EDIT: Philip wanted to add in regards to his “fast access to audio levels” comment, that it can be done as follow: Settings-Custom key settings- Custom button (3 is easy to access)-Audio Rec Level. Now you can access your level directly. The Sony A7s has become the turn-to camera for many smaller run-and-gun purposes due to its size, its video functionality (including proper XAVC S codec, peaking, zebra …) and the incredible low-light performance. In fact, whenever I attend industry meetings like NAB or when I’m giving workshops I’m constantly amazed how omnipresent this camera has become in so little time, after it was introduced about a year ago. It certainly has taken over our cinema5D office here, with every team member using the camera constantly, and me personally owning 2 by now … The market is much different from 5 years ago, when the Canon 5D Mark II was first introduced, with many more large-sensor cameras to chose from. However, it is fair to say that the Sony A7s has taken the spot of the 5D in the same price bracket, which is easy to see considering how omnipresent the camera is these days. Late last year, my friend Philip Bloom has given a free Sony A7s workshop at our main site sponsor’s headquarters B&H in New York for a selected few. Attendees were to shoot a short film with the A7s in a short amount of time. Before they went out to gather their footage, Philip ran through the most important settings of the camera which you absolutely need to know in order to shoot proper video with the Sony A7s. People who are used to shooting with the A7s might know most of what is discussed in this video already. However, I urge every A7s user to watch it – there’s a few things that many people certainly weren’t aware of before: Some interesting topics covered in this free seminar, among many other things: • Different gamma curves in different Picture Profiles (e.g. Cine2, Cine3, Cine4 or SLOG2) • Detail/Sharpness settings • Dual video file recording with XAVC S and MP4 proxies (which can be transferred to your smartphone to be posted online right away) • How to expose properly with this camera (avoiding noise) • Setting up audio for internal and external recording (attention: Philip told me he made a mistake in this seminar – there actually is a way to change audio levels during recording, but you have to assign audio to a custom button to do that) • Frame guides for different aspect ratios • external HDMI quirksRead more
Last year AJA surprised us with the announcement of a high quality, affordable, 4K shooting, cinema camera. The AJA Cion was a tool we were looking forward to use and now, after a long wait and after the public release we could finally analyse and test it thoroughly. Here is our complete AJA Cion review with some awkward surprises and a long list of pro’s and con’s. This is a camera that needs careful observation before the shooting can start. Read on to see all our findings. If you plan on shooting with the AJA Cion we recommend you read our new article: 10 important tips to help you master the AJA Cion In this review we will present objective test results from our labs, compare the camera to other contenders, and try to give you a subjective observation of how the camera worked for us. We will look at the following aspects: Page 1: Features at a Glance Page 2: Sensor Tests (& comparison to Blackmagic Production Camera 4K) Page 3: Ergonomics & Handling Page 4: Pro’s & Con’s | Conclusion AJA Cion Review – Features at a Glance Sensor: The AJA Cion’s sensor has some great technical features. It is a 4:3 APS-C sized global shutter sensor that upon closer inspection had a striking resemblance to the sensor we find in the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K (We do not claim it is the same sensor). The sensor also performs very similarly in terms of lowlight and dynamic range. More on that later. Global shutter CMOS sensor 4K pixel readout 22.5mm x 17mm 4:3 APS-C sized sensor (a little smaller than super35) Recording Formats: The camera records in the ProRes format. This is fantastic, a great recording format, easy to edit. Additionally the Cion does 120fps RAW via the 4 SDI ouputs on the back. This didn’t work with the Atomos Shogun in our tests. Apple ProRes 4444 (up to 30fps) 12-bit Apple ProRes 422 (up to 60fps) 10-bit RAW externally (up to 120fps) Useful Connectors: The AJA Cion is a camera that gives you lots of connections. The idea of an “open architecture” camera, that is highly compatible is one that any operator will welcome. 6 SDI outputs in total 2 hdmi outputs (one of them supports 4K) 2 XLR balanced analog inputs (with phantom power + dedicated boost), 24bit 48khz Well positioned headphone jack for audio monitoring Thunderbolt for direct recording via PC (up to 30fps) 2 LANC connectors for remote control D-tap connector to power an accessory and more Battery (life): The AJA Cion comes with a 2-pin battery connector behind its back plate so you can install your own V-mount or Anton Bauer battery plate. Battery life is extensive on the Cion. It lasts forever. Standby time on our fully charged 126Wh V-mount battery: 3h 15m GO TO PAGE 2 → Sensor Tests • Page 1: AJA Cion Review – Features at a Glance • Page 2: AJA Cion Review – Sensor Tests • Page 3: AJA Cion Review – Ergonomics & Handling • Page 4: AJA Cion Review – Pro’s & Con’s | ConclusionRead more
The Canon EOS 100D is Canon’s newest entry level DSLR and once again: It also shoots video. I tested the camera and took it out for a walk in the highlands of Scotland. It’s lightweight, it’s compact, it shoots video. A travel application is the logical conclusion to test this full fledged DSLR. Beautiful landscapes are a nice thing to shoot. Unfortunately the aliasing the sensor produces makes it less ideal to shoot something that has a lot of detail, like landscapes. In terms of video quality this camera is similar to the other affordable Canon DSLR’s out there. So if you’re only looking for this kind of video performance and you don’t care about functionality you will not notice a difference between this one, the new 700D, the 4 year old 7D or anything in between. You can get the Canon EOS T3i for $549 right now (was $400) which offers a very similar look.Read more
Leica M type 240- video review. (Non of the written here is relevant to the photo section of this camera) Deep into the 4th year of the HDSLR revolution Leica released the M 240, their full frame camera costing $6950. Spending a day with the camera left me wondering, was Leica ever talking to any professional cameraman before implementing HD recording for this unit or just decided to “join a trend” without really meaning this camera to be a capable working video tool?. In my opinion the video quality coming out of the camera is very disappointing and its operation in video mode is not easy/logical. I hope features/video quality can be enhance with a firmware update.Read more
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