in love with it over the past 1.5 years for a good reason (it definitely is the most popular 35mm camera for TV out there right now!). With C-Log you can get a lot of dynamic range out of this camera, and its native ISO of 850 makes it extremely light sensitive. The noise pattern in the shadows even at higher ISO’s is much prettier than from older Canon DSLRs (5D Mark II, 7D). The only real downside of this camera is its 8-bit codec which can be limiting in post production. For 95% of my work it does not matter though, and the 50MBit MXF codec is a perfect balance between size, quality and efficiency.
Great camera but I find the picture to be “too clean at times”. Personally I prefer the HDSLR look and most definitely the Canon 1D C look.
For slow motion work beyond 60p the Sony FS700 is currently the only affordable solution out there. Some stunning works have been created using this tool and there’s some powerful tech in it, but overall this one lacks ergonomics and ease of use in every day working situations.
This is a camera you should run a full test on before you use it, because it gets better when you know its weaknesses and can adjust for example your lighting setup and accessories accordingly. Overall I find the design hard to work with and the sensor response is not as filmic as HDSLR’s or the C100/C300 cameras.
The camera is very lightweight yet feels comfortable on the shoulder.
Lightweight means you can easily mount it on your existing HDSLR accessories like a slider or tripod. Needless to say that by having a shoulder mount video camera the need for a rig and external audio device is eliminated.
The most striking weakness of this camera is the absence of a built-in ND filter
Picture quality is good for the price. Be aware that rolling shutter is severe, so plan your shots accordingly when possible.