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Old 08-29-2012, 01:28 PM   #11
Concord
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Default Re: Which Indie camera?

Another vote, at least theoretically, for the BlackMagic camera:

http://prolost.com/blog/2012/8/22/bl...ma-camera.html

I have the Canon 5dII and T2i and they're great, but not terribly easy to use as video cameras. (They were, after all, designed first as still cameras. Video was an afterthought. They scan still produce great video, though.) Their audio is good only for a synch track; you should be using dual system sound anyway, and the Zoom H4N is cheap and sounds great.

I shoot most of my stuff on the 5DII.

I discuss cameras a little bit here, with examples. Hope you find it useful.
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Old 08-29-2012, 07:55 PM   #12
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Default Re: Which Indie camera?

Thanx for the input, Concord. Your link was very helpful!
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Old 08-29-2012, 11:15 PM   #13
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Default Re: Which Indie camera?

Canon C300, the film camera equivalent to the film stills 5D, although with much greater capabilities and some really cool features.
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Old 08-30-2012, 08:24 PM   #14
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Default Re: Which Indie camera?

Very nice lead, Spacefarer! I googled the Canon C300 and saw a nice demo. It truly has several benefits to my liking, however, I wasn't too thrilled about the price. 15 grand! Still, when I'm ready to upgrade to a HD I would be a fool if I didn't considered the C300.
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Old 08-31-2012, 07:58 AM   #15
Kenneth Fisher
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Default Re: Which Indie camera?

I know a fair amount about this topic. You should start with your budget, and then I can provide recommendations.

FIRST: DO NOT BUY AN XL2! The XL2 is an old standard definition camcorder and is not meant to produce footage for high-definition displays.

***

The Black Magic camera is very cool, but you need to have a lot of storage space to work with the files, so be prepared to spend one thousand or more in hard drives if you are doing proper backups and are shooting anything of length. You'll also need to rig the camera, and you'll need to setup your own battery solution for longer shoots.

Also, I hate to correct other posters, but not everything the Black Magic cam shoots instantly looks like Indie film. It shoots raw footage (Like a stills camera) and you need to understand what you are doing. After you shoot, assuming you are shooting raw (Which is the big selling feature of the camera), you have to color your footage which is an art/science that takes a of of time to learn. It won't be easy for a lay person to use. Prepare to spend time learning about it. Cool camera though.

By the way, if you order one, it will take a while to show up. It hasn't shipped yet and the new-jack DPs have ordered the hell out of it so it will take a while for you to get one.

***

If you don't want to spend a lot of money, want a smaller rig, and you aren't going to shot for a little while, you may want to take a look at the Canon EOS-M http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...mera_with.html

Otherwise, if you want to start shooting now, I would say pick up a used Canon t3i. You don't need to get a degree to use it, take a little time to learn about it and you can shoot some nice work, and once you get your feet wet you can shoot really nice still shots as well.

It records onto cheap SD cards, which are so cheap now that you can use them as your archive after you transfer the footage to your hard-drive.

Used: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...i_Digital.html

New: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...i_Digital.html

Also New: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...i_Digital.html

Ken
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Old 08-31-2012, 12:28 PM   #16
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Default Re: Which Indie camera?

Specman: If you want the best bang for the buck -- by far -- AND the ability to shoot Hollywood/indie qulaity movies (assuming you have the basic skils), get the Blackmagic Cinema Camera and a couple of prime lenses.
There's test footage out now you can find on Google and the reviews from the pros are in at places like NoFilmSchool.com. The Blackmagic blows everything else away, and is being compared the the Arri Alexa and RED cameras that cost more than 5-10 times more.
But whatever you do, do not throw your money away on an XL2. That would be qa big step backward, not forward, if you're at all serious about doing this.
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Old 08-31-2012, 01:49 PM   #17
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Default Re: Which Indie camera?

Thanks for the wisdom Jtwg50 and Kenneth Fisher! I must say The Magic is very interesting to me as well as The Canon t3i. I wanted to try and stick with the larger body camera but it seems now that I'm interested in this side of production the industry standard is changing. Who knew? Guess I should be more concerned with the quality of recording so I must adjust my thinking a bit. Still thanks for your input. I'd be lost without it!
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Old 08-31-2012, 08:35 PM   #18
Kenneth Fisher
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Default Re: Which Indie camera?

Specman, I think what you are referring to as a "larger body camera" like the XL2, is better thought of as a "traditional video camera".

A traditional video camera will give you a completely different look than a camera like the Black Magic Cinema Camera (BMCC) or the T3i.

You're better off thinking of the BMCC and the T3i as "Cinema Cameras".

Let me tell you that as somebody who makes money shooting traditional video, cinema shooting is a totally different animal and in general more difficult. It's actually cinematography. Think of it as serious photography but with moving images.

***

Whichever way you go, you also need to think about more than just the camera. There is audio to consider as well as lighting. And can your computer handle your needs? If not add that to the budget too.

Both the BMCC and T3i require that you purchase lenses for them. Not just one lens, but lenses for different situations. This adds up quick. And if you start rigging these cameras they become larger immediately.

There is really a lot more to the topic of shooting digital cinema than I could possibly inform you about here. Before you drop $3000 on the BMCC, or even the under $600 T3i you should do some research so you know what you are getting into.

And my recommendation is that you wait until the BMCC is released and in the wild with lots of reviews, information and sample footage before you order one. It will be a while before you can get your hands on one anyway.

***

The other way to go if you are more interested in just shooting your content, and not as much interested in making images that "look like a movie" is to buy a traditional video camera that comes with a fixed lens. Your work will look like video but it can still look very good.

Lots of people have started out with video cameras and then when they got some notice they let the experts handle the cinematography.

And remember, content is king.

Last edited by Kenneth Fisher : 08-31-2012 at 08:56 PM.
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Old 08-31-2012, 08:38 PM   #19
SpecMan13
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Default Re: Which Indie camera?

Thanx for the input Jtwg50 and Kenneth Fisher!


Also, I know nothing takes the place of a damn good hd camcorder but in my research I've noticed some good sh!t added and/or created in post production with little more than a small green screen and a desktop. How much more does having a good editing program (Apple Final Cut) help with the quality of your project?
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Old 08-31-2012, 08:44 PM   #20
Kenneth Fisher
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Default Re: Which Indie camera?

Specman, do yourself a big favor before you break open the piggy bank and read up!

Black Magic Cinema camera Forum: http://bmcuser.com

Direct link to a forum area dedicated to Canon cameras in the same class as the T3i: http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/forumdispl...87-Canon-APS-C (Go up two levels in this forum and prepared to be overwhelmed by all the options available to you)

DVinfo.net, a forum where I think you will generally find more balanced opinions:
http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/

Two blogs that have a lot of information on digital cinematography, but I would read them with a grain of salt:

http://www.eoshd.com/
http://nofilmschool.com/

***

And other cameras nobody has mentioned on this thread yet, are the Panasonic GH2 and soon to be released Panasonic GH3.

Have phun!

~ Ken

Last edited by Kenneth Fisher : 08-31-2012 at 08:58 PM.
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