Archive for the ‘Camera’ Category

As if the already in production “hack” was not already helping DSLR users, the team at Magic Lantern has released what they are calling their “professional” upgrade. I can say that I’ve been using it myself and I love it and I can also say that I’ve probably not used all the features and functionality that it can offer to its fullest but I’m doing more with it than most. A partner of mine especially loves the intervalometer feature so much he returned his amazon purchased intervalometer and got himself something else for the money. I love the feature of being able to listen to audio now, but I still prefer to have a independent audio recorded on a H4n or the likes whenever possible.

Here is the a link to their site and where you can download the latest rendition of the application.  Magic Lantern 

Also, with all the work they’ve done for us DSLR users, please please donate to their cause! It take a lot of time and effort and love for what they do to make our lives easier with the aid of their software.  I know I did!  For me, the aid of the sweet ISOs spots has been very useful, the intervalometer, which I’ve used for the time lapses and last but not least the histograms and ability to see the audio levels. A true labor of love is what I would call all their efforts and it continues to get better. You mus check out their new site as well!  So all you Canon users if you don’t know about Magic Lantern, here is your chance, somethings may excite you to try it and some things you may be like “eh, does nothing for me”.  In either case you know the option is there and you can choose your tools of mass film destruction!

Good Luck and Happy Shooting!

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Ok so in a previous post I spoke about the Black Magic Design Cinema Camera. Well on Wednesday the 25th, the Atlanta Cutters had an event which featured some of Black Magic Design’s goodies.  I won’t go into too much details about the camera but you can read more details here. Bob Caniglia, the Senior Regional Manager, said that the camera at the event was the ONLY one in the US at this point.  Still in prototype stage.  There hoping for a ship time in the near future but the date is not confirmed.  At first glance the camera looked great, it was not beefed up with any super accessories as most cameras are.  It had a canon lens, I believe it was a 24-105.  Bob said that some menu items were not accessible at that time.  The aluminum body felt sturdy.  As I peered thru LCD, the image looked like the Technicolor Cinestyle Picture Style for the DSLRs, which means some awesome depth in post.

We all know where to find the specs on this camera so I won’t go into that here. Now it’s been said that some times confidence is what sells an item, not just the specs or the bells and whistles.  I heard many participants of the event say that they were not convinced, there were too many “I don’t knows” and “We’ll have to see once it’s released”.

Now with this open ended platform, they can possibly increase from 2.5k to higher with a firmware upgrade making this camera like the Red, a future proof unit in terms of increased functionality and new menu capabilities.  It was said that the limitation was due only to the media’s capacity or through put.  Another issue is the internal battery system.  The next model will probably have a way to remove the batteries, because in most cases you may not be around a power source the whole and time you are then restricted by it’s use if you run out of batter life and you are not near a power source. The currently in place procedure for replacement of the 2 year life battery is to send the unit in and they would replace it.

As a new comer in the film camera arena, it has lots of support due to it’s expected features and capabilities and of course PRICE POINT! I mean we’ve already spent $3k on the Canon 5D MkII and more for the 5D MkIII, so why not break the 1080p barrier and go into the realm of 2k.

With all that said, it’s really up to you the filmmakers to choose your weapons of mass destruction!

HAPPY FILMMAKING TO ALL!

So while we’ve been waiting for the 5D Mk III and the we’ve been playing with the C300 and the Scarlet by Red, another player has been making a lot of noise in the background! A company named Black Magic Designs have come up with a unit that places a lot of very high end features in a very cost effective package for ALL filmmakers alike.

Please say hello to the Black Magic Cinema Camera

Now this camera impressed me with the stats out of the gate and for such a reasonable price point.  Not to say anything but it’s almost what I expected from the C300 and was hoping for some in the 5D Mk III but that’s another story!

“The Blackmagic Cinema Camera features an amazing 2.5K image sensor with a wide 13 stops of dynamic range for a true digital film camera. You get a built-in SSD recorder, popular open standard uncompressed RAW and compressed file formats, compatibility with quality EF and ZE mount lenses, LCD touchscreen monitoring plus metadata entry, all packed into an exciting hand held design!” This was taken from the site itself.  From what I can tell the industry is a buzz with this new entry into the film world.  It’s compatible with EF lenses and since I’m with Canon already that helps me out.  Although I was planning to get the PL set when I get my Scarlet.  So the only thing I see so far is the lack of more FPS, it goes to 30, there goes my dream of super slow mo’ EFX without using a plugin…but again I digress.

For the money this camera, based on the specs, should produce some very stunning images.  We’ll wait to see the explosion of tests that will undoubtedly start to trickle in as some more people get their hands on this unit.

For more information please see the Blackmagic Designs website for all the juicy tidbits!

From what I can see from the information, it’s gonna be a pretty cool unit that will offer a lot of things to filmmakers! Oh I didn’t mention that it comes with Davinci Resolve and I love the color editing features in that application.  I had to download the light just to see it work!  I’ll tell you more about that later

HAPPY SHOOTING!

Ok, so I know I haven’t written in a while. Lots of things happening, good things, growing and learning! So enough of that…

Canon finally announces the Canon EOS 5D Mk III! How many years ago now did the famous “Reverie”, The first 1080p short film photographed with the Canon EOS 5D MKII by Vincent LaForet was released to the world, changing thing forever. Since then, there have been many a films made and continue to be made by this wonderful camera. Some would venture to say that the arrival of this camera was more anticipated than the Cinema Camera Canon released late last year. Don’t get me wrong now, I think Canon’s got it! The Lenses, the ability to hit low light situations with ease. Like I heard another filmmaker say, I know what “I” want and I’m gunning for the Scarlett unless a shift in the space time continuum makes my reality something completely different. But anyway, back to the Mk III.

We’ve all seen how beautiful the images are from this full frame camera, from stills to captivating movies. It’s been boasted that the 5D Mk II was seen on the set of Iron Man and of course Shane Hurlbet’s Act of Valor I believe was shot with that with Letus’ new gear also “House” DP Gale Tattersall, just to name a few. Films that have been showing in a lot of the film festivals have been filmed by this camera! To say that this is a fluke is crazy. The camera takes wonderfully astounding images. But you can have a wonderfully astounding image and have a bad story and it all will suck then.

I’m not going to get into the specifics of this camera here, seeing that you guys can go to Canon’s website and find out the juicy details yourself.  But I already know that the chosen few that will their hands on the camera, will be posting some incredible footage.  Again to make this clear, I myself shoot with the Canon T2i, and I’ve loved the way it shoots, do I know about the issues, YES but through the trail and errors of others I’ve learned to not make them an issue.  Also I’ve installed the Magic Lantern Firmware update and now I have a great movie making machine.  I’ve never met Koo (nofilmschool.com) but I’d love to, because he has inspired me to stick to what I believe in.  I’ve been studying about the Red for a while as well and I know, KNOW KNOW that it is what I want to shoot with!  I’m excited about getting it in my hands and I’m excited about shooting my movies with it! Sorry I’ve digressed.  Check out the Canon 5D Mark III, would love to get some feedback regarding it.  I actually just borrowed a 5D MII and learning my way around it.  Man it’s heavy…..lol

Enjoy

Michael “The DP”

So November 3rd has come and gone, some of us have been left with, “well what happened to the 5D MIII?” or better yet “Ah heck, another bunch of camera’s out of my range…” or even still “No one cares about us indie guys :-(“, well in any case, technology is allowing us to do so much more than before and even if you still shoot with a 5D MII you are still ahead of the game in most cases, until you get into the “RED” zone. I must admit, when I first saw the RED at an APPLE seminar in Atlanta so many years ago, I wanted it, badly. It was amazing then and still amazing now! Does this mean I’m not a fan of Canon, oh heck no, I love the Canon gear. It actually allowed me to get into the game without spending $50k. But like Ryan Connolly said in one of his episodes, “I want to educate you guys on both DIY INDIE stuff to big name stuff” (yeah I know I paraphrased) but I understood him totally. It was in respond to a loyal viewer’s comment that “if you start filming on the red, I won’t watch you guys any more”…and I understood him too, cause Ryan and the crew and FilmRiot gives us indie guys so much inspiration as well as knowledge on how to make what we “HAVE” work to higher standards. And that is truly important to me. As an up and coming filmmaker.

I have a T2i, it is not as prestigious as the 7D or the 5D MII, but I’ve seen some amazing things done on this camera that rivals some 5D stuff, and that proves my point that it’s not the size of your equipment but how you use it! 🙂 With that said, Let’s get right to it!

Red and Canon decided to have a slugfest on who’s gonna bring the hottest new toy to the playground. SO LET THE GAMES BEGIN:

Canon introduces the Canon Cinema EOS C300
Here are the official specs:

• 8.3 megapixel 2160×3840 Super-35 CMOS sensor (4K resolution) with Digic DV III processor

• Canon XF codec (50Mbps 4:2:2 1080p MPEG2 MXF) records to two Compact Flash card slots

• Canon LOG gamma, SDI, compact body, Custom Presets and menus similar to Canon XF series

• Exposure and focus control are completely manual — there is no automatic exposure or autofocus

• Sold as a system, including LCD monitor / XLR audio unit, side grip, top handle, and battery charger

• Headphone jack (first EOS-branded camera to have this, though it’s obviously necessary

• Uses existing BP-955 and BP-975 batteries

• Lacks dual-link HD-SDI for native 4:4:4 output, though ships with LOG Gamma unlike the Sony F3

Available January 2012

Price: $20,000 (basic configuration)

Canon Cinema EOS C300

Canon Cinema EOS C300

Canon EOS C300

Canon EOS C300

The RED SCARLET X will do

  • 5K resolution at 12 FPS (for still shooting),
  • 4K at 1-25FPS, 2K at 60FPS,
  • 1K at 120FPS, and also does
  • Quad HD (which is popular for down sampling to 1080P since it’s precisely double the resolution in both dimensions).
  • It uses REDCODE RAW at 50MB/sec (which is 440 megabits/sec), comes with a side SSD slot,
  • Canon lens mount, and will ship December 1st.

Pricing will be $9,750 for the Canon mount version and $11,250 w/ a PL mount lens (and the mounts are interchangeable).

The RED SCARLET-X lists for $9,750 and that is direct from RED: no discounts. However, that is a “brain only” price (though it comes with a SSD recording module, Canon lens mount, and AC adapter). After December 31st, in fact, the RED’s prices will go up. But if you include the prices of the things you’ll need to shoot in each cameras’ most basic configuration, many all of these things are included with the Canon but not with the RED. (A couple of them are not included with the Canon either, where noted).

  • Camera Body
  • Lens Mount
  • Side Handle (RED +$950)
  • Viewfinder/Screen (RED’s 5″ LCD is $1,600, though it’s probably nicer than the Canon’s EVF)
  • Media Module
  • Media for 1 hour of footage (a cheap $100 CF card for the Canon, but two $950 SSDs for the RED)
  • Media Reader (a cheap $50 CF reader for the Canon, but a $250 REDMAG for the RED)
  • Battery Charger (an extra $150 for the RED, though I’m not clear on whether the included AC adapter can also charge batteries)
  • Batteries for a few hours of shooting (an extra $150 battery for the Canon, three $195 REDVOLTS for the RED)
Red Scarlet X

Red Scarlet X

Scarlet-X Aluminum Canon Package

Scarlet-X Aluminum Canon Package

This brings the RED up to an even $15k. As you get into more realistic battery and media numbers —  included is the absolute minimum above — the SCARLET-X becomes more expensive than the C300. Which is to say nothing of the fact that the C300′s 1080P MPEG-2 files require much less computer power to edit and process in post than do the 4K R3D files (thus more expense on the back-end for the RED). I’m gonna say that since the 5D was so good with low, the C300 will be better in low light situations, which makes your necessary lighting budget lower. Nice touch for those of us on a super budget and can’t get lighting. But my guess is if you can get a red or C300 you’re doing alright for yourself! 🙂
Now in both situations you know you can get those super CANON lenses, which I believe Canon will take advantage of in the C300 – Either way, if you got the funds make it happen.  Make sure you think about accessories and upgradeability as well, when factoring your costs.  Chances are, you’ve amassed a great collection of lenses that you probably are gonna wanna continue to use!
So there you have it, hopefully I’ve confused you all beyond any scope of recognition and it will make you want to research more and more until you find the one that fits your needs and budget, cause let’s face it, it’s all about what we can afford and afford to keep up.  We have a saying, don’t buy a Lamborghini unless you have Lamborghini money to keep it up! Maybe that’s too high of an example but you get my drift!
I’ll throw this in to see if it will help your decision, one of my all time favorite movies besides Avatar (and NOT THE LAST AIR BENDER, I’ll hit on that on another post ugh), was The Lord Of The Rings and I’m a Tolkien fan, read the books probably a dozen times.  Well Peter Jackson is making the HOBBIT and guess what he’s using….YES…THE RED, sorry Canon. Not only is he using it, but he’s using it in 3 f’ing D. Man can you imagine? Double REDS for each camera rig set up.  Check it out – 
Well I’m sold on that so far! SO let me get back to work so I can save up to get the camera of my dreams! It will be interesting to see which accessory company shows off in developing stuff for this new line up on either side.  Zakuto already has there hands on one. It would be great to see Letus and Redrock do the same!
HAPPY SHOOTING!

Just wanted to share that our team Running In Time won Best Film in the 24hr Film Race and 8 other categories – for at Atlanta, here is the official word  –  http://www.filmracing.com/24/Competitions.htm – Here is the film, check it out – http://vimeo.com/23098483 shot with both a Canon T2i and 5D and a lot of Red Bull, 5 hour shots and a great hardworking team!

Our team just submitted for the 48hr this past weekend, we had so much fun!  Stay tuned!

My Fig Rig

Posted: April 8, 2011 in Camera, DIY Stuff, Rigs
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Ok so I decided to post a picture of my fig rig in all it’s adorned glory…lol. Well ok not so adorned but it looks boss! Thanks again to CheesyCam for the rig idea!

Well here is the latest for the 550D/T2i, a GUI interface update and also a kill for the AGC – I’m one of those that purchased the cables to disable that…hmmm, I still wanna wait until it has been debugged…tho…lol have fun…here is the link below

http://magiclantern.wikia.com/wiki/550D

Magic Lantern 550d Update, December 12th from Renny Hayes on Vimeo.

So here is my first attempt at using the FIG RIG courtesy of Cheesy Cam, I’m brand new to this so I’m learning about color grading and such, and I tried my hand at creating my own Company Video Logo..lol W.I.P. (work in progress)

I wanted to send a special shout out to CheesyCam.com, Dave Dugdale of LearningDSLRVideo.com, Phillip Bloom, Luke Neumann (who I was introduced to via Dave), Andy Ax, Final Cut King, AppleShakeGuru, for the wonderful tutorials!

More to come…

My Canon T2i/550D

Posted: October 27, 2010 in Camera

I’m totally enjoying my new Canon T2i/550D camera as it is now allowing me to be more creative in my photography and in my videos.  It’s been great learning new things about this exciting new world.  A good friend came over to assist in my very first photo shoot and it was great! Showed me f-stop settings and aperture settings, which were very foreign to me.