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DSLR for Photography and AVCHD video?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
Well me and my Dad are going to pitch in towards a DSLR for family photos, wedding videos/special occasions and suchlike.

My Dad's a photographer and I'm a video editor so we're looking for something which is a good medium between the two.

Looking for something in the £600-700($1200) mark which can snap a nice picture aswell as shoot AVCHD recordings.

My ideal camera would be something which:
  • Can be mounted to tripod or shoulder mount
  • Shoots 1080p at 60fps
  • Shoots 720p at 120fps

One camera that caught my eye recently was the Canon 550D (Rebel T2i in America I believe). Proved to shoot excellent video and snap flawless pictures, but had no ability to shoot 1080p at 60fps. However, that camera is only £350 so I imagine we can pick up something much better with our combined funds.

I don't expect the slow motion option to be there, but if there is a camera in our price bracket which can do that, I will definitely look into it.

That's all I can think of, I'll try and keep updated here.
Edited by Reflux - 4/6/12 at 1:50am
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post #2 of 4
So DSLRs are not quite avchd camera technically since they are not officially branded but honestly if you convert dslr footage to prores the quality is crazy amazing for what you pay. most good quality DSLRs are more of low budget cinema quality cameras as their video are more closely associated with that usage although pretty much everyone is using them for every type of video shooting.

do yall already own canon gear hence the interest in the T2i? I do not think that any DSLR offers 120 fps in 720p and im not sure we will see that capability any time soon just because of the limitations of the cameras and sensors. The GH2 out of the box offers 1080 60i but apparently only in NTSC which is better than nothing but being a resident of Scotland you probably would prefer PAL im sure.

I have seen many examples of achieving smooth slow motion through a 3rd party plugin called twixtor that you might want to check out. it seems to be the most popular right now among DSLR shooters that are slowing footage down. i have seen people get as fast as a claimed 1000 fps but honestly at a certain point the video is affected pretty dramatically.

without a doubt from what i have read in your OP you might benefit greatly from a Canon 60D assuming you are wanting to go canon. you might be capable of getting 2X Canon 60D used within your price range which would be very beneficial when doing weddings and special events. the 60D offers manual audio controls although i highly suggest a preamp which means that you might get a single 60D and preamp such as a juiced link for example. and most DSLR preamps mount on the bottom of the camera and still have a tripod mount on the bottom of the amp for tripod use.

your other cheaper option if you are willing to do it is get a T2i and install magic lantern on it which will allow for manual audio control which is not available on T2i out of box. magic lantern also offers a lot of extra wonderful features for DSLR video such as manual bit rate control if you wanted higher quality video or like having complete control over everything. and with the T2i being cheaper you can get 2 of them easier. only reason i suggest 2 camera is because you mentioned weddings and special events where 2 cameras going at the same time is a life saver

also while watching videos on youtube is not the most suggested way to compare cameras and if you put your footage on youtube most people will likely not be capable of telling if you shot with a cheap lens or a really nice lens if your image is properly exposed. but if you watching your edited footage on a very nice HDTV or project it on a silver movie screen using nice glass really shows the quality of these cameras. you dont need zeiss lenses to get great quality video but various canon L lenses are a great choice. also unless you are on a tripod shoot with prime lenses. while this doesnt seem like much of a tip its very tough shooting DSLR video with zoom lenses unless they are super smooth zooms
Edited by Conspiracy - 4/6/12 at 6:06am
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post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Conspiracy View Post

So DSLRs are not quite avchd camera technically since they are not officially branded but honestly if you convert dslr footage to prores the quality is crazy amazing for what you pay. most good quality DSLRs are more of low budget cinema quality cameras as their video are more closely associated with that usage although pretty much everyone is using them for every type of video shooting.

Yeah, what I meant was the equivalent for a DSLR, couldn't really think of a short term so I just put that in to give a jist.
Quote:
do yall already own canon gear hence the interest in the T2i? I do not think that any DSLR offers 120 fps in 720p and im not sure we will see that capability any time soon just because of the limitations of the cameras and sensors. The GH2 out of the box offers 1080 60i but apparently only in NTSC which is better than nothing but being a resident of Scotland you probably would prefer PAL im sure.
I have seen many examples of achieving smooth slow motion through a 3rd party plugin called twixtor that you might want to check out. it seems to be the most popular right now among DSLR shooters that are slowing footage down. i have seen people get as fast as a claimed 1000 fps but honestly at a certain point the video is affected pretty dramatically.

Yeah we have multiple cameras from Canon, Nikon, Minolta and 15 or so cameras from the 1920's onward.

I assumed you'd mention twixtor, I have used it in the past for when I honestly could not find another alternative. It's great as a fallback option but there is absoloutely no beating pure 120fps with it. I wouldn't say I can't tell the difference, the quality is far more alien looking as you can see the frames sort of being, for lack of a better term 'photoshop liquified' together with twixtor as opposed to actually being filmed.
Quote:
without a doubt from what i have read in your OP you might benefit greatly from a Canon 60D assuming you are wanting to go canon. you might be capable of getting 2X Canon 60D used within your price range which would be very beneficial when doing weddings and special events. the 60D offers manual audio controls although i highly suggest a preamp which means that you might get a single 60D and preamp such as a juiced link for example. and most DSLR preamps mount on the bottom of the camera and still have a tripod mount on the bottom of the amp for tripod use.

I'll definitely look into it. Multiple cameras are an option (and to be honest, I would be more happy with the 550D in this case, as it's video options are far superior with Magic Lantern and a good lens) but it would give my Dad choice for his own camera, or possibly we could do a deal with some photo outlet to do a reduced price on both cameras or throw in a lens if we both buy at the same time sort of thing.
Quote:
your other cheaper option if you are willing to do it is get a T2i and install magic lantern on it which will allow for manual audio control which is not available on T2i out of box. magic lantern also offers a lot of extra wonderful features for DSLR video such as manual bit rate control if you wanted higher quality video or like having complete control over everything. and with the T2i being cheaper you can get 2 of them easier. only reason i suggest 2 camera is because you mentioned weddings and special events where 2 cameras going at the same time is a life saver

I looked into that when I was considering the camera. The firmware itself seems great for anyone considering the camera for video production but doesn't seem to add any options for my Dad who will be taking pictures, if we do opt for the single camera it just isn't really an option. I understand it doesn't remove functionality but there's no easy way of quickly hiding all the screen trash when he's examining the photo on the viewfinder.

Then again, if we were to go for multiple cameras, I could just get a good camcorder which would be far more reasonable.

Quote:
also while watching videos on youtube is not the most suggested way to compare cameras and if you put your footage on youtube most people will likely not be capable of telling if you shot with a cheap lens or a really nice lens if your image is properly exposed. but if you watching your edited footage on a very nice HDTV or project it on a silver movie screen using nice glass really shows the quality of these cameras. you dont need zeiss lenses to get great quality video but various canon L lenses are a great choice. also unless you are on a tripod shoot with prime lenses. while this doesnt seem like much of a tip its very tough shooting DSLR video with zoom lenses unless they are super smooth zooms

Lenses we're going to look into as we need them. But I'll try and persuade myself otherwise from zeiss, I will be picking up a cinema widescreen (2.21:1 or 2.39:1) lens for it regardless, and maybe a cheap fisheye for fun.

It's hard really, because we know the thing won't get a whole ton of use, we only want to buy the one expensive camera. It makes more sense to us somehow, instead of having two things lying around doing nothing having one thing lying around doing nothing. It's almost more incentive to use it once we have it.

But yeah. Looking at getting this before my aunts wedding so I can edit her up a beautiful wedding video for free and Dad will snap a few photos on the day too.

Instead of some Nikon hipster flying in wearing jeans she'll have some family wearing suits doing the photography.

Really appreciate the time you took to write the suggestion. Thanks!
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post #4 of 4
yea. my suggestion for the 60D is mainly because some people are nervous about "hacking" their cameras or installing firmware. but if youre not then T2i magic lantern is a great combo. also if you guys have nice nikon glass i highly suggest getting some adapters and putting it on a canon DSLR for video if you go that road. i hear the 35 f2 is quite nice paired with a canon dslr.

but yea in all honesty as you mentioned the smartest idea might to get a dedicated video camera but it will cost more if you want to be able to have a interchangeable lens video camera. and really the only option is the newerish sony camcorder. because after that you start going into the 2/3" land where you cant use your SLR lenses on the video camera. so DSLR might be a good idea until you need the ability to do multicam video shoots. hope you dont have too much trouble making a decision wink.gif dont forget about canon CLP and going with a refurb smile.gif
Edited by Conspiracy - 4/6/12 at 7:58am
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